Blogs and wikis can be great tools for companies and businesses. Blogs can be great marketing tools. Wikis, meanwhile, can be great for collaboration, especially among colleagues who are spread across the globe. However, there is a debate as to how manageable corporate blogs and wikis can be, especially in light of acceptable use policies, or the lack thereof, and companies firing employees for blogging about their work.
Andy Merrett recently asked here how controlled a corporate blog should be, given the mix of official postings and those that are more personal in nature. The bigger issue would be for a company to be able to scan the blogosphere for content elsewhere that is relevant to one’s industry or the company itself. While this can be part of the job of a corporate blogger or the company PR professional, tools that can automate this process make life easier. There are the free and obvious tools, like Google Blogsearch and Technorati, and of course you can chance by blog postings linking to your blogs or sites via analytics and metrics apps, such as pMetrics and Google Analytics.
Recently, startup Techrigy announced its SM2 software. To make “social media management” easier for companies, SM2 Social Media Manager basically monitors the company intranet, and the internet at-large for blog and wiki postings that are relevant to that company. They note that companies are afraid to get into blogging because of the risks.
SM2 will search the internet to discover blogs and wikis containing discussions about an organization. It will then monitor these media and provide notifications when a potentially damaging communication is posted. SM2 will also comb through an organization’s internal network to discover blogs and wikis and ensure that they meet corporate standards.
“Many companies still take the approach that no employees can blog or use wikis,” [Techrigy founder and President Aaron Newman] said. “This is not a profitable strategy, as employees are increasingly demanding the ability to use these tools. SM2 is a solution that enables companies to embrace these technologies and still maintain some peace of mind.”
The first phase of SM2, available this end July, will be a hosted service that will integrate with existing blog search technologies like that of Google and Technorati, and flag the sites that mention one’s company. The second phase, to come later in the year, will do the same for wikis and blogs located in the company intranet.
Discover blogs and wikis running on your intranet and discussing your company on the internet.
- SM2 performs internal scans to find blogs and wikis operated inside your organization.
- Search engines are utilized to find blogs and wikis operated by individuals associated with your organizations or those that mention your organization.
- User decides which blogs and wikis to record and monitor.
Monitor blogs and wikis to ensure that liabilities are not being created.
- SM2 schedules automatic scans to determine if damaging information has been posted.
- Comes loaded with keywords and phrases for which to monitor.
- User can create customized rules for which to monitor.
- Real-time notifications if a violation is discovered.
Retain communications in case of litigation.
- Blog and wiki postings are recorded.
- Communications are stored and indexed.
- Can be instantly reproduced for evidence requests.
Techrigy’s rationale behind SM2 is that organizations need to retain “control over what information employees are distributing through these [social] media,” to help manage the associated risks. So for instance, with the application, companies can make sure communications are backed up for later reference, that employees use adequate disclaimers when using social media, that no confidential nor copyrighted material is published by employees, and that employees don’t harass each other online.