Roger Yu of USA Today just wrote an article a few days ago on companies abandoning blogging:
With the emergence of social media, more companies are replacing blogs with nimbler tools requiring less time and resources, such as Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter.
The entire article is fairly balanced… but the data may be a bit misrepresentative of all corporations. First, the data referenced is from the fastest growing Fortune 500 companies. This is the old tale of causation versus correlation. Are companies abandoning blogging because the strategy is not helping them grow or are they abandoning blogging because they are growing?
There are still many major corporations that publish fantastic corporate blogs. And I’m not the kind of person who would say that blogging is the perfect strategy for all businesses. If you have a fantastic brand, a great following and are a growing, profitable company… you can probably bypass management of a corporate blog. That’s not to say the tactics your company are deploying aren’t as affordable as corporate blogging… you may be spending more time and money on other marketing and public relations energy than you think.
But you are not one of the fastest growing companies in the Fortune 500, are you? Is your company nationally or internationally known? Are you seen as a thought leader in your industry? Are you a trusted and authoritative brand that the industry listens to? Do you dominate search results? Do you have a marketing budget with the freedom to build that strategy utilizing other means?
Given the resources, I wouldn’t have to blog for my company, either. I could invest more in public relations, sponsorships, advertising and push to speak at events all over the country. But that’s a luxury that I can not afford. Blogging works well for me because I can invest time and energy… both expensive resources but ones that I always find to grow my business with.
My concern with the article is that, at first glance, companies may look at this article and find it to be a great excuse not to look at blogging as a feasible strategy. The decision to invest in a blogging strategy is far more complex than just looking at what the Fortune 500 are doing. Blogging is a long-term investment that requires dedication, resources and strategy to make it work well.
I personally believe most companies bail on blogging because it doesn’t provide the immediate results that some large companies demand. It’s always easier to pay to buy attention to gain attention… the question isn’t what works, it’s a matter of how long, how much and why you would incorporate one strategy over another.
One other note, it’s also not surprising to me that major media outlets with professional journalists, editors and publishers would write about the negatives of blogging. Just sayin!