Burson-Marsteller is blogging, folks

And that’s not all.

BM has started a blog called e-fluentials back in June 2002, in order "to share knowledge of online public opinion leaders" and, probably, as an experiment on the side of its E-fluentials website. Apparently, this whole e-fluentials thing totally dried out in 2003: there are no postings for the entire year. 2004 was a little bit more animated, and there is a decent number of postings for 2005.

The blog is powered by b2evolution and it has all the bells and whistles, i.e. permalinks, comments and trackbacks. Unfortunately, all postings are signed by a gentle Anonymous under the name of "e-fluentials", instead of being signed with a person’s name. And, despite the fact that it offers three flavors of RSS, plus ATOM, none of them is listed on the weblog. OK, I’ll list them here, as a public service :cool: :

RDF | RSS 0.92 | RSS 2.0 | ATOM

The blog is authored by Dr. Leslie Gaines-Ross (Chief Knowledge & Research Officer, BM New York), Idil Cakim (Director for Knowledge Development, BM New York) and Sarah Dietz (associate in BM’s Knowledge Development Department).

Dr. Gainess-Ross has authored another BM weblog, CEO Reputation Blog, formerly hosted at ceoreputation.blogspot.com, now erased. (Apparently, the guys from BM Argentina didn’t get the memo; their homepage still offers a link to the now-defunct blog.)

You may not know (I didn’t) that BM has organized last month a seminar in Palo Alto on "how user generated media affect corporate communications". It was a panel discussion with well-known speakers as Chris Shipley, Dan Gillmor, Om Malik, Jeff Nolan, and at least two lawyers.

You can read more about the event (including some pointers for PR people) on Jeff Nolan’s blog.

On this occasion BM has distributed a 4-pages handout titled "Guideposts for the New Communications Ecosystem a.k.a. The Blogosphere Survival Guide" (PDF). Hm, it’s quite cluetrainish in its recommendations. Here’s a sample:

The "rules" are being written in real time

  • Observe blog etiquette – ignoring it has serious public consequences
    • Listen first – it’s a conversation
    • Subterfuge will out
    • Authenticity is all (see below!)
  • Stay close to your legal team – the issues are complex and evolving
  • Create your own rules – define and evangelize company policies for employee bloggers at all levels and for responding to independent bloggers
  • Authenticity is all

  • Blog writers often have very personal motivations and passions – these are the voices that rise above the noise
  • Real people write readable, credible blogs, corporations don’t
    • “If I’m only saying, ‘Use Microsoft products, rah rah rah,’ I lose all ability to have a conversation,??? said Robert Scoble, prominent blogger and Microsoft software evangelist. Fortune, January 10, 2005
  • Openness is essential
    • Be as candid as possible; be clear about what you can’t discuss and why
    • Respectfully acknowledge dissenting opinions
    • Marketing “hype??? will be evaluated with skepticism and cynicism, or worse ridiculed and treated with sarcasm.


One Comment

  1. That’s great, Constantine. You are obviously a much better Sherlock than me. I stopped at “no feeds.” Thanks for letting me know about the feeds and taking the time to comment on the blog!

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