Ellis Booker, editor of BtoB, playboy for marketing strategists, lately started an editorial on blogs by declaring, “I haven’t got your blog, and that i don’t intend to start one.”
His editorial was written partially as a result of a May 2 BusinessWeek cover story entitled “Blogs Can Change Your Company,” which described blogs as “probably the most explosive outbreak within the information world because the Internet itself” and contended that “blogs aren’t a company elective. They are a prerequisite.”
So — to blog or otherwise to blog, thatrrrs the true question. One factor is obvious: increasingly more companies, including Sun Microsystems, Vehicle, and Boeing, are utilizing blogs, and it might be an error to dismiss this potentially effective marketing and communications tool without carefully thinking about each side from the issue.
At its most fundamental level, your blog — short for “Website” — is only a public Site that enables users to informally publish, update and react to each other peoples records. Based on the Pew Internet & American Existence Project, 8 million Americans have produced blogs, 12% of Online users have published records to some blog, as well as in 2004 27% read blogs (a 58% increase from the year before.)
Elevated mainstream attention from the blog phenomenon (including a whole Charlie Rose display on PBS centered on blog publishers) continues to be driven not merely by the increasing recognition of blogs but by their impact — on from politics and journalism to academia and popular culture.
When it comes to aftereffect of blogs on the corporate world, Booker quotes Debbie Weil, a company blogging consultant and BtoB contributor: “There’s two methods to consider blogs. The first is: Blogs will transform everything, altering the character from the relationship between companies and customers. These guys: Blogs are members of an incremental change in the manner big companies speak with and communicate with their clients along with other constituencies.”
Kolbrener’s view is much more using the latter way of thinking. We have seen blogs like a single tile within the ever-evolving mosaic of the company’s marketing and sales communications. Where and when that tile is positioned depends upon a company’s specific needs — but that is the case with traditional marketing tools too. We respect Booker’s implication that blogs aren’t a “must-have” for each company, but his editorial does not keep the real value blogging might have for a lot of companies.
To be certain, he is doing acknowledge a couple of advantages: blogs are simpler to create-up increase than an internet site or e-mail e-newsletter, they offer additional content for your website, and also the elevated content and traffic can enhance your ranking on Web search engines like google. But he rapidly undermines these positives by emphasizing the drawbacks: too little laws and regulations (or perhaps standards) associated with fairness, advertising and libel on blogs, cheap blogs, obviously, include “real, raw and unfiltered content.”
The second concern reveals a typical mistake: evaluating blogs as though their only value could be like a traditional advertising tool. To some traditional marketing mind focused on controlling content and perceptions, “real, raw and unfiltered” content sounds a lot more like an advertising and marketing problem than the usual marketing innovation. Indeed, Booker ends his editorial by warning against an attractive means to fix this apparent problem: developing a “faux blog” that is really compiled by your marketing department or perhaps an outdoors agency. Booker appropriately worries that the “faux blog” turn into a significant faux pas: “If the deceptiveness is uncovered, you will probably be vilified by self-righteous individuals the vast dunia ngeblog. Will this thrashing ruin your company? Most likely not. Yet it begs the issue: What had you been attempting to achieve together with your blog to begin with?”