Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Your Company Blog Sucks, Here's How to Fix it

My latest post is up at Daily Fix, as well as my latest article for Marketing Profs. Both are covering what happens when a company starts blogging, then they run into problems.

Think about it, there's plenty of information available to companies telling them why and how they should START blogging, but there's very little advice available to them if their blogging efforts don't take off like they had hoped.

Late last year I wrote an article for Marketing Profs entitled Ten Steps to Starting a Company Blog (Premium membership required). The article was one of the more popular ones on the site last year, but I always had the intention to follow it up at a later date with a companion article that would focus on how to 'fix' a company blog if it wasn't getting the results a company wanted.

Then a couple of months ago, I came in contact with a company whose blog needed just this type of help. On the surface, the company thought they were doing everything right. They were blogging almost daily, especially during the week, and several high-level execs were involved in the writing, from the CEO on down.

The problem was, there was zero interaction with their readers. When I found their blog, the last 15 or so posts had netted a grand total of one comment. The company was falling into a common trap of positioning the blog as a promotional tool for the company, instead of positioning the content from the reader's point of view.

Which is one of the main areas I hit on in my article for Marketing Profs, entitled Eight Ideas for Revitalizing Your Company Blog (and yes it is FREE!). I talk about several ways that companies can save their blogs, and discuss ways to help build readership by giving their visitors a reason to become readers. The companion post to this article is headlining at Daily Fix today, entitled Your Company Blog Sucks, Now What? Please check them out and feel free to forward them to any companies that you think need to fix their blogging efforts ;)

UPDATE: John Jantsch at Duct Tape Marketing blogs about the article adding "Mack shares simple truths about building and feeding a blog audience. The piece should be required reading for any blogger, seasoned or just getting started." Thanks John!

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Stephen Denny said...

Mack: how much emphasis would you suggest that a corp blog initiative put on *outbound* communications? I've run into similar things -- company blogs talking to themselves with no comments -- and have wondered if the problem is a lack of outreach (as opposed to "in-reach", which may not be a real word).

How are you coaching clients in this area -- do you have any live fire examples in this area?

Thanks --

Mack Collier said...

Stephen I think companies that blog have to be willing to spend time off their blogs as well. Besides, it's a great way to make a positive impression. Think about how often you comment on company blogs, and how often does someone from that company come back to comment on YOUR blog, or link to your blog? Not very often I'm betting.