First, fast, furious...Bangladeshi business blog

We provide
--social media strategies for Bangladeshi businesses worldwide
--public speaking on Bangladeshi businesses and social media
--paid product/service/website reviews of Bangladeshi companies

Interested to place an advertisement for your business?

Friday, April 2, 2010

Business blogging in Bangladesh - three years on

As this blog enters three years into existence with a view to promote the use of business blogging by Bangladeshi companies, I made a few quick phone surveys to a few contacts working in various industries there to find out how they are perceiving business blogging to start the conversation with Bangladeshi consumers. Following is a summary of the present state of unofficial views from a few Bangladeshi executives.

Lack of knowledge
Many Bangladeshi companies, infact most of them, seem to be unaware about the use of business blogging as a marketing tool or social media as a matter of fact, to engage with their customers. The general impression is that since the companies have websites up and running so that should suffice as far as online brand management is concerned. Moreover, the companies are confident that the existing business functions such as customer services, market research, media etc. are good enough to 'engage' customers through various surveys, ATL and BTL activities. Moreover, since there are dedicated personnel to liaise with the press and media, they are not interested to anything which is untried and uncommon in Bangladeshi business landscape.

Difference between business journalism and business blogging
Those who are aware of corporate or business blogging are still not sure whether business journalism and business blogging are the same thing and who exactly does what. They expressed satisfaction that they are getting required hotspots in TV, radio and print media to convey their brand communications to their existing and potential clients, moreover business journalists are already 'doing a good job' by regularly publishing updates and news on various aspects of their businesses, so there is no need to confuse the situation by experimenting with business blogging.

Issues of transparency and lack of rules
The 3rd category of Bangladeshi businesses have adequate knowledge of various game-changing technologies such as blogs and social media but they are unsure about protocols, regulations in their companies about how much of business information can they divulge in public space. Most are fearful of backlashes from within the company. For example, an engineer from Robi voiced his embarassment with the new brand name, is aware of the recent conversations in online space but not sure whether or not someone from Robi should engage in the conversation in the same social networks with people or not. Moreover, according to him, the management is simply not interested to pay attention to unofficial forms of communications customers try to have with the companies. Its not a priority.

Lack of defined roles and resources
Since brands attempt to share control with customers in the social media space, Bangladeshi companies can't fully stop customers from setting up fan pages and groups for the brand, either to sing praise or do brand bashing. Groups in Facebook for Aktel (Robi), BRAC Bank, GrameenPhone etc. exist but what is not clear is whether these are official representations of the brands or not. It could be the artworks of a loyal employee who thought to make a mark on behalf of his/her employer in the social media space by setting up pages for free and attempting to start conversations with consumers. But unless there are no official roles assigned, its difficult to ascertain who the official spokesperson is. Most of the time, brands discover accidental spokespersons in social media who prove to be efficient mouthpieces for the company, Bangladeshi companies are yet to wake up to this reality. So the companies would prefer to keep blogging and social media 'to a personal level and for fun only'.

A formal media survey by market research companies would be useful to provide more concrete views on this topic. Feel free to share your views and the views of your businesses on this.

No comments: