Its been a while since I worked on the Fortune 500 Blogs Project. Today I shall do so, and here is my next review – Sprint Nextel!
On one of Easton’s earlier posts, he has already highlighted one of the blogs that Sprint has, The Communications Insider.
So while I keep that in mind, lets do a more thorough search first, to see if we can uncover more blogs by Sprint.
Searching Sprint’s site, Googling, Technorati, Yahoo. Okay, here are the findings.
Josh has done a review on the same Sprint blog, and the review was done in May 2005, and it seems to me that at that time, it was a different blog. Their URL was http://businessblog.sprint.com/, but it is now redirected to the new one at http://podcast.sprint.com/1/1/.
There is another blog by Sprint, Photobilty – the Sprint PCS Picture Mail Blog… err… I don’t know what PCS Picture Mail means now, I dive more into it later.
Yet another blog in the Sprint Application Developer Program (ADP) site. This looks more like a mini-blog. Here is what I get when I click “Blog Archive and Details“. It sure looks like a blog, but I can’t seem to find the home page of the blog.
I’ve noticed something though – it seems like most of Google’s indexed pages of the Sprint Blog use the old URL, and all the URLs direct to the main page of the new blog, I’ve checked, and it seems that they have taken down those entries in the new blog. The archives of the blog before February 2006 (which is probably the time they ported) was all empty.
Anyway, so it seems Sprint has three very official blogs.
- The communications insider
- The blog entries without a title at the ADP homepage
I just have this feeling that the blog don’t seem like part of their reaching out plan – there aren’t any obvious links from the company homepage to their blog.
Let’s get into each one and examine it in more detail.
The Communication Insider
The Communications Insider is a podcast blog maintained by David Spark. In the author bio, David introduces himself as such:
Spark joined Publicis Dialog in San Francisco to start the advertising agency’s custom publishing divisionâ€“a group responsible for disseminating the communications knowledge of Sprint.
The podcasts cover topics related to Sprint Nextel’s business, topics like Wireless Phone Etiquette and Mobile Multimedia. Most podcasts also feature interviews or dialogues between two or more people.
The podcasts are relatively long – for example, the EVDO roundtable has a clip that is 27 minutes long. However, the frequency of updates of blog is pretty poor, sometimes only updating once a month. I felt it could be more effective to have shorter podcasts with more frequent updates.
The first post of the blog was in February 2006 (I think that was the time they ported from the old blog), and the last post was on 13th July 2006.
There are feeds available for the their podcasts, and each post also invites commentary. Looking at the number of comments on their blog, I would hypothesise that there isn’t enough publicity for this blog to be regularly visited by the target audience. Based on the links on Technorati, this blog is linked and read by fellow bloggers in the mobile phone niche.
Taking a look at the source code, it is run over a Blojsom platform.
There is a cool little widget though – there is a little color switcher on the top right that allows readers to switch the colors of the template to the one they like.
To be frank, I feel Photobility looks more like a blog than The Communications Insider.
Photobility is “The Sprint PCS Picture Mail Blog”, and based on the categories I see on the blog, it seems to be discussing about issues related to camera phones.
Here is the official description on the about page:
Photobility is dedicated to the discussion of visual communication and how it influences and changes peoplesâ€™ lives. There’s nothing for sale here. Just a place to discuss the world of visual communication and how Sprint, a pioneer in the camera phone industry, is working to enhance that communication.
The blog is updated quite frequently, seeing 24 posts in November 2006, almost once a day. It also seem that this is a community contributed blog, with different authors for every post. The first post of this blog was made in August 2006, which is pretty recent, and there are feeds for feed reading fanatics. 😉
The ADP Blog
As mentioned, I can’t find the home page of the ADP blog. It says recent blog entries on the ADP Home Page, and a click on the “See last 10 blog entries” links to this unruly URL.
The ADP Blog seems to be more like an internal communications blog or internal announcement service, with messages written much like emails. Again, this posts in this blog come from many authors and I believe all of them are developers for Sprint applications.
The furthest I could go back in time for the ADP blog was May 2005, and updates are pretty irregular, some months having two posts a week, while other’s don’t feature a single post for the whole month.
There are no signs of feeds for this blog, and this is weird, because they have feeds for their technical bulletins and site updates!
Based on what I see on the ADP homepage, it seems discussions have been migrated to their discussion forums.
So that it, 3 blogs by Sprint Nextel was all I could find. If you find any other, do let me know!
How do you think Sprint Nextel could have maximized the use of their blogs? Some of them aren’t updated as frequently as they should be, in my opinion. What could Sprint Nextel do?