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If anyone wants to ask us a question about blogging, please post in the comments and we'll get to it during the day, give you some props, and post a response!

Posted by Dana VanDen Heuvel in Chicago Blog Seminar | Permalink


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How do you sell blogging into an organisation, especially senior management, who may fear that those doing the blogging will not stick to the company line? I know some management see blogging as over hyped. How do you enlighten them? Conversely, how do you encourage your customers to visit 'corporate blogs' once they are written?

Posted by: Peter Vasey | Feb 18, 2005 11:52:21 AM

Thanks Peter! Those are fundamental issues with selling blogging inside large corporations. I'll address the question in my presenation this afternoon and post it later.

Posted by: Dana VanDen Heuvel | Feb 18, 2005 11:56:34 AM

Don't you end up with a stronger company if the openness of internal blogging allows everyone to deal with realities (as per the Intel President Paul Otellini's blog). Circling the wagons and asking everyone to keep mum about things everyone whispers about in the corners is no way to build a strong company.

Posted by: Barry Welford | Feb 18, 2005 12:23:32 PM

Yes Barry - without question you end up stronger. It's pretty fundamental. It's as simple as your basic issues with meetings at any company. If you're not open, honest, and upfront, you never past go and engenders nothing but mistrust and your employee's and customers' desire to flee.

Posted by: Dana VanDen Heuvel | Feb 18, 2005 2:13:50 PM

I asked a technician at work about installing on our intranet a blogging tool to introduce the concept internally. Being versed in Zope/Plone, he said he could install LiveJournal. Cruising through the LiveJournal website, my neophyte opinion is that here was where blogs' negative impression of narcissistic, off-the-wall, "flame-blogging" was formed... I decided not to set up my own blog there. Still considering a personal Typepad or Moveable. I used to journal a lot on paper...

I had seen an article awhile back (PC Mag?) on a provider for secure, external business blogs, but searching there and googling did not reveal. That could be helpful for those without internal IT contacts, who still want to test the water discretely.

I'm going to use an intranet blog to document our current website rebuilding progress. Hopefully, along the way I can build support for blogging's marketing potential.

On another note, I searched for our company's name in blogs, and didn't find anything, which was mildy deflating. Then, I searched for some competitors and found most posts less-than-flattering, and some, @#$#$ flaming.

Engaging with flame-bloggers could be rough. I need to hop through a few of the professional blogs cited at the AMA Chicago blog forum, and see how they've dealt with it. Perhaps this is where MT Blacklist is best applied? I'd hope the "community" would come to the aid.

Good conference! Best wishes for San Francisco!

Posted by: Mark | Feb 21, 2005 3:28:06 PM

Hi Mark,

LiveJournal’s niche is in very personal blogs. Typepad or MoveableType are more flexible systems. Also consider Blog Harbor and Word Press.

It would be great if you could dig up that article on external secure resources. I do not know of such a thing. (Maybe one of the other speakers could shed some light?) If it is discretion you seek you could always start a blog with a pseudonym to brush up of your skills. Maybe consider applying to write for Blog Critics. I hear (Thanks Toby!) they are always looking for content contributors.

Searching for your company's name and coming up with little speaks to me as opportunity. If your competitors are getting flamed it’s for a reason. I would look to cover my bases on their hot button issue. Then open the door. People/markets will speak until they are heard, right?

“Engaging with flame-bloggers can be rough.” We can file that in the understatement section. Keep your subject focus narrow. That way you can flame back with a strong “You’re off topic, behave!” You may be surprised with how supportive the people who actually like your blog can be. Jason from 37 Signals can attest, readership can step up big when someone get too ugly.

Regarding MT Blacklist… it is strictly for preventing comment and trackback spam from creeping on your live pages. You can use it to block IP addresses, but it is not how I would recommend handling such a person.

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