There's a new survey just published by Shiny Media. In it they ask 606 people, recruited from their own blog network, how they felt about brands in the digital space:
51% said they now expect brands to have online conversations with them
64% highlight Flogs and Floggers (fake-blogs) for particular criticism
55% could name brands who "get it wrong" online
(via NetImperative, it has a link to the full research report)
Mike Butcher, of smart Mbites, chaired Brands & Blogs in London last week, the key points from the day are here complete with video. Sometimes it's hard when you are immersed in this world to realise a lot of what we all take for granted as active participants in the blogosphere is radical new news to a lot of people.
I know that when I write digital comms strategies, blogs and social networks often feature prominently. It's a new area for brands, but given the right brand, the right approach and genuinely interesting stuff to talk about, I think that it's a smart channel to for brands to communicate in. But it still takes a brave client to sign off on digital initiatives like this.
So key thoughts: People are starting to expect brands to enter into a dialogue with them online, but it can't be faked. And once you start talking with people online, you can't just stop and expect that people won't get annoyed and go and tell other people quite how pissed off they are with you and your brand.