Blogs and microblogs are about conversations. Too many stories about why companies should monitor blogs focus on putting out fires of customer complaints. Latest example is from the Boston Globe: "Hurry up, the customer has a complaint; As blogs expand the reach of a single voice, firms monitor the Internet looking for the dissatisfied."
The reason coverage focuses on the negative may be because it can be a more dramatic story to tell.
But B2C companies should be thinking about a blogger campaign to get ahead of the problem, to be a participant in online communities before something happens.
The same is true for B2B companies, which may have more specific niches that could actually make it easier to implement.
The current mindset, however, seems to be putting out fires rather than working ahead to ensure there are no fires. Dell, which started out putting out fires, seems to have done well being proactive.
I hope to talk with Richard at Dell to get additional insight from him.