Publishing: Facebook or Private Blog?

Publish.  That word alone causes many excitement and fear at the same time.  Publishing articles show that you are providing value to your customers.  Recently Facebook started allowing publishing on its site.  They have given us comment threads, the ability to add pictures, new like buttons and of course the ability to put our articles into the site and it is all done with the ease that we love.

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One of the problems is that people do not want to spend the time and effort it takes to put all they have into a blog unless it is a subject that they are passionate about.  We are seeing blogs evolve into channels and platforms for personal branding or niche specialists publishing. 

Facebook is constantly experimenting on ways to keep its users on their site longer.  After all, the longer someone is on Facebook, the more ads they will see and therefore, Facebook has that ability to earn revenue from those ads. 

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I have asked people if they have a blog and often times I hear Facebook is my blog.  The question becomes “Is this a good choice?” 

I am going to go out on a limb with many folks and say that if you want to be taken seriously as a blogger in your niche (as opposed to just putting out  your thoughts and photos in some random fashion) then using Facebook as your blog is a poor decision.

Reasons to not use Facebook for your Blog

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Facebook owns your page, not you

Facebook owns your page, not you.  It has been called renting or cybersquatting the space.  If you do not comply with their terms and conditions, your Facebook page can be terminated with just one push of a button on Facebook’s side.    This also seems to be a most opportune time to add that you want to use a self-hosted site with your own domain, which will ensure you have total control over what happens.  Blogger is also a cybersquatting platform as it is owned by Google.  See more about blogs for your platform.

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Facebook is not forever

Nothing is forever.  Did you gasp?  As big as Facebook is, the thought of it no longer being this popular would be sacrilege.  I am sure that AOL once felt that way and look at what has happened with them.  The digital face of the internet is constantly changing.  The ever increasing popularity of SnapChat is proof of that.  What folks want to see and use constantly changes.  If I am going to spend hours researching, editing, spell checking, creating graphics, key word searches and so much more for my blog, I want to be sure that it will be there in 5 years.

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It is difficult to backup Facebook

Facebook is difficult to back up and maintain your content to save for the future.  To be honest, the only real way to backup your Facebook “blogs” would be to create the along with any images to a document, be it Word or Google and save it there.  That just feels like a lot of double work to me and I do not have that kind of time.  Of course you could just take the risk that there is not some change and you have suddenly lost everything because Facebook made a change. 

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The look can change at any time

The look of Facebook keeps changing without your consent.    What makes you think that they cannot change the way your blog, on their real estate, can look.  Suddenly those carefully placed images you created for your blog could be all distorted or (gasp) just disappear.  This is yet another commentary on how your blog is under their control

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Optimization is Important

You cannot optimize your Facebook page for search engines, but you can with your blog.  A blog that you own can actually have plug-ins that will guide you to have the most optimized article.  I want all the help I can get to ensure that the product I am putting out will be reached by those searching for information.  My plug in lets me edit my snippet, which is what someone sees when they discover my article on a search engine.  If I do not take the time to do this, what is presented is the first 500 characters of the article.  I have to admit that 90% of the time that is not what I want to be read as a commentary of my article.  This would be just be extremely difficult without this helping hand.  This cannot be done for an article on Facebook.  Just as my son says so often, “It is what it is” That is not good enough for me and it should not be for you and all the time and effort you put into your work either.

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Please show Mercy

With Facebook you are constantly at the mercy of what they allow and don’t allow you to edit or customize.  I love guidelines, but I also love the freedom of having choices. You have unlimited customized features with your blog

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I have given you six great reasons why, if you want to publish on line, you want to maintain control over your content.  You want your blog to be your primary web presence and your “home base” and not a Facebook page.  You want a place that will not change and something that is reliable for your readers and followers.  Learn more about blogging in my free class here which includes 3 videos and 3 handouts 

Owned Blog vs Facebook

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Please do not mistake what I am trying to say here.  I love Facebook and have a fan page and a personal profile and I am active on both.  I love sharing my content on social media, and I have a schedule in which I share each week’s blog that is on my self-hosted site, on my Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.  But the bottom line is that I am using that home base as my own website.  Why?  Because I do not own my Facebook Page- Mark Zuckerberg does!

Sound off

Let me know what you think of this article.  Do you believe that publishing on Facebook is the way to go or are you using your own self hosted site?

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