In a sea of readily available blogging platforms to choose from, it's tough to know which one will be the best fit to host a company blog on. How do you know that after a month of use you won't want to transition over to a different site instead? Different blogging services offer different things, and your business's needs may require something very specific, whether it's the ability to be more focused on written content or photographic portfolio work. There are plenty of platforms you can use, however I am going to focus on the three most popular - Tumblr, Blogger, and WordPress - simply because those seem to be the three that most business owners are curious about trying out.
Tumblr is a bit controversial in the world of business blogging. Some people swear by it, and others say it is a waste of time - it doesn't have the SEO capabilities or the customizability of the other two platforms, that's for sure. If your target market is over the age of 35, or if your business sells something that isn't very visual, then Tumblr probably won't fit your needs. But if you are in an industry or run a business that can use Tumblr to share images and quick updates, then you really should consider it despite its drawbacks. My business doesn't use Tumblr because we are a document filing service - how many cool, viral images can you imagine coming out of that? But Tumblr is great if your product is visual and you are willing to spend the time to talk to and engage with your customers. Remember that Tumblr users are very reciprocal - that means it is up to you to go through posts, comment, and like if you ever expect to attract people over to your business's page. It's also very easy to use, and a bit addictive, so once you get going you'll likely find yourself spending a lot of time on the site. Just remember to get a custom domain for your business's Tumblr and link to your blog on your homepage.
Blogger inhabits a comfortable middle ground between Tumblr and Wordpress - easier to set up and use than Wordpress, but not as featureless as Tumblr. Users can customize their blogs with a variety of templates, and really the platform can be as simple or as complicated as you need it to be. A common complaint was the lack of SEO customization available - Google rectified that problem earlier this year. Google also recently integrated Blogger with Google+, which is great news for those who actually have a Google+ account. Since a Google search for a business will typically bring up a link to the Google+ profile next to the list of results, packaging everything together means that your blog will be more easily discovered, which in turn drives traffic to your business. The downside, however, is that you are giving up a bit of customizability for convenience.
The MyCorp Blog uses WordPress, so I may be a bit biased towards it, but I just love the different things I can do with it. It can be slightly more complicated to set up than the other two platforms are, but once you get the hang of it you can customize it so it looks like an extension of your regular website - while that may seem small, people do get upset if they feel as though you tricked them into going to a site they did not want to visit. The SEO tools are also outstanding in their functionality. Though Google has taken some serious strides in giving SEO the focus it deserves, it still doesn't come close to WordPress thanks to plug-ins that make SEO optimization amazingly simple. However, if you do not have the server to host a WordPress blog, or the time to really learn how to set one up and use it, then you might want to opt for one of the simpler options.
When blogging for your business, you really should have two objectives - produce well-written, engaging content that people want to read, and attract potential customers to click over to your website. Your needs will determine what blogging platform you should use, and all platforms have some blemish that people are quick to point out. Look around at examples of all three, and see if you cannot find one that you think fits your needs. And then get to blogging!