We all know that corporate blogging is going to bring massive change to the way corporations talk to their customers, and whenever there is change, there will be resistance.
So how do we minimize that resistance? How do we get corporations to get into blogging mood?
To get companies to start blogging, it is important that we first “speak their language”… and I say this not in the sense of really using the terms that they use (even though this is important too), but in terms of using the technology they use.
So lets talk about today’s “corporations” information dissemination technology
… and no, I don’t mean high-tech corporations like Intel or Google, I mean those regular firms you see on the streets.
Tell me. What is the PRIMARY COMPUTER-MEDIATED TECHNOLOGY used for communications by corporations today? How does your boss send you assignments and instructions to work on?
The answer? Email. (oops! no prizes for that though )
Email has been around and in use for years. It came with the Internet! Most people who are regularly in touch with the Internet have at least one email address (and some like me have tens of addresses, each for a different purpose!) Over the years, email has evolved to be one of the main ways of communicate in corporations.
Compare this to RSS. According to the history of RSS at RSS-Specifications.com, RSS was really created only in 1997 by Netscape, to distribute news using XML.
I guess at least three quarters of the Internet population does not know what XML or RSS is! I’ve studied IT since 1998 and I didn’t know what RSS is until January this year!
So what are the implications?
Bringing this back to selling the idea of corporate blogging, how do you think a not-so-Internet savvy CEO would feel if you told him this:
Yes, you should start a corporate blog! It helps you get in touch with your customers. When you update your blog, your RSS feeds get updated, and then when your readers log in to their RSS readers, they can see the updates and they will stroll right back to your blog to read the whole story and drop comments!
Duh! WHAT are you talking about?
Try this instead.
Yes, you should start a corporate blog! It helps you get in touch with your customers. When you update your blog, the updates gets emailed directly to your customers email inbox, and when they check their mail and find the updates, they will stroll right back to your blog to read the whole story and drop comments!
How does that sound? Better?
My point here is this. People don’t like to change. The majority of the Internet population WILL NOT start using RSS readers overnight. I can’t say it won’t forever, but I’m saying it will take time for people to adopt new technology.
So do you have a corporate blog or planning to start one? Remember, your customers may not know what RSS is, so be sure to either use an RSS to Email service as an alternative!
Secondly, if you really just want to provide feeds, at least, you should have a “What’s this” link to explain what RSS is, like what most of the KnowMoreMedia blogs do. That said, I’d better get mine up too!
Follow this series of posts in the coming few days, as I review some of the most widely used services out there, to find out which suits you best!