Friday, May 05, 2006

Organizational Communication Imperatives and Corporate Blogging, by Kennie Swanson

Context for this post

Corporate blogging has sprouted from organizational communication as a fascinating way to connect internally and externally to individuals interested in the happenings of a particular organization. Blogs have made the impact of a tidal wave over the past decade and while corporate blogging is still relatively new, it has already changed the way many people conduct and view business. Many organizational imperatives inform the practice of corporate blogging and for this reason it was very difficult to try and zero in on only one to describe. However, after some careful thought, I think that the level of organizational identification members have towards their corporation has the strongest effect on corporate blogging.

Organizational identification is accomplished within a company when members of that company take the characteristics of the organization including its values, beliefs, rites and culture and make them their own. In order for a blog to even be thought of, one must be vested in the factors for which a company stands for. Furthermore, when running a corporate blog, this sense of identifying with an organization heavily shines through as the backbone for which posts, comments, and even templates are created. From the corporate blogs that we have been exposed to in class discussions, our interviews, and the research of fellow bloggers, I have found that all carry a high intensity of organizational identification.

A great real life example of organizational identification and corporate blogging is evident through John Cass of Backbone Media. John is the director of corporate blogging strategies and he is a true believer of the power which corporate blogging beholds. He is the main contributor to the Blog Survey Blog and is clearly in high identification with Backbone’s values, beliefs, rites, and culture. His association with Backbone is evident from the content that he produces as well as his feelings towards the company in relation to blogging as he has been much appreciated to share with our class. I also found that organizational identification had a tremendous impact on the way in which one of my interviewees, Tim Jackson blogs on behalf of Masi Bicycles.

Tim has been a die hard bicycle enthusiast since he was just a child. I’m serious; he has a picture of himself on his blog, Masi Guy when he got his first bike for Christmas. Now, Tim says that he is living the dream as a brand manager / corporate blogger for Masi bikes and I can’t think of another corporate blogger on earth who identifies more with their company than he does. While reading Tim’s blog, it is quickly apparent that Tim has taken the heart and soul of Masi bikes and made them into fun interesting blog posts. If Tim did not identify with Masi as an organization to the level that he does, it’s questionable whether the blog would even exist and it’s certain that it would not be written with the same persona that has made it so successful.

Through blogging as a class we have talked about some very interesting issues in regards to corporate blogging. And, in dealing with organizational identification, I definitely feel that our own blogs progressed more and more once individuals within the class took in the values, beliefs, rites, and culture that Dr. Carl established for advanced organizational communication. All in all, I’d say it’s been a pretty majestic experience and one that I will take with me in pursuit of my own career. To all my fellow bloggers out there, it’s been real and I’ll catch you in the blogosphere!

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Organizational Communication Imperatives and Corporate Blogging, by Krystle Randall

Context for this post

When I first learned that we would be learning about blogging in our Organizational Communication class I thought I misunderstood. Before this class I thought blogs were just an on-line journal that internet junkies would add to each night before bed. After our class discussions, readings, and contributions by Mr. John Cass of Backbone Media, I have a whole new understanding of and appreciation for blogging.

As I reflect back on our corporate blogging interviews as well as our own experiences blogging, it’s only natural to apply the organizational communication imperatives. The first one I would like to discuss is organizational identification. This is when an employee highly identifies themselves with a company’s values, rituals, and ultimate mission. A highly identified individual will truly feel as though they are an important and influential part of the organization. Having organizationally identified employees can be good for a company. If an employee writes a post they need to believe in what they are writing. This is especially true for commenting because the employees need to be able to respond to constructive as well as destructive criticism. If they are not identified with the organizations values, this may reflect in their posts and comments which would only be detrimental to the company’s credibility.

When employees are identified with an organization they often take on automatic responsibility. This is when an employee will take responsibility for anything and everything that they have the expertise to. If they do not know how to do something, they will instead, automatically direct the information or task to someone who knows how.

This is also beneficial for corporate blogs. If an employee is surfing the blogosphere and finds some negative sentiments posted about their company and/or their products, what are they going to do? Some employees will just read in the information, maybe pass the link on to some colleagues. However, an employee that practices automatic responsibility will comment on the post, say they are from the company, and provide the appropriate facts to defend their argument. That employee took the initiative to stand up and defend their company name because they had the facts. Automatic responsibility is also great for a corporate blog that is maintained by multiple people. One person may normally write the posts and another may research, however, if other aspects of one person’s job become too overwhelming, other employees may take over the blog to ensure consistency as well as credibility. If nobody maintained the blog and responded to comments it could hurt the company image all around.

Both organizational identification and automatic responsibility are a result of a corporate culture. I would also say that a company’s culture can be reflected through their blog. Redding’s ideal SCOPE model can be used to analyze company blogging as well as blogging policies. Supportiveness is evident in the amount of help or input that is put into the blog, researching for blogging topics, as well as responding to comments. Even starting up a blog for a corporation needs a lot of support because it is seen as risky. Credibility is displayed when a company posts and responds to both constructive and destructive comments. A company can give the impression of being more credible more easily through a blog than other marketing tools because blogs are not only a dialogue between consumers and producers but they are also extremely human in tone. Blogs reflect a company’s openness as well. If a company chooses to allow comments, and posts positive and negative information they are seen as more open. Some company’s even post their blogging policies as well. Some companies choose to monitor comments and some do not. Participatory decision making is seen in blogs by
identifying who does the posting, who is allowed to post, and who is not allowed to post. Blogging can actually facilitate participatory decision making because it can connect many employees in one forum. An emphasis on high performance goals is seen in blogging through automatic responsibility as well as maintenance of the blog.

The overall corporate culture of the company can be shaped and changed by the introduction of corporate blogging. A blog can connect employees and build the morale of the internal culture. If employees feel as though they can learn more about each other and collaborate on ideas in a more convenient way, they will do it and blogging does just that. Some companies even use blogs as a kind of internal newsletter. They may post pictures and small comments on the company picnic or holiday party. This can lighten the mood of the corporate culture and bring employees together. External audiences, or consumers, can also gain a new perspective of a company. For example, some companies which may normally be seen as high-tech or inhumane can gain human appeal by using certain language or humor. This can make consumers who would normally be intimidated by the brand gain a whole new outlook on the company, just from their blog.

The future of blogs is unknown however, I have a prediction. I have already started to see that many companies have begun jumping on the corporate blogging bandwagon. If companies do not realize why blogging is important, they most likely will not benefit. Blogging is not just some additional marketing tactic that everyone should do. If this happens we will definitely see more synthetic transparency taking place. Companies will want to seem like they are transparent and credible by blogging, but really they just began blogging because everyone else is doing it. In conclusion, I have learned that, under the right conditions and for the right reasons, blogging can benefit a corporation both culturally as well as financially.


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Organizational Communication Imperatives and Corporate Blogging, by Leah Hyland

Context for this post

Organizational identification is one of the greatest organizational imperatives that informs the practice of corporate blogging. Identification is "an attitude or incipient action," and identification means that a person tries to select a decision that matches or fits with the interest of the organization (Tompkins, 2005). When the employee identity is aligned so much with the organization that they begin to speak about the organization as "we" instead of "they," s/he has a high level of organizational identification (Feather and Rauter, 2004). This concept is essential when a company decides to blog for many reasons. The organization must make sure to choose the right people to blog because it will affect the readership, the success, and the outreach capabilities of the blog on the blogosphere. This ripple effect will not occur if companies do not consider organizational identification when deciding to blog.

If a person were going to be the face of a company, typically the company would want the person to be a good representation of their organization. When blogging, the employee who actually blogs is the first point of contact to readers, and this makes deciding who is going to blog very important. One should choose someone who identifies with the company and its goals and visions, in order to have the appropriate appearance to the public. If the blogger does not care about the company, how can s/he be expected to care about the blog, and its content? Most likely, the blogger will not post relevant or meaningful information, which will eventually affect the company and how the public perceives it. The face of the organization must emulate the ideals of the company and choosing someone strongly connected will ultimately be in the organization's best interest.

The blogger that identifies with the company will care and contribute to that organization and thus the blog. Therefore posts will be more pertinent, and generate richer content. Since the content will be relevant, the readers will appreciate the blog more. If they see a caring and consistent blogger who posts thoughtful things about the organization (or whatever pertains to the purpose of the blog) readers will visit often and probably add comments to the organization's blog, or their own blog. In turn, this will create a sort of community around the blogger and his/her audience, which will benefit the company.

Since the blogger has strong organizational identification, and has now created an active public through posting, and commenting, and outreach, the public itself may begin to show signs of identification with the organization. Due to the personable nature of a blog, the readers will develop a sort of relationship with the blogger and therefore the company. This is one of the greatest strengths of a blog: it creates ambassadors for the organization. These people will typically promote and buy products of the company because they believe in the blog!

A ripple effect has now occurred, beginning with company's choosing a blogger that is strongly identified with the organization. This blogger has created a blog that is interesting and relevant to the company and the public/consumers. The public will then continue to monitor and comment on the blog, which creates a community around the organization. This community will inevitably become identified with the company as well, creating ambassadors and goodwill for the organization. All these effects would not be possible if the corporate blogger was not identified with the organization s/he worked for.

*On an aside, I would be curious to know if CEO blogs are any more successful than "lower-level" employee blogs—is being higher up in the organization chart correlated with how strongly identified you are??

Works Cited

Feather, N. T. & Rauter, K.A. (2004). Organizational citizenship behaviours in relation to job status, job insecurity, organizational commitment and identification, job satisfaction and work values [Electronic version]. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 77, 81-95.

Tompkins, P. (2005). Apollo, Challenger, Columbia--the decline of the space program: a study in organizational communication. Los Angeles: Roxbury.

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Final Blog Postings: Organizational Communication Imperatives and Corporate Blogging

It's that time of the semester again!

Our semester is now complete and I would like to announce that our final blog postings will come from three of our students reflecting on how organizational communication imperatives (what communication principles organizations need to enact in order to be successful) impact corporate blogging efforts.

Specifically, students were required to write an essay (500-750 words) that shows how an organizational communication imperative (organizational identification, automatic responsibility, empowerment, speaking truth to power, communication climate, etc.) informs the practice of corporate blogging.

In three separate posts to follow, we will hear from the top three responses to this question from the Spring 2006 class. I have received permission from each of the students to post their brief essays (in alphabetical order):
Leah Hyland
Krystle Randall
Kennie Swanson
And please note that for most of the students in the class this was their first exposure to corporate blogging. Feel free to comment!

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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

We've come a long way baby

I was reading over our class blog and I must say we have certainly picked up momentum and, if I can say so myself, we are turning out to be quite the informational blog. I really think we have some great resources here--we have information on how to start blogging, why people should blog, what some of the benefits and detriments can be (opening the door for critical feedback, competitors seeing your products), and other neat tips and factoids. At the beginning of the semester I would have never thought that we would grow so much as a blog.

So, congrats team! We have successfully navigated the world of blogs (with much more to learn of course), and we have even begun to network--another great aspect of blogging. I know I have met and interacted with multiple people with whom I hope to continue speaking with. I have also had the privilege to be involved in a podcast, "earSHOT" with Edelman PR (http://www.edelman.com/) which should be available via their website shortly.

Thus, this is not a goodbye, but merely a "see you around" the blogosphere :-)

Cheers,
Leah

Monday, April 24, 2006

Corporate Blogs – Does Breadth of Success Depend on the Popular Interest Level of the Industry?

In my interview with Cathy Taylor of Adweek’s blog, Adfreak, she mentioned the fact that she’s “lucky” that her blog covers such a popular topic – advertising – because it’s something that everyone is exposed to and that people are likely to have a general interest in; as a result, it is a very popular blog, and a great majority of visitors to the blog are regular people, not industry professionals. Advertising is a very large, very public, very broad field, so it’s easy to see why many people would be interested in reading about it, especially in the short, witty, image- and link-filled form of a blog post. She contrasted her blog with having a blog about wallpaper, which has a “built-in audience,” where really only the few people involved with the industry would become involved with such a blog, and far fewer people in the general public would pay attention to or care about it. This is evidence that all corporate bloggers must each have a unique sense of what they see as “success,” because there is such variety in the range of readership.

Do you think a more niche-based blog, such as one about wallpaper, could ever rise to the level of popularity of a blog about a more universally popular topic? If a signifier of success is the number of visitors, are niche blogs doomed to be less active?

Shameless Self-Promotion

As I was online window shopping at Bluefly.com, an online store that sells designer clothes and accessories at discounted prices, and I noticed the retailer had their own blog, Flypaper. A blog about clothes and fashion and Hollywood and things I can’t afford - an automatic winner in my book!

I did, however, notice something else interesting about this blog – nearly all of the posts end with a direct link to a product sold on Bluefly.com. The posts are usually about popular topics in fashion, so most of the time, the linked product looks like or is loosely related to something posted. The blog is more of an entertainment blog, as the posts don’t discuss the particular products, yet the company still uses it as a marketing tool. I suppose if someone is interested in the topic at hand and in the company (since I assume that most people probably find the blog through the link on the main site), they may also be interested in a related product, but I honestly wonder what percentage of the people reading the blog will even consider buying the item in the link.

As with any company, especially in the fashion industry, it’s important for Bluefly to promote themselves as innovative in their industry and as selling products that are “in” in today’s Hollywood-celebrity-trend-obsessed society, so I can see why they have chosen to do this; if people in their target audience see that the clothes on their site look like or resemble the styles represented in today’s pop culture, they may be reassured that what they sell is “in,” which may lead to a purchase. Of course, what they’re doing is not going to hurt them, but will it help them? Are people really going to respond to this? Would you?

I mean, of course every company uses a blog to promote their brand, image, and developments, but do any others promote specific products (especially products that are sold through the company but not made by the company) through links like this? I searched high and dry for another company or retailer who did this type of direct marketing of products they sell on their own blog, but I couldn’t find any. Has anyone ever seen this before on another site?

Blogs vs. Message Boards

After having just done a research project about another web-based communication phenomenon – the message board (music fan-based boards in particular) – for my Media Audiences class, I thought I’d look into comparing message boards to blogs used for business purposes.

Although they have a similar purpose of facilitating communication between companies and the public, the dynamics of each and the amount and type of communication they allow are very different. In an article by social design consultant Lee LeFever, he presents the dissimilarities of the two. He states that the major difference is that:

"Weblogs are individual or small group resources – the control of content and value is driven by a single person or small group. Message Boards are group resources – the control of content and value is shared equally across all users."

For this reason, message board discussions are generally more open and less monitored or moderated, because there is usually a bigger group involved in the discussion, thus producing a lot more information and activity than there is on a blog, which has only a few selected posters (who in the corporate blogging context, are likely to be employees of the company). Some of the other major differences include:
Authoring of New Topics: On blogs, topics are started by the authorized poster(s), which are usually an individual or a small group; on message boards, topics are started by anyone who registers or is allowed to post in the community, which is usually a larger number of people
Intent: Blogs are intended to provide personal accounts, news, or reflection for others to read and don’t solely rely on interaction for content; message boards are intended to provide group input, decision making, and collaboration, where there is more interaction
Responses: On blogs, comments are not required and not always present; on message boards, replies and interaction are necessary to build a discussion and execute the intent

I couldn’t find many examples of corporate message boards, but I did see that Adobe, Apple, and Dell all provide forums on their websites. For the most part, the posters are customers discussing products or asking questions about products, and employees are not really involved. These boards make for a great customer service tool, since anyone can post their question or concern and get an answer from people who have experience using the same product, assumingly in less time than if he or she were to call the company’s customer service number and deal with all the aggravation of being transferred and waiting on hold. I’m not sure if this type of forum would work as well for a non-technology company that probably deals with fewer questions than one with these types of products, but it would be a good place for fans of any type of product or brand to come together and discuss it. Do you think a message board could benefit any company, or are blogs the way to go?

What can blogging bring?

What can a blog do if it’s successful? I found a very interesting list of potential benefits on the web here: http://www.tmcnet.com/usubmit/2006/04/17/1578027.htm


This site lists 7 good things that can come from blogging:

1) Humanize your business, which is something we’ve talked about as a class.
2) Improve your customer service. It can provide easier access to answers for customers.
3) Give your target market information they’re looking for.
4) Drive traffic to your sales website.
5) Build your credibility (unless you’re Walmart) and establish yourself as an industry expert.
6) Promote your products or services.
7) Generate extra income.

This is a pretty good look at the upside of blogging. For success, this site recommends similar tips that we’ve seen here: great content, regular updating and having a distinct voice. It says that blogs are not the place for corporate speak and that people are often drawn to them because they offer the human element that we’ve so often talked about.
I felt this would be another great addition to the multitude of posts we already have considering what makes a blog successful. The ones we’ve defined as being successful, are they getting some of these benefits listed above from blogging? Or did they define success by other means?

To be or not to be?

To blog or not to blog? This is the question that seems to be circling around. Sure, there are benefits. Well, wait, there CAN be benefits, but there are still infinite risks. Hell, if Google can accidentally delete their own blog, bad things can happen to anyone. Yes, it’s true: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2006/03/and-were-back.html

So, the question is, do the benefits outweigh the risks?

I think it really depends on the company. I think it REALLY depends on whether or not the company has the right person.

My fellow poster, Bruce Wayne, mentioned in his post that language is absolutely essential in branding. What sense would it make to have someone with no experience in physics trying to explain coulombs? None. Obviously, you need an author knowledgeable of the subject. You can’t have someone blog about something they know nothing about. They need to have access to the language and the culture of the corporation and corporation’s field.

So, what do you need for a successful blog. I happen to like Rick Short of Indium’s 4 P’s as a brief way to assess if a blog is right for you or not. They are:

Point: Your blog needs to have a specific purpose.

Passion: Don’t bother if you’re not interested in the topic.

Personality: This is where having the right person comes in. You need someone who has to skills and the language to communicate with your target audience as well as the personality to carry it all.

Perseverance: It needs to be a routine. A blog should be consistently updated.
You can see his post on this here: http://www.indium.com/rickshort/entry.php?id=158

Sunday, April 23, 2006

The Future of Blogging

Throughout this semester we have hit upon some very interesting topics in regards to corporate blogging. Some of the topics that stick out in my mind in regards to blogging are its uses as a career booster, a marketing tool, and as a function for coporations to be transparent. There are also some challenges that face blogging including credibility, ethics, and time contraints for working professionals. So where does the conclusion of our blogging experience leave us thus far and what does the future of blogging look like?

Well, i think the notion that blogs are here to stay is fairly grounded from its world wide acceptance and high usage. So if you think you can avoid them, think twice. As the popular qoute goes, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. But will blogs serve as a place for open discussion, or will they migrate towards simply being the next generation of marketing? I think they will do both. One of my interviewee's, '>Max Goldman of Success Factors, stated that his company is trying to evangelize blogging into more of a real time discussion. Where as with other companies, their blogs serve as a blatant way to advertise themselves to consumers. However, I think the nature of the blog, with it's followers backing the goal of transparency, shall overcome corporations that appear synthetic.

In the mean time, i think blogs will evolve and new forms of blogging will emerge that make it more time conscious and convenient for today's working professionals. Wharton legal studies professor Kevin Werbach states that two things are certain: "Blogging will remain disruptive to the traditional media, and new uses will surface. You are going to see blogging move to video and instant messaging. "It's just the beginning." Also Loic Le Meur suggests that audblogging, or blogging by means of audio voice recording is another path that may become popular for blogs, especially if they can be transcribed into searchable text.

It will be very exciting to see how these advancements in blogging will affect the blogosphere. Can you think of any other things to look out for in the future? Overall, i think it will be very important for all of us to stay up to date with the latest trends and technologies to make sure we are not left in the dust like so many before us have already experienced.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

One of the Most Effective Corporate Blogs

For my second interview for the Corporate Blogging Study I interviewed Aliza Pilar Sherman. Aliza is not a corporate blogger but rather a blogger specialist. During the interview she mentioned that one of the most effective corporate blogs out there right now is actually by GM. I was extremely surprised to hear this being that GM is such a huge corporation but in fact they have a blog that is personal, effective, fresh and appeals to the kind of audience that reads blogs (a younger, more hip audience). After looking over the blog there is no surprise to why it is held in such high esteem. The blog exhibits posts by the Vice Chairman of GM and covers topics ranging from global product plans to the new Saturn concept car. Please check out this blog at http://fastlane.gmblogs.com/ and check out some information on Aliza Pilar Sherman at http://www.mediaegg.com/. Thanks!

What Do I Blog About??

Alright, by now I think that many of us have a pretty good idea of the momentum corporate blogging is picking up and the potential benefits towards one's career for starting a blog. However, amongst all this hype and hurry there is still a question that I think many others, myself included, have towards starting a blog which is; what do I blog about? For those of us in college right now, this concept is seemingly hard to grasp. In the good old teenage days we didn't have to worry about what kind of information we used to present ourselves as because most of the time it was in a joking manner and it was also only known about by our own friends. Now, i hate to say it, but it's time to face the music. Ahhh we are getting old!! People take what we say seriously and even worse (for some), our careers depend on the way in which we choose to show ourselves in the public eye (myspace, blogs, ect...).

So I was interested if i could get some good advice about how, or what to blog about. After doing a little research of my own I found a great post by Debbie Weil titled, Top 7 tips to write an effective business blog. The 7 tips she gave are as follows:

1. Start with a topic you're passionate about.
-Basically this means the theme of your blog and it should be related to the business or profession that you are interested in.
2. Concentrate on shorter, more frequent entries in your blog
-Feewww! I'm always worried about whether or not a post is going to win the nobel peace prize or not, but I guess it's better to be consistantly involved.
3. Let yourself go as a writer; let your authentic “voice” emerge
- Now this is the tricky part. Since we are "adults" now we need to find a happy medium that allows us to express ourselves, but at the same time mean business.
4. Use correct grammar and syntax (no misspellings allowed, just as on your resume or your site)
- arrrg, i luv typin in mah' own style but i guess that is a bad habit i need to break!
5. Purposefully organize the content of your blog
- Think about who might be reading your blog and how to get more traffic by using tricks like keywords.
6. Post a new entry at least once a week, preferably two or three times a week
- This may take some discipline but i think it can be done.
7. Include your key contact information on your blog
- Thats the purpose of the blog! Get your name out there and make sure others can get in touch with you if they are interested in your insights.
8. BONUS TIP - HAVE FUN WITH THE BLOG!
- This is my favorite tip because we all need to just hang loose sometimes you know?

Debbie also emphasized that better blogs come from good writing and that the corporate world is in dire need for good writing. I think these tips are some great things to keep in mind when starting a blog. What do all of you think? Would you change or add something?

Friday, April 21, 2006

Update on Corporate Blogging Study

Just wanted to provide a quick update on our corporate blogging study. The students have conducted all 20 interviews (thanks to all the corporate bloggers who participated -- we'll be following up with a more personal thank you in the near future) and transcribed at least one of them.

We began our initial thematic analysis of the interviews as a class, and then John Cass and I will be going through in more detail.

Students also wrote a reflection essay critiquing their own interview skills and commenting on what they felt the three most important themes were. Now that classes have ended I am in the process of reading and grading their essays.

We'll post additional updates as we go along!

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Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Blogging - Essential to Your Career?

While working on my own personal job search on Bostonworks.com I came accross an article entitled "Blogs 'Essential' to a Good Career." The article basically gives the opinion of Ben Day, a man who essentially says that he "blogged his way into a career as a high-earning software consultant while maintaining the freedom to schedule frequent jam sessions and performances as a keyboard player." Ben feels that blogging is something that every person needs to do in order to get a successful job.

Ben reports that by starting a blog revolving around your profession or a career that you wish to have will show employers your dedication, the fact that you know what you are doing and that you know what your field involves. He says that employers regularly Google prospective employees and if a professional blog comes up on the search you will have a much higher chance at getting an interview or a job then someone who has nothing come up when Googled. Think about it...if you were being Googled by a prospective employer would you rather your myspace come up or a professional blog on the position you are after?

Ben then lists and describes eight reasons why blogging will help your career:
1. Blogging creates a network.
2. Blogging can get you a job.
3. Blogging is great training.
4. Blogging helps you move up quickly.
5. Blogging makes self-employment easier.
6. Blogging provides more oppurtuinities.
7. Blogging could be your big break.
8. Blogging makes the world a better place.
Check out the article at http://bostonworks.boston.com/news/articles/2006/04/16/blogs_essential_to_a_good_career/

I found this article to be especially interesting because after all we have done on blogging in class I still did not ever think about starting my own. I just felt that I personally wouldn't benefit from it and that it was only something that was effective in a corporate setting. But if having a blog could be something that puts me ahead of someone else in terms of getting a job that it is something that I would definitly try. What is there to lose? What do you think?

Blog as branding tool

I was reading Janet Johnson's blog over at Marqui and she spoke about "You as a Brand". I was thinking about it and wouldn't that just fit perfectly into the blog? I want to take it a step further than Janet did and suggest that big corporations that rely heavily on branding must focus extensively on the language they use in their blogs. Extreme examples always demonstrate things easiest. When you think about it, we've spoken about this in class several times. Blogs for companies like Adobe and Microsoft most likely rely on complicated, technological language because this reflects their brand as a leading technology company. A company like Starbucks would use coffee related vocabulary integrated into the individual's blog. Companies like Nike and Reebok whose brand focuses on an athletic lifestyle would utilize fun, easy going vocabulary.


Maybe what we should have asked the corporate bloggers is how they utilize language to reflect the brand of their company. Because its easy to see in these examples I've suggested, it'd be much more interesting to see how it plays out in average companies. In my interview, Janet mentioned that corporate blogs inevitably become more personalized as the writer becomes more comfortable writing. We debated this in class, but perhaps what's not in such contention is whether the language eventually aligns with the company brand. What do you all think?