Wednesday, May 7, 2008

to blog or not to blog

Unfortunately, I am up 2:00am ... I won't bother with why.  Since I was up I hit my normal round of Blogs.  I don't normally like to re-post large volume's things that I find online; however, I read this over on the pixelated image and felt it fit in with a post I made a few days ago around the origin of my blog ... enjoy:

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Compelling Reasons for Blogging.

1. Blogging is relational. Blogging is a higher-touch use of technology than your conventional website. It’s more relational. The more people get to know you and love you, the more they’ll be inclined to hire you. I got my best, and favourite, client through my blog.

2. Blogging is viral and your website probably isn’t. Viral marketing is huge. HUGE, I tell you. The rise of youtube and stumbleupon and the million other sites that enable social marketing are evidence of this. A blog allows people to connect, forming ad-hoc networks of like-minded people. The more people that know you, the greater the base of prospects you have.

3. Blogging will make you famous. Or infamous. Or almost famous. A great blog stands out in a sea of really mediocre ones and even if you’re not getting ten-thousand visits a day a good blog can provide a growing platform from which to launch your fame. Or infame. Or almost fame. You get the point. Consider your blog your in-house PR firm. Blogs are the new fame-makers.

4. Blogging will connect you to other photographers and increase your access to people you can teach and people you can learn from.

5. Your competition is blogging.

6. Blogging forces you to keep current and keep your paint stirred. Like teaching, it can be an excellent way to learn and solidify your photographic thoughts and practice.

7. Blogging makes you a producer, not merely a consumer - it enables you to give back to the community and that’s a karmically cool thing to do.

8. Blogging allows you to use phrases like “karmically cool” with reckless abandon.

9. Because blogging is a form of conversation and all opportunities in life begin with a conversation. The more conversations you have, the more likely you are to encounter new opportunities because opportunities come through other people and our primary connection to other people is conversation. Some of the biggest opportunities of my professional career have come through blogging.

Reasons You Should Absolutely Not Blog. Not Ever. Never.

1. You have nothing to say. Some people just aren’t there yet. I think everyone has an opinion, some of them even informed, but not everyone has the confidence to express them (which in some cases is good) If you don’t have anything to say your blog is dead before it gets off the ground.

2. You can’t write. Let’s face it, some people chose photography as their idiom because they’re better with images than words. If this is the case, don’t force a square peg into a roundy hole. I do suggest, however, that before you jump ship and abandon the idea of blogging entirely, you consider publishing an image a day. We don’t always need words.

3.You’re a shameless self-promoter and insist on only plugging your latest achievements and ego-drivel. People come to your blog to GET something, not to give it. If you insist on sucking the life out of your readers with the All About Me show, you’ll find them dropping like flies. Unless you’re Paris Hilton. Or Angelina Jolie. There is never enough Angelina.

4. You don’t have the time to commit to it. If you publish a personal blog to keep family up-dated with the latest pictures of kittens, then how frequently you publish is not much of an issue, but professionally a blog must publish with reliable frequency. Sure, take a hiatus once in a while, take a no-blog day, or publish only on Mondays. But make it reliable and consistent. If your readers can’t rely on new content they’ll go elsewhere.

5. You don’t want to blog. Fair enough. Don’t blog. If you hate bloggin and do it resentfully it’ll come across in your writing and eventually you’ll be blogging as bitterbloggerwithnoreaders,com

6. You can’t handle the trolls.If you can’t handle the odd jerk showing up uninvited, then blogging may be less appealing to you. Once in a while someone logs on and starts a fight. It’s a little like someone arriving at your home, walking in, and lighting the sofa on fire. You can either ban them, delete them, put up with it, or stop blogging. I don’t think this is a good reason not to blog - but it’s a reality. Fortunately photographers tend to be a civil lot and if you fill your blog with big words, the jerks tend to stay away.

No one is forcing a blog on you. But there are compelling reasons to consider it. It’s good marketing, it’s good to give back to the photographic community, and it’s good for the soul. If you do it right, a blog can be a real assest and a real blessing. More about doing it right tomorrow.
Thanks David for such great insight!  Ya hit the nail on the head.

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