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Aug14
How to Ruin Your Corporate Blog: 100 Tips by 10 Bloggers
Remember when I asked for nine volunteers to help me complete a top-secret corporate blogging project?  Well, we're done!  Here's what the ten of us did.  It's simply a list of 100 ways to utterly ruin your corporate blog.  That's right.  We're talking useless, unpopular, offensive, ignorant, insipid - all the things you would hate for your business blog to be.  Reverse psychology at its worst - er, best.

Thanks to all who participated.  We used Writely to collaboratively build the list.  I was thoroughly impressed with everyone's creativity.  This was also an experiment in social media publishing. I am amazed that ten people from all over the world could communicate and collaborate so quickly and easily.

While this list is meant to be fun, I invite you to see if your own company blog matches any of the "tips" here.  If so, you've been warned!

Who made this ginormous list?
1-10. me
11-20. Amrit Hallan
21-30. Jessica Neuman Beck
31-40. Colbert Low
41-50. Ed Lee
51-60. Greg Kiernan
61-70. Maria Palma
71-80. Ellen Weber
81-90. Alex Pullin
91-100. Mark White

And now, without further ado, we give you:

How to Ruin Your Corporate Blog: 100 Tips by 10 Bloggers

Tips 1-10 by Easton Ellsworth of Business Blog Wire
1 - Don't allow your visitors to leave feedback of any kind - after all, you wouldn't want them making fun of you; you had enough of that in high school!
2 - Give your blog a name and URL that closely resemble those of a prominent porn site - that'll get all kinds of great traffic over to ya!
3 - Put up a long-winded introductory post and then leave your blog alone - isn't it enough just to be able to brag that you have one?
4 - Keep your blog invisible by refusing to provide a link to it from your vintage-1997 corporate website.
5 - Never link out - not even to other posts on your own blog. People can't handle the trauma of having to leave your precious blog.
6 - Post all your usernames and passwords on your blog. That way, nobody can accuse your blog of lacking the "collaborative" element.
7 - Share your weird political views every other day - readers don't really want to hear about your company anyway.
8 - Publish a controversial post and then delete it right when people start to argue about it - that'll stop all the racket!
9 - Don't offer any feeds for your blog. Who needs feeds anyway? They're just a passing fad - pretty much like your blog, right?
10 - Secretly vandalize competitors' blogs by leaving defamatory comments under pseudonyms like "Amanda Church" or "Amanda Synagogue." Quoting Ben Franklin each time is a plus!

Tips 11-20 by Amrit Hallan
11 - Make your blog a jungle of corporate jargon so that people need some sort of a decrypter each time they want to read it.
12 - Preach to them and judge them as much as your vocabulary permits. Let them know how superior you are and what lousy mortals they are for not being in your kind of position.
13 - Go on one of those long-drawls trips every time you post a new blog. No need to make them interesting or crisp.
14 - Use a multi-color, pyrotechnic template with lots of animated gifs and flash animations. Make your template so heavy that they can go do some shopping while your blog loads.
15 - Put so many banners of your company on your blog that people actually have to resort to taking migraine medication in order to locate your post and read it.
16 - Copiously use racist remarks and use such vile language that you put even Mel Gibson to shame.
17 - Leave comment-spam on other blogs to leave your links.
18 - Be a corporate bully. Inundate your blog posts with invectives against your competitors and keep ranting about why you are right and why they are wrong.
19 - Use a lousy, cheap server...the best way to keep your blog out of reach most of time and discourage people from visiting it again. Most of the time, either the server will be down, or you'll be running out of your bandwidth quota.
20 - Don't respond to comments. Assume that people who leave comments on your blog have nothing better to do in life and hence don't deserve any kind of input from you.

Tips 21-30 by Jessica Neuman Beck of CouldBe Studios
21 - Plagiarism, smagiarism. Why come up with your own content? After all, that's what copy/paste is for!
22 - Talk about your dog. Your mother's recent foot surgery. Your sex life. Don't just give people a glimpse into your life; give them a full immersion.
24 - Spell-check is for losers.
25 - Post often. In fact, post every time you run across an interesting link (no matter how relevant). Don't bother writing a sentence or two about why you've posted the link; that'll just slow you down. Quantity trumps quality.
26 - Only post when you have a new product or service to offer. Your blog may look like the sale page at Macy's, but that's what it's for, right?
27 - Pop-ups: who doesn't love them?
28 - Don't provide links to your archives, or only show past entries by date. Don't use keywords, categories, or tags. Don't provide a way to search past entries.
29 - Use your subscriber list to send out press releases and "special offers." So what if people just signed up for your blog digest? They won't mind a little spam.
30 - Don't respond to criticism or recent controversy about your corporation. Your blog is a happy, fun place. If you don't mention negativity, people will just forget about it.

Tips 31-40 by Colbert Low of Biz Toolbelt
31 - Leak financial reports before the actual announcements.
32 - Talk behind your bosses and colleagues. Post pictures of your colleagues picking their noses.
33 - Make fake blogs and fake bloggers. Bloggers shouldn't be real; all readers want are the thoughts of a bunch of PR people anyway.
34 - Don't read other relevant blogs for the industry you work for. Who cares about what they think?
35 - Don't be transparent. Everything that goes on behind the blog should be kept secret.
36 - Ramble on about your kids and family. Why talk about the company's products when the personal bits are more interesting?
37 - Post pictures without any text.
38 - Don't leave your contact details like email as terrorists could kidnap your children and force you into diabolical schemes.
39 - Talk about 10 separate ideas in each blog post as you don't want to waste time.
40 - Link to spam sites and non-relevant websites.

Tips 41-50 by Ed Lee at Blogging Me Blogging You
41 - Don't bother joining the conversation. The PR company said you had to enable comments, but they never said you had to read them!
42 - Our blog is the only blog that counts. This is where the conversation is. No need for anyone to go anywhere else.
43 - We're going to royally screw our competition - let's not give them any oxygen or links.
44 - No one likes anyone who's being self-deprecating; you're up here, they're down there. Use the blog to show your superiority.
45 - Who doesn't like baby pictures?
46 - Constantly refer to a secret project that's going to change the industry but it's "in the works". When it fails to get out of alpha, just stop talking about it. People will forget about it!
47 - Internet users have no sort of attention - make sure our colourway is as bright as possible. Neon pink never went out of style.
48 - #47 only applies to other bloggers - people will pay attention to what we have to say so write as much as you like, as often as you like.
49 - A picture's worth a thousand words; a video is worth 10,000! Put as much video as possible on the site. Doesn't matter how long it takes to load.
50 - There's only one Internet browser right? No-one uses anything but Microsoft's Internet Explorer so why bother checking if the blog works anywhere else?

Tips 51-60 by Greg Kiernan at Bloggers Buzz
51 - Decide that your blog is better used as a platform for whatever cause you believe in at that moment than what its actual topic is (or was), and post long semi-coherent posts on whatever takes your fancy.
52 - Let your bandwidth run out so visitors just see a "Bandwidth exceeded!" message.
53 - Add every animated icon, weather pixie, geo location and similar to your page that you can.
54 - Add background music to your blog. For bonus points make sure it's something intolerable and that can't be turned off. If you're especially cruel, Celine Dion wailing the theme from Titanic will see your readers bleeding from the ears.
55 - Insult a majority of your audience based on sex, religion, ethnic background, intellegence - the choice is yours and you can combine for bonus offence.
56 - Make it impossible for someone to leave a comment without a long difficult registration process.
57 - Never proofread your posts for spelling, grammar or little things like the post making sense.
58 - Make it compulsory to sign up to be able even to read the posts on the blog.
59 - Send spam emails to people who comment on your blog.
60 - Select a theme that makes usability and even readability difficult to impossible.

Tips 61-70 by Maria Palma of Salon de Maria
61 - Get drunk and write up a post about how you hate Jews (think Mel Gibson!)
62 - Say that you're all for customer service but your customers still continue to say otherwise
63 - Don't have your CEO post because he/she's too busy counting his million-dollar salary.
64 - Don't have your Vice-President post because he/she is busy on a cruise with the CEO who's counting the money.
65 - Have your "legal team" edit every post - We wouldn't want the real truth to be told now, would we?
66 - Have someone blog who is actually a spy from your closest competitor ... who then sabotages the blog by deleting all the posts!
67 - Beg and plead for people to exchange links with you.
68 - Have the President's speech writer be a guest blogger.
69 - Type up posts in yellow-colored font on a white background.
70 - Post only when "Sales are up!" "The stock price is up!" or "Profits are up!"

Tips 71-80 by Ellen Weber of Brain Based Business
71 - Talk down to readers in subtle ways so they really see you as expert -- BTW the definition of expert is: X (the unknown in algebra) + spurt (a drip under pressure).
72 - Make jokes that drop like dead balloons on a church picnic.
73 - Sell everything you can to anybody you can as fast as you can-- at any cost. Not to worry that folks see through it.
74 - Avoid counterpoints so that your language and message appeals more to redneck readers and angers the rest of us.
75 - Learn 'em on your site ... but don't ever really listen to 'em -- it's far safer that way.
76 - Make sure you cling to traditions and don't waste any time on news about the human brain --that would mean change!
77 - Run from insights and ideas that come from others in your field -- new ideals will only confuse your goals.
78 - Avoid change at all costs and hide old-fashioned secrets so that nobody else steals your outdated ideas.
79 - Refuse to post any practical tactics for doing your vision -- just show it as "done" in superior ways!
80 - Use all the jargon you can muster ... you'll look smarter ... hire technical experts to change every readable word into jargon that few readers understand -- the more jargon you use, the more your company will stand out in the field. Add extra syllables to any readable words - it adds to your superiority.

Tips 81-90 by Alex Pullin of Wages of Spin
81 - Try to 'get down wit' the kids' as much as possible. After all if you show the younger generations that you are willing to learn their 'lingo' they'll respect you all the more ...
82 -... But draw the line when it comes to learning any new media platforms or processes, you don't want to tread on any toes or appear like you are trying too hard.
83 - Everyone loves crazy pictures of llamas in hats, right? It just shows how fun you guys are!
84 - Tell everyone how fun you guys are!
85 - Either only talk about your clients or never mention them ever, this is all or nothing people!
86 - You don't want to disturb your CEO or other important people in the company by getting them to blog, it is really more the Intern / Work Experience Guy's job. Hell, even the Janitor will do.
87 - Write about how your entire company went 'partying' in Mexico on expenses, with pictures if possible. After all it isn't like any of your clients will read it - you haven't even told them about blogging. And your readers will be thrilled to have another look into your 'fun' life (see #84)!
88 - Get really mad when the Intern / Work Experience Guy / Janitor you made to blog because you couldn't be bothered to, has written about how you couldn't be bothered to blog. Who does he think he is?
89 - Actually you aren't that mad - only a complete geek would read other blogs. So you have no idea what the blogosphere is saying about your company. Yours is the only blog worth caring about. And you pay the Intern / Work Experience / Janitor to care about yours.
90 - Don't tell anyone else in the company about your blog (aside from the Intern / Work experience person / Janitor who has no choice). In fact, never even mention it. Just wait for the day when someone else suggests it and then you can smugly say you set one up ages ago. How's it doing, you ask? Oh, I'm sure it is fine...

Tips 91-100 by Mark White of Better Business Blogging
91 - Over-optimise your posts – a keyword-optimised phrase should be keyword attractive to Search Engines but non-keyword-optimised human readers also love to wade through keyword-rich phrases with too many keywords which make no sense. (cf. keyword phrases).
92 - Don’t focus on a subject area: keep your readers on their toes by switching between posts on “Thermal Dynamics” and where Taylor Hicks has charted with his new single.
93 - Always sign off your posts with “Lots of Love” – blogs are intended to be personal, so you can never be too friendly with your readers. Bonus points here if you add “xxx” for kisses.
94 - Don’t update your Blog – your first post may well have been “the best you’ve ever written” or indeed “the best anyone’s ever written”, so don't pander to your readers' whims of wanting regular information.
95 - Avoid pictures – in fact avoid anything remotely colourful. Everyone loves pages of plain text and the more the merrier so don’t mess it up with imagery. Ideally steer clear of new paragraphs as well, one long one is more than sufficient.
96 - Cater to a Multilingual audience … but do so using an online translation tool. You will find that your blog instantly becomes unintelligible in the target language as well as the original. A clear “Win – Win” situation.
97 - Try to calculate the Blog’s ROI – not a bad idea, per se, but once you have gathered everyone’s opinion on how to do it and got stuck into the calculations, you will find that you have no time left to post anything of value.
98 - Use lots and lots of external advertising – there’s nothing like a good game of “Hunt the Post” on a blog, your corporate readers will love it! So make sure you have multiple AdSense, BlogAds and eMiniMalls on your blog and, if you have space left, squeeze in the odd post or two.
99 - Make sure your Domain name can be misread: ‘Experts Exchange’ may be the name of your blog but you could find that a domain name of www.expertsexchange.cc attracts clients looking for a very different type of service.
100 - Focus solely on posts which contain lists like “12 ways to make your product irresistible to cats”, “35 Blogging Secrets that the Gurus didn’t want me to tell” or “100 Ways to Win Friends and Influence People”. Hhhmmm.

... And there you have it, folks!

... All right, all right - I'll throw in #101.

101 - Never ask for anyone else's help with your blog.  Especially not with collaborative posts.  You deserve all the glory for yourself, right?

Happy biz blogging!  Add your extra corporate blogging tips, rebuttals, rejoinders, rumors, complaints, etc. below.

15 Comments/Trackbacks




We are an amusing bunch aren't we? It looks so impressive!

Wow - I feel proud to be part of such a fun group Ha ha! God help any company who tries our tips - or do they:-) Thanks Easton -- you always have fresh ideas to keep the brain alive!

Sarcasm, what a lovely, poetic form!

I'll be the first honest soul to say that there were a couple that I found myself pasuing at and thinking "Wait, have I done that?"

Good read.

That was fun but as i look at the list it is possible i was guilty of one or two of those in the past myself ... ooops.

Great to see all the contributions and you made a valid point about Writely. I've been using it on and off but it was for the first time I used it collaboratively.

Ha ha ha, this is just great!! Our list is up if you’d like to look - http://lilduckduck.com/ducky-moments-in-time/240

Have a great day!

That's great... but 100 items is way too long (good way to ruin your corporat blog.... too many items in a list)

http://joshmaher.wordpress.com/2006/08/14/top-ten-reasons-you-should-not-blog/trackback/

Good post! I thought it was a long list, but then kept reading and reading! Nice job!

I just wrote down exactly what I did in setting up my blog! and then saw a load of other things I do...

Thanks for the comments, everyone. Josh, good point - but I think every now and then a long long post is forgivable :).

In the beginning, I thought it was too long. But, guess what?! I read the entire thing!

Love the idea!

Hahaha.. Great List! Everybody had tons of great ones, but I must say .. I thought Jessica's list #21-30 was quite entertaining!

Easton
Great, great post. So many things all so true! Read the whole thing twice. I hope KMM is now paying you by the inch!
Cheers/George

» Small Business Blog Help, Part 2: 10 Key Benefits, 3 Key Risks from BusinessBlogWire
Welcome to Part 2 of a continuing series on small business blogging.  Part 1 answers the question, "What is a business blog?"  Part 2 describes 20 benefits and 2 significant risks that small businesses may experience with a corporat... [Read More]

Hilarious. Although you lost me at about #24.

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