Types of Business Blogs

As mentioned in a previous post, at the Web 2.0 Expo 2009, there were many businesses and organizations in attendence that were grappling with how to handle and effectively use Web 2.0 technologies for their organizations. In one of the talks I went to entitled “Why Social Media Marketing Fails and How to Fix It”, one of the panelists, Jeremiah Owyan (Forrester Research) touched upon 3 models that he sees most corporate/business blogs fall under, which I found was interesting and worth a post.

In general, the three categories of typical corporate blogs are:

  1. The Tire: In this model, social media particpation occurs at the fringes of the company. While this form may be more authentic, there is no clear leader and those participating typically do not know what the others are doing or saying. There is no real social media strategy.
  2. The Tower: This model is more of a top down approach where the MarCom group may be in charge of “Social Media Marketing” and typically by an executive mandate. While the message of the blog may be on point with the company brand (at least from the Marketing Department point of view), the content often reads like press releases and is very un-authentic. People can see right through marketing department generated content whose only purpose is to sell something or for keyword density in hopes of search engine optimzation. These types of blogs are not effective in user engagement.
  3. The Hub and Spoke: This model is the aspirational model that Jeremiah wants all corporate blogs to strive toward – where there is some central focus but is cross-functional and reaches into the edges of the company. As this model does require participation among different functional groups, it is the most difficult model to establish within an organization.

When we started our blog we didn’t have the above definitions/categories in mind, but our approach was more in line with the Hub and Spoke model. Whether we are actually executing on this model and posting content worth reading and worth your time is another story. As always, we do appreciate any feedback our blog content.

Takeshi Eto
VP Marketing and Business Development

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