I must say that I have enjoyed the journey of blogging, since our first blog days at Molson Coors in Canada. That blog for Molson Coors was established as one way of getting our story out to the public through our own owned media channel. That was its initial strategic purpose. They were early days but those first posts delivered on our strategy to get more connected with community stakeholders and thought leaders. Relevant too that the early posts related to “Raising the Roof”. They can still use our support as we hear their campaign ads today. I reflected back on those early blog days as I worked with @StaceyHood on this site and the new frontier that this represents for me. On the topic of corporate blogging I’m still a fan. I still believe that for large companies, that may sometimes feel distant from their “consumers”, that blogging can bring forth the real human touch of a corporation’s people and human element. The blog can and will show the human side of your business, if in fact there is one worth exposing and people internally are willing to support it.

Taking a quick peek around at some of my favourite brands the blogosphere is well populated. Air Canada has a very personal approach to blogging at “Go Far – Stories that Fly”. When I personally think back to the chatter about customer service at Air Canada over many years, I’m truly impressed with how they have turned it around and are so responsive to the flyer. They are also very quick on the tweets and retweets @AirCanada.

WestJet has a really cool interactive blog site with tips and clips from destinations and a wide range of posts from “meet the veeps” to technical questions. Nicely done ! What’s really great is that it’s personal, engaging, relevant not too “selly”. It’s a connection with the flying public. They are also terrific in responding to tweets @WestJet.

The Home Depot corporate blog has a fascinating approach. It’s a home design, renovation, design (my words now remember) context with great tips and tricks for home decor. I was particularly taken by the blog on painting a “lattice design” on a wall. These blog posts could stimulate some interesting options for home or cottage. For the college crowd out there you might check out the cool laundry basket design featured recently. What’s really impressive here is the constant feed of fresh content. Would love to know their calendar plan on content.

Always a fan of everything Disney. Too many fond memories of growing up with the movies and a few visits to DisneyWorld. Disney Parks Blog content seem to lean on the “behind the scenes” context. Who wouldn’t like to get a glimpse of a bit of how the magic is created and maintained ! It’s also very basic and obviously straight from the author’s pen, rather than spun with all the glitz that one might expect from a Disney production. Humble, basic, human…

My last example (and not for lack of there being many more to look through) is Petro Canada’s “Pump Talk”. It is a truly friendly conversational blog that speaks to matters that are relevant to the consuming public. It is a nice balance between petrol policy and tips to keep the family and community comfortable and safe.

So what’s my take on the “blog or not” question ? In a word…blog !

I state five key factors to consider when diving into the blogosphere.

1. Know the purpose of your blog. Entertain, inform, feed facts, dispel, rumour, advocacy, voice of employee. Have a strategic purpose.

2. Be authentic. The best advocates are the people from within your organization. Let them tell their stories from the heart.

3. Build advocates in the community. It’s totally fine and wise to build advocates and bloggers that shout out your message and their opinion of you.

4. Reach out to other corporates and their bloggers. It’s a community that needs to share and engage to spread good news and good will.

5. Plan. Whether by special occasion, industry event, theme of your business your content needs an overall plan that ties back to purpose.

If you haven’t yet read Naked Conversations by Scoble and Israel…it is basic training required reading for new bloggers. Like a favourite novel you might return to on occasion, the lessons learned through this work are timeless.

Be sure to let me know when you’ve got your blog up and running so that I can comment, share and tweet about it. Cheers @FergDevins  @DevinsNetwork.