Come on people, justify business blogging!
Robert Scoble and Shel Israel got their collective selves clotheslined by Amazon’s CTO Werner Vogels when they presented their case for business blogging to Amazon. Apparently Werner was rude to them and asked questions they could not answer. Ironically Robert is best mates with Dave Winer who is never politically correct when asking questions or calling someone out. It’s good to see them being brought down a peg or two, not because they are up their own ass or anything but because they do seem like the business blogging pinup boys and a dose of reality is needed in this arena. Fair play for Werner. I wonder if they presented to him before they released their book , would it have made their book stronger in the end?
Even for me who likes to promote blogging through the Irish Blog Awards and the Blogger Academy I would say that there does need to be a stronger case for business blogging. The other poster boys for business blogging are the blogging bespoke tailor and the blogging wine company. They were unique in their market because they blogged first plus they had a very controversial publicist. It was something new. It made them flavour of the month and got them a lot of attention. What if a second bespoke suit guy started blogging or another 200 wine makers? Then what? What if every bespoke tailor blogged? What sets them apart then? Surely blogging isn’t as vital then? Is business blogging not just an arms race? Didn’t we see the same with getting your site online? Didn’t it happen with people advertising on radio and getting themselves a phone number that people could call? Is this why Werner didn’t worship at the Naked Conversations altar?
So business blogging proponents. Here’s a challenge for you. I run a ball bearing company. Ball bearings are fairly uniform. What is the advantage for me in blogging? What can I blog about ball bearings?
Day 1. So they’re spherical.
Day 2. They don’t bounce, they are not rubber balls.
Day 3. 7 things you can do with ballbearings. (Hat tip to Guy “lists” Kawasaki)
Day 4. Lets have a ballbearings geek dinner.
Day 5. I am diverifying into golden ballbearings. Jumped up shits love paying for rare things like speedboats and 10 grand suits. I can exploit this.
Day 6. Here’s a witty cartoon that does a double entendre about balls. Added in is the word “fuck” for the shock value and so you know I’m an edge case.
Day 7. Some clever A-list bloggers said something profound. I’ll make a funny but nonsensical comment that attacks their detractors and it’ll boost their egos. Sucking up allows me to become part of the luvey dovey club. Oh yes, almost forgot, I sell ball bearings.
If business blogging is ubiquitous then surely you won’t have the success that stormhoek or Thomas Mahon had? Then isn’t it just going back to other forms of marketing to get attention and be unique? Bring back in those techniques that we spat on while being unique business bloggers? I can see it now: “Crazy Al’s Winery. I am the crazy!!!! Read my blog, phone me, see me crazy!”
Tell me why business blogging will give me greater marketshare when everyone else is doing the same. Tell me how in a business that’s all about uniformity I need to stand out? Or must I get out of the market and find a new niche? Doesn’t that create a billion markets and a billion monopolies?