Last Sunday Brian Solis joined us and led a fabulous discussion on using blogs as tools to build influence. His #Blogchat was extremely popular, and based on impressions, was the biggest #Blogchat ever at over 30 Million impressions generated last Sunday night alone.
One of the points Brian made during the conversation was that blogs were better tools to build influence than Twitter was. The basis of his reasoning was simple: Blogs give you a place to catalog your thoughts and opinions that will remain, whereas the lifespan of your tweets is usually a few seconds at best.
At first I totally agreed with Brian. I mean, if you want to google my thoughts on how companies should use Twitter, you’re going to find the blog posts I have written on the topic, not my tweets.
But, I think there is something to be said for how Twitter allows us to build influence and awareness on an individual level. 5 years ago, I discovered smart people via the blogosphere, but today I find them via Twitter. I think it also depends on how we best convey our ideas. Do we need 500 words in a blog post to give our thoughts justice, or can we break them up into 140 chars on Twitter?
I am on the fence when it comes to deciding which tool is better for building awareness. I think there are a few factors at play:
1 – How do we best communicate? Do we prefer ‘real-time’ interactions with multiple people, or do we prefer to have time to think about our thoughts and put them down all at once in long-form?
2 – Do we let input from others shape our ideas, or do we prefer to share our ideas with others? For example, I think this is why Seth doesn’t use Twitter. Because he doesn’t want to have to ‘explain’ his ideas and debate them with dozens of people at once. He would rather put his ideas out there, then the rest of us can have a conversation about them. Or not. Personally, I find that interacting with others usually helps me bring clarity and strength to my ideas. But not always.
3 – Are we talking about an individual trying to build awareness and draw attention to themselves, or a company? I think Twitter can be a better tool for individuals to build attention for their ideas. But if it’s a group, I think a blog can be more effective.
What do YOU think? If you could only pick one tool to use to build awareness for yourself and/or your company, would it be blogs or Twitter? What are the advantages and disadvantages to choosing one over the other?
That’s what I’d like to discuss with y’all tomorrow night during #Blogchat! We’ll start at 8pm Central as we always do! And as you are getting ready, please feel free to share your personal experiences and which tool you think works better for you!