We heard the whisperings of some tragic claim the other day, a claim that blogs are dead.
Yes, we were told (true story) that blogging was dead, buried and gone forever. Different media and different tastes had made the platform obsolete and as good as extinct, said this person.
Well, we’re here to tell you the rumors of the blog’s demise have been greatly exaggerated, to borrow a line from Mark Twain.
No the blog isn’t dead. Or rather it is not dead anymore.
Let us explain. Blogging has evolved since its inception in the 1990s and while its original form has declined to the point of extinction, it has been reincarnated several times and it will continue to do so in 2014 and beyond.
What hasn’t changed about blogging is its core purpose. Blogs, since their start in the basements of the earliest adopters of the internet, were a way to share opinion, information and content with those who were interested in the same things. This is still the same.
Blogs, however, look different and are read differently than before, but they can still be a huge boost to organizations seeking to make an impact in their industry or community.
The modern blog ties together multiple platforms and seeks a variety of ways to communicate content. Gone are the days when a blog was simply a journal in digital form. Blogs are, often times, attached to a website or are a website in their own right. They now have social media streams attached to it like Twitter or YouTube. Some come in short and frequent bursts and use pictures to tell a story rather than words. Others have not one, but dozens of contributors and still others crowd-source content from the community.
While the look of blogs has changed, so too has the way audiences read them.
While it was common five to 10 years ago to have a list of 15 to 20 blogs to read weekly, that is no longer the case. More and more people have one or two they read regularly. Rather, reading blogs has become an ever-changing adventure to discover information. A Google search for information on a topic will definitely turn up at least a couple hundred blogs on the subject. Instead of getting 1000 loyal readers browsing your material every week, your blog may receive 1000 readers one week and a completely different 1000 readers the next.
This is where your organization can step in and use a blog to flourish and help others flourish.
Let’s start at the beginning. Your organization and its members/staff/volunteers are experts in something. Whether it is health care, finance, pastry making or something else, your association or non-profit has worked tirelessly to promote and improve your industry.
Writing a blog is a way to share your expertise with the world. Blogs afford you the flexibility and creativity to tell your story and share your knowledge in a variety of ways. From humorous to matter-of-fact, from pictures to words or from short to long, blogs have very few limits if you are willing to spend the time to create great content and are ready leap outside the box.
Sooner or later there will be someone who comes looking for information on the subject your organization is an expert in. It might be a member, someone from the community or even a student looking for information for a project. This is when they will find your blog.
At that moment, when someone looking for information finds your blog, the possibilities are endless. They may read it, say “That’s interesting,” and move on. But they may also learn from it. They may see your passion, creativity and knowledge and realize that the content and the organization are worth investing in. They may take the information and spread it around. They may change the way people see you, your members and your organization.
Blogs aren’t dead. In fact, we at Incline think blogs can breathe new life into non-profits and associations. Although they have evolved from years past, the new species of blogs that has risen up has only improved. Harnessing the power of blogging can take your organization to new heights.
We don’t think it’s time to say bye to the blog, but we want to know what you think. Is the blog dead or alive and kicking? Let us know in the comments!