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4. Content fails the ‘so what?’ test

8. Fear of making enemies

All blog content needs to pass this. Your blog is really only as strong as your weakest post. Think about it, readers are likely visiting a blog for your ideas and if they come across one that isn’t worthwhile you may lose them forever. Your blog puts your thinking on display for the world to see. Always ask ‘so what?’ and think about what the reader takes away, where the benefit is and why they should listen to you.

The truth is most companies wouldn’t dare make enemies with another blogger or web personality. Oh, if only they understood basic psychology or how the social web actually works (enemies link to you, debate with you, hate turns to love much easier than indifference turns to love).

5. Not consistent enough This one speaks for itself, if you’re not updating what’s the reason people have to come back? This one is obvious (if un-followed) but so frequently missed.

6. Trying too hard Yes, it’s possible to try too hard. Natural dialog flows easily and effortlessly, like art. It’s less the product of a process and more the result of a flow of experience — improvisational, not mechanical. Process for some things like editorial calendars for example is important. But ensure it does not get in the way of creative content.

7. Lack of differentiation Corporate blogs are a dime a dozen. How, exactly, is your blog different from the competing companies in your category? Find this differentiation point, whether a unique voice, visually stunning content, creative post concepts or something that makes your blog stand out from the pack.

22 | The Changing Face of Communications

9. Digital marketing strategy problems at the company level When there is no internal digital marketing strategy for the whole team to follow (or there are internal conflicts over who owns digital) it quickly becomes apparent in a corporate blog. A company needs its own online marketing approach agreed before engaging in a dialog with the web. Far too many (even large) businesses lack this.

10. No effort at forging connections Without actively connecting to others, you will never form a network of your own. Your content should be creating connections organically as part of your process. Doing something like making every post a ‘link post’ is a simple enough way to do this but you should be doing multiple things which forge connections on a consistent basis. Get creative; there are really no limits on how to do this.