Major League Baseball Empowers Fans to Blog

    April 23, 2005

Here’s an update to my article from yesterday. Major League Baseball is now empowering consumers to launch …

Sample_blogs_275x275… their own Six Apart-powered blogs. The MLBlogs site is live. Users can sign up for $49.95 per year. Tommy Lasorda’s even blogging. The former LA Dodgers manager has comments turned on. Excellent! Let’s ask Tommy why they lost the 1978 series.

In all seriousness, this is a downright brilliant, yet risky marketing strategy that utilizes the power of customer evangelists to spread word of mouse. In particular I love how MLBlogs is already linking to all kinds of bloggers – fans, former pros and even groundskeepers. This is similar to what Jones Soda does.

At our agency we are now working with companies to develop blogging strategies that employ four disciplines – find, listen, engage and empower. In other words we help clients find their vocal online evangelists and vigilantes, listen actively to them, engage these people in a transparent dialogue and even empower the individuals to shepherd the message for the company. The MLBlogs program utilizes all four of these disciplines and it’s brilliant.

The only downside is that you will definitely find vigilantes signing up for blogs as well. Could you imagine what they will say if there’s another baseball strike? But overall baseball always perseveres and it seems to have more fans than detractors. Collectively, those who do blog, will build the MLB brand and that’s smart marketing. (via Om Malik)

More links:
Major League Baseball
Major League Blogging post

Steve Rubel is a PR strategist with nearly 16 years of public relations, marketing, journalism and communications experience. He currently serves as a Senior Vice President with Edelman, the largest independent global PR firm.

He authors the Micro Persuasion weblog, which tracks how blogs and participatory journalism are changing the public relations practice.