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555: 5 paras, 5 links, 5 minutes

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555: 5 ways to turn off your audience

Five ways to turn off the next generation, leave them cold, and have them leave you cold.

1.  Flood the Twittersphere. As soon as businesses adopted Twitter, it began to lose its sway on the next gen.  Even 140 characters will soon be too much effort.  And flooding that space isn’t going to help you a bit.  Twitter’s got a way to help you see what gets retweeted.  Note a prediction now–Facebook will fade too if it doesn’t capitalize further on the visual.

2. Ignore the visual side of the medias that are available. Shopping for major purchases has become looking at the photos.  If there is a visual element available, ignore at your own risk.

3.  Keep putting bullet points on PowerPoint slides. “Death by PowerPoint” has become a literal phenomenon, as in the death of your sales prospects, and the diminution of your bottom line.

4. Keep doing what you’re doing now.  Mail eventually floods with junk.  Land-lines eventually become flooded with tele-marketers.  The Internet flooded with porn, and the blog world simply became overloaded period.  Facebook will fade, and Instagram will implode and on and on and on… people are beginning to plead to undigitize. You have to shift as the audiences do, but that means you have to figure out when to move.

5.  And last, but not least, stick with Facebook, Twitter and Linked-In.  Skip Pinterest, YouTube, Tumblr, Instagram.  If you’re not everywhere, you’re not anywhere… but you can’t be everywhere. Time to move… or time to lose.

555: organizational social networking in the cloud

We’ve come full circle with computing You may have to be at least as old as I am to comprehend how quickly we actually accomplished it.  When I began working with computers last century, in larger businesses (British Telecom was actually my first experience with it), monitors and keyboards were hung off a mainframe central computer.  You're Already Using the CloudNow, as processes move to the “cloud,” the computer terminals have morphed into our laptops and our PCs, but they’re hanging more and more off the processes and services that exist on the meta-mainframe that is the cloud.  Indeed, there’s some contention that the mainframe in many cases IS the cloud.  You no longer have to own the software or even the storage, you simply access it as a service.  What does this have to do with social networking as communication?

As the image shows, you’re already using the cloud if you use Gmail, Hotmail, YouTube, Twitter, YahooMail, Linked In, Facebook or Skype among many others.  If you’re reading this, chances are you’re using one of them.  If you use a photo storage site, you’re using the cloud.  At work, if you’re using a document sharing program such as Documentum or one of the other enterprise document management or knowledge management systems, such as Sharepoint, you’re using the cloud.  That particular cloud may be internally based, on your company’s own servers, or externally hosted.

The everyday user of cloud-based computing is much like the owner of a car.  Do you know what makes your car work?  OK, maybe you do, but I certainly don’t.  I know if it goes down the road or it doesn’t.  That’s the position the vast majority of individual users find themselves in–they simply know if their connection to the network works or it doesn’t.  And when either my car or my network doesn’t work, my frustration knows no bounds. I rely on my company to provide the necessaries to be able to access the cloud-based services I utilize pretty much every moment of every day.

However, companies that don’t have the internal resources to host their own cloud are beginning more and more to rely on external services.  The issues for companies that are using external hosting are enormous. Some of the possible implications are access problems, security problems, the hosting company’s longevity–in other words, if the hosting company fails, what just happened to all your cloud-based file storage?  Software licensing lends itself to some wholly nightmarish scenarios on the web, and that’s been acknowledged almost since the infancy of cloud computing.

Companies that use cloud-based external services for social media, in particular, are exposed to all these issues in ways that are just beginning to be understood.  If a company doesn’t have the internal resources to enable cloud-based computing, they also don’t have the resources to implement a disaster recovery program that is internally hosted, thereby leaving them at the mercy of their choice of provider.  The converse of course is that, if something happens to the physical location of the business, cloud computing may save the day, because the servers will be elsewhere.  Lots to think about.

5 Links, 5 Minutes

New Occupation for Mainframes:  Do the approval processes for mainframe usage disable the on-demand capabilities that are inherent in cloud-based computing?

Combining Big Iron and Cloud Computing:  Maybe the answer is “do both.”

Software Licensing and the Cloud: As DevCentral showed almost two years ago, “the old models of software licensing are wholly incompatible with cloud computing and on-demand environments.”

Disaster Recovery and the Cloud:  Maybe externally hosted clouds are the answer to disaster recovery.  If your information is safely stored elsewhere, your company may be able to ride out a calamity without data loss.

Solving the Cloud Management Puzzle:  Just a few of the things that need to be considered.

First 555: collaboration

This is the first of many sets to come of five short paragraphs on a topic of interest, and five links you can explore in five minutes, thus the 555.

There are times when you have to say, “no, that’s not what I’m talking about.”    A lot of the current flap around social media is about businesses being on Twitter, Facebook, etc., in order to market themselves. That’s not necessarily what I’m talking about on bizcom2g. The heart of bizcom2g is about how businesses communicate internally.

I believe businesses are just really beginning to explore the benefits of using social networking tools to communicate internally.  This is a huge step away from businesses where I’ve worked that weren’t even necessarily happy about the chat function that was built into Windows NT some years back.

Even as fast as the world moves these days, it’s going to take time to prove that social media that encourage collaboration are worth the money it takes to establish them in a business.  Below are some links about what it takes, and whether it’s worth it to businesses to not just allow social media interaction but encourage it and even fund it.

The links for today talk a lot out about some of the tools that are out there–and everyone seems to focus on one.  The most interesting concept, though is Inc.’s comment that file-sharing is the mack daddy of collaboration.  If your IT group keeps your from attaching anything over 10mb to your e-mail, and people hate getting them anyway, the answer is social media that allows you to move to a link instead of an attachment…

5 links in 5 minutes:

How to use social media to solve critical internal communication issues: a research report from Melcrum – Australia.

Short explanation of five media tools in business settings: Yammer, Digsby, Skype, wikis and podcasts.

Inc.’s version of five media tools in business settings:  File-sharing, blogs, wikis, microblogging (in-company Twitter, basically) and forums.

Equation:  Engagement = share growth, non-engagement = lost billions Firms with engaged workforces have more than two and a half times the earnings per share growth rate of their industry counterparts. Companies using Web 2.0 achieve 18% boost in employee engagement.  Companies not engaging their employees have $300 billion in wasted productivity.

Promoting social media internally If you’ve decided it should be done, how do you get the employees to do it?

Does collaboration pay off?:  The Harvard Business Review blogs about the difference between good and outstanding, and how we quantify it.