Since I started blogging a few years ago, I’ve had a number of friends who started, a few who have failed, and a number of others who have expressed interest. One of the common questions they ask is why they should, so here are my thoughts on why, and why not, to blog.
To stay in touch – One of the best reasons to blog is just to give updates to those who care about you. Let them know what you are up to.
To share your thoughts, ideas, or information – For me, blogging is a way to just hammer out some of the things I am processing through. I don’t necessarily write for the purpose of getting feedback (see below), but it is good to write knowing that someone out there will likely read it. It at least forces me to think a little bit about what I am typing, and comments from others are just an added bonus.
To communicate what is on your heart – This is similar to above, but it is more about communicating finished ideas rather than thinking out loud. A lot of pastors use a blog just to share their heart with their congregation. Blogging is a great tool for this, and I hope to see more and more pastors discovering that.
To promote a product or service – I love being able to keep up to date with what is happening with the next release of Logos, or to hear about how the writing process of Blogging Church is going. I’m glad these and others blogs exist to keep me current on products I am interested in. There is one qualifier about this one…if you are promoting something, it should be evident to the reader.
Why Not Blog?
Just to get comments – This might just be me, but I rarely comment when someone specifically asks for feedback. I don’t like it when someone writes, “Hey, I saw this. What does everyone think?” I’d much rather know what the blogger thinks, and then have the opportunity to respond if they leave the comments open. Of course, we almost always ask for feedback with the Pathways blog, but I’m comfortable with that as it is the purpose of it. I’m still trying to figure out how that differs from what I’m trying to describe here.
To promote yourself – I’m probably as guilty of this as anyone, but something rubs me wrong when I feel like someone’s blog is just about promoting themself. (This is not the same as promoting a product or service as I described above.) There is a fine line between blogging for the purpose of connecting with others. vs blogging for the purpose of drawing attention and respect from others. Perhaps the former is more about sharing, while the latter is more about receiving. I’m not quite sure, I just know that it bothers me when I see it.
To get rich – Yes, there are some people who are making their income off blogging. But if you are starting blogging just for that purpose, it’s probably not going to happen. Blog for the joy of it. If you make even a little income, consider it an added bonus.