Friday, November 11, 2005

Finding a Voice

Yesterday, I was on a panel for the AMA Phoenix meeting on "Leveraging B2B Marketing Technologies."

What it really came down to was blogging, podcasting, Wiki/collaborative technology and permission email marketing.

I was the blogger on the panel, and the AMA chapter in Phoenix is going to post video, so I will be able to post that when I write a bigger piece.

Two things that I want to highlight, though. The last question to each panelist was "in 60 seconds, what is the takeaway for your area?"

I said just three words: Pubsub, Technorati and Blogpulse. Then, went on that while it is not necessary for a company to blog (or podcast or video podcast), it is extremely important that they know what is being said out there about the company, about the executives. That if you are not taking part in the conversation, at least know about the conversation.

After the panel, though, I was talking with James Peggie from Elexir Systems' Search Engine Marketing Blog - who already has blogged the event - along with Jennifer Deurloo also from Elexir, Nice Moseley (who arranged the whole event) from DirectResults, and Andrew Lahser, an attorney that has a patent law blawg and podcast at Patent Pod. The conversation came around to finding a voice for your blog (or podcast).

It is an interesting point - when you begin to blog, you really do not have a voice. There are blogs that I read (or cringingly read) that are just parroting information and have no real voice. However, those blogs might be well read, but they provide no real value to the conversation because they are voiceless.

Then, you can scan the blogs at PR Blogs, and you can hear the students' voice. They might not be seasoned bloggers, but they have a voice because they are adept at the online world, growing up with IM and The Facebook and Myspace.

How did I develop my voice? I write in a conversational tone, and while I like to say all blogs are character blogs, because we can not be this way in the real world. But, my tone on the blog is pretty similar to the tone in real life - it's my voice, with less of a nasal twang.

How do others find their voice? By blogging or continuing to blog. Eventually, if you are being true to yourself, a voice will appear. And, that is what makes a blog worth reading - an intimate tone.

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