Making Communications Buzz

Monday, April 24, 2006

Giving Blogs a Bad Name

What is a blog? In January of 2005, only 38% of Internet users knew what a blog was. Has anyone seen an update?

Of that 38%, how many really know what a blog is? How many of those think that blogs are just online "journals" for techno-geeks and disaffected teenagers with nothing better to do?

Up until about a month ago, I was of that opinion myself. Now I can't stop thinking about uses for blogs: in business, for families, for churches and other non-profits, for schoools and on and on.

Really, the meaning of "blog" is totally up for grabs, changing constantly. Potential uses for blogs are as unlimited as the Web itself.

Blogs have been given something of a bad name because of their association with bogus news, criminal cases and employee termination lawsuits. But when companies like Nielsen (BuzzMetrics) and Google invest in blogs and many major corporations explore the uses of blogs as customer relations tools, we can see the perceived potential for use in communication is much greater.

Where do you think blogs are going?

3 Comments:

  • Blogs are words.. shouts, whispers, mutterings, etc. They're all things to all people.. movie lovers, corporate suits, politicos, musicians, geeks, and on.

    I see more of the business side.

    As a marketing writer, I don’t yet have clients that want me to help them blog.. but it might be an issue in the near future.

    Blogs are strange because they're are somewhat anti-marketing.. yet when done right they can certainly advance marketing goals (even much better than standarad formats like brochures, web copy, white papers, etc.).

    The problem is that most companies don't know how to do it without lapsing into marketing-speak and pissing off genuine readers/interested parties.

    If it were up to me, I'd advise all companies to spend as much as they can generating information/text/articles/etc... better for copywriters ;).

    .. I think people appreciate it, though, too. A lot of great brands -- Ben & Jerry's, Kiehls, Trader Joe's -- over do it with stories and text on their actual product packaging, and people love them for it. If it's genuine, it works.

    By Blogger Phil Dunn - qualitywriter.com, at 1:02 AM  

  • Blogs are words.. shouts, whispers, mutterings, etc. They're all things to all people.. movie lovers, corporate suits, politicos, musicians, geeks, and on.

    I see more of the business side.

    As a marketing writer, I don’t yet have clients that want me to help them blog.. but it might be an issue in the near future.

    Blogs are strange because they're are somewhat anti-marketing.. yet when done right they can certainly advance marketing goals (even much better than standarad formats like brochures, web copy, white papers, etc.).

    The problem is that most companies don't know how to do it without lapsing into marketing-speak and pissing off genuine readers/interested parties.

    If it were up to me, I'd advise all companies to spend as much as they can generating information/text/articles/etc... better for copywriters ;).

    .. I think people appreciate it, though, too. A lot of great brands -- Ben & Jerry's, Kiehls, Trader Joe's -- over do it with stories and text on their actual product packaging, and people love them for it. If it's genuine, it works.

    By Blogger Phil Dunn - qualitywriter.com, at 1:03 AM  

  • Phil,
    Thanks for your thoughts and thanks for posting to The McBuzzBlog.

    The Internet is brimming with possibilities that have been realized but not yet delivered or supported in a way that businesses can use.

    I'm still feeling around for a niche for McBuzz and for The McBuzzBlog, but it seems to me the role of translator / facilitator for new media like blogs in business is a good one to pursue.

    Businesses can use blogs as an extension of their Web site to show that they are listening to what clients and prospective clients have to say.

    By Blogger Mark McLaren, at 8:33 AM  

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