Thursday, March 1, 2012

Keeping your business's blog and your editorial blog separate

As event planners, we wear lots of hats. Because there are so many aspects to planning events (are you a designer/stylist? A logistician? Do corporate? Social? etc. etc...) we get used to multitasking.

So it is with event planner blogs. I read avidly, and it's great to see so many people sharing their ideas and best practices. One thing I think is dangerous about blogging though, is when the motive for a blog is not transparent.

Example: the other day, I stumbled across a wedding I had coordinated, on a beautiful, editorial-looking blog. The writing was well-crafted, and the blogger advertised that they accepted submissions through Two Bright Lights. In every way it appeared to be an editorial post, although I thought it was weird that, except for some fine print at the bottom, there was no mention of my company specifically as the wedding coordinator. On the other hand, vendors for the cake, flowers, and attire were mentioned and name-checked in detail.

A few weeks later I saw an update, where the blogger shared a brand new social media page and excitedly announced a new division of their coordinating business. Confused, I went back to their About page. After reading, I realized the blog belonged to an event planner in the Portland area and that it doubled as their business blog and website.

I recommend that businesses not do this. Posting a detailed blog post about an event called a "Real Wedding" on your event planning business blog implies that you have some connection to the event. If you are blogging to increase awareness of your event planning business, you are subtly passing off these "Real Weddings" as your own work.

If you want to be a journalist-blogger that covers real weddings, great. If you wish to be an editor of beautifully curated content, that's wonderful! (Offbeat Bride and Every Last Detail are some sites that do this very well.)

On the other hand, if you are a planner marketing your business by blogging, post "Real Weddings" of only your own events. Be very clear about the use of pictures for events that you're not connected with. That way your motives are clear, and you won't appear to be trying to mislead the public.

Agree? Think I'm way off base? Leave it in the comments.

Image of me, working the Oregon Nurses Association 2011 convention, courtesy Casey Campbell.