If You Want To Be A Leader, Blog

Copyright 2006 Margaret Stead

OR Why you should publish a blog now instead of a web site or standalone newsletter? 

If there is a vital piece of advice you should take when contemplating your ‘Web platform,’ it is to use the words that your visitor might use, in the title of your site. (Your URL.)

(Resist the temptation to call it by your name: www.kevinsmith.info because unless you are ALREADY famous, then NOBODY will find your site by themselves, ever.) 

The other trouble with choosing domains or addresses with ‘KEYWORDS’ is that you will find almost invariably, that the minute you have chosen one (and PAID for it) – is likely to be the minute you can think of a ‘better’ one! (That is probably why I have forty or fifty domain names hanging around spare at GREAT expense!) 

So it makes sense to use blogging software to create multiple blogs with multiple names with your multiple keywords in them. This way if you make the wrong initial choice you can easily and cheaply switch your emphasis to ANOTHER blog. JUST like that. What’s astounding is when you have thoroughly settled on your blogging address you can OVERLAY a traditional domain name, becoming indistinguishable from a normal web site!  

Possessing a web site has become something of a status symbol in business. But casual visitors rarely know the difference between a web site and a blog. It is only when you get into the ranks of the IT world do you find people who can RECOGNIZE a blog when they see one. 

Many admiring commentators even PREFER blogs to web sites because of their INTERACTIVE ability and informal nature. Large companies are increasingly using blogs to stay in touch with their customers, particularly CEOs A good example of a CEO blog would be ‘Jonathan’s Blog’

Jonathan Schwartz puts it very well in the November 2005 issue of the Harvard Business Review: 

“But it’s riskier NOT to have a blog. Remember when, not long ago, CEOs would ask their assistants to print out their e-mails for them, and they’d dictate responses to be typewritten and sent via snail mail? Where are those leaders now? (The last of my contacts of that breed just retired.)” In ten years, most of us will communicate directly with customers, employees, and the broader business community through blogs.  

For EXECUTIVES, having a blog is not going to be a matter of choice, any more than using e-mail is today. If you’re not part of the conversation, others will speak on your behalf-and I’m not talking about your employees.” Full Article only by subscription to HBR. 

So the decision whether to have or a web site or a blog is a ‘NO-BRAINER’ for me. As well as being cheap, cheerful and endlessly adaptable, blogs are beginning to get the RESPECT they deserve.  

Newsletters (or e-zines) are still a great way to keep in touch even with just a small list of people – but they are subject to the vagaries and fashions of the Internet GATEKEEPERS. Until recently there was a joke that was ‘going the rounds’ amongst marketers that went something like this: ‘What do you get at the end of the year with a mailing list of 200,000? 

Answer: 100,000. (Not such a ‘good’ joke, anymore.) I know, from personal experience (My newsletter is regularly read by 15,000 plus readers) that delivering e-newsletters, reliably, has become something of a nightmare. Even Alexandria K Brown, the e-Zine Queen, now has a BLOG! 

When my newsletter was inadvertently ‘bounced’, by an ‘Abuse Team’, (average age: seventeen) for containing the word ‘Hair.’ I knew it was time to look at alternative ways of keeping in touch. Blogs are PERFECT for keeping in touch with your staff, colleagues and customers.