Technorati have conducted interesting research into the blogosphere and produced the State of the Blogosphere 2008 Report.
This comprehensive report highlights not only who are the bloggers, but also what they are blogging about, how to monetise blogs, and becoming brand advocates.
Blogging is a very useful marketing tool for a business these days, and many bloggers are being approached to become brand advocates by companies who understand the value of such a service. And service it is, as 6 out of 10 bloggers report that they are offered payment of some kind to post reviews of products, services, retail experiences and so on.
Bloggers are also raising revenue from their blogs with the top 1% earning over $200,000 per year from their blogs. This is mainly through advertising, but there are also some bloggers being paid to post. Contextual ads (eg Google Adsense) are used by 38% of the bloggers surveyed, and one can see how a company blog could add to its revenue stream with this method.
However, almost half those interviewed reported having no advertising on their blogs, with the main reasons given being not wishing to clutter the blog with ads, not being interested in making money, or not having any visitors to make it worthwhile.
Building a blog to have a following of regular readers can seem hard work, but the repayment in both loyal customers, good PR and even a residual income from ads would seem to make the effort worthwhile for any sized business. Additionally, it can add many long tail keywords for the SEO on your website plus an archive of useful information for visitors to your website.