Why Microblog in the Enterprise?

Lots of interesting stuff has been written and is being written on why we should use microblogging (or microsharing) inside and outside the enterprise. I've been collecting some of the posts I find most interesting and will share them with you here, with some personal comments relating to why I use microblogging inside and outside the company.

On external microblogging:

How to Use Twitter as a Twool by Guy Kawasaki. Great example of personal experiences with Twitter, but also how it can be/should be used by companies. Learned about search.twitter.com,which is great. Already use Twitterfeed, which is handy to auto-publish bookmarks, etc.

Why I love Twitter by Tim O'Reilly. It's unbelievable how many tweats he cranks out every day. How do you do that? I don't have a smart phone and use the web and TweetDeck to tweet. After reading this post I decided do regularly check my Twitter Grade. Just to see how I'm doing compared to others.

10 reasons why Twitter is for you and FriendFeed in not by Robert Scoble. Gives a nice overview of the similarities and differences between Twitter and FriendFeed in a neat, cynical way. I also started using FriendFeed. But I find it hard to switch completely, even it's a wonderful tool. You can really monitor your and other's social media update in there. Even if they're not in Friendfeed. But I still can't switch all the over to FF for some reason. Do you have the same experience?

But I'm learning to swith. Daniel Pritchett of Sharing at Work has a great introductory presenation on FF: Connect faster and learn more with FriendFeed. > And Zee Kane of the NextWeb has 2 nice posts to help you (and me) start using FF: The Unofficial Guide to Friendfeed Part 1 and Part 2. Both taught me bout 'imaginary friends' in FF. That is such a useful feature to add in and follow people that don't use FF (yet).

Finally, there's an interesting HP paper titled Social Networks that Matter: Twitter under the Microscope. Conclusion: Users with many actual friends tend to post more updates than users with few actual friends. "On the other hand, users with many followers or followees post updates more infrequently than those with few followers or followees."

Now over to internal microblogging:

I told you some time we started using Yammer internally. Slowly but steadily the number of users is increasing. I think it time to stop experimenting and give it an official 'go'. We have several nice cases to show why microblogging internally is very useful.

Dan York of Voxeo Labs gives a nice overview of the main current enterprise microsharing tools: Yammer, Present.ly, Laconica and pushing enterprise microblogging into the cloud. He also provides a list of why companies should use microblogging internally and also addresses security of hosted enterprise solutions. Of course, Pistachio consulting has the most comprehensive overview of microsharing tools out there.

The NYTimes picked up on the trend with an article, Now Brevity is the Soul of Office Interaction. Here's a nice example of the gap microsharing fills in knowledge work: "Depending on what they're doing, people might be paying attention to messages as they're posted. But if I'm not in the office, I can go back and get the whole company stream for a day and read it in about 10 minutes. I could never do that with e-mail." (...) "[M]icroblogging systems are more appropriate for asking quick questions and sharing brief status updates. The short posts can also reduce in-box clutter." (...) "This phenomenon, often called “ambient awareness,” is easy for companies to sanction when the messages take so little time to write and read."

And finally, Mary Abraham of Above and Beyond KM blog has a post Ask and You Shall Receive via Enterprise Microblogging. She pointed to great post by Marcia Conner on 'Enterprise Micro-Learning, mentioning lots more benefits for enterprises to use micro-blogging. Thanks, Mary!

The strange thing with Twitter is that, as when I started blogging, you have to get the hang of it. Don't give up too soon. Start by tweeting every now-and-then. Then answer tweets. Direct Message someone. And then, suddenly, someone answers your question and it takes off from there!

To wrap this post up, I have one wish. It's related to a wish I also have w.r.t. blogging: offer one platform for internal and external (micro)-blogging. Now, we have to constantly switch between the two, cross-post, etc. I hope the number of platform will be reduced to one in the coming years.

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