November 14, 2005

A Typepad User, and Proud of It

A Typepad User, and Proud of It SixApart showed huge corporate courage today when they emailed their entire blog user base, apologized (for the second or third time) for service interruptions the past month, then announced a cash remedy. As a default, they’re giving everyone half a month of service for free.  This is obviously a huge hit to the company financially and probably more of a gesture than anyone expected.  But better than that, they allowed users to click through to their web site and automatically get a full month for free — or a month and a half for free — if they felt in good conscience that the service outages were more harmful to them.  They also quite intelligently allowed users to click through and decline the service credit if they weren’t inconvenienced by the outages. This is everything that customer service is supposed to be.  Prompt.  Proactive.  Generous.  Allowing customers to be in the driver seat about remedies.  After a HORRENDOUS weekend of customer service gaffes by United Airlines (a story for another time), I couldn’t be more struck by the contrast.  And SixApart isn’t even an employee-owned company teetering on the edge bankruptcy.  Way to […]

August 22, 2005

For My Email (Bloglet) Subscribers

For My Email (Bloglet) Subscribers Many of you rely on emails from an outfit called Bloglet to receive notifications that I’ve posted something to my blog.  However, as you no doubt know, Bloglet’s service is incredibly flakey, so many times, the notices don’t go out. I am trying a new service called Feedblitz, which will serve the same purpose but appears to be MUCH more reliable.  For a couple of days, I will use both Bloglet and Feedblitz in parallel to make sure they both work, but then I’ll turn off Bloglet.  You don’t have to do anything to convert […]

May 18, 2005

How Much Blogging is Too Much Blogging?

How Much Blogging is Too Much Blogging? After being completely (and blissfully, I might add) offline for 11 days, I have returned to find 247 new postings in my Newsgator folder.  Only a short year ago, I would have come back from vacation to too many emails…now I get to sift through too many emails AND too many blog postings. On the bright side, I have at least these two images of the Barolo wine country and the Amalfi coast solidly etched in my brain to ease re-entry to work. Anyone interested in a brief travelog of the Italian countryside, […]

October 27, 2004

Why is Seth Godin so Grumpy?

Why is Seth Godin so Grumpy? Permission marketing guru Seth Godin says we should all Beware the CEO blog. His logic? Blogs should have six characteristics: Candor, Urgency, Timeliness, Pithiness, Controversy, and maybe Utility — and apparently in his book, CEOs don’t possess those characteristics. Certainly, CEOs who view blogs as a promotional tool are wasting their time, or are at least missing a fundamental understanding about the power of blogs and interactivity. But many of the ones I read (and the one I write) do their best to be anything but promotional. One of my colleagues here describes my […]

October 17, 2004

Giving Away State Secrets

Giving Away State Secrets Ed Daciuk, one of my subscribers, questions me: “I am wondering how a CEO who blogs balances the disparate goals of giving enough insight to be interesting but not give away trade secrets like positioning or financial drivers.” Good question, and one that I thought about along with my prior posting. It’s a tough balance sometimes, but the goal is to stimulate thinking and communicate in broad strokes more than it is to detail things out, especially with non-public information. So for example, in the prior posting, I didn’t mention the client’s name, industry, or location; […]

July 21, 2004

A New Blog About Wine

When a group of us had dinner back in May, Brad posted that it was remarkable that 4 of the 6 people had blogs. Then Amy started a blog, making it 5 of 6. Today, Mariquita and her friend Sharon launched their blog about wine, making it a clean sweep. There is almost a complete dearth of blog information and commentary about wine. You can tell — the URL she was able to get on Typepad was! When Mariquita and I went looking into other wine blogs a couple months ago, all we found were one or two somewhat […]

June 20, 2004

Good Question – How's the Blog Working Out So Far?

My dad, one of the smartest people I know, asked me a good question last week. “How’s the blog working out so far?” My answer was generally “I’m not sure,” but as I thought about it more, I saw “good” coming from four different categories, in order of importance to me: Thinking: One of the best things publishing a blog has done has been to force me to spend a few minutes here and there thinking about issues I encounter in a more structured way and crystallizing my point of view on them. Invaluable, but mostly for me. Employees: A […]

May 27, 2004

Why Blog?

There was a good piece in the New York Times yesterday about blogging, including some good quotes from Jarvis. I’m getting the hang of it, but I have to say that blogging in the bathroom is taking things a little bit too far.

May 19, 2004

Blog Blacklists: A New View of Internet Vigilantes

I always thought that spam blacklists were well intentioned but problematic for the email ecosystem, since they are vigilantes in action and have no accountability and trackability. Periodically, I’ve even pondered whether or not they violate someone’s first amendment rights. It’s maddening to know you’re a good guy in the email world, you can get put on a blacklist because some anti-spam zealot decides he or she doesn’t like you on a whim, you can’t complain or get off of the list, you may not even know you’re on the list, then you’re downloaded thousands of times by naively trusting […]