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Why I Still Love Blogging

When I started blogging in 2004, it was cool, exciting and popular. Everyone was talking about blogs, commenting on blogs and starting blogs. The love-fest was not a surprise given how blogs gave people a new, user-friendly platform to reach a global audience about any interest or topic.

Fast-forward seven years (wow!) and blogs are a solid part of the landscape but far from sexy or cool. If social media is a dance, blogs are the nice but bespectacled girl/boy standing in the corner while the cool kids (Facebook, Twitter and YouTube) are wildly partying in the middle of the dance floor.

A story in the New York Times talks about how interest among young people in blogs is declining because it is easier to find an audience on Facebook and Twitter. Other reasons for not blogging include being too busy to write post, the lack of readers and the fact blogs don’t help them keep in touch with friends and family.

These are legitimate issues. Blogs can be challenging to write because they need lots of ideas, enthusiasm and, ideally, the ability to write well and quickly. And it can be difficult to attract an audience given the competition. Blogs may not also be the best social tools, compared with Twitter and Facebook.

Nevertheless, I’m still convinced blogs are an important and viable part of the social media landscape even though they may not be sexy. Perhaps the most compelling reason why blogs are still alive and well is they provide people and companies with an excellent platform to discuss ideas, provide commentary and perspective, and establish though leadership. These are things that are difficult to achieve using Facebook or Twitter.

The biggest reason I blog here and a couple of other places (Twitterrati and Sysomos), is I enjoy writing them. I like being able to explore and share my ideas. Whether it’s an audience of 10 or 1,000, it really doesn’t matter. Blogging also made it a snap to walk away from career as a newspaper reporter because I still had a way to deliver my ideas.

Sure, I would like more readers because I think my blog offers solid value and perspective. But blog readership is a tricky beast because quality doesn’t always rule the day. If readership is the main criteria for writing a blog, you will likely be disappointed. Instead, you need to focus on quality rather than quantity.

The other key reason for blogging is it is a great way to support my digital marketing consulting business. When potential clients are deciding whether to spend money on you, they need to be comfortable that it’s the right decision. Despite the economic rebound, companies are still being careful with their spending. My blog, hopefully, shows them my insight, ideas, approach and commitment in a way that Twitter and Facebook could never do.

For me, a blog is a terrific marketing vehicle because it’s user-friendly for people not into Facebook and Twitter. For the most part, my target audience aren’t people into Twitter and Facebook. They’re people running businesses but they’re comfortable reading a blog because it’s a Web site on steroids. For them, blogs are a good way to quickly get a snapshot of who I am and what I do.

I often tell people that blogs are dinner while Facebook and Twitter are desert. Everyone loves dessert because it’s sweet and sexy. This is particularly relevant when it comes to children, who will rush through dinner or not eat it at all because they’re so excited about dessert. In a way, their behaviour about dessert explains their interest in blogs.

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  • http://www.hyndmanlaw.com Rob Hyndman

    I think a decline in the popularity of blogging is a great thing – it will draw more attention to those people who are serious about it, and make it easier to find great content :)

    • http://www.markevanstech.com Mark Evans

      Rob,

      Less competition is always a good thing for those us willing to carry on with blogging so I’m all over your thesis. :)

  • http://brighta.wordpress.com Jeremy Dent

    What about SEO, social media links, making your website interesting, archiving inavualble material, content marketing…there are a many more reasons to blog!

  • http://www.twistimage.com/blog Mitch Joel

    You (and I) also Blog because it is a great publishing platform. You can have a thought, write it out and instantly publish it for free to read, comment on and share. As former (or current?) Journalists, we have to appreciate that this is a huge publishing shift. I love writing and I love having direct access to an audience and community. Writing (or Blogging) is hard work (it was long before Blogging existed). For those of us who love to write… and for those of us who like to read, we should give pause and realize that Blogging hasn’t even begun to scratch the surface or publishing… I love my Blog (and my writing) more and more every day… because I love to write, read and share.

    • http://www.markevanstech.com Mark Evans

      Mitch,

      Clearly, we are kindred spirits when it comes to blogging. Truth be told, I could give up Twitter and Facebook long before I’d stop blogging.

      Mark

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  • http://www.socialcapitalvalueadd.com Michael Cayley

    Network learning and connectivism are my main motives to keep on bloggin’ or commenting or twittering.

    Network Learning: http://bit.ly/h9GwQg

    Connectivism: http://bit.ly/gVzk03

    In other words, I think it is increasing difficult to stay on top of change and develop knowledge unless you (and/or your organisation) has developed network assets and a credible blog is a cornerstone assets.

    Cheers,
    mc

  • JJ Hunsecker

    “They’re buy people who are running businesses…”
    It’s important to impress buy people who are running businesses. They must appreciate bloggers too buy to proofread, spell-check, copy edit or fix their mistakes. That’s the kind of diligence I’d want a consultant billing my company for.

    “I often tell people that blogs are dinner while Facebook and Twitter are desert.”
    Which desert are they? Mojave? Sahara? Gobi? The idea of a “sweet and sexy” desert is certainly intriguing, making us more even more curious about which arid wasteland could be described that way. It might explain why children are “so excited about desert.”

    • http://www.markevanstech.com Mark Evans

      JJ,

      Thanks for the spellchecking. No excuse other than trying to publish something before an early-morning hockey game.

      cheers, Mark

      • http://ZDoggMD.com ZDoggMD

        Your gracious response to that comment says more about the kind of person you are than a blog full of lengthy posts ever could.

  • http://usethegoldenrule.wordpress.com Gaston LeBlanc

    I just wanted to add that new people (like myself) are discovering blogs and blogging. I am amazed at how much good content is out there. The idea that you can publish your work for all to see is profound. I know my writing skills are not up to par but that does not worry me, for I am constantly learning things. And that is another key reason why I think blogs are great.

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  • http://threadyblock.blogspot.com/ Jason Dea

    I enjoy blogging. It allows me to share my thoughts and experiences with others in a freely distributed manner.

    Also one area where I’d love to improve is my writing ability and my ability to tell a story. My blogs give me a great platform to work towards my “10,000 hours” of writing experience.

  • http://lompoulu.blogspot.com/ Lompo Ulu

    I love blogging,
    eventhough I still a novice in this field, blogging help me to reach people from all over the world which has same hobby like me. Thank for your post, Mark. Love It.