Marketing types, and I’ll generously include myself in this group, like to talk about ‘the conversation’ and ‘the dialogue’ between consumers and brands. I try to read a variety of marketing/branding/PR/Advertising blog and have noticed something: Many of the blogs have very few comments. Here’s a very unscientific survey - I looked at the front page of several blogs, looked at the number of posts and the total number of comments:
PSFK: Posts:36, Comments: 57 (Avg. # comments per post: 1.58)
Brand Autopsy: Posts: 30, Comments: 192 (Avg. # comments per post: 6.4)
Influential Marketing Blog: Posts 10, Comments: 36 (Avg. # comments per post: 3.6)
Murketing: Posts 15, Comments: 7 (Avg. # comments per post: .47)
Grant McCracken: Posts 14, Comments 65 (Avg. # comments per post: 4.64)
Eyecube: Posts 10, Comments 7 (Avg. # comments per post: .7)
Online Marketer Blog: Posts 5, Comments 24 (Avg. # comments per post: 4.8)
Again, this is a rather arbitrary analysis. I think all of the above are super smart people who all have a different approach and style.
Let’s take a look at the Top five blogs on the AdAge Power 150 to see what that looks like under the same litmus test:
Seth Godin: N/A, doesn’t host comments on site.
Search Engine Land: Posts: 20, Comments: 8 (Avg. # comments per post: .4)
Copyblogger: Posts: 6, Comments: 241(Avg. # comments per post: 40.17)
Search Engine Watch: N/A
Adrants: Posts: 25, Comments: 34 (Avg. # comments per post: 1.36)
So it seems that having a robust comment system isn’t a particular help nor hindrance.
Now, as a contrast I’m going to take a look at two websites I really enjoy that aren’t directly related to marketing/branding/PR/Advertising:
The Sartorialist: Posts: 40, Comments: 3477 (Avg. # comments per post: 86.92)
Arsenal America: Posts: 10, Comments: 800 (Avg. # comments per post: 80.00)
*Note – I’m the founder of Arsenal America.
Pretty striking difference, huh? Now, obviously this doesn’t take quality of comments into account, but let’s assume all of the above have their fair share of dross as well as intelligent commentary. Is the online marketing community missing something here?
Would a marketing blog consisting only of photos engender more community-based dialogue?
Would a blog focusing on the marketing of a specific sports team generate robust, passionate discussion?
Are we all so busy blogging ourselves that we don’t have the time to fully engage in online conversation with our peers?
Lots of questions, I’d love to hearing your thoughts, so please leave a comment!