We all know about Glaxo and its embarrassing attempt to market alli by starting up a blog about the drug – alliconnect.
The problem for GlaxoSmithKline is that the alliconnect blog has attracted almost no readers and only a handful of comments — all but one of those are from the GSK “alli” team or prominent corporate blogging adviser Debbie Weil, who advised on the project.
Now, that would normally be a problem between GSK and Weil. But Weil has made the bad results — the falling short of client expectations — brutally obvious in a public way. Can things be so bad she’s asking PR bloggers to “seed” comments onto the alliconnect blog?
Debbie has recently sent out this email:
This is a shameless request. I’m working with GlaxoSmithKline on the
official corporate blog for alli, the first FDA-approved, OTC weight
loss product. You may have seen the TV ads.
While traffic to the blog is growing, readers seem shy about leaving Comments.
You can help jump start the two-way conversation! Take a peek at the
blog at http://www.alliconnect.com.
If you’re inspired or provoked, leave a comment on any entry. No need
to say that you know me, of course.
It really is kind of neat that a Global 100 company is doing a blog
like this. It’s not easy.
Not to be outdone, a little over a month ago Johnson & Johnson started a new corporate blog, written by Marc Monseau, who is one of J&J’s PR execs. It’s been given the snappy title of JNJ BTW.
This effort came shortly after J&J hosted a dinner for bloggers to pick their brains about how the blogosphere works and how J&J should deal with it.
One idea was to give all 120,000 J&J staffer their own blogs on which they could berate and praise their employer as they saw fit.
Instead, unsurprisingly, J&J has given only Monseau a blog. (119,999 blogs to go then!)