Your Blog Stinks
Forrester says most B2B blogs are "dull, drab, and don't stimulate discussion."
Worthen: "Not surprisingly, 53% of B2B marketers say that blogging has marginal significance or is irrelevant to their strategies--the rest call it somewhat or highly significant-and the number of new corporate blogs among the companies Forrester tracks has dropped from 36 in 2006 to just three in 2008."
Advice Goddess Amy Alkon comments, "My time is valuable, and I'd really rather not spend it watching your logo animate. Also, get somebody to blog for you who has a personality and a point of view, and who has information to dispense that's not available everywhere. And don't censor that person into tediousness."
We all recognize bad blogging pretty easily, but good may be in the eye of the beholder. Toby Bloomberg adds, "the success of a social media strategy begins with identifying goals and objectives that support business outcomes."
I've watched a lot of people start blogs since I started paying attention to this stuff in 2000, and I think there's a blogging gene. Some folks are naturals, and some are not. That's not to say blogging is out of reach for most competent adults, just that using links well, writing with immediacy -- sounding like a web native -- is not always as easy as it looks.
The standard caveats apply. You've got to feed the beast -- it doesn't have to be every day, but that's a good way to build an audience. You've got to know your audience and give them something they want and/or need. Over time, you must build a relationship with them.
One of the fascinating, Long Taily things about blogging is the rich ecosystem of subcultures and communities it reveals (I met a woman who is part of a vibrant knitting-blogger scene -- complete with internecine battles between the knitters and crocheters). The point is that there are people who are really, really interested in your business and your industry -- the trends, the details, the word on the street -- and you now have a way to engage them on a regular basis.
If you don't, your competitors will.