Intelliseek and Edelman just released a new white paper on employee blogging (here – pdf).
In this day and age, where more and more goods are being bought based on word of mouth, the paper analyses the reasons and motivations for employee blogging as well as the benefits when done right.
The report cites interesting research by Intelliseek in which they analyze the impact of certain situations on people’s buying decisions. At the top of the list is negative word of mouth by someone they personally know (with an impact of 8.6 on a scale from 1-10), followed by positive word of mouth by someone they personally know. Further down the list is a positive comment about a product by an employee of the company – with a 7.0 impact. Further down is a positive comment from an individual on the internet with comment postings from others agreeing with the original poster – with an impact of 6.8. A negative comment by an employee has an impact of 6.6.
High on the list as well are positive comments by “experts” or credible professionals – with an impact of 7.1 for positive comments and 7.0 for negative comments.
The report also talks about CEO blogging and lists a few case studies where it works – both for internal communications and external communications. Unfortunately, they stop short of recommending whether CEO’s should blog in the first place. While I am still not convinced that CEO blogging is the right thing, others, like Jeneane Sessum over at PR Blog Week 2.0 do think it is.
The report also touches on the benefits of using internal blogs for internal communications and collaboration. While I see the benefits for internal communications – it acts as a virtual watercooler – I cannot see blogs being successful for collaboration. Blogs enable non-threaded discussions – and that is not how people collaborate. The right metaphor for collaboration in my mind is the wiki.