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Where Personal and Business Blogs Collide?

19 December, 2003 10:26 AM

What's Your Brand Mantra? is an interesting blog that I've been following recently. It's focus may not appeal to everyone - its about 'Branding' and 'Marketing'.

I come from a Marketing background and I try to keep up with some reading in this area so Jennifer's writing interests me.

Yesterday's post, Shining through, got my attention. In it Jennifer shares how she was recently challenged by another Marketing Blogger to reveal more of her personality on my blog.

Its an interesting comment. Brand Mantra is a business blog and therefore has quite different goals to most of the blogs on my blogroll which are personal in nature. I've read a lot of business blogs lately and to be honest I find many of them to be quite boring and sterile. I often come away from them wondering who the person behind them is and if they have a sense of humor.

Many people keep business blogs and personal blogs at arms length - I know people who have one of each. There is good reason for this - you don't want post about 'what I did last night' or 'what my kid said to me over breakfast' plastered through your corporate blog. However I wonder if there is opportunity for some overlap. I think a business blog that used humor and was written by someone that readers could relate to on a personal level would do quite well. Perhaps personal bloggers could be teaching and modeling personable and engaging blogging to business bloggers?

On the flip side perhaps there might be some lessons to be learnt from bloggers like Jennifer's and other marketing bloggers who might teach us a thing or two about presentation, promotion and finding readers.

These thoughts are works in progress. Feel free to add yours.



In my particular field -- journalism -- there have been frequent stories in the trade magazines of reporters who started blogs on their personal time and then got into trouble at work as a result of them.

Some of the controversial bloggers expressed a strong opinion in their blog which had the effect of compromising the newspaper's reputation for journalistic professionalism. Perhaps they used their blog as a back channel to release information which an editor had spiked as being unsubstantiated or otherwise unsuitable for publication.

All of this gave me some pause when I started my blog, but I decided that the narrow missions focus of my blog would keep it from falling into conflict with my work at the newspaper. In any case, I'm working in the less formal environment of a small, rural newspaper, and my supervisors and co-workers (the editor and publisher are both Christians, and the publisher goes to the same church as me) have been very supportive of my mission work.

John Carney » 19 December, 2003 3:01 PM

In my field - pastoral ministry - the personal/professional thing is pretty muddied to start with. The nice thing is that posting what I'm going through in my life and how I'm dealing with it /is/ work related.

kevin » 20 December, 2003 9:08 AM

When it all comes down to it, I'm not sure we can (or should even try to) disconnect the personal from the business. Brands are about reputation. Business is about trust and reciprocation. Contracts are covenants. Marketing is communication. Selling is a dialog. Business partnerships, even at a transactional level are about shared goals, common vision, commitment to each other.

The thing that appeals to me about blogs is that they allow a deeper conversation to occur. They reveal the person behind the words. The motivation behind the advice. The human behind the company.

To me, the biggest problem in business (and in churches, and in schools, and in nearly every social situation) is lack of trust. And trust can only come when people know your motives. And that can only come when people really know each other.

My blog continues to evolve, but like Jennifer, I'm working on being more open, not less. If people don't want to wade through my posts about my kids, or my frustrations, they can move on to other posts, or for that matter, other blogs.

In the meantime, the value I've found in blogging comes from getting to know others that share common values of mine, whether it's customer connection, management values, personal development, work-life balance, or family connection.

John R Porcaro » 21 December, 2003 8:05 AM

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