I was just most pleasantly surprised to see Bob Langert at Open for Discussion, the new McDonald's corporate blog respond graciously to my suggestion that the blog needs to improve and how he could accomplish that. I can feel Bob struggling with finding a voice that is less corporate than the one in which he is probably accustomed to speaking.
Maybe, I'm flattered and pleased that Bob found me. I'm also pleased that he did a very bloggy thing by directing comments toward his noisiest blog critic. This immediately changes my perspective. I see a human in there and he seems to want to start a conversation.
That's exactly what blogging does, Bob. It let's us start a conversation that we both find interesting. By being on blogs, it's all public and others, I'm pretty sure will jump in. They'll eave comments on your site and maybe mine, and they post on their own blogs, so that the conversation gets amplified.
That's the part of the blogosphere that could be the juiciest to McDonald's. You have a new way to start conversations with your customers, potential customers and people who will never be your customers. People in each of these three groups have a great deal they want to say to you and a good part will prove valuable, I'm pretty sure.
Bob, you asked how you deep you should go on subjects and you sound willing to discuss some very sensitive issues that touch upon who McDonald's. My advice is to touch upon these issues and see which ones draw response from bloggers. The ones that incite the most passion and interest are the ones you should drill down upon.
Another thing you can loosen up on a bit is the need to just provide knowledge. You first posting essentially on how cattle are treated before they become lunch was not bad for a magazine article. It could be stronger if you stick a bit more first person in there. Tell us how you feel and think. Tell us about the debates you have inside the company and the different perspectives that McDonald's needs to kick around. Let us know what makes you passionate about McDonald's as well as the areas that you wish the company would do better.
Toss in personal tidbits about what you do on the weekends or where you travel r what sports you like. You don't have to spew your innards, just give us a few crumbs so we see a full picture of who you are. Give us nuggets like just what is a McDonald's "Senior Director?" Where do you work? Who are some of your co-workers. You start the conversations and people will join the ones they find the most interesting.
I was called arrogant when i said this a week ago, Bob. But I really mean it. Welcome to the blogosphere. In one way the place s like a Savings Bank. The more you invest n t the greater your return.