Reading a blog post Blogs Aren’t Inherently Trustworthy written by Dave Fleet showed that word has been spreading about online consumers no longer trusting corporate blogs. The word is blogs by themselves aren’t inherently trustworthy. People might not trust corporate blogs because they might come across as impersonal. Consumers see a huge company’s logo but don’t see the people behind the scenes. People like to deal with people and might trust companies more if a designated face was given to a blog. Dave asks what can corporate blogs do to gain consumer trust.
I do agree with Dave to a degree that people like people, and are not as intimidated by one person as they are with a corporation. Getting a personable picture up on your site gives a face to the “voice” of the blog posts. For example this could be the president of the company and blogs written in first person.
It has been shown in polls that 36% of consumers say they think more positively about a company that has a blog. More statistics show that $148 billion is spent on advertising but a mere 14% trust it. Half is spent on social media but a whopping 78% trust it. It is clear we live in the age of reference and companies need to be aware of this.
Corporations need to understand that each interaction is an impression. Their blogs are a way for a company to show how their brand fits into a persons/consumers life and what relevance it has to them. If companies are filling their blogs with useless information, people won’t be interested in what that company has to say, and will lose interest. That is why proper use of social media is important because it will build brand trust.
If corporations are transparent, up front and open about their brand and what they stand for, their message will be trusted, respected and accepted by consumers. And like Dave Fleet says, companies need to match their actions with their words. Social Media can go bad, like what to Tourism Queensland.
Debbie Weil, author of The Corporate Blogging Book, says the basic rules to a blog are:
- Respect your audience
- Show proper consideration for others’ privacy
- Avoid topics that may be considered objectionable or inflammatory, such as politics and religion
- Find who else is blogging on the topic and cite them.
- Don’t pick fights
- Be the first to correct your own mistakes.
I think those are safe rules for everyone to abide by.