In case you haven’t noticed, I’m a big advocate of using blogs for business. But, despite them being around for awhile, many entrepreneurs are still unsure of how to set one up and get it going.
To my more inexperienced clients, I often recommend getting a hosted blog just to learn the ropes. A hosted blog is one that is hosted by a service, often for free, but sometimes with a fee. Examples of hosted blogs include, WordPress.com, Blogger.com and LiveJournal.com. These sites make it very simple to set up a blog and get going.
But there are drawbacks.
You are more likely to get spam comments on your blog, they have limited customization, and some even lay claim to your content — so read the fine print. And, of course, your branding ability is limited with a hosted blog.
If you’re ready to really take the plunge and host your own blog, then I recommend WordPress. However, I know some who swear by Typepad. Because you host the blogging software on your own hosting account, you have much greater control and flexibility over the look, feel and function of the blog. According to Network Solutions — and I whole heartedly agree — “self-hosted blogs are the smart choice for small business owners who want to use business blogging as an effective communications channel.”
Next week, I’ll talk a little bit about RSS and how it can be used to help you grow your list or circle of influence.