Fear of flying is a complex psychological issue, airsafe.com tells us. "It’s an anxiety disorder. Fear can come about well before a person even gets to the airport, and some of the elements of flying fear have little or nothing to do with the actual risks associated with the flight." Fear of heights plays a role, fear of the unknown, concerns about turbulence, and even concerns about being dependent upon technology.
It’s interesting that when I read a blog by David Meerman Scott about Fear of Blogging, it sounded to me like an alternative version of the AirSafe blog! Meerman Scott says that, every day, he runs across fear of marketing on the Web. This fear, he adds, leads businesses to ignore blogs and refuse to participate. Yet, he says, all the people who go on to have experience with blogging and other social media tells him that their earlier fears were overblown.
One of the main fears many business owners have that may prevent them from starting blog marketing is, according to Scott, "Fear of people saying bad things about us" (The equivalent of people being afraid of turbulence in a plane, I wonder?) In my own Say It For You blog posts, I’ve often calmed this very concern.
First of all, you can set up your blog platform so that you have to approve readers’ comments before they go "live" on your blog, if that makes you feel more "protected". But keep in mind that one of the goals of any business blogging effort is to create "conversation" between the business owners and the audience. So what you really want to do is invite comments and questions, even negative ones, and then address any concerns as soon as they appear.
Meerman Scott has had blogophobes confess to fear of looking silly or being afraid their blog posts won’t have anything important to say. I’ve had business owners embarrassed over their lack of computer savvy, afraid to admit they don’t understand blogging software. (This is the equivalent of fear of dependence on technology to keep one safe while flying.)
Meerman Scott advises blogging among trusted colleagues to "get the hang of it". The reason clients rely on professional ghost bloggers like me is they can take advantage of blog marketing without having to overcome those twin fears connected with technology and with writing.
The most interesting fear described in David Meerman Scott’s WebInkNow blog was "fear that it does not work in our industry". "I’ve heard them all", he says, meaning the misperceptions that "blog marketing does not work for mutual fund managers, lawyers, dentists, politicians, Singapore-based software companies, Canadian blood donation centers, Florida real estate agents, churches or rock bands…"
From a business standpoint, fear of blogging can be a fearsome business mistake. Comprehensive research developed by Universal McCann shows 73% of online users read blogs. In the time it’s taken you to read this far into my blog post, thousands and thousands of new blog posts have been introduced, some of them by your competitors.
Experience brings mastery, Meerman Scott concludes. To which I offer a second: Just get going! There are no monsters in the closet, and the cure for blog phobia is simply – blogging!