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3 BIG reasons CEOs should Blog

23 October 2007 3 Comments

There are plenty of reasons for CEOs and other high level executives to blog. I'm skipping the “because communicating is good” and concentrating on the solid benefits in this list.

1) Blogs add a personality and face to a company. This can mean more business — more dollars and cents.

Let's face it, people don't tend to trust big organizations anymore, whether it's the US Government, Microsoft, Worldcom, Enron,
etc. People do however trust people they know, and like to do business
with people they know and trust. When an executive blogs, they become part of the face and personality associated with the
organization. They build trust. They build likability.

I never liked Sun Microsystems. They were an arrogant competitor from way back. I now occasionally read their president and CEO Jonathan Schwartz's blog, and I no longer think of them as the old arrogant Sun — I rather like them these days.

2) Blogs influence the most important people.

I rarely read GM's Fastlane blog.
I simply don't care about cars. But guess who does? Well, my friend
Gearhead Gregorius (name changed for my amusement) does. When I need a
new car, who do I ask for opinions? Well quite naturally Gregorius the
car nut — and he's much more positive on on GM these days.

Few if any of my clients read Jonathan Schwartz's blog.
But when they need to buy new Unix Workstation, my opinion is often
valued as I'm an old Unix guy from way back, and as I've said before I
kind of like Sun now.

3) Blogs connect CEOs and senior executives to their most important people — the customers.

It's lonely at the top! The higher you get, the less feedback you get.
The less in touch with the end customer you are. Blogs put you in
direct contact with the people that matter most, the end customers.

Bonus #4) Writing is critical business skill

Some executives and CEOs really should learn to do it better! Practice doesn't make perfect, but it does help you improve.

Tomorrow: Why executives shouldn't blog, and some certainly shouldn't!

3 Comments »

  • Anonymous said:

    Ted,
    Do you really think a CEO should use a public forum to “meet” people or learn to write? I think #3 and #4 would be more appropriate for an internal company blog, like a company newsletter. Unless the CEO is a good communicator — or hires one — it seems to be poor judgment to put the company's image on the line like that.
    Morty

  • Anonymous said:

    Morty,
    I don't meet “connect” as in “meet” or “LinkedIn,” but connect as in communicate directly. CEOs sometimes don't hear what is actually happening at the front lines — the information is filtered through several layers. This removes the layers — direct communications.
    As far as learning the write — they better already be good at that! Blogging can only make them better.

  • Anonymous said:

    Ted,
    Your reasons for CEOs blogging seem more anecdotal than universal. In an ROI-driven world, they sound almost folksy.
    I think you might be right that blogging personalizes and popularizes CEOs — which is probably to their personal benefit — but I have to wonder about the benefits to the business.
    I have a couple good reasons to add. One is improving visibility in general and search engine rank in particular. Search engines just love authoritative bloggers who blog every day.
    Another reason is to stay sharp. If you're blogging every day, you have to keep on top of the news and the tools and your market. I probably would not have noticed how quickly people are migrating to online software such as Google Apps or Zoho or Skype if it weren't for blogging. And those things are making a real difference to my bottom line.
    STEVE O'KEEFE

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