Social Media

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Starting a blog could possibly make you famous. Or it might not. It doesn't really matter. Fame isn't the point. And, after all, how many people to you know who are famous simply because they started blogging?

Okay, there are a few, but still...

The point isn't fame. It isn't fortune, although you can definitely earn a healthy income from it. The point, for most leaders, is influence.

Leadership is influence.

Leadership is doing something that creates a ripple, or maybe a current or maybe a tidal wave that affects something downstream. Welcome to the world where blogging is more at the core of commerce and media than you've probably ever realized.

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Last week, someone dropped a shrink-wrapped stack of phone directories on my doorstep. And these were "Christian" directories, whatever that means. (My name wasn't in it, so ...)

Phone directories are a lot like the rest of the print industry—fading fast. Nobody is subscribing or reading, which is dropping circulation numbers, which is turning away advertisers, which is causing tons of publications to either shut down or merge with someone else. A few are still doing well. All print isn't dying, but much of it is. Why?

Because digital is rising. The internet is big. You know this. You know it so well you're tired of hearing about it, right?

But tons of leaders, who have some influence, still see operating a blog as purely a luxury, maybe even a hobby if not an utterly pointless waste of energy.

But it isn't. Let me tell you the why first. Why should you start blogging, like, yesterday? Here are my three biggest reasons (and I have a dozen more):

  • Blogging lets you frame the story behind your brand. And by "brand" I mean the story the people tell about a person, a product or an organization.
  • Blogging is like owning a piece of real estate. It's your own. Facebook and Twitter don't belong to you. You're just renting space and helping someone else profit from it.
  • Blogging leaves a legacy. So do books, of course, so you should try to write books too, but blogging is off-the-cuff, in-the-moment, from-the-heart. Publishing is long, slow and heavily edited to sell.

There is a bit of preliminary work to be done.

You need to think through your potential subject matter and outline the topics you're going to write about. Do a little research into the various tools at your disposal for creating content.

But at the end of the day, blogging isn't rocket science. That is, unless, you actually do blog about rocket science and, if that's the case, I can't help you much.

I've been blogging for 15-ish years. I've managed blogs about blogging and I've written a book about social media.

Blogging has earned a significant side income for me and my family, enabling us to pay off debt, set money aside for our kids' future, travel without stressing out and give generously with joy.

But I still say that the most important motivation for blogging isn't the money. It's the influence!

Brandon Cox has been a pastor since he was 19 and has served churches large and small, including serving as a pastor at Saddleback Church. Currently, he is planting a purpose-driven church in northwest Arkansas. He also serves as editor of pastors.com and Rick Warren's Pastors' Toolbox and authors a top 100 blog for church leaders, as well as a blog about men's issues, a blog about blogging and a blog about social media.

This article originally appeared at brandonacox.com.

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