Vaspers the Grate has a "grate" list of 20 Reasons a Business Should NOT Blog. They are all spot-on, but I wanted to mention a few of my favorites here. Don't blog...if your business...
* Has no interesting stories to tell about how your products have solved problems for users, how your company got started, or lessons learned along the way.
* Is fearful of "losing control of the message" -- which is probably a non-differentiating, feature-driven, "we-oriented" message that's boring and alienating customers anyway.
* Is not "into" computers, social networks, YouTube, etc., and does not care about customers who are.
* Believes in commanding and controlling, rather than engaging in conversations with the public.
* Hates getting down on the level of customers to learn what their real problems and needs are.
And my favorite...
* Is totally satisfied with conducting Business As Usual (which generally leads to Business As Over).
You could say that blogs are a bridge. A bridge between the community of your customers, and the community of workers that make up your company. Unfortunately, too many companies view their customers with an almost 'us versus them' mentality.
Francois Gossieaux recently noted the difference between Target and Wal-Mart's groups on Facebook. Target's group has over 12,000 members, while Wal-Mart barely has a tenth that number. While members of Target's group can contribute to and start their own discussions, Wal-Mart's cannot.
In the Marketing 2.0 group on Facebook, Francois notes:
"What is the difference do you think, except for the fact that a large portion of the population believes that one of the two companies is truly evil?
"The Wal-Mart home page looks like another interactive ad.. The Target home page is more inviting and enlists the help of users to co-create the experience."
And this is truly the power of social media. Blogs and social sites have the incredible ability to bring company and customers together, if the company is smart enough to build that bridge.
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