Here are a few of the key points she makes:
Choose the right topic and make it specific enough. She goes on to say that you’ve got to be passionate about the topic of your blog. I think this is one of the most common reasons why some bloggers give up. They’re interested in a topic but not passionate enough about it to invest the time required to create a dynamic and interesting blog…one that visitors will want to keep coming back to.
Don’t assume your company’s online discussion groups, message boards, etc., are a suitable replacement for a blog. They’re not. It’s like the difference between a hammer and a screwdriver. Both are important tools but they’re used for different situations.
Don’t let your IT department build a blogging platform from scratch. There are too many free or inexpensive options to choose from. Use one of the existing platforms. Don’t take the bait when one of your programmers says they can create something better…they can’t, and it probably won’t have the power and flexibility of the existing tools.
I often overlook the backmatter that comes in most books (e.g., appendixes and other items not deemed important enough to appear earlier). Don’t skip the “bonus resources” in Debbie’s book. I particularly liked reading the usability and design coverage; I’ve seen much of this before but it’s good to read it again to see how you’re doing, what you might need to change, etc.
One of the common promises of corporate blogs is that they solve the “transparency and authenticity” issue with many companies today. Debbie notes this as well. My only comment is that I’ll bet most companies don’t think they have a transparency/authenticity problem. Maybe they’re in denial. Or, maybe it’s the result of the Sarbanes-Oxley world in which we now live, but a lot of companies continue to be extremely uncomfortable with the transparency of a corporate blog. Either way, Debbie’s book is a great tool you can use to not only determine if corporate blogging is an option for your organization, but also how to get a good blog off the ground.