A few days ago, USA Today published More Companies Quit Blogging, Go With FaceBook Instead. Huh? I don't get it. You know I don't get it, especially if you read this 2009 post about why a blog adds more long term valuable to your business than a FaceBook Page could ever add. Sure, it takes less time to publish a short FaceBook status update (or 140 characters in the case of Twitter) than it does to publish 140 words. But since when did less time mean more value? If you want to add more value to your business, so you can add more value to your customers's experience, so you can increase the value of your business, the last thing you want to do is ditch your blog for FaceBook
Don't Abdicate Your Throne
How many times have you surrendered control of your community engagement to FaceBook, only to have FaceBook rock your world by doing things like:
- Turning your “fans” into “likers” (remember how awkward that was?)
- Sending your group page to Siberia
- Eliminating the reviews tab (remember those? I wrote about them in 3 Really Simple Ways To Spruce Up Your FaceBook Fan Page)
- Switching to to TimeLine (I wrote about that in What Facebook’s New Changes Mean For Small Businesses
- And don't get me started on FaceBook's ever-evolving privacy issues and what your customers think about them.
And that's a very short list.
There's little doubt that each of those changes was good for FaceBook. But were they good for your business? And even if they were, does it make any sense to turn over your community engagement to a third party that does not have your business's best interests at heart?
I think not.
More People Are Reading Blogs …
… so … why would you stop blogging?
Don't miss this. While the USA Today article highlights a decrease in the number of businesses with a blog, it fails to mention recent data from emarketer showing that the percentage of web surfers reading blogs rose from 45% in 2008 to 53.5% in 2011.
Did you catch that?
Companies that ditch their blogs are doing so at a time when the number of people reading blogs is increasing. Why would anyone do that?
Don't Delegate Your Community To FaceBook (or Twitter or … Anyone)
FaceBook is great, and I use it almost every day at the Indie Business Fans Page. I love connecting with you there (and on Twitter and other places). But FaceBook is not looking out for my business. And it's not looking out for yours either.
If you abandon your blog, or neglect to maintain the one you have, you are literally making it harder for people to find you, trust you, learn about your products, and ultimately, buy your products.
More and more, people are looking to blogs to find the information they need to do everything from choosing health and beauty products to learning how to change a tire.
Whether you want to grow big or grow small, your customers and prospects will be looking to you for the information they need to make wise buying decisions. They will be looking to trust you, and to be able to rely on you as a leader in your field.
What better way to showcase your credibility than to host a blog that you own, manage, and control? What better way to show customers, prospects, media representatives, colleagues, and friends that you are investing real resources in your brand and not relying solely on free services like FaceBook and Twitter to garner attention and sell your products?
A blog is simple, very low cost, easy to manage, and free.
Get one and use it. And don't ditch the one you have.
Question: Are you going to keep your blog (or start or re-start one)? Why or why not?