Last month Forrest Wickman wrote a spot-on rant about the highly annoying tendency of even some of the savviest marketing and media folks to confuse a “blog” with a “blog post” called “This Is a Blog Post. It Is Not a ‘Blog.’”
As someone who shares Wickman’s pet peeve over the irritating media and content marketing terminology misuse, my first thought was “amen, brother!” As a notorious curmudgeon prone to frequent rants of my own, my second thought was that I needed to add my two cents and explain why the difference between a “blog post” and a “blog” matters to content marketers and those who hire them.
What’s the Difference Between a Blog and a Blog Post?
This, what you are looking at here, dear reader, is a blog post. It is one piece of content that together with other pieces of content make up a larger publication called a blog — in this case the Reputation Capital Media Services Blog.
For even greater clarity, let me put it in the style of an SAT analogy:
A blog is to a blog post as…
- …a newspaper or magazine is to an article.
- …a TV channel or radio station is to a show.
Content Marketing Terminology Confusion
When you consider those analogies, you can see that it’s equally confusing, awkward and nonsensical to say:
- “I’m writing a newspaper.”
- “She’s starring in a TV channel.”
- “He’s writing a blog.”
You can write for a blog, which means you regularly contribute blog posts to it — but you don’t write a blog.
Why Should this Matter to Marketers?
Even if your company is not doing any content marketing yet or that’s just not a key element of your job right now, content marketing is a big, serious deal in marketing these days. So if you claim marketing is your profession, you need do know the correct content marketing terminology, including the difference between a blog and a blog post.
Wickman put it well when he wrote “I’m not going to sugarcoat this…calling a post a blog makes you sound stupid. That may seem harsh, but I’m doing you a favor. Every time you make this mistake, it sounds like you don’t understand this newfangled thing, the World Wide Web. Even if you think all those who might judge you are just being superficial, that’s not going to stop them from judging you.”
And why should you care if people are judging you? Because they’re judging your professional knowledge and capabilities.
If you’re running around saying, writing and tweeting things that make you look stupid people are going to start to question all of your professional skills and knowledge — and that’s not going to help your career.
Why Should This Matter to People Who Employ Marketers?
Just as I wouldn’t expect a marketer to have a robust legal or medical vocabulary, I’m willing to cut people some slack on the difference between a blog and a blog post if they aren’t marketers, journalists or professional bloggers. Still, if you’re hiring or working with marketers in some capacity — whether you’re in sales, sitting in the C-suite or running a small business — you really should know.
First, as the Wickman quote above points out, it makes you look like you just don’t understand the basics of the Internet today, which makes you appear out of touch — not a good thing.
More practically, though, if you don’t understand some basic content marketing terminology, you aren’t going to be able to reliably evaluate the people who are doing your marketing or vet marketing professionals you’re considering hiring. You want to know if these people are confusing basic terminology such as blog and blog post — because if they are, you probably don’t want them working for you.
Reputation Capital Media Services is a Baton Rouge marketing agency that helps B2B companies and their marketing agencies produce high-quality digital content, including blog posts, e-mail newsletters, white papers and multimedia. Our editors and writers are experts in their fields, which include HR technology, employee benefits, and financial services and accounting. Contact us for a free 30-minute consultation to find out how great content can help you attract and retain your customers.