Archive for corportate blog

Corporate blogging ROI

While working on a paper about corporate blogging, I will post a few article next weeks about corporate blogging trends for the coming months. That’s also a personal concern as I work in the public administration where blogging and external or internal two way communication is definitely not a standard :-)cio_today

Today’s article was found on CIO Today website and is dealing with Corporate blogging in a Chief Information Officer’s perspective.

One important concern for an organization willing to set up a corporate blog is to see where the benefits are. In this article, the author questions issues like productivity of employees reading and posting on the blog, visibility of the organization through such media and potential problems of adjusting a blog to the general communication concept.

I found this quite relevant to start asking the right questions about corporate blogging… and I will go and meet my boss right away :-)

Further readings :

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Targeting Millennials

Last October, Annie Waite (on internalcommshub.com) wrote about the way communicators should change their approach to targetinternal_comms millennials (those born between 1982 and 2001) instead of the baby boomers… This post was inspired by the results of a survey conducted by Genesys on how millennials call for another type of communication to be addressed by organizations.

To understand better what millennials are made of, respondents were asked the following questions (below, mostly picked answers):
« In your opinion, what do you consider to be the most distinctive characteristics of Millennials? » Select up to 3.

  • Ease with technology: 74%
  • Willingness to challenge convention and standard business practices: 38%
  • Innovation and fresh ideas: 32%
  • Interest in building relationships, teams and networks: 30%
  • Represents a large and growing market: 28%
  • Comfort communicating feedback: 20%
  • Commitment to social causes: 18%

« What techniques do you believe are most effective in targeting Millennials? » Select up to 3.

  • Participate in viral marketing and peer-to-peer recommendation sites: 41%
  • Sponsor or advertise in areas populated by Millennials (eg, extreme sports, music venues, chat rooms, social networking sites): 36%
  • Delivering great product at a great price: 35%
  • Focus not only on Millennials but also on their key influencers (eg, parents, peers): 30%
  • Contribute to social causes that Millennials support: 28%
  • Contribute to corporate or issue blogs: 21%
  • Wireless text messaging: 21%

These are certainly keys to manage effective communication with (future) new consumers or employees and will probably shape interactions beetween different stakeholders of many organizations, but let’s not forget, in my opinion, those who are already left behind of new technologies or social networks as much of this evolution is done through digital conversations. Many employees in large organizations, for example, could be completely lost if such millennials oriented communication were implemented without a little bit of training and help (contribute to corporate blogs, using networking sites, wireless text messaging…).

If I strongly believe in the benefits of technology and web innovations in communication, the digital divide is there, between baby-boomers and millennials, even if I’m quite optimistic about the abilities of baby-boomers to catch up quickly, being a later baby-boomer myself (born before 1982 :-). The challenge is in the capacity of organizations to bring everyone at least to the same (average) technology level, convincing the less-experienced to take the step…

That’s my wish for 2009… Let’s make it together !

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Blogging trends

Following my previous post about web trends for 2009, I wish to focus a little more on blogging trends.

Below, you will read abstracts of different articles I found quite relevant. Blogging is certainly becoming a bit more mature every month and now there are interesting developments taking place in the blogosphere. Keeping the conversation going must be one of the main concern for everyone, but there is more to it… like influencing, networking, sharing or niche blogging…

First, an abstract of a hot trends analysis from entrepreneur.com :entrepeneurcom

In the blogosphere, the opportunity for entrepreneurs lies more in the implementation of blogs than in starting a blog-related business. “People are thirsty for knowledge and want their voices to be heard,” says Karen Jackie, a blogging expert and principal at ContentRobot. com, and starting a blog “is an easy way for small businesses to tell their story and [let customers join] the conversation.” Leveraging this powerful tool requires ongoing commitment, but blogging will become easier with evolving technology, multiauthor efforts and mergers with social networks. Says Jackie,“Blog-powered websites will phase out the lonely, static corporate website.”

Then, Strange corporation focuses on the benefit of user generated content (comments in blogs for example) :

UGC such as in blog comments, product reviews, video reviews, creative competitions, galleries, and other content has significant benefits: 1.) Brand perception – open, honest, approachable, 2.) Brand engagement – users can contribute and get involved, 3.) Brand dialogue – customers feel important and listened to, 4) Brand trust – your products/services must be good because you let users scrutinise them, 5) Value added – UGC galleries, product reviews and video reviews offer users more immersion and engagement, and 6.) Free content – your users are helping to improve your offering for free.

Darren from ProBlogger.net breaks down the top 5 trends for blogging in a short video, and he thinks blogging trends are the following :

  • Multiple bloggers producing content on the same blog
  • Trends towards more niche blogs focusing on a very specific subjects
  • Merging blogs in big websites. All sort of media and content grouped on the same spot (mashup)
  • Blogs as portals or magazines (only segments devoted to blogging and acting more as aggregation of content)
  • Indirect earning and income blogs (reach job opportunities through blogs) and money through advertising

Finally, Greg Jarboe is writing about the influence of blogs :

Now, blogs certainly aren’t considered the “newbies” of the social media scene – “granddaddies” is probably a more appropriate name. But that gives them an advantage from a marketing perspective – the medium has matured and moved from early adopter phase to the mainstream. That means more consumers are not only reading blogs; they are being influenced by blog content when it comes to what they decide to buy and who they decide to buy it from.

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Benefits of implementing a wiki in an organisation

While looking for examples of successful implementation of wikis inside organisations, I read an interesting article on CNNMoney.com about « Boosting teamwork with wikis« .

This show the real benefits on teamwork a company can get from wikis. I also describes the obstacles to overcome in order to implement it successfully.

Below are a few quotes from the article that are relevant in my opinion to understand the problem :

« The biggest reason that we’re switching is that the wiki is easier to use, » says Rosen. « If employees see a better way to organize or present information, they can just go ahead and do it with a wiki.

As with many contentious entries on Wikipedia, the two sides edited each other’s decisions repeatedly until they came to a compromise: The orders could go in both categories. « It forced everybody to learn about each other’s job, » says Rosen. « That benefits us in the long run. »

Finally, don’t forget to visit Wikimatrix to help you choose what wiki’s good for you!

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Faire circuler l’information dans une organisation

English Summary : everybody working in a complex organization knows how it is difficult to manage information circulation between people and each layer of the system. A few articles quoted below cover the problem and Wikis could be part of the answer to the problem…

Quiconque travaillant dans une grande organisation sait à quel point il est difficile de faire circuler de l’information de manière efficace au sein d’une structure complexe. Si l’e-mail nous a donné la vitesse, il nous apporte également la quantité (sans forcément la qualité), la redondance, le désordre… et au bout du compte, l’impossibilité de gérer efficacement cette circulation d’information.
Un graphique saisissant nous permet d’appréhender la puissance d’un Wiki au sein d’une organisation dans le sens où il centralise l’information de manière unique pour éviter les redondances. L’efficacité d’une Knowledge Base n’est plus à démontrer. Ainsi, dans l’organisation dans laquelle je travaille, le mise en place d’un référentiel avec plusieurs contributeurs a considérablement réduit le nombre de mails envoyés concernant les mêmes demandes répétitives.

De même, certains s’interrogent sur l’utilité d’une interface comme Facebook au sein de l’entreprise. Même si ce genre de modèle ne peut évidemment pas s’appliquer à toutes les organisations, c’est une nouvelle étape à laquelle nous devrons nous préparer.

Pour la fine bouche, un dernier lien nous présente l’utilisation des « social medias » pour faire du marketing

Bonne lecture !

Et pour aller plus loin :
What is a social media : two practical guides ?
Online collaboration tools and ressources
How we use twitter for journalism

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Corporate blogging – a PR perspective

While attending a seminar on Advanced Media and Public Relation (by Dr. Tom Watson at IUG), I had the opportunity to read about a study on blogs in corporations.
The « Makovsky 2006 State of Corporate Blogging Survey » is very interesting in many ways. Nearly all (96%) the Fortune 1000 senior executives were polled about blogs and their answer are summarized in the quote below :

The survey revealed that only a very small number of top executives are convinced to “a great extent” that corporate blogging is growing in credibility either as a communications medium (5%), brand-building technique (3%) or a sales or lead generation tool (less than 1%). In contrast, most executives are somewhat or not at all convinced of blogs’ growing credibility in these areas, (62%, 74% and 70% respectively). Moreover, nearly half of senior executives polled do not have corporate policies pertaining to blogging, although 77% believe that their organizations should have such policies. Clearly, we are seeing a snapshot of the beginning of a corporate activity and a medium which is set to grow rapidly and which will become increasingly important to corporations around the world. Companies that do not recognize this trend and take action to capitalize on it will miss out on valuable opportunities. They will also put themselves at risk of being blindsided by unfavorable publicity.

Then, another study is also relevant when writing about corporate blogs and that is « Weblogs and Employee Communication » (Wright and Hinson, 2006). This report explains how employee blogging has become a dynamic new medium to communicate with internal and external audience and has changed many aspects of employee communication. Below are a few quotes from this study (check out « why employees blog » and « Are employees’ blogs good or bad? ») :

The potential impact of blogs on public relations and corporate communications is phenomenal. […] The rise of the blogosphere has the potential to empower employees in ways not unlike the rise of labor unions in the late 19th and 20th centuries. […] Although employees who blog are writing both positive and negative things about their organizations, it appears that the positive outweighs the negative.

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