I recently wrote How to Write an Awesome Business Blog – which triggered a request to give examples of what I think are great business blogs.
Because this is PRiME, I’ve picked out blogs that will be appreciated by experienced women, though age and gender aren’t really that relevant. This is a subjective list, which includes blogs that I have always respected, ones I have hunted out from lists of top business blogs and recommendations from other prime bloggers.
So first, what do I think makes a great business blog?
- It’s written to be helpful to the reader and share insights, not a sales piece.
- Well-constructed and an easy read
- Has a good headline and you want to read it, even in a supermarket queue or crushed on a train
- It’s professional and may have personal experiences, but it is not “personal”
- Generously shares the writer’s expertise
- The blog has a clear identity so you know what to expect, and the blogs are always consistent within a theme.
Here is my list, in no particular order. I would welcome challenge and other suggestions.
Wine is a great way to start off any list?! Thanks to fellow blogger, Tricia Conover, for recommending this blog. Check out Tricia’s wine blogs on Prime. Alder Yarrow started Vinography in 2004 and has a confident and informative style. I love his weekly Vinography Unboxed, where Alder gives his views on the samples he’s been sent that week.
No one can have a list of top blogs without mentioning Mashable, which “informs, inspires and entertains the digital generation.” It has 45m visitors a month and sets the standard in great blogs. Chances are if you ever searched a techy “how to…” question, you will have found a Mashable blog with the answer. They are brilliant at blogging to answer their subscribers’ questions.
3. TED Talks
This was another great suggestion from Tricia, the TED Talks blog that goes alongside the wonderful TED Talks – videos of really outstanding speakers covering business and global speakers. They are viewed by millions of people.
4. Lean In
Sheryl Sandberg started Lean In with her book and this continues the discussion – a great goal for any blog. There are lots of contributions from men, working out their role to support working women and to combine family and work – finally it’s moving away from being a “women’s issue!” I’ve chosen this blog by Ray Arata as the example.
Successful-Blog is what Liz Strauss, its founder, describes as a “community conversation.” Like Mashable, it takes good contributions on all sorts of business topics. This is a good lesson for us all – getting guest contributors is one of the best ways to build a blog as “continuing the conversation” is a great blogging technique.
6. Harvard Business Review
It must be every business person/academic’s dream to write for Harvard Business Review. Academic research is distilled into useful and practical advice; writers provoke new thinking and debate. You could spend hours lost on this site – you want to read every topic: Ethical shoppers don’t inspire us – they bug us, Why is it so hard for us to admit our mistakes?, Fending off a colleague who keeps wasting our time, etc.
7. Board Talk
Dina Medland is very much a blogging heroine for me. A former FT journalist, she started Board Talk in 2013 and absolutely focuses on boardroom issues from governance to women on boards and leadership, headhunters to investor roles and corruption. She kindly contributed a piece to my Ebook on business blogging about how she got started and what she learnt at the start. Dina has also become a Forbes blogger.
8. Little Pink Book
I’ve been a bit cheeky here – this is a list of the Top 10 Business Blogs for Women, so you get 10 blogs for the price of one with this! This selection is a mix of legal, financial and careers advice, as well as several on starting and running a business.
9. Sherpas in Blue Shirts
I met Sarah Burnett, VP at Everest Group earlier this month and was delighted to find a leading corporate businesswoman who had been blogging for ten years. She blogs for her company’s site, Sherpas in Blue Shirts. Everest Group is a management consulting/research firm that focuses on global IT and business services strategy. Sarah has just written a guest blog for our site about how she started blogging and what the benefits have been. I struggle to find really good corporate bloggers. There are now increasing numbers of accountants and lawyers writing blogs, but rarely do you find one who shares what they are seeing with their clients, rather than providing a legal or accountancy brief.
10. Pat Chapman-Pincher
Pat Chapman-Pincher started blogging just over a year ago and shared her story in this PRiME blog on how you can influence business leaders. Her story is inspirational. She worries that business leaders do not understand technology or its impact – artificial intelligence and intelligent automation – and are therefore not adapting their businesses to deal with threats and opportunities. Through her blog, she explains in plain English what the issues are and what boards and directors should be doing.
11. Seth Godin
I am about to write something that will be heresy to many. Seth Godin is one of the world’s best known business bloggers and one of the great gurus in social media. But I confess, I have never really gotten into his blogs. He does a little snippet every day – something to think about – yet they have never grabbed me. I subscribed when I was learning about blogging but getting a ping every day was too much for me. I am but one person and there are millions of others who think he is fab, so he has to go in this list!
12. Sunny Sky Solutions
There is a great story as to why I have chosen this blog! I met Gabriela Castro-Fontouras about three years ago – on Twitter. We have gotten to know each other better over time on social media, and we have done guest blogs for each other. Earlier this month, Gabriela asked us to work with her – her business helps people to set up and trade in Latin America. Social media does work for business! Apart from the story, Sunny Sky Solutions also has great insights and tips about where to start in Latin America and the various pros and cons. It’s packed with sensible advice.
13. Chris Brogan
Chris Brogan’s book, Trust Agents, was seminal for me. This book helped me for the first time, understand how social media could be really strategic and build relationships, instead of going for “a million likes on Facebook.” So I have to include his blog in this list (thanks Chris).
14. Gina Abudi
Gina Abudi writes for small business owners, particularly around leadership and management – how to create your vision and keep your employees with you. I found Gina on a few “top business blog” lists.
15. We Are The City
Described as “Supporting the female pipeline,” We Are The City is a great resource for women by women in the City of London. But to be honest, it’s great wherever you are, with tips and insights to get women promoted.
16. Denise Lee Yohn
Denise Lee Yohn writes about all things branding. How to design brilliant customer experiences, commentary on brands that are doing well – and not and snippets from the latest books on branding. A treasure trove here.
17. Fitness Professionals
Debra Atkinson, another PRiME blogger, is behind the Fitness Professionals – a site to help business owners who run fitness businesses. She has tips for all the business headaches including hiring and firing employees, getting new customers, using social media and innovative ways to stand out.
18. Enterprise Nation
Emma Jones is the inspiration behind Enterprise Nation, which helps start-up and small businesses. Highly respected, she is often advising the UK government on small business issues and has her finger on the pulse as to what is keeping business owners awake at night and how to help them.
19. Marilyn Stowe
Marilyn Stowe is a family and divorce lawyer and was a very early blogger. I have always thought blogging is perfect for people running “sensitive” businesses – divorce, insolvency, crime – where someone may not want to admit even to themselves that they have problems. It is highly likely they will start trawling the internet for advice or to understand where they stand. A blog is a really good way to create empathy long before the reader is ready to pick up the phone.
20. Northern Lights
I hesitate to include this, as the Northern Lights blog is my own business blog! I hope this isn’t too promotional (I am British so it isn’t quite the thing to do), but we get really great feedback from our clients. We write to help our clients and contacts on using social media for B2B businesses, networking, winning business, thought leadership and communications for senior people. I have been blogging for seven years but am still learning! We get ideas for topics from the questions that clients ask us.
So there is my mix of great business blogs which I hope will give you food for thought, ideas for your own blogs and some best practice tips on what works! As I said, please do send me your suggestions – contact me on Twitter @nlightspr or email email@example.com. I love finding new blogs to admire.