4/22/09

If Gartner Does It Why Can't Your Law Firm Do It? - Giving Your Professionals Their Own Blog Space


I stumbled across the Gartner Blog Network this morning while searching for legal news. For some reason I've never visited the Gartner blog before, but I was immediately impressed by what I saw, and the underlying concept of the network.
There are 69 Gartner analysts that contribute to the blog network, and according to Gartner, all of their analysts can contribute if they so desire. What an amazing concept!!
I dug into the FAQ section and was also amazed that they lay out the template of the Gartner Blog Network, and even include the guidelines they give their analysts. The FAQ lists the rules for posting' what are appropriate topics; policies on posting comments; where blogs fit within their analysis reports; republication or quoting guidelines; and how complaints are handled. Basically they give you a template to take to your attorneys and administrative officials showing them how a firm-wide blog can be handled.
They even give you a canned disclaimer:

Comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management. Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes. This content may not be used for any other purposes in any other formats or media. The content on this blog is provided on an “as-is” basis. Gartner shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or use of this blog.
With some minor changes, you can even present the guidelines for your firm on what is appropriate material to post on a blog:
1. All [insert law firm name here] policies apply: Know and follow [law firm] policies. 2. Think before you post: Use sound judgment and think about reactions to your post before you post it. 3. Respect your audience: Avoid negative personal comments or inflammatory subjects. 4. Have productive conversations: For [law firm] and its associates, the primary benefits of Web participation are for others to learn about [law firm] and for [law firm] to learn from others. 5. Don’t “give away the farm”: Avoid posting the kind of information and advice for which clients pay [law firm]. 6. Protect and enhance the value of the [law firm] brand: Present [law firm] in a positive light and avoid making derogatory comments about [law firm], our products, services, management, employees, or systems. 7. Protect confidential information: Protect [law firm's] and our clients’ confidential information. 8. Be personable and have fun: Web participation is about enjoying personal interactions, not delivering corporate communications.
Check out the full explanation of the Gartner participation guidelines to see the details behind the guidelines.
Again, I was amazed and thoroughly impressed with how Gartner enables, trusts, but still guides its analysts in its blogging network. Perhaps you can leverage this information within your own firm to "enable", "trust" and "guide" your attorneys to create and participate in its own firm-wide blogging network.

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4 comments:

Doug Cornelius said...

Greg -

Gartner's is great. There is also the granddaddy of company blogs: Sun. http://blogs.sun.com/

They have over 4380 bloggers including the president and general counsel

Greg Lambert said...

Thanks Doug. I hope that examples like this can help show firms that it is possible to let attorneys blog (and still have rules to follow). Again, if Sun and Gartner can do it, firms can too.

Alin Wagner-Lahmy said...

this is a great post! One of my favorite 'Social Media Guidelines' are Intel's

http://www.intel.com/sites/sitewide/en_US/social-media.htm

written in a simple, inclusive, direct and friendly language.

Alin Wagner-Lahmy said...

btw - this also reminds me of 'Age of Conversation' by Scoble and Israel - simple and brilliant. which speaks very much to the grassroots community activity, not so much controlled, guided approach.

 

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