In the same way that real estate agents and home builders vehemently and derisively denied that anything was wrong in the housing marketing before the recent — and ongoing — collapse, companies in the business of designing, hosting and merchandising blogs will not abide any suggestion that the tastes of social media consumers are changing.
This week the New York Times ran a thought-provoking piece on recent research that shows a drop-off in the popularity of blogging among young people. Instead, a “mixed use” model is emerging where more of the content generation is taking place on”short-form” platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr. In other words, early adopters and “digital natives” are figuring out that blogging isn’t a necessary part of online social networking. They can reach and engage with their intended audiences without blogging.
Right on cue, defensive blog floggers like Kevin O’Keefe parried that thrust by belittling and dismissing the predictive value of the demographic that literally built social networking (“So kids and young people don’t have the attention span and motivation to publish”). However, apparently the article’s most insidious offense is that it might plant the false notion in lawyers’ heads that they can create an effective social media marketing strategy without paying his firm to design and host a blog for them.
“When I first saw the New York Times story yesterday that blogs are waning as the young drift to other social media, I thought here we go again.
Everyone’s going to start talking about blogs being passe now that you can Tweet in 5 seconds and share a quip on Facebook in 20. It’s a story that’s been told multiple times before and one that never proves to have legs.
Nonetheless, lawyers will start buying it and think they can skip over blogging as a means of publishing to enhance their reputations and build relationships and go straight to Twitter and other short form social media.”
And I say “Bravo!” Good for them! In fact, lawyers absolutely can — and in many cases should — skip over blogging if:
- They are not resourced to do it well or
- There are other platforms with which they’re more comfortable, or where they are more likely to find and engage with current and prospective clients and influencers.
Over on Bazaarblog, writer Tara DeMarco took a similar knee jerk diss approach in her misreading of the Times article, but at least finished with a sound conclusion:
“Blogging may not be the right investment of time and resource for all businesses. And yes, many company blogs fail. But they are absolutely the right medium for the right messages, and businesses will keep on blogging….”