Blogs are used increasingly by companies to find out what their customers are thinking. So why not log on to Building’s new sustainability channel and give Phil Clark a piece of your mind?

Why employ an expensive PR firm to find out what people are thinking about when you can set up a blog instead? It’s a point that some companies and organisations have already grasped, namely that a blog offers you immediate access to an audience from whom you can gauge opinions, ask for ideas and assess the success or otherwise of innovations.

Jeff Jarvis, a media commentator for The Guardian, recently offered an interesting example. After he had complained about the service he received from Dell computers the company started a blog site called Idea Storm (, encouraging its customers to highlight problems and put forward their suggestions. From the look of the site, it’s a roaring success, turning customer dissatisfaction into a hub for creativity.

The blog site I’ve created on sustainability,, is trying to do similar things – albeit on a rather smaller level. I’ve already discovered some passionate individuals out there with strong opinions on the issue in the 10 months or so that I’ve been blogging. A recent post on the need for a campaign to highlight steps the industry needs to take to improve the environmental performance of buildings elicited a wide range of ideas, from pushing the government to concentrate on its existing estate to overhauling the utilities system.

Such feedback and discussion has already informed the development of Building’s sustainability channel at, which was formally launched this week to coincide with Building’s Sustainability awards. There you will find a host of sustainable case studies, news and data as well as comprehensive coverage of Monday’s ceremony, including pictures, videos and details of all the shortlisted companies, projects and individuals. And if there’s anything we’re missing on the channel, feel free to get on the blog and complain about it.