In David Terrar follow-up on the recent “Return on Investment of Blogging “debate, he provides a list of useful links to other viewpoints and shares his own experience of the benefits of blogging.
However, his example of how getting a mention on a target site had saved him the cost of employing a PR consultancy is flawed evidence of the value of blogging.
Firstly, a single mention on a target blog is unlikely to be the sole achievement of employing professional PR support for 6 months as he suggests. Secondly, you cannot evaluate the value of public relations by what you would have paid for a service. There is illogical reasoning at work here – a price tag is not a value measure.
Thirdly, in terms of blogging’s ROI, success must depend entirely on what you aim to achieve from this tactic. If David’s objective was to: “get my name and brand picked up by the mainstream media” (presumably in order to increase his income) then spending time and effort writing a blog on the off-chance of being noticed is simply relying on luck.
A pro-active PR strategy would have added a focus on including relevant links/tags/SEO/etc, selecting appropriate topics, building a reputation with other bloggers, establishing relationships with key media and so on, to ensure this blog – and David’s name/brand – became recognised by his target media audience (or even better potential clients to increase his income).
Blogging by itself is unlikely to be an effective promotional tactic – but within a strategy that encompasses building relationships, managing reputation and communicating a brand, then it can be a pretty useful tool. Evaluating blogging needs to be part of the overall assessment of the relationships, reputation and outcomes of communications such as increased knowledge and behaviour change.