I have am taken an interest in how people and organizations are affected by technology, and subsequently how it affects my pocket and yours. Whether you believe it or not, blogs are quickly evolving from the normal online journals and diaries into strong powerful marketing tools that are already shaping the way advertising and marketing is being done. There are well over 35 million blogs, with 40,000 new blogs being started every day. The blogosphere – the world of blogs – is doubling in size every 5 months! Some blogs have millions of readers per month, while your organization’s website looks like a dull poster. If your organization is not paying attention, something is happening, you it may be going extinct!
While most companies and corporations have websites that look static and boring, with contents remaining unchanged for weeks, months and even years! Internet users typically don’t have much reason to visit a website over and over unless they want to buy something or want a current gist. Big Corporations are already paying attention to the problems they can cause; from the whistle blowing on the MLMs (dipotepede and deoluakinyemi’s posts on wonder bank blogs) to customers’ complaints on forums ( nairaland’s user- mypeace created a thread to announce UBA’s hidden COT charges on savings accounts, Nigerian Village Square online protesters and British airways saga). Your business cannot afford to close its eyes to them, because they have been the next big phenomenon since the internet itself…it has given the small business a leverage to compete with other companies- and the rising profiles of blogs have the potential to shake up just about every business — including yours. It’s now no more an ordinary online journal; it’s become a potent business weapon. It doesn’t matter whether what that business is you are running, we need to pay attention before a one-man company runs you out of business.
Blogs have gradually becoming a potent voice in mass communication, advertising and marketing campaigns. Blogs have been responsible for breaking a number of stories before tele-media, including the capture of Saddam Hussein. A 20 year old Nick Ciarelli, has continued to be one pin apple can’t sit on. His blog has a reputation as a reliable source of information about Apple computers’ planned launches. This has made his blog a hot site for both competitors and buyers. Someone decided to open a blog to put McDonalds on it toes, to “discuss the brand experience of the world’s largest fast food chain from the customer’s point of view” , and consumers have been talking. There is an uploaded clip of a dell product exploding on YouTube; this has forced Dell computers to withdraw 4.1million of the defective model from the market. A dis-satisfied customer of United Airlines angrily created a website, “untied.com -problems of the united airlines”, even arrogant Nigerian British Airways could not ignore the internet community at the Nigerian Village Square and their signature collection for an airline boycott to protest the treatment meted out to Nigerians in the airport. MTN, Biggs, and other corporations need to pay attention-they may be next, or a competitor may be coming. Mr. Edet (not real name) met the company he lost a web design and branding contract to-it was just a 28-year old boy working from the dining table of his Dad’s house. While Mr. Edet runs a 12-man company, with his website running, exquisite office space in Ikeja; the young guy work alone, at home-a weblog and a proposal, did it.
Apart from being “consumer-revenge portals”, blogs are now strong marketing and innovation tools tools. Millions of books hare being written everyday on business blogging. Business Week stated on its cover, “Blogging will change your business,” and virtually every business needs to embrace blogging as a business tool. I have a strong conviction one of the users of nairaland, who posted a question on bank PHB’s services, is a staff of Bank PHB trying to do a near cost-less survey on how their services are doing and it’s amazing the kind of downright straight 2 d point responses. Most foreign companies are already incorporating blogs into their websites or encouraging their employees to blog and many of us are starting to offer business blogging consulting.
Blogs can help companies in several ways:
” They give personality to a company and add personal relationship and interactivity to its website and brand. Thus building brand trust and customer retention. People give their money to people on blogs, for investments, goods or services, though they have never met them before.
” They offer a fantastic system to publicize company programs, opinions, values and products. I commend the PMNews team for adding the comments section to their news sections, imagine the reactions. Survey could be conducted easily, thereby giving us the power to keep tabs on market
” Search engines love blogs than websites. Due to their dynamic content, regular readers, and social network compatibility, blogs will drive traffic to your site traffic. Hence, potential customers.
” Since the internet has flattened commerce, SMEs (businesses) can become popular almost overnight. It has given businesses the potential to become popular overnight, and to literally reach literally millions of potential customers all around the globe, without the attendant cost of capital projects and infrastructure.
Business, in its simplest form, is the obtaining and retaining of customers, and the ability to make money and deliver excellent and quality products and services. Blogs will cause a huge change in the way customers are obtained and retained, how goods and services are delivered, and even how market survey is being carried out.