There's no manual that tells you how to handle every subject in your blog, blogs aren't blogs without opinions. On the other hand, with sensitive topics, you must be careful in order not to kill your online and blog reputation. With the growth of freelancing, there are many situations where blog posts may become hot topics. So, what are the golden rules you should follow to keep your reputation in tact? Reputational damage can be hard to fix, some details can be compensated with professional help, but it is much better to avoid this harm in the first place. Here are a few tips to do just that.
Be sensitive to other people’s values
Not everyone will agree with your opinion, just as you won’t agree with theirs. But when it comes to more than just opinion, when your articles strike at people’s values, traditions and culture, that can have a huge impact. Understanding how your article may affect the people reading it and being sensitive to that is very important. You’ve heard that line think before you speak. Well that’s the same as blog writing too. You need to fully respect other people’s values and even if you don’t agree, avoid targeting people, especially when it’s something that cannot be changed.
Respond to negative comments
A blog is about communication, so you need to be open about talking to people who read what you write. Don’t just ignore bad feedback, by responding and respecting opinions or even further backing up your own opinion. You are showing you care about what your readers think and perhaps engaging more readers to share their opinions. You will always get the trollsthat are looking for a backlash. However, do not respond angrily. Make your response clear and composed, don’t lose your cool.
Its important to be yourself
When you write a blog, you are sharing yourself with the world. So, you need to share your true self. Lying will only come back on you in the end. There are many reasons why people may lie in their blog writing. Perhaps to avoid criticism, to make themselves appear to be better or more important than they are or sometimes just to fit in. This only makes it harder to back up views and opinions if they come under scrutiny. Plus, if you are caught to be lying in one instance, it undermines everything you have shared and quality honest work you have done. Avoid reputational damage by telling the truth, being yourself and if you need to, say nothing at all.
Use trusted sources
There’s nothing worse than being called out after using an untrustworthy source. Make sure you check and double check your sources and most importantly write from your own experience. Don’t be drawn into speculation or share photographs or pictures that are not associated with the topic you are talking about. Sharing untrue information, some might even call it fake news, can reduce the trust from your audience and damage your reputation.
Do you know how to handle sensitive topics on your blog?
Think back to why you started your business and blog in the first place. How do you feel about the niche it represents? Think about this when you are writing about sensitive topics and you will write true to yourself. In essence, you should use trusted sources, respect other people’s values and answer criticisms and negative comments in a dignified way. And remember, if you do come to some reputational harm, help is out there to reduce the impact as much as possible.