Is Value With Operators or Users?

by Jay Deragon on 08/20/2008

Today, business people have to turn the old rules inside out, upside down, and backwards not only to succeed, but to survive!

The rules of business are changing, the new rules are unconventional. The social web removes all barriers to entry, provides technological mediums at a fraction of historical cost, enables people to work from anywhere at anytime and connects everyone to everything globally, including your customers.

The real sources of future business success will be centered around the knowledge and creativity of how to tap into and use the power of the social web for business purposes. The social web challenges conventional wisdom while providing data, resources and insights to help companies transition to the unconventional wisdom of networks as capital and human resources.

Networks of valuable conversations will fuel dramatic changes in business structures and in the idea of collaboration and sharing with unimaginable communities as sources of ideas. Given this access, all kinds of people can get involved in business challenges and “discover gold” from unimaginable sources – via sharing a bit of information.

Now Brand Media Wants Our Conversations

Look at the landscape of technology and content. The big print and broadcast media are vying to capture our attention and our conversations in their latest and greatest “social proposition”.

Chris Snyder writes in Wired concerning Business Week planned Business Exchange Network:There’s this sense that media companies are somehow crippled or hobbled or can’t possibly innovate,” Roger Neal, senior vice president and general manager of BusinessWeek Digital, said “One of the exciting things about web 2.0 is that the tools are easier and easier for people to use to build things,” he said, noting that with open source resources, virtually anyone is capable of creating an engaging, interesting site.” The BusinessWeek site is currently in an alpha testing phase, with expected launch in late September.”

“They’ve been embracing testers’ requests to include such new technologies as Del.icio.us feeds into the site, but he says they have no interest in acquiring any companies.”

That is not to say that they aren’t into any partnerships.

“Neal says that they will soon announce a deal with the career-focused social networking site LinkedIn that will “allow users to leverage their LinkedIn information on the Business Exchange.”

What Other Partnerships Would Bring Greater Value?

Our conversations are representations of commerce. Commerce follows value and value is created from knowledge. Where ever you find conversations that add value you find an attraction that lifts all readers. Communities that attract the most readers are communities where the crowds are learning the most. When knowledge is shared it represents an exchange of value and where value is exchanged between participants knowledge expands rapidly.

Technology is cheap and easy to find or build. The conversation of the many is where to find the gold. The new market of conversations comes from unconventional thinking about users and producers. The people who create the innovative value is the best source of value and partnership opportunities.

Now it seems everyone wants our conversations but who recognizes the users as the greatest value or the critical source of partnerships? Is Linkedin a better partner than the users?

What say you?

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