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Don’t Force your Personalities to Blog

It’s the lowest hanging fruit of social media best practices:  Let’s get our personalities to blog!

Yet what I hear over and over is that “our personalities don’t want to blog” or “they don’t want the extra work” or “they want to be paid more if they blog.”

Listen, there are two types of talents:  The kind that get social media and are interested in engaging in it – and the other kind.  It is my belief that you should not try to paint lipstick on the proverbial pig.  If the personality insists on wallowing in the mud, let him wallow.  You simply cannot bribe someone to care about social media, mainly because you can’t bribe someone to care – period.  They either care or they don’t.

Forcing a talent to blog against his or her will, no matter what the incentives dangled before them, will yield the one thing stations almost never complain about and the one thing that haunts them the most: Lackluster and mediocre content.

Get this much straight:  It’s not about the act or the effort of blogging.  It’s about the content that is actually provided in the blog.  It’s either good or it’s bad.  It’s either compelling or it’s mundane.  It’s either must-read or it’s don’t-bother.  Because you can’t pay someone to care, you can’t pay someone to create great content unless they have it in them to begin with.

This doesn’t mean personalities shouldn’t care about social media.  Of course they should.  If they have any interest in their own futures or any ability to see over the arc of what’s left of their careers, they should know better.  But “should” doesn’t mean “will.”  And we would all be foolish to imagine that every old dog will learn new tricks.  Instead we should be grateful that the most talented old dogs thrive on new tricks and embrace them.  Hopefully, you employ one or two of these old dogs.

So what do you do if your personalities don’t want to blog or they do so with such dim energy that the results are a throwaway, a waste of their time and the audience’s attention?

You have somebody else do it.

I guarantee you that there are people at your station throughout your ranks that would love to have their say on your website.  Enlist them if:

  1. Their content fulfills the broader purposes of the digital brand

  2. They have the enthusiasm and commitment to “feed the beast” regularly

  3. They have something fresh to say

  4. They have a distinctive voice or point of view

  5. They are ready to go cross-platform:  Text, audio, and video

  6. They want to do it

The purpose of blogs on your website is not to give voice to the talent – they have voice aplenty already.  It’s to provide new value to your consumers.

And value comes from those with an interest in providing it.

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