Businessweek Archives

The business blog backlash is nigh


? Yahoo search focusing on life events |

Main

| If you're snooping at someone's profile, Friendster's telling ?

September 30, 2005

The business blog backlash is nigh

Stephen Baker

How long will it be before a parade of CEOs and other top execs turn their backs on blogging with a dismissive 'Been There, Done That?' It's the rare CEO who has the time and energy and openness to blog. Jupiter's Alan Meckler? He'll stick with it, I'm betting. You can tell he's into it. He posts often, and it provides him a platform he relishes. GM's Bob Lutz doesn't post much anymore, though he did release a podcast last week. Debbie Weil reports that Intel's Paul Otellini blogs internally only every week or 10 days--to mixed response.

The skinny: Blogs are powerful tools, but only when the bloggers are ready and willing to dive in. Most CEOs simply don't have the time. The danger for them, as they take stock of their experiments, is to conclude that other blogging efforts within their companies will be as tepid as their own.

Anyone know of a CEO blog that's hot these days?

UPDATE: Here's a link on the issue Dave Taylor sent along.

11:00 AM

business blogging

TrackBack URL for this entry:

http://blogs.businessweek.com/mt/mt-tb.cgi/

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference The business blog backlash is nigh:

? BusinessWeek's Baker On Blog Backlash from Phil's Blogservations

BusinessWeek's Stephen Baker is wondering about an imminent "business blog backlash". [Read More]

Tracked on September 30, 2005 02:56 PM

? Why CEOs Shouldn't Blog from The TrueTalk Blog

The blogoplex is reacting to the Business Week blog post entitled: The Business Blog Backlash is Nigh. In it, Stephen Baker says, It's the rare CEO who has the time and energy and openness to blog. He cites our boy [Read More]

Tracked on October 2, 2005 08:32 AM

? Talking about: Business blogging != from act2

Talking about: Business blogging != executive blogging [Read More]

Tracked on October 2, 2005 03:53 PM

? The rise of individual credibility from NevOn

A challenging assessment of the differences between executive blogging and business blogging and which are best blogs, by Chris Anderson, editor-in-chief of Wired magazine, writing in The Long Tail: [...] It's a huge mistake to equate executive blogs w... [Read More]

Tracked on October 3, 2005 02:17 AM

? Individual Credibility from New Persuasion

Stephen Baker's Friday post over at Blogspotting on CEO's tiring of blogging has started a chain of posts that I want to add to. Baker wrote:How long will it be before a parade of CEOs and other top execs turn [Read More]

Tracked on October 3, 2005 09:47 AM

? Business Blogs: Corporate vs. SMB from Radiant Marketing Group

Let me be frank. I'm tired of all the talk about business blogging that seems only to surround its use in the corporate environment. Much fuss is being made over whether CEOs should or should not blog, and the benefits of employee blogging, etc. That's... [Read More]

Tracked on October 3, 2005 05:21 PM

? Blogs de chefs d'entreprises: la fin de l'euphorie initiale ? from entreprise_et_blog

The business blog backlash is nigh parle de la baisse d?nergie blogueuse des ceo US en ce moment en ?voquant le temps n?cessaire pour bloguer. Ne serait-ce pas plut?t la fin de la p?riode de d?couverte et larriv?e bient?t de [Read More]

Tracked on October 4, 2005 06:06 AM

? Blogging blacklash already? CEO blogs vs. employee blogs, etc. from BlogWrite for CEOs

A recent meme that's got some smart folks arguing back and forth: is blogging ennui about to set in amongst the CEO crowd? Stephen Baker asks in BusinessWeek's Blogspotting.net. Chris Anderson (of Longtail fame) makes the point that employee blogs [Read More]

Tracked on October 6, 2005 10:10 AM

There's Dave Hitz...NetApp founder.

http://blogs.netapp.com/dave

Posted by: Mike Manuel at September 30, 2005 02:53 PM

Mark Cuban comes to mind. Maybe we'll see more media CEOs before the likes of CEOs in manufacturing, etc.

But in a sense, we're kind of saying that the kind of dialogue in the below articles is pretty much an academic exercise ...

Why CEOs Should Blog

Why CEOs Shouldn't Blog

Posted by: Steve Shu at September 30, 2005 02:58 PM

Here's the link Steve's trying to point to:

http://www.globalprblogweek.com/2005/09/19/taylor-why-ceos-should-not-blog/

It's an article I wrote for Global PR Week 2.0 that's very apropos about some reasons why CEOs shouldn't succumb to the blogging "phenomenon".

Posted by: Dave Taylor at October 1, 2005 01:02 AM

Who cares whether a CEO blogs or not? I don't see any widespread desire to hear the meandering thoughts of a CEO and they're sure as heck not going to blog corporate strategy.

Posted by: Dennis Howlett at October 1, 2005 05:05 AM

Dave's right. His article was one of two articles I was trying to point to. Here's the other one:

http://www.globalprblogweek.com/2005/09/19/sessum-why-ceos-should-blog

Posted by: Steve Shu at October 1, 2005 10:49 AM

CEO's are in a very difficult legal position when speaking to the press, public, or writing blogs. Lawyers sue companies and CEO's all the time for disclosing information. The SEC has very strict and unintuitive rules around public disclosures.

CEO's are pretty much restricted to speaking from a script of previously released information. They can't talk about the next big thing. But, I can...I'm a mid level manager. Read my blog, Don Dodge on The Next Big Thing at http://dondodge.typepad.com/the_next_big_thing/

Disclosure, I work for Microsoft in the Emerging Business Team. We work with VC's and start-ups to find the next big thing.

Posted by: Don Dodge at October 1, 2005 08:26 PM

Whether a CEO should blog or not is academic, as Steve says, with strong points on both sides. No one expects the CEO to communicate about corporate strategy in such a public space anyway and a CEO blog/vlog/podcast will attract its audience just like any other website. At least a CEO blogger will be familiar with this media for correct implementation and guidelines for use (or not) of collaborative technologies like dark blogs and wikis within the company.

The large French retail chain "Leclerc Group" has an active CEO blogger, Michel Edouard Leclerc:

http://www.michel-edouard-leclerc.com/blog/

Posted by: Alex de Carvalho at October 1, 2005 08:39 PM

Dave Taylor's article on CEO's and blogging at the Global PR Blog week was an excellent discussion on some of these issues. I'd only add that each company will have different approaches to blogging. If you are the CEO of a small technology engineering firm, and you hold the patents on all of your company's products, you probably should be the one to blog. An executive of a large fortune 500 company, I am not so sure. Bob Lutz might blog because he is passionate about cars. But as Chuck Tanowitz suggested in one of his posts, Bob does not really reveal his passion for cars.

John

Posted by: John Cass at October 3, 2005 02:55 PM

The emphasis for business use of blogs seems to continually be at the corporate level. That's where the focus is at least. I'm sick of it!

I contend that SMBs are the ones able to make the best use of blogs, particularly for marketing purposes.

Corporate bloggers like Scoble may be business blogging's "pop stars," but the singular soul that continues to inspire me is a man by the name of J.D. Iles, owner of a small sign shop in New Hampshire. His signsneversleep.com blog is a model all aspiring small business bloggers can learn from. Maybe even corporate types as well.

Posted by: Paul Chaney at October 3, 2005 05:23 PM

You can have a look if you speak french http://www.michel-edouard-leclerc.com/blog/m.e.l/index.php

Michel Edouard Leclerc is the CEO of a big firm of supermarkets "Leclerc". (the post of the 3/10 is about blogging by the way)

Posted by: Pierre at October 4, 2005 06:09 AM

I agree with Paul Chaney's comments and several other comments posted here. Large public companies will probably always be skittish about blogging, but blogging is a great forum for small and mid-sized businesses. My organization has been blogging about workers comp for two years now, and we have gained a loyal following of clients and prospects that have an interest in the topic. Our CEO contributes to the blog, but most posts are written by managers. Over the two years of blogging, we've seen several insurance and HR-related weblogs making a fine go of things and a viable blog community is gaining traction in this area, as evidenced by our growing blogroll.

Every business is expert in their given field. Blogging as an expert source and a filter for news and information is good business blog model, and can be a valuable service to current and future customers, vendors, partners, etc.

Posted by: Julie Ferguson at October 5, 2005 12:21 PM

I strongly agree with one thing ... the success of the blogs depends on the passion of the blogger and the relation of that passion to a target audience. Regardless of company title or position, CEO or janitor, the blogger has to want to do it. Whether or not they have time for it is besides the point. If it's important to them then they'll do it, and if it contains that shared passion for a certain focus between reader and blogger it'll be successful.

Posted by: John Hardesty at November 21, 2005 09:09 PM

Who cares whether a CEO blogs or not? I don't see any widespread desire to hear the meandering thoughts of a CEO and they're sure as heck not going to blog corporate strategy.

Posted by: ????????? at March 25, 2006 04:09 AM

Dave's right. His article was one of two articles I was trying to point to

Posted by: 3gp at April 2, 2006 07:56 AM

CEO's are in a very difficult legal position when speaking to the press, public, or writing blogs. Lawyers sue companies and CEO's all the time for disclosing information. The SEC has very strict and unintuitive rules around public disclosures.

Posted by: mmf at May 25, 2006 08:17 AM


The Good Business Issue
LIMITED-TIME OFFER SUBSCRIBE NOW
 
blog comments powered by Disqus