Business Blogs Continue More and Less: One Blogger’s Perspective

I was an early adopter of business blogging, despite my usual hesitation to embrace new media. After much trepidation, I launched this blog in 2005 to help managers engage employees and customers with internal marketing. As I start my 10th year writing this blog and reading others, here’s my take on how business blogging has evolved.

  • MORE social media for MORE sharing of content. When I began blogging, the primary way to share posts was through blog subscriptions, RSS feeds, and email. Now Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+, and other social community networks like Ning allow for far greater posting and sharing of content.
  • LESS blog comments, yet MORE reader engagement. People seem to be posting fewer blog comments as they have many more opportunities to respond and engage in discussion via social media groups.
  • MORE thought leadership, as well as MORE information overload.
  • MORE work pressures and LESS time to write. 

I can’t predict how blogging will continue to evolve beyond the certainty of MORE content competing for MORE fragmented and LESS attention in an ever-growing social media space.

In the meantime, do business blogs still make sense? Most definitely, according to my colleague and social media mentor, Toby Bloomberg:

“Social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and even LinkedIn have capitalized on our society’s short attention span. While ‘short’ posts and updates are fast to write (and to read), blogs offer an opportunity to explore issues in more depth. There is no better way to establish, reinforce and sustain thought-leadership positioning.”
[You can read more about this on my Blog Anniversary & Interview with Toby Bloomberg]

What are your thoughts on business blogging? Whether you’re a fellow blog reader and/or blogger, I’d love to hear from you!

14 Comments

  • Dawn Lennon February 17, 2014 Reply

    Congratulations, Sybil, for your commitment to blogging and for your commitment to service. Your 9 years have demonstrated how much you care about quality service marketing and about those who strive to contribute to the effort.

    Blogging can be arduous when done on a regular basis. That said, when content is of value, the blog enables the reader to know more and do better. So thanks for setting such an inspiring example. Onward. ~Dawn

  • Zane Safrit February 12, 2014 Reply

    Sybil,

    Congrats on your tenure!

    Congrats on your consistently excellent content, too.

    I started blogging about the same time. I found and continue to find it a powerful platform to explore ideas, articulate new discoveries and connections, be a base for a global audience to connect with me and me with them.

    The market is flooded with content and so much of it is great. So many people are excited about their journey of discovery, finding new friends and ways to connect. I think several things will happen:

    Writing and communication skills will improve. That’s so important as we move through these shifts in our cultures, our economies.
    Lots more micro-communities will sprout, grow, mature and disband.
    The riffraff, the shrill voices and what-not that draw the out-of-context headlines will fade away from lack of impact, lack of interest, no means to monetize hysteria.
    More transparency and accountability from organizations to its members and the public. No top-down hierarchy will decide the rules. No agenda other than connecting, communicating and finding solutions.
    Some craziness. All of these points glaze over how much disruption this empowerment will bring. Unfortunately, some of those who should go quietly into their night will refuse.

    You highlight some of the challenges, opportunities… stuff I’m pondering about. I loved blogging, love social media and I want to make sure I’m adding value in these different channels.

    Best to you.

    • sybil February 12, 2014 Reply

      Zane, thanks for adding your observations & predictions on blogging and social media networks. As the daughter and sister of English teachers, I especially find hope in your comment about writing and communication skills improving!

  • Sandra Beckwith February 12, 2014 Reply

    Congrats on your anniversary, Sybil. I’m sure your blog has been an important part of your business growth.

    As someone who’s been blogging since ’07, I’ll agree with you that one of the biggest changes for business bloggers is how our content can be shared with social networks now. Anyone who doesn’t have sharing icons as part of their blog structure is missing out on opportunities to expose others to their content.

    I’ll disagree with you on content volume, though. I’m seeing more comments on blogs in general (and on my own) because the social sharing brings more traffic to each post. I’m also seeing more discussion on my blog post content when I share it on other social networks. Collectively, I’m getting lots more conversation about my content whether it’s right under the post or under a link to my post on Facebook or LinkedIn, and I love that!

    Sandra Beckwith

    • sybil February 12, 2014 Reply

      I appreciate your weighing in, Sandy. Glad to hear about your experience with comments!

  • Toby Bloomberg February 12, 2014 Reply

    Happy happy blog-birthday. Sustaining a blog with not only great, relevant content but is well written is a huge accomplishment.

    Much appreciate the shout out. You always demonstrate one of the important pillars of blogging — generosity of spirit.

    • sybil February 12, 2014 Reply

      That’s because I learned from the best! Thanks, Toby!

  • Susan Cartier Liebel February 12, 2014 Reply

    Sybil, congratulations! I’ve been blogging for going on seven years and in internet years, that’s like dog years! From a business perspective there is no surer way to organically grow your business, share your voice, engage with others you would not normally and take new online relationships offline to develop them further. What has changed (as you indicated)is attention span. There is so much competition for finite minutes in a day, you have to stay on point, be compelling, and spread your content through multiple media platforms to bring your audience (old and new) back to homebase – your blog. I recently read that humans went from having an attention span of twelve seconds down to eight, one second less than a goldfish. How’s that for perspective!

    Therefore, slow and steady, consistently on point writing is critical. You don’t have to be the first to report, you have to be the best at your perspective on the topic you know best.

    • sybil February 13, 2014 Reply

      A shorter attention span than a goldfish?! LOL! Seriously, thanks for your comments, Susan. I admire how you’ve built your brand with your Solo Practice University blog.

  • Elaine Fogel February 11, 2014 Reply

    First of all, Sybil, congrats on your 9th blog anniversary! I started blogging for MarketingProfs in 2006 and didn’t start my own for quite a while. But, I’m glad I did.

    Although it’s hard and time-consuming work, it gives me an opportunity to share my experience and knowledge. I always learn something while researching topics.

    The other big advantage for me is the continued growth of online content one finds when using my name in a search engine. That has tremendous value. So, I agree with Toby. It builds credibility and thought leadership.

    • sybil February 11, 2014 Reply

      Thanks, Elaine! It’s amazing how people underestimate the time involved in researching, as well as writing, a business blog.

  • Matt Heinz February 11, 2014 Reply

    Great takeaways! I’d add to this that good writing stands out more than ever today. The market is flooded with content, which makes those with a good point (delivered efficiently & effectively) are still earning attention.

    Blogs aren’t a destination, though. They’re part of a journey. Too many B2B “math” marketers thing of blog posts as glorified landing pages to generate leads. If they instead assumed (correctly) that their blog will likely require multiple visits, touchpoints and impressions to drive true credibility, preference and action, their execution might change a bit and be more effective as well.

    • sybil February 11, 2014 Reply

      You’re so right, Matt: good, thoughtful writing is a key differentiator! Strategically, blogs need to be considered part of process involved in both brand-building and relationship-building.

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