Corporate blogging, Conversations, Enterprise 2.0 and the speaker’s corner

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Last week, I conducted a course at Oxford university about Web 2.0 and social networking. I have done this now for about two years and the audience is corporate(and not students).

One of the questions raised by an attendee was: Why should people in companies blog? Is there REALLY a value for corporate bloggers (and we use the term ‘blogging’ loosely to include twitter, video blogging , facebook and so on)

This is a common question – and extends often to saying that I don’t have anything interesting to say, my company will block it, etc etc ..

I take a much more people centric view to blogging .. after all – my blog discussions range from complex wireless topics like – iphone vs. Symbian vs. Android vs. Limo vs. Ovi : We cannot compare an ecosystem with an operating system to Johnny Cash doing Elvis impersonations / Bo Diddley‘ and ‘Tom and Jerry’ – Of Tom and Jerry and craving the friction of a human being

My response was:

A good blogger is someone who – if they go and spoke at Speaker’s corner in Hyde park – would still be able to attract a crowd!(speaker’s corner is an open air, impromptu debating platform)

While this may sound extreme, the principle is valid – because the content matters.

However, unlike Hyde park, this not a one way but rather a two way conversation

So, I say .. the content does not matter THAT much – but rather the ability to start a conversation matters MORE .. and to experiment, learn and evolve from that conversation matters MOST OF ALL.

So, that’s my advice to all the closet corporate bloggers .. Experiment .. engage in the conversation .. and start small and evolve from there ..

There is also the secondary reason for blogging and that is – it helps you to build your own brand – within but also outside your company(In uncertain economic climates – your personal brand had even more value)

Interestingly enough, ALL communications related to enterprise may end up as conversations. This is not some kind of utopian, woolly dream – but it is really happening. Today, we have a PR agency in the Conversation group dedicated solely to creating and facilitating market conversations – which is very interesting and I see a HUGE potential market for this – and will watch it with interest!

On Thursday evening, I am speaking at the mashup event on Enterprise 2.0 on a panel along with speakers like JP Rangaswami – Managing Director, Service Design for BT Design and Carl Bate – Vice President, Chief Technology Officer, Capgemini UK

I hope I can continue this conversation there! If you are attending this event, let’s speak

Image source: wikipedia