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BulldogAwardDesignation - Ishmael's Corner winner Best Blog for PR Agency/Consultanc

There are times when it’s just not possible to say what you want to say in a headline and also optimize that headline for SEO.

This is one of those times.

The Bulldog Digital Awards recently named my blog as “Best Blog for PR Agency/Consultancy” with the gold designation.

I’m thankful that the judges didn’t hold the outdated design against me. As I mentioned last week, we’re in the throes of bulldozing the current site with a fresh “look and feel” on the way.

Considering the dowdy design, I’m especially appreciative of the growing number of folks who make the time to read the blog.

To borrow from the Beatles, it’s been a “long and winding road” to establish a readership with critical mass. Part of the blog’s growth has come from stockpiling posts over the years. Looking at traffic over a 12-month period that covered August 2013 thru July 2014, you can see nine of the top 10 posts for this period were published prior to August 2013 with the vast majority of this recent traffic coming from organic search or what we like to term “earned search:”

BlogTrafficChart SEO organic search

I’ve highlighted this point because some folks have questioned the value of corporate blogging. We believe that a company blog makes for one of the most effective thought leadership platforms on the planet.

But it does require work and time.

For those in communications or marketing who prefer a magic wand, you’re right to take a pass on corporate blogging. Pixie dust alone will not bring readers to a blog.

As our client campaigns continue to encompass owned media and even paid media, my blog often acts as a laboratory for experimentation, ideally in a way that benefits the entire industry.

For example, because communicators typically come from an English, mass comms or journalism background dominated by words, the transition to visual storytelling can be a challenge. By striving to create original artwork for over 50 percent of the posts, we’ve come a long way on the visual storytelling front (aided by hiring a powerhouse creative director, Chauncey Hill). This has involved pushing beyond conventional photography into areas such as illustration as reflected in visuals such as the Pope taking a selfie and the misguided wisdom of a startup CEO copying Steve Jobs:


Pope and SteveJobs - visual storytelling


We’ve come to believe that illustration — where literally anything is possible — is the most underutilized form of visual storytelling in communications.

And we continue to explore the concept of Word Visuals like the one that recently played off the Gigaom mast head:


So I appreciate the pat on the back as acknowledgement that the blog serves an industry resource and an advocate for the communications profession.

Given the upheaval in our industry, there’s never been a better time to be in communications.

Or write about it.



  • Chris Parente

    Congratulations on the recognition, and good post. I’ve long felt that running your own site, achieving you’re own organic SEO, becoming an influencer are powerful experiences to bring to a client engagement. Wish I had my own graphic artist though — that’s enviable!

    Now I’m going to check out some of those evergreen articles of yours.

    • hoffman

      Thanks for the positive words. It’s kind of nice to have an outlet that doesn’t require client approval.


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