Blog, Blog, Blog, Mediation Blog World!
2008 is the year of the mediation blog, people!
The blogging world is exploding with new ideas, formats, creative uses and money! Mediators, we got to get in now because the popularity and power of blogging is only going to grow.
Because blogging is one of the most compelling and egalitarian communication tools around. Each mediator has the ability to reach hundreds of thousands with his or her message and get an answer back.
And while it's true that a new blog is created almost every second, according to reports by Technorati and other blog monitors, that doesn't mean your blog will get lost. Create a micro-niche with a very tailored message and your blog will be a magnet for those who need your services, even in a very crowded field.
Why not? Our business is about communication, for heavens sake. We have to start talking to our markets. Each blog can be a mini learning center to share the process, experience and potential results with prospective clients.
Within the profession,we have to start talking to each other- mediator-to-mediator more with blogs. Long ago when Diane Levin and I launched the ADR Web Ring, we hoped more mediators would join us in the blogosphere. Many did join in and create thoughtful, useful blogs. ( No better examples than Mediator blah, blah and Settle it Now) There's room for more. I'd love to see our online community reach the volume and variety of blogs and discussion found in the blogging world.
It's the right time for a couple of reasons.
Blogs make money. Blogging is beginning to get monetized in a serious way. Bloggers like John Chow claim to make upwards of $25K per month. Yeah, I'm a bit skeptical, too, but not so much I won't try to find out more.
Blogging is fun. The tech tools are getting easier to use. The income strategies are pretty creative. Of course, not every technique recommended by online gurus is going to be appropriate for a professional practice like mediation, however, many will be adaptable. Information products and Amazon stores come to mind.
Blogging is low-cost. The most popular platforms Blogger.com and Wordpress.com are still free and probably always will be. So, there's no real cost barrier to blogging. However, as blog design and functionality evolves, it'll be harder to be attractive and competitive with a free blog platform. ( I'm planning to shift to Wordpress for just this very reason.)
More to Come on Blog Design and Launch
Yep, this is definitely the year of the blog for mediation. Our Spring Learning Series from March to May will focus exclusively on the how-tos and why's of launch, design and promotion for your blog. It doesn't have to be overwhelming and you don't have to do it alone. Hopefully, I'll have the pleasure of sharing the stories and blogs of a few mediation/ADR bloggers in an interview or two.
I'm excited to see what you all come up with. So, please drop me a comment below to share your blogging plans, especially if you're just starting out.
My new baby boomer blog, ThisMarriageThing.com, will launch in February (from my mouth to G-d's ear). I'm still kicking around branding, but my tagline will be something like (feel free to kibitz):
This Marriage Thing
Conversations that redefine marriage, boomerhood and what comes next... OR
This Marriage Thing
Conversations for folks who want to be happy and married...
This is a side project that's kind of an experiment in combining the new viral and social media marketing techniques like Stumbleupon and podcasting. Should be fun and I hope you come along for the ride.
Try. Fail. Learn. Grow!