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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The blogging phenomena

BusinessWeek magazine in a recent report on blogging says there is a sign that the number of new blogs being created is declining, and validated that many people start blogs only to give up on the process. "A total of 70 million blogs have been set up, but March data from blog search service Technorati show that only 15.5 million bloggers updated their sites during the last three months, up slightly from 15.3 million in October."

However, the magazine also reported that some blogs are becoming significant businesses -- and many of the leading blogs are extremely influential.

The reality is that blogs are not right for everyone; and like many things that are easy to start but much more challenging to maintain, most people who experiment with blogs give up on the idea pretty quickly. The challenge in creating a successful blog is that you need to get everything right -- the bloggers personality must resonate with the readers; the topic must be relevant to them, and the blogger -- barring the rare situation where star status is achieved -- needs to be realistic about expectations. This is the reality of the Internet; millions can view the blog, but only a few will, in most cases. Then, the priority should be in encouraging the right people to visit.

Nevertheless, I think a lot more construction, architectural and engineering businesses could have successful blogs; blogs that bring their owners and key personnel much closer to their clients, colleagues and suppliers. But to make it work, you'll need a very special combination of freedom and commitment -- freedom to allow individual expression; and commitment to continue the process until the blog 'catches' with the market -- and that can take some time!

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