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Blogging in Internal Communications [en]

Blogging in Internal Communications [en]

[fr] Notes de la conférence que j'ai donnée aujourd'hui à Zürich sur les blogs dans la communication interne.

First of all, let me thank all present for their participation, and Nils ([Enzaim Communications](http://enzaim.ch/)) in particular for making this happen. I also appreciated having [Stefan Bucher](http://www.stefanbucher.net/blog/) amongst the audience — it’s particularly nice when fellow bloggers show up, share their experience, and to top it all tell me my talk was interesting to them, too. Thanks!

Two months ago I gave a talk titled [“How Blogging Brings Dialogue to Corporate Communications”](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/09/24/how-blogging-brings-dialogue-to-corporate-communications/). This one is quite similar, but focused on internal communications.

As I explained, the dynamics involved are very similar. It’s about having conversations, whether it’s behind the firewall or outside on the big bad internet — about engaging with people (employees, customers, colleagues) rather than talking *at* them.

Although the talk I prepared was very similar (with some added stuff specific to internal communications), it did of course turn out rather different. Different people, different questions. I like it (particularly with small audiences) when instead of giving a lecture-like talk, there are lots of questions and I am derailed from what I had planned.

That’s a bit what blogging is about, isn’t it? Having a dialogue. So, when the setting permits it, I try to do the same thing with my talks. My impression is that people get more out of them that way. (Do feel free to correct me if you think I’m mistaken.)

You should probably go and have a look at [the notes from my previous talk](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/09/24/how-blogging-brings-dialogue-to-corporate-communications/), as I’m not going to rewrite everything here. I’ll just concentrate on what seems to me was the important additional stuff we talked about. If you were there and want to add things to what I’m writing here, please feel free to leave a comment. I’d be very happy if you did.

If you look at the slides, they’re very similar in the beginning, aside from slides 9-10-11 in which I try to clarify the difference between blog and wiki, as I was told confusion was common.

Blogs

Content on blogs is organised based on the time they were written. From an editorial point of view, blogs also put the author(s) forward. He has a very different status from the commentators, who are guests on his blog.

Wikis

Wikis, on the other hand, are organised solely through the links created between the various pages. The focus is on the documentation produced rather than on who produced it. The various author voices tend to merge into a uniform community voice.

Both blogs and wikis are part of the larger class of tools one can name “social media”. These are the online tools which help us publish information in a way that connects us to other people, and encourages us to engage in conversations and relationships with them. You’ll also come upon the expression “social software” used with roughly the same meaning (though the emphasis is in this way more on the technology than on its usage). “Social tools” can be considered a wider category including all technology that explicitly connects its users to one another. (I have to say, though, that many people — I included — will sometimes use these terms interchangeably.)

Short version: it’s “social media” that is important in this discussion, more than “just blogging”. I’m talking of “blogging” inasmuch as it is a popular incarnation of social media.

We spent quite some time commenting the [blog examples]() I showed. These are of course examples of blogging externally, because unfortunately, it’s kind of hard to find examples of internal blogging on the internet ;-).

There are a lot of “damage control” or “crisis” examples, because blogging is a good tool to use in this kind of situation where real communication is required.

Here are a few quotes I read out. First, the beginning of the open letter to Palm on Engadget:

> Dear Palm,

> Man, what a crazy year, right? We know things haven’t really been going your way lately, but we want you to know that we haven’t given up on you, even though it might seem like the only smartphone anyone wants to talk about these days is the iPhone. It can be hard to remember right now, but you used to be a company we looked to for innovation. You guys got handhelds right when everyone else, including Apple, was struggling to figure it out. And it was the little things that made those early Palm Pilots great — you could tell that someone had gone to a lot of trouble to think about what made for a great mobile experience, like how many (or rather, few) steps it took to perform common tasks.

> The problem is that lately we haven’t seen anything too impressive out of you guys. Sure, over the past few years the Treo has emerged as a cornerstone of the smartphone market, but you’ve let the platform stagnate while nearly everyone (especially Microsoft and HTC, Symbian and Nokia, RIM, and Apple) has steadily improved their offerings. So we’ve thrown together a few ideas for how Palm can get back in the game and (hopefully) come out with a phone that people can care about. (And we’re not talking about the Centro / Gandolf.) Read on.

Dear Palm: It’s time for an intervention

And two days later, the response of the Palm CEO, Ed Colligan

> Dear Peter, Ryan and Joshua:

> Thank you for the very thoughtful post about Palm. I really appreciate the fact that you guys and others care enough to take the time to write such a comprehensive list of actions. I forwarded it to our entire executive staff and many others at Palm have read it. Although I can’t say I agree with every point, many are right on. We are attacking almost every challenge you noted, so stay tuned. Let’s remember that it is very early in the evolution of the smartphone and there is enormous opportunity for us to innovate. We have only just begun to fight!

> Thank you for taking the time to write. I really do take your comments to heart and I know the team at Palm is totally committed to delivering the best mobile computing solutions in the world.

Ed Colligan

Not bad, huh? This is the kind of openness people want to see more of.

> Corporate types will always be concerned about negative comments, which is a valid concern; however, if you’ve got a product or service that’s worth blogging about, your fans should be coming out to support you — which they have, in Yahoo!’s case. Also, by allowing full comments, and better yet, responding to some of them, you gain a valuable sense of integrity and, as loathe as I am to type these words, “street cred” — that you just can’t buy.

> Negative comments are the price you’ve got to pay for having a Real Blog, and companies that have them deserve to be recognized. It shows that they believe in their own business, and they respect their customers enough to allow them to have a public opinion on their business.

Yahoo’s Blog Takes Its Blogging Lumps, Like a Real Blog Should

We talked a lot about negative comments and what to do about them (they can actually turn out to be a good thing if you respond to them openly and honestly). We also talked about ghost-writing (don’t!) and human relationships in general. Things that are true for offline relationships, I find, are also true for online ones you can establish through blogging: if somebody is willing to recognise they made a mistake, for example, or acknowledge that you are upset about something, it goes a long way. Same is true on blogs.

Here’s a link to [the corporate blogging 101](http://engineerswithoutfears.blogspot.com/2007/04/tooling-around-blogs.html) I mentioned in passing and I said I would point you to.

I also skipped a bit quickly through the Do/Don’t lists, so here they are again:

DO:

  • eat your own dog-food
  • trust your bloggers
  • read other blogs
  • be part of the community
  • use a feed-reader
  • link! even to competition, negative stuff
  • be human
  • learn the culture
  • use an existing blogging tool
  • discuss problems
  • define what is really confidential
  • give existing in-house bloggers a role (evangelists! learn from them!)
  • tag, ping, use the “kit” and other social tools

DON’T:

  • try to control
  • use a ghost-writer or outsource blogging
  • “roll your own” tool
  • ignore established blogging conventions, they’re there for a reason
  • copy-paste print material in posts
  • use corpspeak
  • force people to blog
  • write happy-clappy stuff
  • write blog posts or comments as if they were e-mails (starting with Hi… and ending with a signature)
  • be faceless (signing with the name of the company instead of the person)

Employees know (and so do internal communications people) that the best sources of information are usually one’s direct boss and… the cafeteria. If you think about it, your boss is probably one of the main people you actually have real conversations with. You don’t often have a real conversation with the CEO — but you probably have regular briefings with your boss. Hopefully, you have something resembling a human relationship with her/him.

The cafeteria or the corridors are the informal networking spaces of company life. And often, these informal relationships can actually be more useful to your work than the hierarchy. “Networks subvert hierarchies”, says the [Cluetrain](http://cluetrain.com).

Well, in a company in which employees can blog, subscribe to their feeds and leave comments on each other’s blogs, the online space can become a kind of “virtual cafeteria” — only in the public eye. This might sound scary to some. But you’re not preventing people from having conversations in the cafeteria, are you? By having these conversations online, in a “public” space (which may still be behind the firewall), you can help them be more efficient if they’re positive, and debunk them more easily if they’re rumors.

RSS is an important technology to be aware of. It’s the one that allows people to subscribe to blogs, comments, or other sources of news. In a company where employees can have their own blogs, they’ll need to learn to use an aggregator, which will enable them to create their own news channel. One can expect an employee to know best exactly what sources of information to follow or people to stay in touch with to get her work done.

People who work remotely, who are on different sites, different silos, or who simply have different working hours can all benefit from the online cafeteria.

A few key checkpoints, if you’re thinking of introducing blogs in your company (“are we ready?” style). 5 prerequisites:

– the management/CEO/company needs to **care** about their employees. Blogging won’t work well in an “abusive” relationship.
– be willing to **engage** in real, honest **dialogue**, also about problematic issues (difficult, but often the most rewarding, as with normal human relationships)
– blogging takes **time**, so it should be counted in as part of people’s workload/job
– accept and understand that communication **cannot be controlled**
– understand that blogging is not just a technology/tool, that it is mainly a **culture/strategy**

5 ingredients to “make it work”:

– **training**. Don’t assume blogging comes naturally to people. We “natural bloggers” are the exception, not the rule. The technology is cheap — put money in the training, so people have a chance to really “get” the culture.
– **eat your own dog food**. If you want to get people in your company blogging, do it yourself, too.
– blogging is a grassroots phenomenon (bottom-up), so **enable** it (top-down), knowing you can’t “make” people blog. Create a blog-friendly environment.
– **read** blogs and comments. This can easily be 50% of the workload involved in “blogging”
– speak like a **human** being.

There… that’s about it. Did we talk about anything else important that I missed?

Similar Posts:

How Blogging Brings Dialogue to Corporate Communications [en]

How Blogging Brings Dialogue to Corporate Communications [en]

[fr] Notes d'une conférence que je viens de donner à Zurich sur les blogs en entreprise.

As promised to the participants of this (Monday) evening’s event, here is my slideshow of the talk, notes, and links. *note: notes written up on the train on the way home, I hope the links aren’t too broken and that it makes sense; let me know in the comments if there is anything weird.*

Thanks to everyone for participating so well 🙂 Please feel free to add notes, comments, further questions, things you took away from the talk in the comments to this post.

*note: the beginning of the notes are roughly what I said; questions and answers are not included — there were lots; I gave an accelerated version of the second part of the presentation, as we had talked a lot, and actually, covered much of what was important anyway.*

For links related to corporate blogging, see those tagged [corporateblogging](http://del.icio.us/steph/corporateblogging) and [20070924](http://del.icio.us/steph/20070924) for those linked to today’s talk. Click on the “related tags” on the right to explore further.

I’ve added slide numbers in brackets roughly when they appear. Not that the slides are that interesting, of course…

[1] [2] Blogging is a tool that brings dialogue, and the point of this talk is to see how that happens in a corporate context.

[3] Two main aims:

– understanding the “[bigger picture](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12797905)” blogging is part of
– practical advice on introducing blogs into a business setting.

[4] As you’ve probably noticed, I’m not a Powerpoint wizard, so won’t be dazzling you with fancy slides and lots of buzzwords. I’d like to have something approaching a conversation with you. I’m obviously expected to do quite a lot of the talking (that’s what I was asked to come for!) — but you know lots of things I don’t, and you’ll have comments and questions. Please ask them as we go along… I’d rather go off-track from my presentation and be sure to address the things you’re wondering about. *note: and yeah, that’s exactly what happened! got so caught up in our conversation that I lost track of time!* This way of doing things, you’ll notice, is related to what blogging is about.

[5] First, I need to know a bit more about you. I know you’re communication executives and I’m told you’re already familiar with blogs — that’s a start, but I need more:

– who reads blogs?
– who has a blog? (personal, corporate, work-related?)
– who is blogging this talk? *(nobody — hopefully in 2 years from now, half the room)*
– who uses a feed-reader (NetNewsWire, BlogLines, Google Reader)
– who is in a company that uses corporate blogs?
– who has employees/clients who blog?
– who has read The Cluetrain Manifesto? Naked Conversations? (required reading!)
– who is in a company that is blogged about? do you know?

[6] Before we get to the meat (practical stuff), let’s clarify

– what is blogging?
– where does it fit in?

There’s a lot of confusion there.

Blogging is:

– a [tool](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12812114)/technology
– a culture
– from a business point of view, a strategy

Different [layers](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12842694).

Blogs@Intel · Intel Corporation

[7] [Using just the “tool” layer](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12841664) often fails, because it’s just publishing “official communications” in a different wrapping. And official communications are boring — I hope I’m not breaking the news to anyone. Example of this: [blogs.intel.com](http://blogs.intel.com/). Not very exciting.

I think a lot of corporate blogging failures can be attributed to stopping at the “tool” aspect of blogging, and underestimating the cultural aspects.

Listening and Learning Through Blogging

[8] Example that gets the “culture” layer: [Listening and Learning Through Blogging on McDonalds’ CSR blog](http://csr.blogs.mcdonalds.com/default.asp?item=140627).

> I’ve just finished my second posting, and I’ve realized how much there is to learn about the blogosphere. I’ve spent a lot of time looking at other blogs, listening to what others are saying about what we’re doing, and picking up some suggestions along the way. ([McDonalds’ CSR blog](http://csr.blogs.mcdonalds.com/default.asp?item=140627))

From a business point of view, adopting blogging is a strategic decision, because it impacts the culture. It’s not just a shiny tool we can use to do the stuff we do usually, it’s linked to deeper changes.

[9] So we’re going to concentrate on the “culture, strategy” side of blogging, which is the first part of this presentation. So we’re going to have to backpedal, zoom out, and look at the big picture: [10] The Internet, The Cluetrain Manifesto.

**So, what’s [the Cluetrain](http://www.cluetrain.com/) about?** It started as an online rant, and grew into a book in 2000. It’s still valid today.

Basically, the Cluetrain says that [conversations are happening](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12816615), inside and outside your organization, and they can’t be stopped.

[11] People are tired of being talked at. They (inside: employees; outside: customers) are too busy having [12] real conversations with their friends, people they know and trust. Offline as well as online. They won’t listen to fabricated discourse (a lot of marketing). I know that when I receive my bank statements, I’m interested in how much I’ve spent, and the flyer giving details about my bank’s latest service goes straight to the bin. What about you?

[13] These conversations are everywhere. They’re talking about you — you the companies. A lot of our day-to-day conversation is about brands, consumer products, services… These conversations [14] can’t be controlled. Control is a big issue when it comes to corporate blogging.

Is communication something you control?
Are conversations something you can control?

[15] We know how important word-of-mouth is in marketing, and in the shaping of buying decisions we make. We listen to our friends (people we trust) way more than advertising.

Do great stuff. Care. Let people know. They’ll talk about you.

[16] Blogging is about jumping in there, being part of the conversation. And this conversation is bigger than just blogging.

Not that easy, but [not that hard](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12817670): remember what it is to be human. To be passionate about something. To care. Bring that into the conversation.

So the important question becomes: how will this fit into my corporate culture — or not? Is it compatible?

[17] What [I mean](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12814659) by corporate blogging: blogging that has to do with corporations, businesses. Blogging beyond the tool (culture). Everything is possible.

– internal
– external
– one author
– multiple authors (group blog)
– very official
– unofficial
– employee blogs
– news outlet (with the danger of missing the “culture” and falling back into the “just tool” use)

[18] Some quick [examples](http://del.icio.us/steph/example) of real “corporate” blogs. A lot of damage control in my examples — one thing blogs are good at.

– [Dell](http://direct2dell.com/one2one/default.aspx): started out badly, listened, learned
– [McDonalds CSR blog](http://csr.blogs.mcdonalds.com/default.asp)
– [English Cut](http://www.englishcut.com/): “my tailor is rich” (haha) fairytale; blogging to demonstrate expertise and built credibility (and [drive your business through the roof](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12827453))
– [Palm’s response to Engadget’s open letter](http://blog.palm.com/palm/2007/08/thanks-engadget.html): a personal reply, and look at all the comments
– [Robert Scoble](http://scobleizer.com/): ex-Microsoft, hired for his blogging skills and reputation
– [Nee-Naw](http://www.neenaw.co.uk/): a LAS employee — impacts the image we have of the LAS
*note: this is where things started going fast*
– [Richard Pierre SA](http://www.richardpierresa.blogspot.com/): Swiss, also an “expert” blog (demonstrating expertise)
– [Rapleaf’s “we made mistakes”](http://blog.rapleaf.com/2007/09/06/start-ups-privacy-and-being-wrong/): if you mess up, and talk about it, and say sorry, chances are many will forgive you
– [Domaine du Crest](http://www.domaineducrest.ch/blog/): winemaker, Geneva; insight into vinyard life
– [Yahoo! official blog]: taking the heat in the comments
– [4500 Microsoft employee bloggers](http://blogs.msdn.com/)
– [DreamHost, ongoing disaster](http://blog.dreamhost.com/2006/08/01/anatomy-of-an-ongoing-disaster): being candid about what went wrong
– [Larry’s take on the Vista SR bug](http://blogs.msdn.com/larryosterman/archive/2006/07/31/684327.aspx): info straight from the horse’s mouth
– [Michel-Edouard Leclerc](http://www.michel-edouard-leclerc.com/content/xml/fr_home.xml), French CEO (see also [reaction in food poisoning crisis](http://www.michel-edouard-leclerc.com/blog/m.e.l/archives/2005/10/intoxication_al_1.php))

[19] Who should blog?

Corporations do not blog. Humans do, people. You can’t remove the person from the blog. Businesses with a “do the right thing” attitude. Enthusiasm needed! [20] Bad guys shouldn’t blog. Businesses who mistreat customers and employees shouldn’t either. Not if you’re dull or cheesy or very controlling. (See Naked Conversations, pp. 134-138.)

[21] [Why](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12816423) should one blog? Very important question.

– to communicate differently, humanise the company
– not just another channel to push the same tired message through.

Where does blogging fit in strategically? => who, what exactly…

See [possible objectives here](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12842170). Basically, anywhere there are people doing things. Except probably high-confidential security stuff.

[22] How?

You want to get blogs going for all the good reasons, but how does one

– start blogging [23]
– blog well? (ongoing work!)

[No real “one size fits all”.](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12843845) Many answers to this, depends on the situation/culture of the company in question.

Some general answers, however.

[24] Check out the [corporate blogging 101](http://theobvious.typepad.com/blog/2007/05/corporate_blogg.html), very precious stuff there.

enable blogging. Encourage employees to blog. Blogging is a grassroots phenomenon, but it needs support form the top. There are maybe people already blogging — find them, and use them to encourage more blogging.

[25] have a purpose (that important Why? question). Don’t blog to blog. Figure out what **current needs** can be adressed by blogging. You can start small:

– event?
– product?
– “news”?
– project?
– office life?
– expertise on one topic?

This is very context-dependant. Need to understand the context well to be able to choose/advise wisely.

Careful! If you’re using a blog to post the usual “official communications”, you’re missing something.

[26] **learn the culture**: this is the big bit. Listen to bloggers (online and offline, in-house and out). Get training (this is where it’s worthwhile to put your money, as you’ve saved on expensive software).

Before going to [India](/logbook/), I studied the culture, but it couldn’t prepare me totally for what I found when I went to live there. You need to go to a foreign culture to really “get” it. Blogging is a foreign culture.

Learning to blog well can take time. Not everyone is a natural. Ongoing effort!

[27][28] Remember, blogging is about **Me & You**, having a conversation.

– dialogue
– relationship
– people

[29] **Listen.** Read blogs. Read comments. Be open. Get a feed-reader.

[30] **Passion.** Believe. Be passionate. If you’re not interested, it’ll be boring.

[31] **Style.** HUGE subject. How to write on a blog. It’s difficult.

– write for the web
– use “I”
– use links, make your writing 2D instead of 1D
– informal
– short paragraphs
– simple, direct language
– no jargon or corpspeak
– tell a story, as if to a friend
– author name, but don’t sign posts like e-mail

[32] **Time.** Don’t kid yourself, it takes time. Commitment. Easily an hour a session, a few times a week. But it’s fun 🙂

If you try to remove any of these ingredients, I doubt your blog will be successful and survive.

[Best practices?](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12828157)

[33] DO:

– eat your own dog-food
– trust your bloggers
– read other blogs
– be [part of the community](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12817808)
– use a feed-reader
– link! even to competition, negative stuff
– be human
– learn the culture
– use an existing blogging tool
– discuss problems
– define what is really confidential
– give existing in-house bloggers a role (evangelists! learn from them!)
– tag, ping, use the “kit” and other social tools

[34] DON’T:

– try to control
– use a ghost-writer or outsource blogging
– “roll your own” tool
– ignore established blogging conventions, they’re there for a reason
– copy-paste print material in posts
– use corpspeak
– force people to blog
– write happy-clappy stuff
– write blog posts or comments as if they were e-mails (starting with Hi… and ending with a signature)
– be faceless (signing with the name of the company instead of the person)

[35] FUD: fear, uncertainty, doubt. Cf. Naked Conversations pp. 140-145 for discussion, really, it’s all there:

– negative comments
– confidential leaks
– loss of message control
– competitive disadvantage
– time-consuming
– employee misbehaviour
– ROI absent…

[36] ROI of blogging (google for “ROI blogging” — without quotes). Comes up often (need for quantitative measurement), but still very debated topic. Respected experts all over the map, from [“it doesn’t/can’t apply”](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12843414) to [“here is a way to calculate it”](http://blogs.forrester.com/charleneli/2007/01/new_roi_of_blog.html).

[Distinguish](http://corpblawg.ynada.com/2006/11/01/corporate-blogging-roi-hard-return-vs-soft-return):

– hard returns
– soft returns

There is a return, it’s a worthwhile investment, say those who do it. How to measure it is another story. Sorry 🙁

[37] A closer look at some examples… [coComment](http://blog.cocomment.com) [disclosure: ex-client]:

coComment blog -- Corporate Blogging Example

[38] Read the first sentence… what is wrong here? Not a human speaking. Don’t post press releases as blog posts. You might cite them, or link to them, or comment on them, but don’t stick them in there as posts. How does the reader think his “feedback” will be received when he’s being spoken at to start with?

coComment -- Corporate Blog Example 1

[39] Privacy concerns raised on other blogs. Good to address the issue and respond, instead of hiding! (it would just get worse… cf. Kryptonite). “Click here” looks bad, though, and hints that the medium (blogging) isn’t really understood.

coComment blog -- Corporate Blogging Example

[40] OMG. What is this doing here? Did somebody smoke something? First-time author on this blog — an introduction would have been more appropriate.

coComment blog -- Corporate Blogging Example

[41] Note that this is a multi-author blog, which is usually the case with an “official blog”, though often there will be one “main author” who carries it. Apology for painful upgrade, that’s good. E-mail-like signatures on each post, however, again point to incomplete understanding of the culture.

[Flickr](http://blog.flickr.com): great example (and great photosharing service too, sign up today).

Flickr Blog -- Corporate Blog Example

[43] Look at that outage notice. It’s fun! Really fun. And there are updates. Two of them. As a user/customer, I feel that they give a damn.

Flickr Blog -- Corporate Blogging Example

[44] Coverage of what’s going on in the community. Blogging is a lot about community, nurturing it.

Flickr: it's not just blogging

[45] Here, a forum post. It’s not just about blogging, remember the “bigger picture”? But same kind of attitude. How you engage with others in the community. Treat them as people and not like numbers. Look at how well this issue is documented, with links and all — and this is a “problem situation”. We’re not shoving the dirt under the carpet here.

[Moo](http://moo.com/blog/) *note: if you got a business card from me, this is where they come from!*

MOO | Blog -- Corporate Blogging Example

[46] So, this is a promotional posting (ad, marketing, oh my!) but look… it feels like she was e-mailing a friend, rings true.

Up for debate (bloggers will tell you “yes”): can you feel if somebody put his/her heart into a post?

[47] Closing notes:

Blogging is a strategy. Deep change in communications. Not pushing a message anymore, but

– conversations
– relationships
– trust
– people

The question to ask is:

Is my company/department/team ready for this?

Blogging is a grassroots phenomenon, so bottom-up (you can’t force people to be passionate about something and blog about it), but needs support from top-down. There are maybe already blogs in your company, and you might not know it!

Read The Cluetrain Manifesto and Naked Conversations to start. (I’m serious.)

Eat your dog food. If you’re going to introduce blogging in your company, you need to start blogging — before. Open a WordPress.com account and start writing about stuff you’re interested in. Use your blog as a [backup brain](http://www.contentious.com/archives/2007/09/05/how-to-blog-without-the-time-sink/), writing things as they occur to you. For you first, and for sharing with others in case it’s of interest to them.

Blogging is technically cheap, but culturally expensive.

[48]

Some extra stuff, off the top of my head (some from off-presentation discussion):

Blogging tools: [Wordpress](http://wordpress.com), Movable Type and Typepad ([SixApart](http://sixapart.com)), Drupal.

Looking up stuff in blogs: use [Technorati](http://technorati.com) or Google BlogSearch. Use Technorati Cosmos to see who linked to a given blog post.

The “Because Effect”: I make money *[because of](http://steph.tumblr.com/post/12827176)* my blog, not *with* my blog.

Discussion of trust and reputation in the blogosphere. Auto-regulating medium.

A few sketches I made while preparing this talk, but didn’t use:

Cluetrain 101 Sketch 1

Cluetrain 101 Sketch 2

Cluetrain 101 Sketch 3

[Open-sourcing the invitation copy.](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/08/11/corporate-blogging-talk-draft/)

Good example of an “event blog”: [LIFT conference](http://www.liftconference.com/blog/official) (and go to the conference, too, it’s a great event).

*promotional 😉 note: if you would like to have me come and give this talk (or another!) elsewhere, please don’t hesitate to [get in touch](http://stephanie-booth.com/contact/). This is one of the things I do for a living.*

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Corporate Blogging Talk Draft [en]

Corporate Blogging Talk Draft [en]

[fr] Je donne une conférence dans un peu plus d'un mois à des responsables de communication d'entreprises suisses. On m'a demandé de fournir une présentation de mon intervention, qui figurera sur l'invitation. Voici la version resultant de deux jours en sueur (oui je sais, c'est pas très impressionnant!) -- j'apprécierais votre feedback en la matière si vous lisez l'anglais.

A little over a month from now, I’ll be giving a talk on corporate blogging to leading communications executives of Swiss companies. I’ve been asked to provide an introduction to my talk, which will be included alongside some biographical information in the invitation to the event. Here’s my draft, based on examples of previous invitations I was given:

> Blogs are way more than teenage diaries, and it is now common knowledge that they can be a precious tool in corporate environments. Many companies today are interested in embracing social media, and some take the plunge — unfortunately, not always with the desired results.

> Blogging is not a magical solution. Though it requires little technical skill to exertblog (akin to sending an e-mail), it comes bundled with the culture of openness and real human dialogue described at the beginning of the decade in The Cluetrain Manifesto, which can be at odds with existing corporate communication practice.

> When a corporation starts blogging, whether behind the firewall or on the internet, it changes. Not all corporations are ready for that. Not all corporations can accommodate those sometimes unpredictable changes.

> Though one could just start blogging blindly, it is wiser in a corporate setting to identify some particular needs or problems which can be addressed with social media. Though social media is by nature error-tolerant, it would be a mistake to underestimate the importance of learning the “blogging culture”, or the time required to keep a blog alive.

> Stephanie Booth will share her insights on how blogs can find a place inside corporate culture, and how to go around introducing them in such a setting. The focus will be on blogging culture and practices, illustrated by real-world examples taken directly from the blogosphere.

I’ve been struggling with it for the last two days, and I’d appreciate your feedback in the comments (both on the language and the content).

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