Mushroom Blogging

In these Say It For You blog posts, I’ve often remarked on the disproportionately large impact blogs can have as part of a business’ marketing strategy. Blog Business World reviews a new book, The Age of the Unthinkable. In that book, author Joshua Cooper Ramo addresses that same idea in a much broader sense, showing that small events can have enormous and unexpected effects far beyond their intiial impact.

To understand the potential magnitude of business blogging’s power, it helps to compare it to mushrooms. "Mushroom", believe it or not, is the answer to John Mitchinson’s question
(in The Book of General Ignorance) "What’s the world’s largest living thing?"

According to Mitchinson, the largest recorded mushroom specimen is in Malheur National Forest in Oregon, and it covers 2,200 acres. All you actually see are innocent looking clumps of honey mushrooms, because the rest is in the mushroom’s underground root system.

A report by Hubspot on "inbound marketing" shows exactly why mushrooms are a good metaphor for small-but-mighty blogs. A survey of hundreds of marketing professionals revealed that inbound marketing channels, in contrast with "traditional outbound marketing in which businesses push their messages at consumers", deliver at a dramatically lower cost per sales lead. The Hubspot report further demonstrated that "blogs lead other social media categories in terms of importance to business."

People have been paying attention to this blog phenomenon. In the few moments it’s taken you to read this far into this short blog post, thousands of new business blogs will have "gone live" online.

Blogs are less formal than websites, and they’re shorter. Unlike mushrooms, blogs are not underground – in fact they’re out there in the blogosphere for all to see. But, at least for right now, blogs may well turn out to be like mushrooms – the world’s largest living things online. because boy, can they pull weight when it comes to marketing!

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