Monday, March 30, 2009

Corporate Blogs and Freedom of Expresion

Last week I was at a marketing meeting at the Boston Society of Architects. The presenter, Mike Reilly from Reilly Communications, briefly introduced HOK’s blog, Life at HOK. After seeing the blog the question came up of how to keep everyone “on message” while blogging, an oxymoron in my opinion. If you’re trying to keep everyone on message within a blog then you’re not allowing the true power of a blog to come through – freedom of expression and opinion. A blog is about free communication - no corporate police, no messages to deliver. For HOK it’s an outlet for its employees to express themselves, whether relevant to architecture or not.

Another company may take a different approach where there are parameters around what the content can be. That too is a viable strategy so long as there is no one in the background editing and putting the corporate spin on the posts. Blogs have different voices unique to their writer(s). It’s the personality that comes through in a blog which makes it more engaging for its readers.

The HOK blog is a testament to what a corporate blog should aim to be, an unfiltered collection of messages. It gives the reader a glimpse into the culture of HOK in a way that polished corporate messages cannot.

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