People don’t trust company blogs. What you should do about it reads the headline of post in Groundswell, based on a survey Forrester conducted in Q2 this year with over 5000 people that according to their note, are as representative as possible of the US online adult population.
Company blogs came in last with only 16% who read them saying they trust them as an information source. At the other end, in first place with 77% trusting them, are "email from people you know". This shows, that the personal or social network has become the most trusted source of advice and information for a large number of people on the web. It also shows a high level of resistance to the attempts by companies to use these networks as marketing tools. Any attempt at trying to control or influence the conversation is suspect and likely ineffective.
On a more positive note, the trust level increases to 24% among people who regularly read blogs, and 39% among those who blog themselves.
What this tells me, is that the more familiar people are with blogs and the various types that exist and are able to distinguish among them the higher the credibility gets. It's also telling that a large number of the general public are probably still not as familiar with the whole blogosphere as those of us who are very close to the subject and personally involved in it. For marketers, the challenge to reach their audience in this new world remains as complex as ever.