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June 23, 2009

A Corporate Blogger’s Starter Guide

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A few week’s back, Lisa Barone penned a post on Outspoken Media, seductively titled Why I Hate Bloggers. She makes a point most can relate to: there are more blogs that you don’t read than those you do read. It’s funny hearing the message come from a renowned blogger — an entertaining, educational, well-respected one, at that — but we all know where she’s coming from.

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Photo by sa’xic via Creative Commons

The advent of blogging has brought on a pretty significant shift in the way people communicate and, with its growing popularity, has attracted all kinds to the blogging arena. As expected, some blog content is more appreciated by a general readership than other blog content. But from personal experience, I believe that almost every would-be blogger has thoughts and ideas worth sharing. Likewise, many businesses would benefit by communicating important news and events through an informal medium that invites engagement, like a blog. The key is figuring out how to communicate in a way an audience will embrace.

Over the years, Bruce Clay, Inc. bloggers have written pretty extensively about corporate blogging here on the BC blog. In fact, today I was messing around with some of the categories used on the blog and I realized there’s a veritable treasure trove of corporate blogging resources hidden within the archives. It’s about time some of those posts saw the light of day again, so I’ve rounded some of them up to bring you a fast-and-sweet starter guide for corporate blogging.

Why Blog?

Corporate Blogging Isn’t About the Media: Who says traditional companies shouldn’t have blogs? To the contrary, Lisa explains that if a company doesn’t know how to share their message through online media, they might as well quit already. A company should blog, not for media attention, but rather, to engage customers: “The sooner you realize that your corporate blog isn’t about you or your company or the media and that it’s about your audience, the greater your blogger experience is going to be.” Traditional companies that are afraid of entering the blogosphere should realize that the Web isn’t going anywhere any time soon and that opportunities online abound.

The State of Blogging

A Report on Blogging: Last September, Technorati published a series that analyzed trends and themes of blogging and surveyed the effect of blogging and blogs. There are almost a million new posts published every day, proving that the medium has gone mainstream. Already, new channels are springing up to be the next big thing and blogging is a widely-accepted and relatively-understood communication medium. Blogging has proven profitable for some, and the medium continues to evolve.

Finding Content Ideas

Don’t Be Popular. Be Useful.: It’s often tempting to pay attention to metrics that illustrate the popularity of blog posts through stats like retweets or page views. But focusing solely on visibility can get you to take your eye off the prize — providing something valuable and useful to readers. Of course you want to author a must-read blog, but you’ll achieve that by giving readers something unique or previously unknown.

Finding Your Blogger Voice

Can You Be A Corporate Blogger Without Losing Yourself?: Any corporate blogger may eventually face a time when his or her opinion conflicts with the organization’s stance. It can be a challenge to keep a balance between supporting the company and maintaining personal authenticity. But organizations that completely marginalize dissenting opinions are in danger of losing their audience’s trust. There’s little harm in mentioning different view points because it makes the organization look open to diversity and even gives the company a chance to argue their opinion as well. In the end, it helps when the blogger and the company hold many of the same values and goals.

Using Blogging for Reputation Management

Using Your Blog To Keep Fires on Your Own Site: No matter how hard you try to avoid it, some disgruntled customer is going to flame your company online. Understandably, online reputation management is a growing industry, as well as a growing priority for many businesses. A blog is a convenient tool that can help companies stay informed of and contribute to conversations. A blog is a great place to announce possible concerns, new procedures and technical difficulties, among other reputation nightmares. By addressing your audience up front, you can gain trust and maintain some measure of control in the discussion.

Tips for Liveblogging

A Guide for Liveblogging a Search Conference: A veteran liveblogger, Lisa shares her tips for the real-time, on-the-road blogging style known as liveblogging. Don’t forget to bring your hardware, plan your topics ahead of time, claim a good spot near a power outlet, turn on your best focusing power, and don’t drive yourself too crazy with editing.

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3 responses to “A Corporate Blogger’s Starter Guide”

  1. Elizabeth writes:

    The “Why” is exactly right. It’s not about you; doing things like blogging are to help you listen to your customers and to help them with their needs. This ties in perfectly with your content ideas be useful, not popular. Write content that helps solve your customers problems, makes their lives easier. Blogging and other social media outlets can be very useful to your company if you focus on your customers and what’s best for them.

  2. George writes:

    Give proper advice or suggestion to the customer,and feel free to share particular info.regarding the customers query.And discuss on it which makes customers happy.Social media is play a great role in this.

  3. Mandy writes:

    Blogging can provide a useful business tool not only to promote your ideas but more importantly receive feedback and ideas from you customers. This will help you response to your customers more effectively and address issues more quickly. This will therefore allowing you to manage your reputation and keep your customers on board.



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