Blogging within the firewall is evolving from barely supervised or unsanctioned to a formal marketing and internal communications practice. The Blog Council, with founding companies AccuQuote, Cisco Systems, The Coca-Cola Company, Dell, Gemstar-TV Guide, General Motors, Kaiser Permanente, Microsoft, Nokia, SAP, and Wells Fargo, has a mission to share advice and develop best practices, and to act as advocates for "responsible, ethics-based corporate blogging."
The best practices projects include a global corporate blog directory, standardized terminology and moderation of best practices.
Some of the topics the Blog Council plans to cover include proactive blogger relations, blog policy, blogs as customer service tools, calculating the ROI of blogs, creating brand love in the blogosphere, managing blogs in multiple languages, dealing with thousands of employee personal blogs and how to engage bloggers to write about a company.
The Blog Council will convene in January in sunny Orlando for a member offsite and "unconference."
The Blog Council recognizes that times have changed. It's hard to miss impact of blogging, twittering and other new forms of communication. "We have to speak for a corporation, but never sound corporate," and to learn "how to do it live, real-time, in the public eye," the Web site states. This will be a difficult and painful lesson for most corporations.