Just found this interesting article on Business Blogging.
“Jonathan Schwartz is a blogging addict. He is also the president and chief operating officer of Sun Microsystems (SUNW) — a company at the forefront of a new marketing and communications trend that mixes blogging with business. (For the rapidly shrinking minority who don’t know what I’m talking about, a weblog — or blog — is a personal journal on the Web that’s devoted to politics, science, product reviews, or just about anything else you can imagine.) In his corporate blog, Schwartz, naturally, covers the world of Sun. In his latest entry, which focuses on a trip he took last week to Wall Street, he juxtaposes snippets of his Manhattan dinner conversations with Sun’s recent work on “radical form factor compression.”
The Sun president’s Web writing style — open, honest, ever geeky — is a hit. Schwartz’s blog reaches more than 100,000 readers per month, a number that has grown exponentially during the blog’s three-month existence. “I’m stunned by the breadth of it,” he says. Surprise aside, it’s easy to see why a busy bigwig like Schwartz might take the time to operate what some view as a nerdish hobby. “It is an efficient way for me to have a focused, one-on-one conversation with thousands of people — shareholders, customers, employees, and the digerati that circle this industry,” Schwartz explains….
In theory, at least, blogs are a marketer’s dream. That’s because — unlike burning through millions of dollars on TV or print advertising campaigns — they are a virtually cost-free way to communicate with customers. And not just any customers. These are self-selected hard-core fans of a particular trend, hobby, idea, or product. “Bloggers are an incredibly influential consumer segment,” says Technorati CEO David Sifry. “These people are huge networkers. They get the word out quickly on products they like — and don’t like.” Exploiting these chatty surfers is especially useful during a product launch. (To help create consumer buzz for its newest film, for example, Fox Searchlight is running a Garden State blog penned by actor/director/writer Zach Braff.) The chief blog marketing goal, then: Create a community of knowledgeable insiders. “Done right, consumers will do all the marketing for the company — forwarding the information they found to their friend and encouraging others to visit,” says Lydia Snape, Internet services director for New York agency Renegade Marketing.”
Read more at Have Blog, Will Market:“