And the reasons why I still think that it is still worth it for many
Dee Rambeau, author of the Adventures in Business Communications blog, announced last week that he no longer intends to blog because he is, “old enough to know that to waste time is a true crime.” He also laid out his case in Marcomblog, a blog set up for students at Auburn University, and to which I am also a contributor.
Dee has been blogging since 2004, so he has been around long enough to know a few things about blogging and about the PR blogging community in particular. He lays out five basic points (I have paraphrased for sure) about why the practice has become untenable for him. I think there are kernels of truth in what he says, albeit infused with a bit of snark and jaded insight.
Five Problems With Blogging
1. It is hard to monetize the effort and time needed to produce a well-written blog. It is hard; I will give him that point hands-down. As he said himself, a blog is a good way for a company or consultant to develop some thought-leadership in a subject area, but measuring this benefit isn’t easy.
2. Blogging is often about the ego of its author. Again, I can’t disagree with this, if you are spending time putting out content, you hope someone is listening. However, I think that having goals and objectives for a blog helps to temper this somewhat, letting the author focus on what is important and refrain from chasing meaningless stats and rankings.
3. Public companies take a big risk by blogging. They do indeed, but as Forrester’s paper on calculating the ROI of blogging shows, you can assign and quantify the risk. I will have more on this in a future post.
4. You can achieve the same SEO of a blog in your own website by adding a few tools. So, a blog by any other name would smell as sweet. I think the key here is to have dynamic content somewhere, call it what you may. Sorry Dee, this one is just splitting hairs, but I get your point, blogs are just a content management tool, not magic beans.
5. Monitoring blogs is more important than authoring one. Actually, this is the first pillar in a three-step process that I advocate to my clients, and many of my clients never get past the first step, which is active listening or monitoring. I have to wholeheartedly agree with Dee on this point.
That said, there is a lot of wisdom in what Dee has to say as he departs the blog-authoring side of things. And luckily he will be around, as he says himself, as a participant and observer in the areas that most interest him.
I think that it is important to put more critical thought into what and why we are doing what we do, and more importantly in how we advise our clients about proceeding in this area. I personally am still moving forward in my goals for this blog, and I have also developed business through it, or at least because of it. Dee has a achieved his goals and has no more, so I would advise any client at that point to move on.