Blogging for Business

A Panel Discussion

BlogHer 2005
41 minutes, 19mb, recorded 2005-07-30
Brown, Getgood, Smaragdis and Halvorson
While customers today are exposed to almost constant marketing messages, many businesses struggle with keeping control of the corporate image. The current climate of the internet, the proliferation of content creators, and the ease with which a company's customers can communicate with each other and with potential new customers have begun to limit the amount of control a company can exercise over the information the public can access about the company and its brands. In this climate some companies are taking steps to make sure that they are participants in this new level of discussion, and not just the subjects of it.

The speakers in this panel represent companies from small and non-technical to large and computer-related, from non-profit to for-profit, and they discuss aspects of business blogging from the corporate culture required to make business blogging successful to the various reasons that drive companies to blog successfully and the sorts of tools that can help make a business's blog more successful. Along the way they cover issues of blog promotion, customer blogging, tracking blog subscription rates, and determining the value blogs and bloggers offer to a company.

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Lisa Meyers Brown, Vice President of Marketing for the American Cancer Society's Eastern Division, is charged with developing and managing the organizations marketing strategies. She joined the Society in 2001. Since joining, Lisa has introduced online marketing initiatives that have significantly increased traffic to the Society's national web site. These efforts have increased annual donations, and subsequently revolutionized the Society's approach to income development activities. In 2004, Mrs. Brown created and implemented a nationwide online program, called Team ACS, that empowers supporters of the Society to use their participation in non-American Cancer Society events (e.g. marathons, triathlons, etc.) to raise awareness and funds for the fight against cancer. Lisa currently is a board member for the Taproot Foundation NYC, and a member of the development committee for Girls Inc. NYC. She has previously volunteered with the Dance Theatre of Harlem, Salvation Army, Multiple Sclerosis Society and AIDS Support Group.

Susan Getgood is a results-oriented strategic marketer, with 20+ years in computer software industry. She has extensive experience in the Internet security and educational technology industries, including SurfControl and Cyber Patrol, two well-known brands in the Internet filtering industry. Her firm, GetGood Strategic Marketing helps organizations of all sizes unleash their marketing power to build brands and drive revenue. In her most recent client projects, she has been exploring how weblogs can be used as marketing tools and developing a new model for integrated sales and marketing strategy. Her own marketing blog is at Marketing Roadmaps

Mary Smaragdis has been a strategic contributor to Marketing and Communications functions at Sun Microsystems, having played principal roles in Public Relations, Executive Communications, Web, Outbound Marketing, eMarketing and most recently in the Brand, Advertising and Global Communications organization. Prior to joining Sun, Mary managed PR at Insignia Solutions. She has a background in journalism, having spent five years writing for USA Today. Her blog -- MaryMaryQuiteContrary -- has been featured in Fortune Magazine, Financial Times Germany, CMO Magazine and other publications. She holds a BA in Government and Politics from George Mason University.

Christine Halvorson has been Stonyfield Farm's Chief Blogger since March 2004 and launched the company's blogs on April 1, 2004. Today, Stonyfield Farm, which is the world's largest producer of organic yogurt, is still one of the few companies who have taken to corporate blogging in a big way. In the blogs, Christine writes content related to women's health and fitness, getting junk food out of schools, and the inside scoop on what's happening at Stonyfield Farm. She edits and posts for one of the organic dairy farmers, who blogs about his farm in northern Vermont, and she has recruited 6 or 7 Stonyfield employees to blog about their experiences raising young children. Christine has a background in journalism and public relations, worked 10 years on women's issues with the Minnesota Legislature, and most recently was a freelance writer of books, magazine articles and newspaper stories. She continues to freelance in her spare time and often collaborates on projects with her husband, Ken Sheldon, who is a children's musician and author.


This presentation is one of a series from the BlogHer 2005 Event held in Santa Clara, California, July 30, 2005.

For Team ITC:

  • Post-production audio engineer: Bruce Sharpe
  • Series Editor: Cori Schlegel

This free podcast is from our BlogHer series.