Most Companies Have No Employee Blogger Policies

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Mega PR firm Edelman and blog portal Intelliseek just released a white paper on companies and the employees that blog them. The study titled, “Talking From The Inside Out: The Rise of Employee Bloggers,” takes a candid look at the relationship between employees and their employers and examines the challenges and opportunities this phenomenon presents.

They mentioned some interesting figures including:

* Nearly 70 percent of companies have no policies or guidelines in place for employee bloggers, which is a clear liability for both companies and bloggers themselves.

* A recent Intelliseek study reveals that up to 9 percent of people posted to blogs (others or their own) to comment on or defend their employer.

* Over a recent six-month period, blog postings with the phrase or derivative of “love my job” outnumbered those with “hate work” by about 2-to-1 and outnumbered those with “hate my boss” by about 4-to-1.

* Employee blogs have helped enhance the reputation of employers in many instances (as in the cases of Microsoft, Sun Microsystems and Stonyfield Farms) but have also hurt reputations in the case of several high-profile firings (as in the cases of Google, Delta Air Lines, Waterstone’s and Friendster).

“We have clear evidence that consumers and other important stakeholders make decisions about products and brands based largely on what a company’s employees say about them,” said Christopher Hannegan Senior Vice President and Director of Edelman’s Employee Engagement Practice. “Now blogs provide these same employees with access to a mass audience as never before. So companies need to understand that two powerful forces are beginning to converge in way that will have a direct and growing impact on their business.”

This study goes into detail about the problems that unregulated blogs can create but also the benefits can that can be attained. This study also takes a good look at how some companies are handling the blogging issue. As handling the image and perception of any company the heart of public relations, knowledge of blogs and the best ways to utilize them is absolutely crucial.

“Employees can be critical builders of brand equity or chronic destroyers of it, and blogs speed up that process rapidly,” said Pete Blackshaw, Intelliseek’s CMO and 2004 co- founder of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association. “Corporate communications professionals and senior executives need to come to grips with this new reality and learn to operate in this fast-changing blog environment.”

John Stith is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

Most Companies Have No Employee Blogger Policies
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