Corporate blogs have become a vital element of the corporate communications and marketing repertoire. US corporate blogs such as the „FastLane Blog“ by General Motors or „Nuts about Southwest“ by Southwest Airlines are an important communication channel to customers, employees and other target groups. In other countries such as Germany, companies have been more cautious in implementing corporate blogs. Examples such as the „Daimler-Blog“ or Opel‘s third corporate blog „Meriva-Blog“ are exceptions from the traditional one-way communication strategies. The reasons for the slow acceptance of corporate blogs in Germany and other countries are varied. In many companies the debate on corporate blogging and other social media applications is dominated by the fear of dialogue, and the anticipated loss of control is giving communicators a headache. Scientific research is suitable to address many communicators’ resistance. A research project by the University of Magdeburg is therefore investigating corporate blog users’ reading and commenting behavior. A part of the project consists of an international blog reader survey in three languages – English, German and Russian – in order to evaluate the many factors that influence user behavior. Ho do design and media usage affect corporate blog reading and commenting? What roles do writing style, credibility or frequency? How do various reader groups (e.g. age, gender or ethnic groups) differ in their reading and commenting behavior? The goal of the study is to identify corporate blog characteristics that are particularly important for readers and to show to what extent the attitudes of varying reader groups differ
Methodically, the study is based on the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) by Frank Davis, which was developed to evaluate users‘ attitudes towards information technologies in the light of their usefulness, ease of use and entertainment value. The basic model can be visualized as follows:
In addition, a range of further factors such as cultural dimensions, age and experience factors have also been included in the model.
I would be very grateful for your participation and for spreading the link. Furthermore, there will be a draw of 20 Amazon coupons among participants and interested participants will be able to request a free copy of the final study results.
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