Businesses are often nervous about the naked conversations that take place in and around blogs. They are right to be concerned, careless comments can hit a corporate share price.
The more common danger is that a corporate blog will be boring. Many argue that corporate blogs should only be written by the Chief Executive because anyone else in the company will avoid any controversy and the end result will be anodyne. Vetting, reliance on press releases and caution result in blogs that interest noone. Blogs must really allow comments, but businesses tend to block any challenging comments or any that generate real debate.
“A lot of companies are making the mistake that blogging is publishing,” says Bob Pearson Vice President of corporate group communications at Dell. “Blogging is two-way and, crucially, it’s the audience that decides what’s read, what gets linked to and so what is deemed successful. So it makes sense to listen to the conversations your target consumers are having and then shape your blog around them.”
Should corporates blog? The answer to this is a qualified yes but there is a real challenge. We have to ask the question is the blog going to be interesting and is it going to be relevant to its target audience. Once you’ve started the blog you will quickly discover whether the answer to these questions is yes. If it’s no, stop the blog.