So you think you want to Blog?
Many of our winery partners say they’d like to start a blog which can be a good thing if you know what you’re getting yourself into; your customers are out there, critics and supporters, and they want to talk about you and with you. A blog is a good way to connect and can help drive traffic to your site. As Jeff Stai from Twisted Oak and Clark Smith from GrapeCraft can attest, there are several good reasons to start a blog and many more reasons not to:
Blogging is a commitment. Most of the winery personnel I know do not only the job they were hired to do, but a few others as well. The perfect voice for your blog is a brand ambassador; someone who knows your message well, is reliable, a very good communicator, and has the time to post daily.
Blogging takes time. Linked to the need for regular updates is the fact that this takes time. The best bloggers, in addition to posting daily: moderate and respond to reader comments on their own site; read other blogs; and respond to commentary regarding their product or winery on other sites.
Blogging demands a thick skin. Not every comment or post is going to be positive. You’ve got to roll with the punches and keep your cool when responding to criticism.
One word… Spam. Are you and your IT department ready for the barrage of junk mail you’ll receive?
Blogging is as easy as writing a letter to two people; someone you know very well and someone you haven’t met yet. Which is not easy at all. Company blogs must be carefully written with those two audiences in mind, with just enough information to entice new customers without giving away the store, and something new and non-repetitive for existing ones.
There is no kiddie pool for bloggers - just the deep end. Your words are out there - thoughts, opinions, feelings - with all of the typos, misplaced prepositions, and missing conjunctions. Just like your website, a blog is a reflection of your brand, but in a much more visceral way. Make sure that you and your company are ready to take the plunge.