After the photo on the blog yesterday regular reader Karine wrote in the comments “But, isn’t there a risk here as far as your credibility is concerned? I know no risk, no gain, but still. This is a professional blog, isn’t it? So, what does YOUR market think?”
Hope you are well. It’s a very, very tricky issue when you do something even slightly off centre.
As a quick example, I wrote a small article in the SitePoint Tribune newsletter about a study that found overweight people are discriminated against at work.
They get less promotion, etc and a decent % of people in the study said they don’t respect overweight people. It wasn’t me saying it of course, I just mentioned the study and the findings.
I wrote it as a heads up to let people know that others don’t always make decisions based on what they probably should.
(To read something similar, but a lot more articulately than I can put here, check out Malcolm Gladwell’s book ‘Blink’.)
Anyway, I received more email for that article than any other article I’d ever written. The vast majority was critical – such as “How dare you say that you pig.” (even though I said it was a study.)
What Happens Next
So yes, there is a risk. But the risk isn’t as big as it might appear when you do something controversial (rather than truly offensive) because many people are drawn to controversy. They want to see what happens next.
With something like this on my blog I don’t think it causes any loss of credibility. My whole strategy comes from thinking differently and trying to develop strategies that stand out within the market (I wanted this to be an example of what others could use more than a marketing strategy for this blog).
Controversy, being a little offensive (think of your local radio shock jocks) and just being different works as a marketing strategy…..But it can be a fine line to tread.