I have a pet peeve regarding some individuals and networks advertising for bloggers. Many of them are jumping on the blogging bandwagon without actually knowing what blogging entails. They know blogs are popular and profitable and want in, but have no clue about blogging. In fact, many places want articles and not blog posts. Trust me, there’s a difference.
Articles are well researched paragraphs of information following a specific format and word count. They’re static pieces of content in which the author cites sources and speak with a particular tone and voice.
Blog posts are less structured. Posts can be one line or several paragraphs. They can be expert interviews or opinion pieces. A post can consist of a photograph, a video or useful content such as this. Blogs are supposed to encourage community and posts should elicit conversation among your readers.
Finding a Happy Medium
One of my former clients has a magazine publishing background and wanted her blogs to run the same way. She didn’t want me to use “I’s” and insisted on each post meeting a certain word count. Another client found my blogging to be too conversational and turned off the commenting feature because it was too “distracting”. Speaking of distracting, a current client sent an email around to all of his bloggers because he felt images were unnecessary and rather we didn’t use them.
In these situations I do my best to work with the client, but also offer a few suggestions as to why it might be beneficial to encourage a more open-minded approach to blogging. Some clients are willing to compromise, but the ones that don’t “get” it tend to have a “my way or the highway” type of attitude.
If your client wants you to write an article as opposed to a blog post, be sure you’re adequately compensated, especially if you’re expected to do a lot of heavy research or interview experts. $3 a post isn’t going to cut it for a heavily researched 500 worder. I understand why blogging pays less than traditional writing, but if it’s traditional writing you want, you’ll have to open your wallet a little wider.
I’m not saying you should pay for a couple of lines a day either, but if you’re looking to hire bloggers it’s a good idea to take some time out to learn a little bit about blogging and what it entails.