[tweetmeme]It’s been fashionable lately to proclaim that blogging is dead. After all, look at all those bone-crushing numbers of subscribers on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
But a story in today’s New York Times, Russian Site Smokes Out Corruption, illustrates the unique power of a blog. The story describes how a Russian lawyer, Alexsei Navalny, attracts a million unique visitors a day with his blog that exposes corruption in big state-owned energy companies in his crusade against graft, kickbacks and bribery. He’s putting himself at great personal risk for a cause he believes in on behalf of the small, but growing number of middle-class shareholders in these companies who he believes are being ripped off. Blogging is the new media in countries where the government controls official media, because official media isn’t reporting the news.
What This Means for Business
So, how does this translate into blogging for businesses? As I’ve written before, I believe a blog should be the centerpiece of a company’s social media strategy. Foremost, it provides ample space to tell your story, your way, with as much copy as you need to make your case. This can’t be done in a 140-character tweet or in a quick update on other social media sites. A blog has a long shelf-life because it will continue to come up in searches long after it is written. That’s why Mr. Navalny’s blog is so important. He’s able to include chunks of copy documenting what he claims is corruption in these companies. The story continues to get fleshed out in each blog post with more information as it is uncovered.
Blogging is story telling. Over time, a blog can help to shape a brand and reinforce what the company wants to be known for and why this is important for its constituents. Long live blogging.