The article covers the basic blog stats, as well as discusses the benefits of blogging. There's a brief history of blogging, and some great arguments for blogging. Read it if you are interested, but if not, move down toward the end of the article.
I was most interested in the business reasons for blogging. Sorry for 'pilfering' so generously, normally I don't like to do that, but I've edited down a few of the highlights. Here were the key thoughts:
"Most of those executives who blog are treating the medium as a marketing and public relations channel. There's nothing wrong with that.
"[But] Baseler's blog (Boeing VP) contains a lot of information that might be difficult to find through other channels. For example, Baseler recently told readers how many deals Boeing made at the Paris Air Show 2005, and how many were orders versus commitments, and in general he tries to cover more than one aspect of Boeing's operations. This prompted one reader to remark, "Your blog provides a business context to airplane product development."
"In corporate blogs, the value of information is closely connected with interaction.
"Giving readers this kind of information creates an impression of trust and transparency; it doesn't matter that the information is ultimately being presented for the sake of marketing, it makes readers feel as if the company is sharing something with them, and it helps to build a community. This really kicks in at the level of reader comment, when readers talk back to the blogger.
"This is where corporate bloggers are dropping the ball. The authors of personal blogs tend to reply to comments, and even tailor some of their own content in response to comments. This is the final step in making the blog a true online community, and actually co-opts readers as part of the blog itself, as they also create and inspire content.
"Unfortunately, some executive bloggers are not closing the loop by getting involved in the comments sections of their blogs, where some genuinely interesting and answerable (that is, without legal implications) questions about their companies' products, strategies, and competitors are going asked and unanswered."
All very good points. I guess some of the take aways are that it's okay to make marketing statements within a blog, be transparent (while maintaining confidentiality when it is absolutely required), and respond to comments (which is an area that I, personally, really did not understand the protocols of...thinking I should respond off-line...apparently not).
The article does reinforce my purpose for blogging, as a personal Knowledge Management system, but gives many of the other dimensions.