Monday, January 14, 2008
Companies remain in the shadows of the blogosphere
Ike has once again blogged about a positive experience with a company, and once again that company has failed to reach out to him. But this time, the company, Canon, did visit Ike's blog, and Ike even added screenshots of the hits registered via his Sitemeter account.
Over the past couple of years, I've noticed a dramatic uptick in the number of companies that come to this blog via searches. A few months ago in the span of an hour, people from Walmart, GM, Kodak, and Dell all arrived here from Google searches for their company's name. I've heard similar stories from other bloggers, so it appears that as a whole, companies are beginning to realize the need to monitor the blogosphere, and are doing so.
But more often than not, the monitoring doesn't lead to further action.
The question is, do companies simply not want to respond, or aren't sure how? I tend to think it's the latter. I also think that many of the hits that we see from a company are coming from your average employee that decides to do an 'ego check' to see what's being said about his/her company in the blogosphere. If they come across a post such as Ike's that should be responded to, they either ignore it, or mention it to a boss that probably doesn't know what's the best way to respond, or that they should respond. My guess is that most companies see a positive mention in the blogosphere, and think 'hey that's neat, shows we are doing a good job!', then move on.
This also reminds me of a recent article from CRMBuyer that quoted Jeremiah Owyang as saying that 2008 would see companies for the first time, start to set aside budgets for social media. This is a big reason why I think so many companies aren't getting past the 'monitor' stage to move to engaging bloggers online. Because they don't understand how to respond to bloggers, and don't have anyone on staff that can show them how.
If Jeremiah is right, we may see companies begin to move past the monitor roadblock later this year. That's when the fun REALLY starts!
Pic via Flickr user edcrowle
Tags:The Viral Garden, Marketing
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