Issues Facing Corporate Blogs

02/20/2005

Came back yesterday from a trip to Chicago. I was presenting at AMA's workshop  Blogs: Marketing Beyond The Web. What began last December as a 3-city road trip (Seattle, NYC, Chicago) has turned into a 4-city tour. San Francisco in April was added this week. The workshop's goal is to help marketers understand the strategic application of blogs.

It's always a exhilarating but exhausting time. I continue to learn from both sides of the podium. The participants challenge us to go beyond platitudes about blogging (Bob Bly they are keeping us honest and on our toes!).

There was more discussion during this workshop regarding specific issues that corporations will face when they begin including blogs in the marketing mix. I'm taking that as a signal that companies are moving blogs higher into their consideration chain as a credible marketing strategy. 

The answers to many of the following questions will revert back to what is right for your company. For other questions, best practices will emerge, from the innovators who were willing to jump in the game early, setting the standards.

Selling-in
-Convincing senior management that the benefits of a marketing/business blog out weigh the risks.

Identifying The "Right Blogger"
-What skills are needed?
-How to structure the job description?
-How much time will it take?

Corporate Blogging Guidelines
-All agreed that corporate blogging guidelines will become SOP (standard operating procedure).
-The company's culture and type of products/services will influence the development of corporate guidelines. The more dangerous the product the more cautious the rules the higher the penalties.

Comments
-Is a company liable for comments placed by 3rd parties on their blog?
-Should you delete slanderous comments?
-Who owns the comments content -  the company or the commenter?
-What is the extend of the resources (time) needed to monitor comments?
Sidebar: Read Charles Smith's post on Reasonable Man about who owns comments.

Outsourced Blog Copywriters
-If blogs are the a window into the soul of an organization, where do outsourced blog copywriters fit into the model? 
-Are outsourced blog copywriters able to present the same passion/involvement as internal bloggers? 
-Are outsourced blog copywriters best utilized to produce general industry informational posts along side posts from internal company bloggers?
Sidebar: More about outsourcing blog writing on Radiant Marketing. Paul Chaney has some interesting thoughts and also posts to a few blog writing gigs.

How To Say Goodbye
-Does closing a corporate blog impact a company's image/goodwill?
-If a corporate blog just isn't cutting the mustard, what's the best exit strategy?

It's been fascinating to watch the rapid progression as marketing/business blogs move from a shoot from the hip attitude to a structured and strategic approach. This sure aint Doc's blogosphere.

Trackbacks

Trackback url:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451b4b169e200d83457bbbf69e2

» Challenges To Blogging For Business from PSFK
When I got my new job in October 2004 one of the main reasons my new employer seemed attracted to me was because of my blog(s). My employer was interested in me was because they wanted to take advantage of my blogging skills and use it for their benefi... [Read More]

Tracked on Feb 20, 2005 12:00:27 PM

» Challenges and Guidelines to Corporate Blogging from Marketing Loop Blog
A quick summary of AMA's workshop Blogs: Marketing Beyond the Web was posted on Diva Marketing Blog. Here are some of the topics: Selling-in: convincing senior management about the benefits. Identify the right blogger. Corporate blogging gui... [Read More]

Tracked on Feb 20, 2005 10:53:14 PM

Comments

I don't see how anyone could blog about a company for pay.

I can understand blogging about a related topic, like blogging about gardening for a Menard's web site.

But to blog happy pleasantries about a company for pay, nope. That is a violation of blogging: candid, personal communication from a CEO or other corporate official to the target audience.

The biggest question I see facing CEO bloggers is whether or not user comments will be allowed.

Posted by: steven streight aka vaspers the grate on Mar 3, 2005 3:00:27 AM

Steven -

Agree. I'm hearing that loud and clear from folks who work with firms that have more that 3 people on staff. Especially for many Fortune 1000s, it is a walk on the wild side!

Toby

Posted by: Toby on Mar 3, 2005 9:41:41 AM

Post a comment