How do you make a solid business case for blogging for marketing? What about managing upper management's expectations on the outcome? Should you hire a professional blogger to write your company blog?

To get answers to these questions and others, MarketingProfs called a Thought Leaders Summit, mustering some of the best minds in the marketing and blogging. In a 90-minute session, we tapped into the wisdom of the following gurus in Internet marketing and business blogging: Toby Bloomberg (Bloomberg Marketing); Seth Godin, Shel Israel (Conferenza), B.L. Ochman (, Steve Rubel (CooperKatz & Co), Robert Scoble (Microsoft), Doc Searls (Linux Journal) and Debbie Weil (WordBiz).

The experts also revealed their most effective blogging tactics. They discussed what business bloggers must refrain from in order to become accepted members of the blogosphere, and they talked about tips for getting syndicated onto other people's Web sites and blogrolls.

Finally, our experts told us about their heroes and mentors, and they gazed into the crystal ball to see what the blogosphere will look like in years to come. Their ideas on those issues are distilled in the second part of this article, to run next week.

Making a Solid Business Case for Blogging

With almost 10 million blogs out there today, blogging is not just a passing fad. It's here to stay. And the early birds—those companies that get a head start—are likely to achieve celebrity status, generate buzz and garner attention in mainstream media (at least for a while).

If you work for an organization that needs statistics and proof that blogging is going to pay for itself right away, you'll fall into the trap of doing it for short-term gain. And if that's your intent, your blog is going to fail. In fact, you are likely to end up sabotaging the entire operation.

Marketers and business people need to take a long-term look at the strategy of why a company is going to put resources, people and dollars into what is essentially a new marketing tactic.

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Stephan Spencer is the founder of Science of SEO and an SEO expert, author, and speaker.

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