To blog, or not to blog…

Should your company start its own blog?

It may seem like a no-brainer. After all, blogs have established themselves as credible tools to connect with stakeholders in ways that traditional one-way media do not.

But starting a blog because everyone else is doing it is the first step toward failure. If memory serves, this excuse didn’t work too well in high school, and it doesn’t work now, either.

Before you reserve a domain name, install the software and tell all your friends, you may want to take some quiet time to consider what you hope to accomplish with it. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Why are you considering starting a blog?
  • What’s the value proposition for people who might read it?
  • Precisely who’s going to read it?
  • What kind of resources will you be able to devote to your blog?

If you’re not able to come up with solid answers to these basic questions, take the time to think them through. Talk to your stakeholders, solicit feedback from them on what you’re doing well – and not so well – from a communications perspective. Use their feedback to identify where you could be doing a better job of keeping them in the loop.

That last piece – finding ways to improve the way we communicate with our stakeholders – is critical. Blogs are only one of the many tools available to today’s businesses to reach out and engage the people who matter. Depending on the outcome of this early, informal process, you may or may not decide that launching a blog makes sense at this time.

In subsequent blog entries, we’ll explore this prep process more deeply. For now, take the time to think the blog rationale through, and feel free to share the results in a comment.

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