To blog or not to blog
Technorati publish an annual ‘State of the Blogosphere’ report analysing trends and growth in blogging and whilst they have not yet released a report for 2012, their 2011 report is an interesting read.
The report states that corporate bloggers make up to 8% of the blogosphere, a substantial amount. Deborah Sweeney, CEO of MyCorporation, highlights the problems that this high percentage may cause with businesses publishing ‘’clichéd, outdated articles in the hopes of attracting a wider audience.’’
A blog can be a vital way for businesses to engage with current and prospective customers so it is important that you use your blog in the correct way to make this customer engagement the most efficient it can be.
A blog is a free channel through which businesses can communicate with customers and when executed correctly can be an effective self-marketing tool.
Using a blog in the correct way can allow your business to promote themselves and their services as industry leading and experts. As a result people not only listen to what you say but also brings trust and creditability leading to an increase in profit margins.
So, what should you avoid writing about in a business blog?
There are five top topics which you should avoid talking about in a blog.
Your companies’ press releases
The sole purpose of reading a business blog is to gain your advice or read an analysis on a topic you explore within your industry. People will not want to come to a blog post to read a copied and pasted version of a recent press release. If a business starts to post press releases, readers will begin to drop off and will not check the blog on a regular basis.
Promoting your business
The Technorati report highlighted that 61% of corporate bloggers stated that they blog to earn professional recognition and 52% reported that they blog to attract new clients. It is imperative that a blog is not seen or used as a promotional tool as readers prefer to read advice on topics and not reading about how you believe your business is great.
Highly detailed, personal stories
Blogs should remain professional at all times so avoid mentioning personal or business problems in a post.
Announcements which jump the gun
Some new businesses facet this problem when they are small and growing. Those small businesses which are in the process of signing a contract get too excited and feel the need to post the news in a blog. Now, this can be bad for two reasons. First of all, those contracts that have not been finalised could fall through and this would therefore look bad on the business. Secondly, the partners may not be happy with the business wishing to announce the news on their blogs.
Pseudo New Age advice
Blog posts such as ‘’Finding the Business Zen Within’’ mostly contain common advice and so are not the sort of posts most people in the business world wish to read about.
Posted by Tara Soulby, EMEA CSS BDS SMS&P Readiness Co-ordinator Intern at Microsoft UK. Studying BSC Business Management at Surrey University. LinkedIn profile available here.
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