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Business and corporate blogging is not only about product and service awareness

September 8, 2010 Leave a comment

As we all know, blogs are used by people everyday to document their life, share their stories and experiences as well as their interests. Commonly this is not to make a personal gain, simply to tell the world their stories. However there does come a time that this blog can add credibility to your words of wisdom.

Businesses usually use blogs and micro blogs to simply market their company and product/services. This is generally done by an anonymous user (generally from PR) representing the business. However Adobe/Macromedia have tackled this from a different perspective and have been rewarded for it.

Eric Anderson, an employee of Adobe had previously worked for Allaire Corp, which has ultimately been taken over by Adobe. At Allaire Corp Eric used to blog to quickly disperse information to its customers. Using this, he published technical information to the customers and also used it to gather feedback.

After Allaire Corp merged with  [Macromedia, then] Adobe, Eric started to work on “Flex”, an application development solution for multimedia Internet applications. He, of course, started a blog for this project. Through this blog he has encouraged 30-50 people to blog about Flex, therefore expanding the exposure of the product.

This was not the only benefit of Eric’s (and other adobe employees) work. There was also another perk that came along with it. Eric found that when attending conferences he finds that he is well known by many of the customers, through them reading his blog. This not only helped them understand his work, however it gave him instant technical credibility. This may possibly be why Adobe pays its employees to blog.

It has become clear to Eric that his blogs traffic is generated ultimately from his technical content of Adobe Flex rather than his personal blogs. He has classified it as “content that people need”, and therefore they will be searching for it. He stated that publishing “needed” information is what made his blog successful.

This re-enforces my discussion made how blog dynamics works. Realistically a blog to a reader is simply a source of information on something they need to know. However some blogs do have a strong two-way connection between the publisher and the reader, for example a pregnancy blog, where the reader ultimately connects with the publisher.

Eric has found that there has been high traffic to blogs he has written discussing Adobe’s competitors and competing technologies as this is what people are interested in, “why are you better?”. Another way he has found to gain a mass of traffic to his blog is the discussion of the product’s future direction. This in due course generates awareness of, and “talk” about the product, which is what he realistically is aiming for.

A pitfall in publishing information about future directions is the potential risk of competitors leaching valuable information on the product from Eric through commenting on his blog. Eric has pointed out that he has commonly been sceptical of some of the comments made on his blog as he has no way to validate the identity of the person.

This goes to show that a company blog can do more than promote its products and services, it can promote its employees as well. Although this can be looked at as a possibility for the employee to be poached by a competitor, as long as the company keeps the employee happy, why would they need to worry about it?

Report on adobe and eric – http://www.scoutblogging.com/success_study/blogger_interviews/adobe_eric_anderson.html

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