I have heard social media experts on LinkedIn and at work comment on how important it is to write engaging material using blogs and other platforms as a way of promoting your personal brand or business.
Some companies I have spoken to see the purpose of this method of social selling, others are less convinced. Particularly when the results are difficult to measure, the effort involved to write, edit, and publish the final draft can be time-consuming, time that could be used towards achieving more tangible marketing or sales goals.
I have been writing blogs on LinkedIn and other sites for a few years now. The process of writing usually takes me a day that I must prioritize in-between other jobs. Once the article is complete, I return the next day to edit the final draft. If I am happy with the final text, I publish it.
I am not measured on the success of my articles nor the time to write them. This removes a lot of extra pressure from the process and has encouraged me to write more.
Therefore, I can only imagine how difficult it must be for those who need measurable success for their efforts through such metrics as likes, shares, or comments. The impact this has on your creativity, and thus the content you are trying to create, would surely have a negative influence.
Further, I have found it difficult to see any trends that show me how to write blogs that will guarantee such accolades. While some of my blogs receive noticeable appreciation with many likes and shares, others have received none. This could be disheartening if I were focused on this outcome to justify blogging.
It could be that writing only for accolades will affect the way you write and what you write about. Creating blogs because competitors are doing it or a general assumption that marketing your business online now requires blogging will not make for interesting content.
People are already reading quite a lot online: daily posts on social media platforms, texts, emails, and many other messages that demand some sort of response, particularly from friends and family. With such an array of content to be read and responded to, blogs should offer something different and certainly not require any response. The focus first and foremost should be on content that is interesting to read. Therefore, relying on a response from the reader is counterproductive.
I recently wrote about my own experience writing blogs on LinkedIn; how I started publishing articles online and how the process became easier with each post. By the time I wrote my first blog on LinkedIn, I was already happy with my style of writing. This helped a lot when some of my blogs didn’t get the online recognition that rewards such efforts. But I also found I would get compliments in person from colleagues, family, and friends that read my articles.
Such feedback reminds me that, even though results of blogging might not be obvious, it does not mean that no one is reading.
For more on evaluating the outcomes of effective social conversations, see Goal!!! Keeping Score With Digital Selling Metrics.