There are an endless array of reasons business people refuse to blog. But, I think the most damaging is the one that often goes unstated. It’s the perception they have of what blogging really means. Most business people, and people in general, equate blogging with a contemporary form of journaling. They can understand that the practice may popular among teenagers and maybe even therapeutic for adults, but burrowing underneath their skin is the perpetual question, “What can Dear Diary do for my business?”
The simple truth is that a blog post is subject-agnostic. A blog is simply a platform for creating content. It can be a digital notebook or a digital magazine. It’s simply a medium for sharing text, links, photos, audio, and video.
Yes, that content can certainly be all about you. You can use your blog as a platform for talking about your work day, posting pictures of your employee Christmas party, linking to webpages where your product can be bought, and taking video of yourself making funny faces. But, for your business, this should never be the case…
Your website is about you. Your blog is about your customer.
There is a place for bragging. It’s called your “About Us” page. It’s called your “Products” page. It’s called your “Contact” page. But, your blog should never be used as a stream-of-consciousness rant about your thoughts, feelings, opinions, and experiences. Everything you write, every piece of content you share, should offer something of value to your customers.
It’s Not About the Subject; It’s About the Object
As far as what you should write about, there are an endless array of topics. Fodder for your blog lies everywhere you look.
Here are great lists of ideas for blog posts to get you thinking:
- 7 Standard Blog Posts to Get You Past Writer’s Block.
- 10 Blog Post Ideas You Can Use Right Now.
- 12 Most Stimulating Business Blog Ideas.
- 52 Types of Blog Posts That Are Proven to Work.
- 100 Blog Topics I Hope YOU Write.
Or, just google, “Blog Post Ideas for Business” or something along those lines and you will find something to write about. More importantly, you will realize how much you encounter in your everyday operations that can be turned into meaningful content for your customers.
But here’s my point: What you are writing about is not nearly as important as who you are writing for. Every blog post should always offer something of value for your customers. The subject may be about you, but the object should always be the customer.
You can write a story about how you overcome a challenge in the workplace…as long as the point of the story is to teach your customer a lesson.
You can share pictures from the employee Christmas party…as long as the point of those pictures is to show your customers your human side.
You can post a video of you making funny faces in front of the web cam…as long as, well, no. Actually, no one wants to see that. Just stop. Now.
In all seriousness, though, it all boils down to your intent in creating the content you are creating. Before you put something into writing, you should always have asked the question, “What can my customer get out of this?” You want to keep a journal? Fine. There are avenues for that. But the objective of your business blog should always be to inform, entertain, or engage your customers. In the words of Marcus Sheridan, “It’s called a blog; not a BRAG.”