Miller Beer Blog Terrorizes Rivals: Another Reason Your Company is Insane if They Aren’t Blogging
I wrote a post a year ago about how the fear of blogging had been replaced by the fear of not blogging. Boy, was I wrong about this being the case on a national level. A few months later I discovered that (at least for businesses in and around Chicago…) most of the dozens of directors of marketing I spoke to were still terrified or completely apathetic about the idea of blogging. Almost zero had any interest in our conference we built significantly for them. We had to cancel an event that in San Francisco drew 300 rabid attendees.
I’ve noticed that there’s barely a startup in Silicon Valley that doesn’t have a company blog. I dare you — find me a company that’s announced a round of funding that doesn’t have a blog. Okay, maybe a few don’t, but for every one that’s not blogging there are at least ten that are.
Now I read in the Wall Street Journal about how in the heartland of America, Miller Brewing Co. has created a very successful blog whose intent is primarily to needle their rival Anheuser-Busch:
The corporate marketing battlefield has long been strewn with pithy digs in ads and selective news leaks about others’ business woes. But it’s unusual for a company to go to the trouble of creating its own media arm to grind out news on the competition. While the site lets Miller tweak its famously tight-lipped rival, it also gives the company a platform to take a first crack at spinning industry news.
“They are trying to aggressively go around the gatekeepers” in newsrooms and the trade press, says Stephen Quigley, an associate professor of public relations at Boston University. “It’s something you couldn’t do five years ago,” before the proliferation of blogs.
The article doesn’t say if Anheuser-Busch is responding with their own blog, but the implication is that they’re largely in denial:
Anheuser declined to answer specific questions about Brew Blog or make an executive available for an interview. It wouldn’t say whether it considers the site a concern. “Our focus is on our consumers and delivering great brands,” Dave Peacock, Anheuser’s vice president of marketing, said in a statement.
Hey big companies: If this whole “transparency” thing is still terrifying to you, wait until competitor blogs are launching assaults on you and you have no defense. Hey wait, maybe your competitors will let you comment on theirs!