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How To Blog Without Blogging

March 7th, 2007

By now, you know I think you should have a blog. But I hear your issues:

  • It is a big committment
  • It takes time I don’t have
  • I can’t take on one more project (especially a long-term project)
  • I don’t have anything of value to say
  • There are 55+ million blogs out there, I’ll get lost in all the noise
  • There are already though-leaders in my space
  • … and whatever other excuse you have 😉

Seriously, you don’t have to tell me why you can’t or won’t blog. I have a response for each of these excuses above… I went through the same thing about a ten months ago, and took 3 weeks of hard thinking to finally decide to move forward with a blog.

So in this post I’m not going to respond to the “ya buts,” in fact, I’m not even going to try and convince you to start your own blog! But check out this really cool, clever technique that I learned from my readers here on this blog. Its all about creating or expanding your online presence.

First, create a LinkedIn profile and make sure the public profile is pretty complete (some public profiles have nothing in them, you have to login or connect with the person before you can see anything (think customer service – if you make someone login they are likely to click away without learning about you)).

Second, find blogs you like. I am starting to use BounceBase.com (its free) and saving my favorite blogs and topics. For example, I’ll save the JibberJobber blog and “Job Search” as a topic. BounceBase is kind of unannounced right now but I have a good source there, and am using it right now (after trying a bunch of RSS readers – this is more than an RSS reader).

Third, find specific posts in that blog that you can intelligently comment on. Don’t leave dumb comments like “This is a great post.” or something like that – think of commenting on other people’s blogs as adding to the conversation, not patting the blogger on the back. Leaving an intelligent comment increases your credibility (think: personal branding) and will make others want to know more about you.

Now, I’ll be honest and tell you that I LOVE other bloggers leaving comments on my blog. There are reasons for that (has a lot to do with blog marketing (or personal vanity :)), I won’t bore you with details). So it really is optimal if you have your own blog – but the title of this post is how to blog without blogging, and I’ve just let you in on the little secret 😉

Bonus: here are some of the blogs that I recommend commenting on (you should have your own favorites depending on your level (executive, professional, small business owner, etc.) and industry):

Kent Blumberg and/or David Maister – if you are a CXO, concerned with leadership, etc.

ServiceUntitled – if you specialize in or care about customer service (um… everyone that cares about customer service, raise your hand)

Russell Page or Janet Meiners– if you are involved in PR, marketing, etc.

Mike Schaffner, Phil Windley or Jeff Barr – if you are in IT (either strategic or techie)

Adelino de Almeida – if you are a marketing geek

I think you get the point. Fastest way to get started – go to BounceBase, choose Blog Search (on the left, in the drop down), and then type in a field, industry or whatever… and start looking for blogs to comment on! Don’t forget your LinkedIn public profile URL to leave on the comments!

Note: I’m going to leave a comment below so you can see what it looks like.

34 Comments »

34 responses to “How To Blog Without Blogging”

  1. so there you go – if you click on the link you’ll see my public LinkedIn profile (I know, I know, I need to beef it up – I’m working on that :p)

  2. Hey, you aren’t allowed to be the first to commnet on your own posts…. no fair. :-(

  3. OK, great post… Jason is on the money about how to get folks interested in learning more about you. Since his blog deals with jobseekers from all types of industries his advice is applicable to most any person. As for favorite blogs I like to read Jason\’s [mostly because of his hot sister], recruiting.com [because I\’m a recruiter], SixDegreesFromDave and then kind of stumble around as the mood hits me.

    Since I\’m busy with my own blogs at Confessions of and Executive Restaurant Recruiter and Recruiting-USA, and two super secret projects that will change the face of my niche and the recruiting industry in general [I can dream big can\’t I?] I don\’t have a whole lot of time to read other\’s blogs.

    Keep up the great work Jason!

  4. Nikki Blue says:

    To fully understand this, I had to read your other post on LinkedIn first.
    I’ve heard of LinkedIn, but never put effort into figuring it out.

  5. This is a great way for people to create a platform to get noticed while they post replies on blogs and forums. The LinkedIn profile can easily replace a personal website including creating a blog or forum. I am starting to see more LinkedIn profiles in signatures and it works.

  6. Jason,

    Thanks for the mention. Readers – go to David Maister’s blog first (if you are CXO or interested in that level). David is the Master – I’m still trying to learn from him.

    Kent

  7. Interesting post. It brings up a couple questions for me. I want people to go to my website and buy a classic bamboo fly rod rather than pitch “me” (i.e. go to my LinkedIn profile). So what do I put in the “name” box? On this one I my name and the company. I usually just put my name. Does this make sense? Also, I frequent a lot of marketing/business blogs and fly fishing blogs but I am involved in the “conversation” on the business blogs and not the fly fishing blogs. Would you recommend that I change that in the context of this blog post?

  8. Bill Vick says:

    Jason nails it dead center. Great advice for anybody wanting to maximize LinkedIn (or other networking sites as well).

    I’m referring this site to my network and will put something on my blogs at:

    http://www.employmentdigest.net
    http://www.xtremerecruiting.org

    Bill

  9. ravelbabel says:

    You really should consider incorporating video into your blogging experience. I would appreciate you stopping by and leaving a video, (or text), comment on my political satire blog, http://www.ravelbabel.com
    I think you’ll find that it’s not that difficult to say with video.

    Jake

  10. Jason says:

    @ Nikki – yep, I’m assuming you’ve heard of LinkedIn…

    @ David – sorry I forgot to mention – if you have a blog or website feel free to leave it here. David is a blogger at Your Individual Brand.

    @ Kent – I disagree about going to Maister “first” – you both have different flavors, and different blogs. I’d be on both, and then some! One of the cool things about blogs is that you can find one (or some) that fit your personality and needs… (although, no doubt that Maister has a great blog).

    @ David Mr. Bamboo Rods – great questions. I like what you put in the name (David/Headwaters Bamboo Rods) – you are branding this David guy, and Headwaters as experts in bamboo rods. No problem there. I would DEFINITELY suggest that you contribute on the fly fishing blogs, as you do so you’ll build credibility as an expert, and I’m guessing this will lead those blog viewers to check out your site. Everyone wants to hear an expert’s opinion, and I’m guessing people interested in bamboo rods would buy only the best, and what an expert recommends. I’d say, if you are spending time going to those blogs, then spend a few more minutes and call it “marketing.”

    Note that the original post is assuming that you don’t have a website, or a blog, or something like that, but you want to create a meaningful online presence. You are definitely an exception.

    @ Bill – I’m flattered – you are one of my recruiting heros (Bill has a number of books and projects and is a thought-leader in the recruiting industry). Thank you :)

  11. Christie says:

    Great post….

    J/K !!!!!

    I too bookmark and add blogs to my blogroll that I like to read. I literally read at least 20+ blogs a day. I also prefer blogs that offer alittle insight to the actual person….blogs with personal experience, humor and love ‘Day in the life’s.

    Cheers-

    Christie

    http://web20headhuntress.com

  12. If you can’t commit to a full blown blog, use Twitter. You just leave short updates on what you’re doing or thinking. People can “follow” you and get updates by text message, IM, email, or just on the site.

    It’s the only time in my life that I wake up to having new followers. You will never feel like a loser again. It’s great for your self worth. Plus you find your voice and it’s low commitment. It could be the perfect segway into blogging.

    Thanks for the plug Jason. I try to plug you every chance I get now. I try to work you into almost every post sort of like a keyword. Let me know how the traffic is impacted. Can I have 20% if anyone signs up based on my blog?

    LOL

    Janet

    p.s. I’m a blog nerd now. I cleaned out my blog list and there are still over 200 blogs on it. Some I don’t actively read but I might want to sometime. A blog pack rat.

  13. Honestly, Jason–Do you love comments like mine that don’t say anything at all but hope people will click back to me???

  14. Hi Jason,

    Just created my public profile custom address on LinkedIn. Very cool: http://www.linkedin.com/in/wendyterwelp. You can use LinkedIn in many ways for personal branding:
    1. Invite your clients, business partners, affiliates, professional organization members, etc. to join.
    2. Write a thorough profile so members get an idea of who you are, what you do, your interests, and your brand.
    3. Add a picture. :-)
    4. My personal fave, ask for recommendations. People are fantastic and want to help you. And you can use the recommendations in many ways for your business – including popping them onto your website.
    5. If you’re in job search mode, the recommendations can be linked into your resume. This creates instant access to references.

    – Wendy Terwelp, Career Coach & Personal Branding Strategist
    Links:

    * http://www.knocks.com/News.html

  15. I’ve been using a public LinkedIn profile for several months now. Now I’ll have to check out BounceBase.

  16. […] LinkedIn & Personal Branding Jason Alba, JibberJobber.com, asked a great question recently: “Do you use LinkedIn for personal branding? Sure, you have a public profile… but what do you do PROACTIVELY to share that with others? Check out my blog post on an idea that I have… and then share what you do!” Here’s his post: http://www.jibberjobber.com/blog/archives/438. […]

  17. […] Networking and personal-branding expert Jason Alba explains how to blog without actually blogging. […]

  18. Jason, great post, I had to say that just because you said not to. 😉 That and the fact that our off line conversation helped lead to this post.

    And for those that don’t know Jason I can attest to the fact that for every “ya but” that I came up with he had at least 2 rebuttals. All very compelling reasons, but I’m still taking the anti-blog route for now.

    To go along with Jason’s advice, I would also recommend that you choose your words carefully when you post online. Once you post something on the web it is out there forever for anyone to search for and read. If you post to a more popular blog, like this one, it also won’t take long before everyone can find it. If you don’t believe me just try it, Google your name a few days after you have made a post.

    Make sure that your online presence represents what you want it to.

  19. […] JibberJobber Blog » How To Blog Without Blogging […]

  20. Not only should you choose your words carefully, but watch your spelling. I cannot stand blog posts that are misspelled.

    Another way of branding yourself online is to answer questions at LinkedIn Answers or Amazon’s Askville.com. Participating in forums and Yahoo Groups helps as well.

    Check out yourself at http://www.googlism.com to see where you come up.

  21. Blake Snow says:

    “Its all about creating or expanding your online presence.”

    I hear you. While what your suggesting is good advice, it fails to provide a central repository for your thoughts. No one is going to seek out your scattered thoughts. People pay (through their attention) for convenience. Be sure you make yourself convenient.

  22. Francie says:

    I don’t think one really can blog without blogging. Yes, they can particpate and reap some benefits with your suggestions.
    But, isn’t it kind of like being spectators at a sporting event? You can observe, make comments and then leave without breaking a sweat. But you’re not on the team. The star bloggers, like you and some of those on your list show up every day for practice, network for all they’re worth, share innovative thoughts and keep the committment.

    Great post, though. I just had to play devil’s advocate when I saw all the responses it generated. Someone must have gotten the word out that JibberJobber’s the real thing! No faux bloggers here :)

  23. Bengt says:

    This post is interested but I think it is more about marketing yourself than about blog without blogging. Besides, commenting on other blogs is a way to market both yourself and your own blog.

    JibberJobber is an interesting site/blog and I will have a look at the blogs that Jason suggest.

    When it comes to RSS-reader I prefer Bloglines but anyone that makes following many blogs easy is worth trying. Having all blogs you follow available in one place is a great feature.
    Cheers
    Bengt

  24. Jason says:

    @ Christie – you had me going there!

    @ Janet – and you said I was funny! You can have over 20% of my blog readers, how’s that? :p I can’t really comment on Twitter (I’m not sold on it) but here’s a GREAT post (take the 2 minutes to read this, and the comments) called If Jesus Twittered

    @ Robert – proof you are funnier me and Janet put together 😉

    @ Wendy – thanks for this – I didn’t say that you can edit your public profile so that you have your name (or whatever) in the URL. Good thoughts (although I don’t think LinkedIn allows you to put images – that’s where JibberJobber comes in ;))

    @ John – excellent advice – keep your comments clean and intelligent and maybe years down the road you won’t regret them.

    @ Anita – good thoughts and resources. I try hard to spel gude but sometimes it just doesn’t wourkout. Do you think any less off me? (jk – I agree)

    @ Blake & Francie – I agree that you can’t blog without blogging, but the title was catchier (and smaller) than “how to participate in blogs” or “how to whet your whistle with blogs without committing” or something like that. I agree with you both, and am a huge advocate of having a blog to quantify your personal brand… but I have readers that aren’t quite there yet 😉 And, I like the devils advocate thing because I still think this strategy is second-rate to having your own blog! (BTW, Blake is a veteran blogger, one of the first I read when I was studying out blog stuff – we’ve yet to meet in person even though we are about an hour away from one another).

    @ Bengt – one of my big messages/themes is to market yourself (I have a category on the left called “personal branding” … and I think having a blog is one of the best ways to quantify a personal brand. So this post is all about how to develop, extend and quantify your personal brand online – and is just a technique – one of many. But of course, I agree with you, you can’t blog without blogging (well, with the exception of what I posted). That’s like saying I’m walking without walking. Cool title though, eh?

  25. Anita Kumari says:

    I like the idea of ‘How to blog without blogging. ‘ Its catchy and memorable. Blog is a good way to advertise yourself. I agree with Bengt. Its good to know how the LinkedIn profile will show up in searches. For some strange reason, my Zoominfo and Soflow profile shows up in Google search, though I don’t use them actively, and my LinkedIN and homepage does not show up at all. Any suggestions?

  26. Christopher Penn, the host and producer of the Financial Aid Podcast, posted this article yesterday: “Matrix 2.0 – What the Web Says About YOU“. The more information we put out onto the web, the more it will know about us, which can be for good or for bad. Check it out.

  27. Bret Payne says:

    I am a Linkedin in Member with Jason.
    Love his cander in his Blog.
    We have learned so much about Jason, and
    bloggin reading his rants and raves.

    Thank you,

    Bret Payne

  28. […] A couple of weeks ago I posted How To Blog Without Blogging and got some great comments – 27 to be exact. I don’t think that was one of my more brilliant posts (although the title was pretty good ). […]

  29. […] I figured out a way that you could blog without blogging.  That’s right.  Read this post: http://tinyurl.com/blog-without-blogging.  Now, leave a comment on a blog (finding the blog was a ONE THING from a while back). Here are […]

  30. Hello, again! I just found another blog to comment on, based on Jason’s advice. Very cool.

  31. Barry Groh says:

    Jason,

    I have bandied around the idea of a blog for a few months, and I have had two issues with it that have stopped me to this point. First, I want to find a topic in my sector (nonprofit) that is not being over done, or beaten to death, but I haven’t found that or my niche yet. Second, I wonder if I will have the time to do a blog and still work and job hunt. I have a need for balance, and part of that means not being in front of the computer all day and night long.

    I do appreciate your candor, your encouragement, and your belief in the power and branding of a blog. I also know I “should” do one for the good of my next opportunity, and I appreciate all the information you have shared with me for other blogs to look at. It is helping to not only find other blogs to follow, it is also helping to push me to start mine!

  32. […] The new applications also give users a chance to send their contacts an unobtrusive yet visible reminder every few days. The Amazon reading list, in particular, is an indirect but excellent opportunity to do what Jason Alba calls blogging without blogging. […]

  33. […] Friday: How To Blog Without Blogging September 30th, 2011 I wrote this post within a year of launching JibberJobber.com. I had been blogging for about 10 months and was […]

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