What is the purpose of a blog post today?

blog post

Last week I posted a long-form piece of content on Facebook. It was an opinion about why this is a difficult time to be in marketing. If this sounds familiar to you, it should … I posted the same thing on this blog the same day.

Under the Facebook post, my friend Michael Stelzner for Social Media Examiner commented, “Is this a blog post?”

I really didn’t know how to answer that. What is a blog post any more?

While my latest ideas usually start on my blog, there is no telling where they might end up next. And ideas tossed around on Facebook, Twitter — even questions on a webinar — might end up as blog posts. The place where one form of content ends and another begins is blurring. With a little tweaking, I have turned blog posts into:

  • Posts for other publications
  • Popular Slideshare presentations
  • Speeches, university classes, and corporate workshops
  • Posts for LinkedIn
  • Discussion topic for a podcast
  • Book chapters
  • And yes, long-form updates to my Facebook newsfeed.

The original post on my blog about difficulties having a career in marketing received 38 shares on Facebook and attracted comments from nine different commenters. The post on Facebook received 36 shares and commentary from 56 different people. The original blog post was like the batter I used to bake a new cake on Facebook.

So … was this a blog post or a Facebook post?

Here’s another example of how the boundaries of content are getting blurry. I wrote a post on The Six Questions that Lead you to a Social Media Strategy and it was a big hit with 10,000 views and 1,200 social shares. When I re-presented the content as a slideshare presentation, it received 170,000 views (so far) and 1,700 new social shares. In this case, the blog post helped me flesh out an idea that led to something much bigger. It also prompted several media interviews.

One final anecdote. On my blog, I proposed ideas about why marketing is moving in-house. Based on some of the comments from the world’s greatest blog community (that would be you), I adjusted the content and had it published in one of the most widely-read and well-respected business journals, The Havard Business Review. The role of the original blog post was to serve as a research lab that resulted in an even better article for HBR (which went viral).

So what is a blog post today?

  • Is it the fuel for Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media platforms?
  • Is it an ingredient for other content combinations?
  • Is it a research lab for new ideas that turn into magazine articles and books?
  • Is it a way to build a consistent voice of authority in your industry?
  • Is it the home room for your most active readers and fans?

The answer of course is … Yes.

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