Opinions, best practices and research into B2B marketing strategy and practices

Why don’t engineers trust blogs?

A fashion blogger sitting at a desk

A blog can be many things. Fashion, food and lifestyle bloggers saturate the internet with millions of posts daily. But in B2B, do engineers have the same love affair with blogs?

When engineers were asked what source of blog content they think is credible, nine out of 10 thought industry association blogs were the most credible. Independent blogs, on the other hand, were less popular. Have marketers gone too far and compromised the credibility of technical blogs? Is this why many engineers feel uncomfortable blogging because they don’t view it as a serious platform to share knowledge?

Edwin Russell, Technical Director at Camsensor Technologies, is one such engineer finding it difficult to trust marketers. It’s likely Edwin’s concerns are shared by many engineers in different industries.

He believes a gap exists between what engineers want and what marketers deliver. Blogs littered with propaganda have led to some skepticism in the B2B world. This is a crying shame because engineers possess a wealth of expertise, especially in the realm of technology. And blogs are the perfect platform for thought leadership.

Edwin has been working at Camsensor Technologies since the nineties and says he still learns new things every day. Working with a marketer, it would be challenging to relay all the necessary knowledge to someone who, in his opinion, doesn’t get it anyway. He likes the idea of sharing industry knowledge through blogging yet recoils when he sees or hears the word ‘blog’: “I’ve got a block for blogs. Can we call it something else?”

Some of his marketing challenges include staying connected with everyone in the industry, including knowing what competitors are doing. Commercial confidence is another concern. Where is the line between sharing and over sharing? Giving away company secrets is a no-no, especially when it comes to cutting edge technologies. Ensuring such sensitivities are considered on a public-facing blog is a must for engineers.

At the moment, Camsensor Technologies tends to do sales the way they’ve always done it – the sales executive dropping in for “a chat” with existing and potential customers. But Edwin wants to find ways to reach customers without having to meet them in person.

Despite his concerns, he remains optimistic about rekindling his relationship with marketers, and he thinks that marketing can help his company develop better customer relationships. “I know blogging will help us – for sure.”

While a blog would help address some of the challenges he mentions, there is merit to what Edwin has to say about blogs. If marketers close the gap and regain the trust, would this help to overcome the engineer’s resistance to blogging? And if we do away with the word ‘blog’, what can we call it?

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Pha Khem

My career moves to date have taken me from my home town Melbourne, to London and finally to Copenhagen where I work as a copywriter and project manager for cylindr BBN. I’ve worked in both the public and private sector, quite often capitalizing on my communication skills. My interests lie in public health, sustainability and corporate social responsibility. As a qualified dietitian, I enjoy working with food chemistry and human physiology yet can lend a hand with writing highly technical copy for a wide mix of industries.