If you want customers or stakeholders to know and trust you, you need to give them a reason. You need to tell your story convincingly and interestingly — and a blog is a perfect venue to tell it.
Great blogs share information unavailable anywhere else. That can include pictures, videos, tips on new products and back-stories. You can showcase individual employees or teams, share insider insights and create infographics that describe product or service innovations.
Companies and organizations with smart blogs personalize their content. They may hand over the keys to the blog to an individual or small group to act as the voice. They may concentrate their content on subjects intended to engage readers, instead of just informing them.
While some complain about the time it takes to brainstorm and produce content for blogs, the truth is blogging makes organizations more aware of themselves at a human level. You have to look around to find good stories, and they are inevitably all around you to find.
Blogging demands keen observation, like any other form of writing. You take notice of what's different or special in your operation or of a coworker who went the extra mile for a customer or client.
A blog is a license to unleash your imagination — and your curiosity. It would have been fascinating, for example, if Marty Cooper of Motorola had blogged about the thought process he and his fellow workers pursued in untethering phones from homes, offices and even cars, 40 years ago. It would be equally interesting if Cooper, who continues at age 85 to imagine the mobile phone as an extension of human capability with applications in medicine and education, could explain how he sees the future unfolding.
Taking the time to think about what you are doing can result in more than stimulating blog posts. It can yield an awakening of where your company or organization is headed and why.
Arik Hansen, writing for ragan.com, posted a blog about five inspiring corporate blogs, each of which has a different personality and offers readers something unique. The Boeing blog describes the manufacturing process of sophisticated aircraft. IBM highlights some of its technology experts. Whole Foods Market captivates readers with recipes, food tips and information about nutrition. Google gushes about its innovations, including updates from the CEO. Target's "a bulls-eye view" blog offers videos and celebrities to engage viewers.
As Hansen says, blogging is anything but dead. Instead, it has matured into a lively, reliable channel to tell your own story and build relationships based on solid content.