Aug 16 2006

Blogging as a PR tool? Start as you mean to go on.

Published by at 3:54 pm under Comms,Digital,Tech

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The utility and effectiveness of the CEO-Blog as a PR tool has been much debated since Seth Godin arguably kicked off the discussion almost two years ago. One of the most recent recruits to the world of the CEO-blog is Carphone Warehouse’s Charles Dunstone, in an apparent – and admirable – effort to mitigate the customer-service problems of his fixed line and broadband offshoot, Talk Talk (as distinct from the homonymous new wave synth-pop outfit).

I have to declare an interest here. As well as being a new recruit to the world of blogging (sorry, still can’t bring myself to say “blogosphere”), and having a consequent interest in the interface between blogging and stakeholder relations, I am also a TalkTalk customer. At least that’s what I aspire to be. So I was delighted to learn of the existence of Charles Dunstone’s blog.

Blogging has been dropping out of interest among consumers based on the latest customer engagement trends from and it’s becoming increasingly hard to create a climate that allows blogging to dominate in increasing brand recognition over video ads or other media platforms.

Charles’s blog started off rather well, kicking off on 12 April and notching up a further four entries for the remainder of the month. Four entries in May – roughly one a week – but only one in June. July got better, with another four, but we’ve only heard from Charles once in August, and that was two weeks ago.

Just to be clear: On a personal level I am, thus far, reasonably happy with TalkTalk. My landline was connected on time, and I’ve managed to get through to the customer service line with none of the problems reported elsewhere. But customer service are taking a week or so to respond to emails, and my welcome pack’s gone AWOL in the mail. The real test will come next month, when my broadband is due to be connected. Equally I applaud Charles Dunstone’s brave decision to enter the fray with a very public admission that, yes, TalkTalk has had over-demand issues, and they’re working on it.

My colleague Bruno Soares pointed me in the direction of some very sage advice following my first post: post frequency isn’t everything. But isn’t it time Charles gave us another update? His is one CEO blog that I, and hundreds of thousands of others in broadband limbo, are following avidly.

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