Sure, blogs are a great marketing tool. But curb your enthusiasm!
After reading the recent Business Week cover story, "Blogs Will Change Your Business," my internal cognitive dissonance radar began to detect a few blips on the screen.
I'm in the blog business, and I have every conceivable incentive to wax poetic about the power and potential of this viral "add water and stir" publishing format. I regularly author and update several blogs (this one and this, too). My firm makes real money measuring and interpreting blogs and other forms of consumer-generated media. In the past month, I've moderated two industry conference panels on blogs, issued a blog white paper, and led a handful of strategy sessions on blogs with major corporations. I have another one later today.
Why on earth would I backtrack on the medium that gave us the trackback (define)?
I'm still a believer. But I've absorbed a plenitude of battle scars during the dot-com era. I worked at a large Cincinnati-based corporation where overhyped ideas were sometimes thrown to submission by skeptics weary of future-speak. My conscience is tugging at me to put things into proper perspective.
Let's stunt the growing mushroom of blog-talk... at least for the moment!
Business Week is dead-on in noting blogs represent "the most explosive outbreak in the information world since the Internet itself." No doubt there's a really big idea here, one we must nurture, protect, and advance. But we'll never get to the second inning if we don't inject some prudence into our exuberance.
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Pete Blackshaw, whose professional background encompasses public policy, interactive marketing, and brand management, is executive vice president of strategic services for Nielsen Online, a combination of Nielsen BuzzMetrics, a firm Pete helped cofound, and Nielsen//NetRatings. One of Pete's key focuses is helping brands interpret, manage, and act on consumer-generated media (CGM). A former interactive marketing leader at P&G and founder of consumer feedback portal PlanetFeedback.com, Pete cofounded the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA). He authors several blogs, including ConsumerGeneratedMedia.com, and is the author of an upcoming book from Random House, "Satisfied Customers Tell Three Friends, Angry Customers Tell 3000: Running a Business in Today's Consumer-Driven World."
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