The Real Reason the Inc. 500 Is Made Up of a Bunch of Crappy Bloggers

by Marcus Sheridan

This article won’t be long.

And it won’t be very romantic either.

But it needs to be said, so here goes.

I was reading a great post by Mitch Joel a few days ago that led me to the following article found at ReadWriteWeb, who wrote about a recent study the University of Massachusetts did on the blogging trends of the Inc. 500. It stated:

A new longitudinal study at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth focusing on the online activities of the Inc. 500 has found a huge drop in the number of companies maintaining corporate blogs over the past year. The UMass researchers, under the direction of Nora Barnes, has been following this group for several years. Only 37% of those interviewed had a corporate blog last year, down from half of those interviewed in 2010.

“The use of blogging may have peaked as a primary social media tool in the US business world,” she writes. “The new data shows adoption of blogging is declining for the first time since 2007 among the Inc. 500 companies….”

Upon reading this I could only shake my head. Furthermore, as Mitch Joel wisely predicted, many ‘experts’ will now point to this study as further proof that “Blogging is Dead.”

***For the record, if anyone ever tells you “Blogging is dead” you have my expressed, written permission to call that person a moron and never lend credence to a single word they ever speak again.***

I know, sounds harsh, but it’s true.

My reason for saying this is simple:

Stating that ‘Blogging is Dead’ is like saying “Great teaching is out of date, antiquated, and a useless practice.”

Say what??

And this is exactly what brings me back to the point of this post.

Corporations are failing at blogging because their writers and marketers don’t see themselves as teachers. In other words, they’re doing it all wrong and missing the entire point.

If these folks did have a teacher’s mentality, they might actually be able to answer the questions, needs, and concerns of their consumer base. Heck, they might even earn a little trust in the marketplace because instead of seeing the world from a soulless marketing angle, they would understand that great teaching equals trust, and trust equals a solid brand reputation along with a lot more sales.

This Isn’t Rocket Science

We can either be great teachers and set the tone for our industry, or we can write about stuff that doesn’t mean a dang thing in the eyes of the consumer…and then say, “Gee, blogging doesn’t work in this industry, let’s just drop it.”

As I stated earlier, it’s total bull.

  • The Inc. 500 is failing at blogging because they have failed to think like consumers (i.e. real people).
  • The Inc. 500 is failing at blogging because they don’t see the value of great teaching as a trust generator.
  • The Inc. 500 is failing at blogging because their marketing departments wouldn’t understand the phrase ‘education based marketing’ if you hit them over the head with it.

In fact, why are we still using the dumb word ‘blog’ anyway?

Frankly the word has never made any sense to me and maybe that’s part of the problem.

  • We’re teachers.
  • We’re publishers.
  • We’re educators.

That’s what we’re supposed to be doing folks.

Heck, maybe these Inc. 500 companies that have failed with blogging ought to brighten up and take a little walk down the street to the local elementary school and hire every kindergarten and 1st grade teacher on the spot to run their blogging departments.

Maybe then we’d see content that consumers actually understood.

Maybe then these massive corporations would see the power of educational content to generate a stronger brand and more sales.

And maybe then we’d all realize that the value of teaching always has been and always will be the core of great human relations, business, and ultimately profits.

Until then, I guess we’ll just have to listen to the ‘Blogging is dead’ pundits do their thing…

Your Turn

Well, I think you now know my opinion on this subject, but I’d love to hear yours. What’s your take on the failing blogs of the Inc. 500? Are they simply missing the mark or do you think that blogging has lost its value.

Jump on in folks, your opinion matters.

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