Sunday, May 22, 2005

Bob Lutz blogs. Will it help?

As the woes of General Motors are reported daily in print and on television, Bob Lutz (with help, of course, from his communications team) continues to offer a refreshingly frank take on things on his Fastlane blog. What I really appreciate is the way that even negative comments — and there are plenty of them — remain published. It shows Bob realizes that being transparent and honest is essential in today's media environment. (Of course, they did pull their advertising from the LA Times after some negative coverage, but check out how that was handled on the blog. Made that decision seem a lot less shortsighted.)

GM — massive, bureaucratic — is a hard company to love. And I've never been a fan. But, oddly, Lutz's unvarnished thoughts are making me feel better about the company. It's certainly more effective than the traditional advertising Buick is airing. I mean, what year in the 1970's must have served as the inspiration for that campaign?

Of course, my concern is that a few years from now GM's blogging enterprise will be viewed as merely another failed venture by a floundering company. If you really consider the tiny size of their blog investment, however, it might be about the smartest thing they're doing. Now if they could just figure out how to bring about real health care reform so they're competing on a level playing field.


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