Here’s further proof of the impact that bloggers can have on companies and that corporate blogs/podcasts can have on audience interaction. The first is the lead article in PR NEWS in which Matthew Schwartz covers the Kryptonite product recall debacle, which reputedly cost the company $10m. Matthew interviews Kryptonite’s PR Manager, Donna Tocci:
"The bigger PR nightmare would have been to release information about a
lock-exchange program and not be able to back it up," she says, adding
that the company has been in constant contact with the media about the
Just how could it have been a bigger nightmare than a $10m recall? The response mechanism of waiting for a press release to be approved meant the damage was done. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but perhaps a short ‘We’ve had reports of a defect, we’re investigating it and will alert customers shortly once our investigations are complete’ would have shown the company was listening.
Matthew kindly interviewed me for this article, and I think the Kryptonite story shows the power one individual can have on a company’s reputation. Equally, the issue would have been different if Kryptonite had its own blog as a direct conduit to its customers.
The second piece is Neville Hobson and Shel Holz’ interview with Michael Wiley, director of new media, GM Communications at General Motors. Michael gives candid feedback about the GM Fastlane blog and its podcasts. He highlights that 20% of GM’s journalists are using RSS. If you look at the comments, I queried this and Michael clarifies that this was internal research – but fascinating nonetheless. This is excellent testimonial from a senior communicator at a large corporate about the impact of corporate blogging and podcasting.
(Credits – Ian Lipner for the PR NEWS link)