Blogging has quickly migrated from being perceived as a forum for personal rants and raves to being a strategy-leading vehicle for communication between companies and their customers. Blogs are now the places to go to get fresh, un-“spun” information about industry trends, new technologies, and cutting-edge implementations. And blogs are the place to engage in genuine dialog about customer needs and expectations, company capabilities and responses to problems, and the technological capacities and decision-making that will shape society’s future.
So, why should you and your company “blog”?
• Blogging is informal and conversational. It gets beyond marketing hype and formula-driven communication.
• Blogging is two-way or many-way. It creates a level playing field for technology users, management, developers, salespersons, corporate leadership, and anyone else who wishes to weigh-in.
• Blogging creates a melting pot for ideas, implementations, applications, and discoveries.
• Blogging respects your customers, invites them to provide feedback and input, and engages them in future-casting and decision-making.
• Blogging empowers employees. It helps them create products customers want and solve problems customers have. By blogging, employees can help shape a positive image for the company and its products and present the human face and contact customers crave.
• Blogging may not be free, from a corporate perspective, but it is a low-cost way to develop an entirely new, fresh, effective marketing, communication, and support channel using existing resources.
• By blogging, you are speaking the language of the most influential industry analysts active today. Savvy customers read savvy analysts’ blogs. And savvy analysts pay attention to the blogs of savvy industry technology leaders.
• Blogging is immediate, provocative, reactive, responsive, and dynamic. It’s what’s happening now.
• Industry weeklies and magazines bring you old news. If it’s important, it’s in a blog today. Isn’t that where your news should be?
• Blog let you be “found” by journalists, analysts, and of course, other bloggers. I have seen time and time again where clients that I cover on my blog, or clients who have their own blogs get better rankings, get better media coverage, and are seen as current and authoritative sources on industry specific subjects.
Why? Because of tagging. If you tag right, you tag often, and write quality content that helps the media, you’ll be found and you’ll get coverage.
As you regularly revisit and update your company’s communication plan, be sure blogging is in the mix. Make it an integral part of your own corporate culture. And be certain that thought leaders in your industry sector understand your company, your products, and your technology vision from the points of view of your customers, your employees, and yourself…through blogs.
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