Blogging is a very personal thing. Many of us put our heart and soul into our words and our communities. We also take it personally when our clients want us to do things their way as opposed to our way. We’re the professionals, right? Don’t we know best?
As more businesses and individuals use blogs and other social media tools to help grow their businesses, the blogging rules from several years ago aren’t always embraced by the people who are hiring bloggers now. Some want bloggers to use a journalistic tone while others would rather not encourage comments.
Should we tell them they’re wrong?
Is there really a right way and a wrong way? Besides, it’s not always a good idea to tell a paying client they’re not doing something right. However, they’re paying us to blog because it’s something they don’t want to or know how to do. Offering general guidance can help ensure your client’s success. Having a “my way or the highway” attitude doesn’t impress the person who signs your paychecks.
What you want vs. what your clients expect
When someone hires us to do the blogging, we’re representing them. We’re conveying their message, promoting their products, pimping their services and making them look darn good. It’s not our blogs, it’s our clients’ blogs and we can’t get too territorial over the whole thing. As long as they don’t make us go against our personal beliefs, we pretty much have to do what the paycheck dictates.
When you and your client don’t see eye to eye
If you don’t like the way your client runs his blog, or if you feel he needs guidance, there’s nothing wrong with setting up a meeting (or virtual meeting) to discuss. Explain why you feel the situation doesn’t quite work and how you can make the blog work to his benefit. Be prepared with a detailed plan, in writing, so he can mull it over after your talk. Make sure you explain the reasons for all your points. For example, if your client doesn’t want you to encourage comments, list the bullet points of why comments are a good thing. Your client doesn’t want to be told he’s wrong, however. So do be kind.
It comes down to the paycheck
We’re pretty much at the mercy of the paycheck, our client is paying us and we have to represent him in the manner he feels is best suited for him and his business. If it’s not a personal blog, we have no claims to it. That doesn’t mean we still shouldn’t blog to the best of our ability though. The better we make our clients look, the better we look.