(Wherein I go ahead and say that it’s okay not to have a blog. Because a blog written badly is worse than having no blog at all.)

In the wee hours this morning, when I was awake before I wanted to be, I lay very still in bed and scrolled through Facebook on my phone. Which is where I found a link, and I followed that link, and now that I’ve had a cup of coffee I’m ready to explain to you why I got out of bed so annoyed today.

Blogging = writing, no matter what you blog about. It's worth the effort to do it well!

I got out of bed annoyed today because one of the first things I read this morning was a sentence containing: “the relationships with our now and future users.” These words were cushioned inside a sentence explaining what factors Hootsuite considered when rebranding.

That’s not how you use that word, now.

I couldn’t keep reading after that. I just couldn’t. I could tell this was supposed to be an important blog post. Rebranding is a tough thing, and selling a new brand to an audience of dedicated users can be very challenging. People don’t like change. Rebranding is change. This post is an announcement, an explanation, an argument, a celebration. But I couldn’t read it. Our now users?!?

Every company has a blog. Tiny or huge, local or multinational, every company has one. Some use their blog to “build community”, some to market their products, some to post press releases. But whatever the purpose or use of a company blog, I don’t get the impression that all companies  – especially, ironically, social media companies – go out of their way to make sure their bloggers are good writers.

Blogging = writing.

This is simply a truth. And good writing is important. Not only does good writing lead readers to establish an impression that the company is good at what it does, it also, you know, clearly conveys the ideas the company wants to convey.

Bad writing reflects terribly on companies. And bad writing inserts a lot of noise into a company’s message.

Sure, I’m thinking mostly about big companies as I let off the steam of my morning annoyance, but the same thing goes for even the tiniest business. If you have a blog, that blog is made up of writing, even if it’s mostly pictures with just a few captions.

You don’t need to be a master writer. But you do need to do it not badly.

And if you can’t do it not badly, then it’s okay not to have a blog.

It’s okay.

Better not to have one than to have one that does you no good.

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Melissa @ Miso Crafty Knits

I just screamed out “YES!” when I read the part about social media companies having good writers. I’m still amazed by some of these social media writers who can’t spell or know how to use spell check, but most importantly don’t know the difference between ‘you’re’ and ‘your’ amongst other words. For some reason, that really irks me.

Betsy Greer

Is it bad that my brain signaled “important blog post” before I got annoyed with the way it was written? And even worse, that I wouldn’t have even noticed it if you hadn’t pointed it out? Krikey! Does this mean that the laziness of some internet writers has eaten my brain? Or that its ubiquity has damaged (some of) our reading skills? I.e., we’re so used to crappy writing that after a spell, we become “used” to it?

Shalagh Hogan

So amused by and behind this Kim. Love your bolding and italicizing.Good writing IS important. The day that isn’t true, well, I’m hoping that day never comes in my lifetime.

Love to ya’,

Nancy Cavillones

One of my biggest pet peeves of all time! If I’m going to take the time to read a blog, I want the writer to take the time to proofread. A typo here or there is inevitable maybe but consistently delivering writing full of mistakes is just annoying, for the reader. For awhile, I kept noticing a handful of bloggers using “peaked” when they meant “piqued,” and some other misuses/misspellings that I can’t remember now. I get especially irked when it’s clear that the writer means to make money with his/her blog.

Kristy Bryson

(You know what I hate worse than poorly written blogs? Writing a comment and then losing the page for some mysterious reason. Ugh.)

Well said! I have a degree in English and creative writing. Everyone wagged fingers in my face and smiled smug, eat-shit-and-die grins, while telling me that my degree was useless. Useless? We need more talented writers in this technological age than we’ve ever needed them! Oh no, they say, you English, History, and liberal artsy-fartsy pants over-educated losers are not needed. Neither are the librarians (I’m one of those, too, with a whopping Master’s Degree to prove it). Just practice questions like, “Would you like fries with that?” That’s what they say, while they misspell “you’re” and “your” on billboards larger than my house or ask me to buy their overpriced “anus burger”. No need for me, huh? Has fact-checking gone the way of the dodo? I worked for a major publisher for two years and it shocking, disgusting what gets into print under the label of “nonfiction”. There are deadlines to meet, you know. No time to consider long-term consumer loyalty or brand reputation.

Kim, I am so there with you. I can’t promise that my blog is spotless, but I do try. And I don’t blog often for the simple fact that I refuse to make it too fast and dirty of a process. I have that luxury, though, because I don’t have anything near as cool as a book or a professional career to keep alive. Keep up the good work and words!

Summer Crosson

I agree on the corporate side, but I will add that starting a blog was an excellent tool for me to improve my own writing. It’s a great tool for developing your own voice and pushing yourself to try new writing techniques in a low-cost, low-risk environment.

So I would add the caveat that for amateurs, a blog is a great tool to become a better writer.

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