...goes a long way, especially when I'm thinking about brands, brand management and the power of brands to build successful organizations and careers.

Monday, January 30, 2006

i'm lovin' it...McDonald's is blogging

I don't know about you, but I'm impressed with the launching of McDonald's new corporate responsibility blog. There are only two posts up, but the plan is to address a number of topics including: personalities & places; balanced, active lifestyles; community; environment; people, policies and programs; responsible purchasing; and Ronald McDonald House Charities.

Based on the first post, senior director Bob Langert is taking his role as the corporate blogger seriously, demonstrating a clear understanding that the McDonald's brand extends far beyond the burgers, fries and Ronald McDonald. Yes, there's a fair amount of corporate-speak, but after introducing the concept of cooperation with vendors, Langert actually asks the readers' their opinions:

"In a nutshell, our approach is to work collaboratively with our suppliers so they can meet our expectations and advance our priorities. What's your view of this approach? For example, should we set across-the-board targets and goals for suppliers, rather than work with them to develop individual targets and goals? What should our priorities be for promoting social responsibility in our supply chain?"

Then he continues by demonstrating the corporation's commitment to social responsibility issues including it's work with the Center for Environmental Leadership in Business (CELB). I won't review the whole post, but I encourage you to check it out.

It's an inside look at how a huge corporation might want to interface with its audiences. While this is an encouraging sign that a corporation is cranking up the relevance component of its brand, it will be more exciting to see how McDonald's builds on this effort, to see if it creates a conversation with its markets, as Mike Sansone likes to say, and ultimately begins to build a new paradigm for everyone involved.

It begins to tell a different story about McDonald's. And, ultimately, it will be up to us to decide if it's true or not.


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