Here are my notes from Darren Barefoot’s talk, a self-described recovering technical writer.
He leads with what defines social media? Create your own definition around these concepts:
- Conversation – comments on large media sites allow ayone to speak to the media person keeping on the pedestal
- Collaboration – 7 million people collaborating on wikipedia, likely the largest collaboration in human history
- Sharing – some sort of microbroadcasting is built into every type of website
- Scope – there are no longer 42-minute hours on televisions. Your buckets of stuff and time are sliced and diced. Ebooks can be 10 pages to 1000 pages.
- Community – constructing affinity groups is easy, accessible
- Transparency – blogging encourages transparency – medium is the message
- Authenticity – example of knowing it’s fake is fakeSteveJobs.com, Lonelygirl15 is an example of outed fakery
42% of Chinese internet users have a blog
Survey of 1200 bloggers – why do you create content, do social media? Talk to friends and family first, Keep personal history, Emote top three. But make money bottom response.
Updated to add: How to use Twitter – video showing how friends use twitter to keep up with each other between blog posts (these are awesome videos, I now love commoncraft)
An excellent, engaging talk, with the conclusion being, there’s no way to relinquish control, it is already too late.
Here are the takeaways he left us with:
- Relinquish control – realize that the best documentation for your product is already not on your website.
- Users will help each other – put screenshots in Flickr to make it easy for your users to grab them and use them in their own doc
- Empower your most passionate users – for example, the Red Room Chronicles created by a Marriot business traveller. He must be the most passionate hotel user known. Offer those users previews, invite them to focus groups, make them feel special.
- Think outside the page – Twitter troubleshooting tips, and of course, remember video and photos.
- Go where your users are – find their community spaces, be present as needed.
- Relinquish control – again.