To Blog, Or Not To Blog? Five Questions for your Company

Corporate blogging. Should you, or shouldn’t you?Image

As veteran of corporate blogs that worked, and others that didn’t, I can tell you that the answer depends on you. That is, you as a corporate entity, you as a staff, you as a leader. There are many experts offering advice on how to do a blog. I’m going to spend my two cents worth telling you things you should think about while deciding IF you should blog at all.

Blogging is like other forms of social media in that many feel they ought to try it because it appears that everybody else is doing it. That reminds me of a venerable bit of parental advice which goes something like this: “If Johnny jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?”

The fact is that just because someone else has a company blog, doesn’t mean that you should. Some blogs fail simply because a blog is not the right communications strategy for every business based on a number of factors that depend on the business itself, including who is running it. Some have tried it and found that it just didn’t work for them.

That said, a company blog could be a great communications strategy for you, particularly if you have a message you want to communicate continually, over time, and in an episodic fashion. An internal blog, for instance, may be a good way for a boss to communicate with staff – if the boss actually has something he or she wants to say (over time, and in piecemeal fashion) and has the right mechanism (intrinsic talent or access to a good writer) to do it. Or an external or public blog can be a great thing for you if you have repeated good works to share with the world – whether as a corporation, or as staffers who volunteer, etc. – and you have the mechanism and the will to do it.

As you contemplate whether a blog is right for your company, here are five questions to ask yourself:

1) Are there ways a corporate blog can most efficiently (compared to other methods) help you tell an ongoing positive message about your company? There are lots of ways you can share what you’re doing: media releases, press conferences, video, your own website, Tweets, status updates on Facebook, etc. Can you think of how a blog, which requires more words, images, time, and some forethought as to how to share the message, would maximize your chances to tell that positive message?

2) Do you have enough individual stories to sustain a regular corporate blog on a consistent schedule? Is your company giving something back to the community on a regular basis, say, monthly, or quarterly? Do you have an ongoing program which would lend itself to uplifting, positive stories? Do you have staff members who continually do good? Staffers who just do something cool, that makes you proud, that you want to share and share often? Can you do this consistently?

3) Do you have the personnel in place to entrust management of the blog? Who will write and edit? Is there a staff member or a team of staff members who will have the time, the creativity, the will, and the freedom to manage your blog? Do you want to hire an outside expert to manage it for you? If you’re the leader, do you have the trust needed to let the blog happen?

4) Are you willing to put some resources behind it? It will cost time, and therefore money, to allow staffers to blog, to do it yourself, or to hire an expert. Can you budget for that? Can the blog manager get easy access to images, software, clearances, clarifying information, and other resources in a timely manner?

5) What kind of content would you want in your blog? Stories about your company doing good? Stories about employees doing good? Both? Best management practices (based on experience) that translate to good advice offered to the public? Do you want the blog as a regular channel for communication with an internal audience – employees, board members, stockholders, stakeholders?

So, as Shakespeare might have put it, to blog, or not to blog? That is the question. The answer really depends on you, the company, you, the staff, and you, the leader.


Author: nickpattersonfreelance

I'm a professional reporter, writer, editor, teacher, storyteller. A former travel and features editor for Southern Living, I started Velleity because people keep offering me travel stuff and you may as well benefit from it.

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