Blogging: Balancing Professional Versus Personal [Chart]

13 Blog Elements To Consider

blogging--balancing personal and professional As happens with social media, many bloggers find that the distinction between their professional and personal lives tends to blur. It’s easy to say keep your professional exchanges separate from your personal ones on social media platforms. But, as in real life relationships, this can be easier said than done. Nowhere is this more challenging than blogging where the best bloggers integrate their personality into their content.

Unlike social media networks where you can limit which of your connections see the information you post, your blog reveals to the world information you, the blogger, may not realize you’re disclosing. This is attributable to the nature of the quicker, less edited style used in blogging.

To help you navigate the blogging waters regardless of whether it’s designed to achieve professional or personal goals, here’s a chart across a variety of topics. (Note: When we discuss personal blogs, the reference is to something broader than a personal journal.)

Blogging: Balancing Professional Versus Personal
13 Elements You Must Consider

Topic

Professional Blog

Personal Blog

Hosting
  • Integrate into company website
  • Host on your own
  • Host on your own
  • Write on WordPress.org, Blogger.com or similar site
Branding
  • Extension of corporate branding
  • Special blog branding
  • Special blog branding (Understand that no branding is still branding)
Topic
  • Company or product related
  • Executive platform
  • Advocacy
  • Any area of interest (Including news, hobbies, mommy/daddy blogs)
Language use
  • Sound like a real person
  • Skip corporate-speak
  • Avoid foul language
  • Be appropriate for company image you wish to convey
  • Sound like a real person
  • Omit the foul language (but can be useful if in character)
Photographs
  • Company photographs
  • Infographics
  • Stock photography
  • Your own photographs
  • Flickr, etc. (Where you have permission)
Bloggers/
contributors
  • Group of executives and/or employees
  • Professional group/  association
  • Editorial staff (Media blog)
  • Customers and/or fans
  • Ghost writer
  • Individual
  • Group of individuals interested in the topic
Publishing
schedule (aka blog post frequency)
  • Needs to be consistent. Best if at least 2-3 times per week
  • Needs to be consistent—shouldn’t just write when sprit moves you
Guest posting
guidelines
  • Will you accept guest posts? If so, are there any special requirements?
  • Experts
  • Employees
  • Customers
  • Will you accept guest posts? If so, are there any special requirements?
  • Experts
  • Other bloggers
Comment
policy
  • Determine what’s acceptable to post-no foul language, no links, no blatant self promotion, etc.
  • Determine what’s acceptable to post-no foul language, no links, no blatant self promotion, etc.
Terms of use
  • Can content be reused by outsiders & under what conditions?
  • Can content be reused by outsiders & under what conditions?
Private
information
  • Keep private information off of blog
  • Sprinkle in personal details only when and where appropriate
  • Keep private information off of blog
  • Add personal details over time but don’t over do it!
Support
  • Content creation
  • Creative
  • Technology/website support
  • Technical support – useful to have
Budget
  • Needed to support efforts
  • Should increase to support evolving goals, if cost effective
  • Useful to have for branding, technical support and for URL, plug-ins, etc.
 © 2012 Heidi Cohen – HeidiCohen.com – All rights reserved

 

When examining the differences between professional and personal blogs, a lot depends on the topic, positioning, target readership and the blogger. As with any social media platform, you have to be human and transparent. When in doubt, choose to be more restrained in your approach and your language. Understand that your blog has a potentially broad audience that’s likely to have a variety of different perspectives and language standards.

What else would you add to this list? How would you make the distinction between professional and personal blogs?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen


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Photo credit:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/72213316@N00/5527423785/

 

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