So here goes my first quasi-live blogging experience. I’m at the Essentials of Business Blogging seminar, and I have to admit that I thought this was going to be a much different event. I realized last night that this isn’t the Blog Business Summit that I heard such great things about from last year. Yes, I’m a bonehead.
But when I realized that I was going into a session for Business Blogging newbies, I was quite excited.
The event has been marginal. The focus has been solely on tools, which while an important part of the discussion, is only a minor part of the discussion. Talking about business blogging without talking about the ethics, and the right mindset for the concept is like giving a car to a 16 year old without any driving experience – it’s dangerous, someone’s going to get hurt, and it’s going to cost money you don’t want to send.
The current speaker (Janet Johnson from Marqui) has just talked about how their strategy a while for paying bloggers to blog about their product. The basic take away she’s pitching to a group of total newbies is that paying bloggers created controversy and increased brand awareness, therefore all is good.
I have to tell ya, I’m about to jump out of my skin. I asked Janet the question “Why pay bloggers? Could you not find any that would be willing to work with you?” She brought it back to how the controversy drove traffic. (This is a company that mentions helping you “Guarantee Brand Integrity” as part of their product positioning on their home page)
But what about a longer term relationship? What about longer term brand ambassadorship? What about making a real connection to current and potential users?
The Paris Hilton Approach may work up front in a limited way, but it’s certainly not a real solution.
UPDATE: The conference organizer just said something to effect of – if people in your company don’t like the idea of comments from people telling you they don’t like your company, just turn off comments.
IF the lack of comments is part of the strategy for your blog, great. If your blog grows to a point where comments aren’t adding value or are overwhelming in quantity or hell, great. But if you simply want to avoid having to listen to consumers, that’s not a good enough reason. Why bother with a blog in the first place? Issue press releases and save yourself some late night typing.