The flood of information on the internet and on bookstore shelves can sometimes only cast greater fear about how to start a blog. Where does one even start?! What platform should I use? What if I’m not even a writer anyways?
Born to Blog: Building Your Blog for Personal and Business Success One Post at a Time, written by Mark Schaefer (@markwschaefer) and Stanford Smith (@pushingsocial), is a great instructional guide that will give bloggers of various skill levels something to chew on.
Schaefer and Stanford set out to convince even the most skeptical of readers that the title of their book is true – everyone is born to blog because everyone has a story to tell. The book then defines five different types of bloggers – storytellers, dreamers, persuaders, teachers and curators – and helps the reader determine their blogging voice. This is most helpful for beginners, but even as a former journalist who has blogged for years, I found this to be a rediscovery of my own writing voice.
The book also provides great tips on generating content, attracting readers and monetizing your content. These are all questions those who want to start a blog are asking and the authors provide effective advice.
Moving beyond personal blogs, the book outlines the benefits of businesses blogging and the importance of content marketing. These chapters should be read by every business executive to sell them on allowing a blog for their business. While most marketers are already sold on its importance of this kind of marketing and are developing content, these executives don`t necessarily want to place as much weight. Different visions for business marketing is usually the largest roadblock between marketing departments and senior management. I have no doubt they would be convinced when they hear how it will improve their bottom line. They don’t have to invest as heavily in search engine optimization? It will extend our brand further then ever before? It will generate leads?! Providing clear-cut benefits from an outside voice on blogging may be enough to shift the winds of change.
While this book was a great guide for beginners and a “refresher” for experienced bloggers, it lacked depth into the subjects it covered. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing as it is clear that the authors were targeting beginners, but it will leave those with some experience wanting more. I wonder why they chose to publish the book’s content as a paperback sold in stores instead of an e-book sold on the internet? After all, most people looking for this information are looking on the internet anyways. Also, with less overhead costs and a lengthy publishing process, I would think it easier and faster to monetize portions of the book online.
Born to Blog is a great resource for those individuals and businesses that want to start telling their stories directly to the world, and need to find the starting line from where to begin.