Who said blogging is dead? In Corporate America, blogging is holding steady with nearly one in three Fortune 500 companies maintaining public facing corporate blogs (from the primary corporation) with current posts published.
The data comes from an annual study by the University of Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research. Back in 2008, only 16% of Fortune 500 companies published public facing corporate blogs. In 2011, only 23% of Fortune 500 companies, but that number surged to 34% by 2013. In 2014, the number is down slightly to 31%. However, the study authors report that this decrease is not an indication that blogging is waning. More than three out of four Fortune 500 blogs (78%) are kept current with recent posts, recent comments, and active RSS feeds with subscriptions.
In total, 157 companies in 58 of the 72 industries in the Fortune 500 maintain active blogs with the specialty retail industry leading the pack (44% of companies are blogging) followed by food consumption products (31%), chemicals (20%), commercial banks (17%), utilities: gas and electric (9%), and mining crude-oil production (7%).
The report also found that companies in the top 200 of the Fortune 500 “out blogged” companies in the bottom 200. Of the top 200 companies, 45% maintain active blogs (accounting for more than half of all Fortune 500 blogs) while just 30% of the bottom 300 maintained active blogs. Interestingly, only two of the top five companies on the Fortune 500 list maintain public-facing, corporate blogs—Wal-Mart Stores and Exxon.
The study also analyzed how Fortune 500 companies are using popular social media platforms and found that LinkedIn was the most popular with 97% of Fortune 500 companies having corporate presences on LinkedIn. Twitter ranked second in popularity. In total, 83% of Fortune 500 companies had corporate Twitter accounts in 2014 with at least one tweet published in the past 30 days. That represents a 6% increase over 2013. Facebook ranked as the third most popular social media platform with 80% of Fortune 500 companies on Facebook (up 10% from 2013).
Coming in fourth place was YouTube with 67% of Fortune 500 companies having corporate YouTube accounts (down 2% from 2013). Google+ ranked in fifth place with 38% of Fortune 500 companies maintaining active Google+ accounts. However, another 19% of Fortune 500 companies have Google+ corporate accounts that are not active. In fact, these accounts have never been active. Companies created them and did nothing with them. According to the report, Google+ is the only social media platform where there are a large number of open accounts that are not active.