Feds go looking for e-customers

Feds go looking for e-customers

The new theme for federal e-government is: location, location, location.

Working with Washington’s Council for Excellence in Government, federal managers will determine how best to market their e-government initiatives, said Clay Johnson, deputy director for management at the Office of Management and Budget.

Originally, government brass were of the sentiment about online services that “if you build it, they will come.” But not enough citizens and businesses have arrived at the new e-government sites.

The marketing plans being developed will identify the audience for each of the 25 Quicksilver initiatives and how best to reach each group, Johnson said today at FOSE 2004 in Washington.

The initiatives range from Regulations.gov, a Web site where the public can comment on proposed federal rules, to Recreation.gov, a site providing access to national parks services.

And while it’s prodding agencies to use e-democracy to reach out to citizens, the White House needs to do the same for its Internet offerings, Johnson said. For example, he said, the Results.gov site to detail White House management efforts is “a pretty lame effort.”

The site initially gave President Bush a way to communicate with his management team and then morphed into a site about the President’s Management Agenda. Planned improvements include a weblog penned by Johnson.

“I’m a little nervous about this blogging thing,” Johnson said, “but I’ll do it as soon as they get me blogged up.”

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