I notice a growing trend of folks using their blogs in lieu of a commercial site. One of the better blogs that falls into this category is Aaron Wall’s SEO Book. I really doubt he needs to advertise himself, but I do believe he receives quite a few inquiries through his blog.
Another example is Rand Fishkin’s SEOMoz Blog. Rand doesn’t advertise his services on his blog, but it is hosted on the same site that offers his SEO services.
Now I am sure than many a self righteous blogger will condemn the blurring lines between community oriented discourse and commercial, profit oriented webvertising, but I gotta say I love it. And I’ll tell you why.
In SEO, and many readers know that I tend to be Anti-SEO, companies are always hiring folks outside to write sales copy to fill their pages. This sales copy may or may not be accurate in describing the values of the company, but it usually reads as sales copy, because that is exactly what it is.
In offline interaction with a company, the consumer often gets a better idea of the values and personality of the company. We see how they dress, how they treat consumers, how they respond to complex questions, and how they conduct themselves in person. On the Internet, we don’t get this benefit. The only thing we are presented with is sales copy written by somebody outside of the company.
Bloggification of a business website turns the dot com area on its head. Instead of sales copy, consumers get to see how the professional deals with the public, how they deal with critics, and how they deal with others in the profession.
Given a choice, would you choose a web host who blogs about his business and his industry, or one who hides behind sales copy and a contact form? Given the choice, would you buy a motorcycle from somebody who blogs about bikes and the motorcycle industry, or would you prefer to do business with an anonymous email address?
I’m going to go out on a limb here and make a prediction. This bloggification of ebusiness thing is going to take off. I suspect that online consumers will start shunning those companies that refuse to make themselves present and accounted for online, and in the end bloggers will rule the Internet.