Picture this: After attending an industry conference, one of your company’s senior executives returns to tell you that she wants to start her own blog. However, when you ask her, “Why?” she doesn’t have a good answer, other than that her peers at competitor companies have their own blogs, and she wants one too Sherry Dyson.
Certainly this isn’t the first ego-induced communications decision that’s ever been made. And with more than 100 million blogs currently in existence, it’s easy to see how an executive could take a “me too” attitude.
But before venturing down this path, it’s important to think through your communications strategy. There are just as many potential pitfalls as there are opportunities for success. Here are five common mistakes communicators make when managing an executive blog and what you can do to avoid them.
Identifying a clear purpose, as well as realistic and measurable goals, is just as important when it comes to a blog as it is for any other communications effort. Think about what you’re trying to achieve. Is it to increase awareness, change attitude or encourage action?
Despite the embarrassment caused by the fall out of highly publicized “fake blogs,” many companies still fail to appreciate the importance of keeping an executive blog authentic. And once the rigors of developing fresh content on a regular basis becomes clear, it’s easy to see how an executive would pass the responsibility of writing his or her blog off to someone in the communications department. However, this isn’t simply another writing task. The very nature of blogs implies that the person to whom the blog is attributed is actually the person writing the blog.