Home > blogging, Public Relations Strategy > PR’s Blogging Lessons Learned

PR’s Blogging Lessons Learned

In February, I posted that this blog would be coming to an end by summer (Sun Setting on Paul Roberts on PR). The delayed ending was planned in order to give myself some time away (to reflect) before posting my final few entries.

First, a reminder of where I started and why I created this blog (The First Day of the Rest of My Blog). The short version is that realizing that public relations and communications as a whole was changing, I decided to start a blog and join Twitter in order to gain the hands on experience necessary to properly counsel companies.

So, after a couple of years of blogging, I’ve decided that (for now) I will walk away from this blog. Not because I think I’ve learned everything there is to learn, but because the entire idea of this blog was to serve as an experiment, and as such it has as shelf life.

To be honest, the last couple of months in which I haven’t blogged, have been fantastic. It is sort of like when you get to a point in your career where you finally make enough money that you can quit your part time job. It has been very freeing. Don’t get me wrong, there is much that I’ve missed about blogging, but personally, my life has never been better. I’m spending more time with my wife and kids on weekends, no longer writing late at night or early morning, my health is the best it’s been in years. Maybe this isn’t all because I’ve stopped blogging, but you get the point.

Blogging is work and takes time. Every communications person advising a client starts with the usual guidance. Blogging is a commitment. Blogging requires consistency. Blogging is more than just write and release, it takes some marketing etc. Now, did my years of blogging provide me with the insight to provide any alternative advice? Maybe, but maybe not. Does this mean that I would have been better off just parroting the usual advice without having ‘wasted my time’ blogging. No, because the hands-on experience has been invaluable – even if is doesn’t change the bullet points on my next Blogging 101 PowerPoint slide.

Blogging is rewarding. For some people, rewarding can mean business or career benefits and personal satisfaction etc.  The point is that most things worth doing require effort and I believe more than ever before that blogging is worth doing for many reasons. While truth be told, the most interesting interaction I’ve had with other bloggers has been via email, in person and via DM on Twitter, here is the page on my blog that I never expected. I’m humbled when someone takes the time to read my posts, so you can imagine how it makes me feel when a fellow blogger takes the time to reference this blog in their own post. Each entry on this page is an honor – one that I never expected.

Blogging is powerful. This may be the place where this blogger has had his eyes opened the most. Again, any Blogging 101 PowerPoint deck is going to espouse the power of creating a blog, but this is one place where I’ve been educated in a way that only first-hand knowledge can provide. Over the course of the last couple of years, I’ve been amazed with the interaction this blog as provided to me. The experiences and lessons from the last couple of years have impacted my opinion and changed me from a guy who thinks a good corporate blog is a luxury, to a communications professional that knows it is a required element of a communications program.

Blogging is subjective. Yet again, this is a piece of knowledge that I probably had going into this experiment, but still a worthy lesson to experience first hand. Going back to that PowerPoint deck, we all know what in theory makes a good blog, but there is no accounting for taste. There are a number of bloggers that I read regularly that are smart, funny, post regularly, include interesting blog elements such as video and graphics and are accomplished well respected industry experts, but are not as popular as some other often less interesting and less informative bloggers. There is a science to creating a good blog. But creating a great (or popular) blog is an art.

And finally, blogging like any other communications tool should be reevaluated from time to time. From time to time it is necessary to reevaluate the benefits, challenges, goals and rewards of a blog and adjust accordingly. Even if that means moving on.

While I reserve the right to change my mind, currently, there are two final posts planned for this blog. The next entry will focus on how this blog has impacted my view of the right way to run a PR program.

As always, a huge and sincere THANKS to those who have taken even a second of their valuable time to read what I have to say.

Photo by http://www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net

  1. June 13, 2012 at 9:55 am

    You know how I feel about your departure from the ‘sphere. So sad I did not get a chance to meet ou sooner. Best fortune in the next phase, and please don’t be a stranger?

    • June 21, 2012 at 8:18 am

      Thanks for the comment and the kind words. I’m glad this blog helped me connect with you. I’ll be around. Talk soon. Thanks again.

  2. June 13, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    Paul, I was so happy to see you appear on my Reader today! I also have been taking a bit of a hiatus from blogging as my job responsibilities are changing and I’m running out of blogging steam this summer. I couldn’t agree with your learnings more– the best way to know how to teach others is if you do it yourself. I had a similar reason for starting to blog and use Twitter, and it has been an invaluable experience and one that’s connected me with lots of smart people–just like you!

    Best of luck to you in where your career takes you 🙂

    • June 21, 2012 at 8:19 am

      Krista, I was just as happy to see you stop by and comments. Seriously, thanks. It has been great to connect with you. I’m sure we’ll still be running into each other on Twitter.

  3. June 21, 2012 at 7:41 am

    I’ll admit my heart hurt a little bit the first time I read this. But I’ve had time to reflect and I think it’s great you know enough about blogging to counsel clients, but also enough about yourself to know when it’s time to retire. Go out on top, as they say. I do hope, however, this doesn’t mean you’re leaving the social web. I have to have my Paul fix somehow!

    • June 21, 2012 at 8:17 am

      As always Gini, you are too kind. I don’t know about going out on top of anything, but I do appreciate the comment. I’ll still be around and reading – with huge respect for bloggers like you that turn out a ton of quality content regularly – and sticking my opinions in when I can’t help myself.

  4. June 22, 2012 at 8:51 am

    Well Paul, I just discovered that as I only discovered Gini Dietrich last week and am already hooked you and I have the same Friday ritual. Imagine my disappointment when I discover her FF guy is retiring from blogging, figured I’d check it out anyway and am seriously bummed to find that I seem to have missed the boat on this one for sure. I’ll just have to root through what’s already here as I have some catch up to do and I can see from Twitter timeline I’m going to enjoy that stream anyway. Wish you all the best in your next adventure as you seem like a decent down to earth guy I’d have liked to learn more from.
    Cheers and all the best.

    • June 25, 2012 at 6:32 am

      Thanks Debra. I’m glad we were able to connect thanks to Gini. You didn’t miss much. 140 per conversation is probably the right amount of insight from me on most topics anyway. haha. Thanks again.

  5. June 23, 2012 at 6:23 am

    Paul, I just discovered this site now. Thank you Gini Dietrich. While I don’t like to give her credit (like SHE needs it) I cannot lie and say that without reading Spin Sucks there are a lot of other bloggers that I would miss. ALWAYS top shelf talent.

    Not unfortunate that I am here now though unless you pull the site down off the internet altogether. I simply need to scour the archives here and based on what I can see there is a lot to go through. Listen, the sensitivity and humility you are showing here is a touch rare in the blogosphere and it is to be applauded sir.

    I understand fully the commitment that this medium takes. It has changed my life and in some ways not for the better but I do love to write and share. Thank you for the insights. There are some gems there. We do not know each other but I do wish you the best in your future endeavors and will be paying attention to see what may come. Best!

    • June 25, 2012 at 6:29 am

      Thank you so much for you comment. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you taking the time to do so. I’ve never been given so much praise for quitting before. You are very kind. Thanks again.

      P.S. Gini is the best.

  6. June 29, 2012 at 1:11 pm

    Thanks for the article, I really enjoyed reading. Blogging for me is something that takes time to pick up on in order to become natural. These are some great tips and would recommend anyone interested in becoming a blogger to reference this article!
    Jamie@ PR Firm

  1. June 22, 2012 at 7:01 am
  2. July 3, 2012 at 10:39 am

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