Behind the Eight Ball?
The results are in. According to the just-released Makovsky 2006 State of Corporate Blogging Survey (and press release), conducted by Harris Interactive, only a tiny minority of Fortune 1000 senior executives are convinced to “a great extent” that corporate blogging is growing in credibility either as a
communications medium (5%) or a brand-building technique (3%).
Nearly half (47%) of the survey respondents say they don’t have corporate policies pertaining to blogging (graph), despite the fact that 77% believe that they should (graph). Moreover, while 12% of Fortune 1000 companies have taken legal or other action with respect to a blog (graph), only one in five (20%) reports having a formal process in place for monitoring blogs written about the company (graph).
The disconnect here is pretty astonishing. Given the fact that blogging can help to make or break a company’s reputation, it continues to surprise me how few corporate leaders are taking the control of their destiny in the blogosphere.
In their book, Naked Conversations: How Blogs are Changing the Way Businesses Talk with Customers, Microsoft blogger Robert Scoble and his co-author Shel Israel write: “Chances are that if people aren’t talking about your company in blogs today, they will be soon. You would be wise to join these conversations, if only to thank those who sing your praises or to correct factual errors.”
A proactive approach to blogging is clearly in the best interest of the corporation. The reactive approach — litigation or firing an employee — damages the reputations of everyone involved.
Our Corporate Blogging Survey (and press release) provides an embarrassment of riches in terms of the data. There are too many interesting findings for one brief blog entry … so you can expect more observations from me over the next few weeks about the corporate blogging phenomenon.
Meantime, here’s a selection of other survey highlights:
- While the vast majority (96%) of Fortune 1000 senior executives say they have at least some familiarity with blogs in general, only 30% report that they have a thorough understanding of the term “Internet blog.” (graph)
- 21% of senior executives reports reading business-related blogs at least once a week (graph).
- Just 15% of the Fortune 1000 executives report that someone in their organization is currently writing a blog related to the company or its activities (graph).
- A bare 3% of execs say their company has changed its products, services or policies because of publicity generated by a blog written about it (graph).