Are blawgs an effective marketing tool?

I won’t get into marketing theory here (being unqualified to pontificate on the topic), but will restate my firm belief – supported by most genuine blawgers – that a blog “works”, ie it engages effectively, raises profile and is good for business, if it expresses a genuine personal voice. (I say “personal” rather than “individual” because there are many effective group blawgs which express the personal voices of a group.)

The effectiveness of blogs declines – and descends into the negative – as you move from personal and business blogging, through corporate and marketing blogging, to the downright evil of splogging.

Cogitate on this if you’re thinking “we should start a blog – it’s great marketing” and consider the case of Findlaw (part of the respected Thompson Reuters empire) whose splawg marketing tactics are deemed (by respected blawgers):

7 thoughts on “Are blawgs an effective marketing tool?

  1. A resounding yes–blogs are an incredibly effective marketing tool. Until fairly recently, websites were the only game in town. Websites, however, are only useful as online brochures; they do not add value to the client service experience. Blogs on the other hand, are a dynamic living breathing entity that can engage clients and potential clients with practical advice and/or commentary on topics that interest them. Illustratively, my blog’s focus is on international business law. It has proven to be a very effective marketing tool for engaging clients and potential clients with frequently updated posts relating to international business. The high caliber value the blog adds to the client service experience is extraordinary.

    I echo Ms. Shepperson’s prior comment that writing a blog is greatly enjoyable. And it allows us to be on the cutting edge of the latest developments relevant to our respective practice areas.

  2. If you can sustain a thoughtful blog, I’m sure it’s better to have one than not. The theme and consistent personal voice are the hard part. An authentic ‘personality’ dictates straying from purely legal, which I’m sure some traditionalists find hard.

  3. The question I’m really asking is at what point does considered, personal/business promotion via personal blogging (good) descend into the naked promotion of services (inept or bad) or the cynical pursuit of Google juice (evil)?

  4. Nick

    I agree with the above comments from Tessa. But, to answer your specific question, I think it is hard to find a definite dividing line and one which I worry about crossing quite frequently. I suppose if one’s primary motive in writing a blog is to self-advertise that will come through in the writing, whereas if one is writing mainly for the pleasure of writing or, dare I say it, the “sound of one’s own voice” (as it were) then the line probably won’t be crossed.

  5. I enjoy writing my blog, which has got me work and recognition in the narrow area that it relates to (the implementation of the Planning Act 2008), but let’s face it, the motivation isn’t purely for the joy of writing. It is also to get me and my firm work and recognition.

    Perhaps it isn’t the motivation so much as the content of the blog that matters. I try to say something interesting and useful each time – and I may even have succeeded in doing so occasionally. Achieving one’s aims ‘the right way’ is when blogging is OK and also an effective marketing tool.

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