[tweetmeme]I’ve been blogging about twice a week for well over a year now. I gave my first update last summer about why I blog. Write Speak Sell would become the focal point of my thoughts about communicating ideas, which is at the heart of what I have done professionally for over 30 years. It’s liberating to say what you really think and believe, while always being authentic.
Since then I’ve also come to believe that a blog is the centerpiece a company’s social media strategy, both internally and externally. The CEO is where it all starts. Wise leaders are using social media because that’s where their employees and customers are.
The CEO needs to be talking directly to the company’s stakeholders regularly with quick takes on new developments. A blog is the perfect vehicle because the nature of a blog is to be informal and for it to express the personality and communicate the authentic convictions of the writer.
A blog liberates the CEO from his ivory tower and into conversations with employees and customers in the social media communities they populate. This is a big culture change for most companies.
With a keystroke, the CEO can distribute her blog to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media sites where people are getting their information now days. She can be out there first with the news, before the rumors and misinformation start flying around the Internet. There isn’t time for a press release vetted by a dozen lawyers before it’s distributed. Everything is transparent now.
The CEO can profoundly influence the company’s future success when employees to buy into his vision. But employees can’t march in step with a CEO who doesn’t engage them in a two-way conversation about his goals for them and the company. If he does that, they can become the company’s most important brand advocates and commit to providing superior customer service.
Once again, I cite Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh as the pioneer. In his blog last year he wrote a piece, “Your Culture” In it he said, “It’s a very different world today. With the Internet connecting everyone together, companies are becoming more and more transparent whether they like it or not. An unhappy customer or a disgruntled employee can blog about bad experience with a company, and the story can spread like wildfire by email or with tools like Twitter. The good news is that the reverse is true as well. A great experience with a company can be read by millions of people almost instantaneously as well.”
Good advice and a good example to follow.