General Motors’ Vice Chairman, Bob Lutz, is not the only one blogging The FastLane Blog, GM’s executive blog. Last Friday, Tom Stephens, Group Vice President, GM Powertrain, joined Lutz as another senior GM executive blogger.
This fits with the intent of this blog as this statement on 5 January says:
The FastLane blog is your source for the latest, greatest musings of GM leaders on topics relevant to the company, the industry and the global economy, and — most of all – to our customers and other car enthusiasts. We look forward to an open exchange of viewpoints and welcome your ideas and feedback throughout 2005.
Note “GM leaders” – plural. It always seemed to me that this blog would unlikely be authored only by the GM Vice Chairman, so it’s good to have that view confirmed.
There are a couple of things that are interesting about Stephen’s post, on myths and facts about fuel economy.
First, he said he published the post as a direct response to something a visitor had commented on the blog the previous week. And second, the post has already attracted some 40 comments.
The most interesting thing, though, is that the tactics with this blog seem to be that when a post does generate substantial comments, as most of them do, no direct responses to any comment are posted by the blog author(s) as comments. Instead, a point made or raised by a visitor is used as a means to address a point of view with a separate post, which gives the blog author complete control over the topic and stating a specific point of view.
Comments are moderated by Hass MS&L, GM’s PR agency (see my post last week), so I would expect the agency to have significant input into overall content development, both from the proactive content-planning point of view as well as the “opportunistic reactive” point of view in adjusting and adapting content plans depending on visitor comment.
This would be a very good example of the value role PR plays in the development of an executive blog like this one. Given factors such as the high profile of the blog and who the bloggers are, I certainly wouldn’t expect it to be developed and run without such communication guidance.
I like how this blog is developing.