Valleywag posted this amusing piece on the lack of posts on Yahoo’s corporate blogs this morning, pointing out that most of Yahoo’s “official blogs” haven’t been updated in months.
Having worked at, and worked with, corporate marketing departments, the problem with corporate blogging is that generating content is hard work, bloggers generally write what they are passionate about, and most corporate cultures aren’t all that supportive of passionate/non-edited/non-reviewed/non-sterilized content being posted by their employees. To compound the problem, often times companies assign interns or others who aren’t all that passionate about a company to write blogs for them and want to control every single word posted on their blog.
The result is–with the exception of small startup companies and the personal blogs of founders–most corporate blogs are stilted, infrequently updated, and rarely connect with their readers. The exceptions are the ones that give a blogger free reign and “ownership” of the blog; set up general guidelines and rules ahead of time for posts, but do not exercise post-by-post approvals; identify the blog with a specific employee (or group of employees), by name; and find the most passionate, involved, employees with the capability and interest in blogging about the company.
I don’t know if any of these issues are what is up at Yahoo, but it probably doesn’t help that the company is looking to lay off hundreds of employees. It’s hard to find employees who are passionate and interested under that situation…