Good Advice on Corporate Blogging

18 Jul ’06

Nicholas Carr has a column in Business Week on corporate blogging – it’s a nice precis with sensible advice, and a cautionary note drawn from the recent mugging of Dell after it launched its own blog. Much of what I read on this is written by people who have a financial interest in selling that advice to companies. Experts, maybe; unbiased, who knows. It’s nice to see a short-but-sweet piece that comes at it from another direction. Extract:

Still, a blog can be a useful communication channel. By providing companies with unvarnished feedback from customers, it can serve as an early-warning system for product or service problems. It can also provide an easy and inexpensive way to deliver specialized information to narrow segments of the market. And because subscribing to a blog is a snap, it can be a great way to distribute technical updates, new product announcements, and other periodic messages.

There are a few rules of thumb that can help companies reap the benefits of a blog while sidestepping the pitfalls. The first one is simple but critical: Don’t blog for blogging’s sake. Make sure you have a clear business goal for your blog—and that you stick to that goal and track how well you’re fulfilling it. Remember that, for companies, blogging isn’t an ideology—it’s a tool.

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