Of all the types of content available to marketers, what could have been better than blogs? A venue tailor-made for vamping, riffing, showing some skin, and maybe even “making your buyer more intelligent.”
“Every CEO should blog!” the digital gurus bleated, like so many sheep.
A few years in, though, and the bloom plopped right off the corporate-blogging rose. Part of the blame falls on the bloggers themselves, of course. But, in the end, blogs could not – and never will – hold a candle to the gale force winds of the rest of the content world.
No Charm, All Foul
Even the biggest charmer of them all, and one of the most heralded CEO bloggers early on, Bill Marriott (of you-know-who company), couldn’t hold his audience. Do we really need to read ten paragraphs from a 100-year-old man about “How To Stay In Business – Say Thanks” ?!? [Thanks, Sherlock.]
CEOs might be good storytellers, but most executives are lousy writers. That’s why there is a field called “journalism,” filled with qualified, talented “journalists.” Company blogs have been ridiculed, rightly, for being too salesy or too infrequent or too inconsistent or too this or too that. Net net, as we are wont to say: pointless and unengaging = too boring.
Just check the number of comments on any company’s blog post – you have a 99.7% chance of seeing the number “0” (zero – or as the folks at the soon-to-be-zero BlackBerry like to say - “zed”).
Pics, Vids, Links & Sap Rule
Even if you could find an interesting corporate blog, it would be overrun by the tsunami of “snack size” content. The chaps at Vine, Instagram, Snapchat et al. are geniuses for recognizing and catering to our ADHD media addiction.
As are the fellows at LinkedIn, despite our protestations here and here. “Please, please, Sir, feed us two more paragraphs of Richard Branson’s millimeter-deep wisdom,” the hordes cry out. In that world, even a stuck-in-the-1990s marketing “thought leader” like Don Peppers can amass nearly 100,000 followers.
We can’t figure it, so we shall emphasize the ”go” part. Yes, we know, we have retired from blogging more times than Brett Favre has retired from football, but we must face the reality. There are no paywalls that can save us. And we will never be popular.
Which are the only two reasons to be in the content business right now.
We’ll wrap all our thoughts into one final post in the next week or so. After that, we’ll grab a cold one, sit on the porch, and mumble “stay off my f&ckin’ lawn” to ourselves, until we pass out.