Welcome to the end of the week and another roll-up of articles from our gracious experts. This time around, we got the lowdown on social media challenges and changes for SEO, collaboration personas and even a look at the evolution of online communities. 

Social Media Changes and Challenges for SEO

Billy Cripe (@billycripe): The growth and acceptance of social media and Enterprise 2.0 technology has shifted customer expectations for company interaction. Inside the walls of the business, these shifts are bringing together two groups that have often remained separate. SEO strategists traditionally focused on gaining company awareness are now coming together with social media experts to better understand the impact of social media on SEO. Both realms stand to benefit. SEO teams gain awareness amplification when the social teams are most effective. And the social media teams enjoy boosted engagement and conversation participation when highly effective SEO teams bring new audiences into the social media engagement spaces.

Collaboration Personas - A Novel Perspective on User-Centric Collaboration 

Martin White (@intranetfocus):  Over the last few years many organizations have used personas to help in the development of intranets and websites. The experience has perhaps been mixed, with some organizations gaining no benefit, and others finding that the personas have transformed the user experience. Most of the published books and papers on persona development have focused on website use, and there is comparatively little written on their use for intranets. However, the common feature between web and intranet use is that the personas focus on the needs of an individual.

As organizations move from social media to social business, the benefits of collaboration are often used as the core business case for investment in technology. A great deal of research and practical experience has been reported on how to create collaborative teams, but until recently there has been no work on how the concept of personas can be translated to collaborative working. Now Tara Matthews, Steve Whittaker, Thomas Moran and Sandra Yuen, all based at IBM Research, Almaden, have undertaken the initial steps in this translation.

Customer Experience: Driving Relevancy - The Key is Getting Personal

Brad Heidemann (@tahzoo): For digital marketers, creating relevancy is crucial. There are too many channels and too much content that is blindly directed to the masses, and especially with the increased use of mobile phones and tablets, consumers are expecting a personal experience. While the concept of personal computing was somewhat personal, a mobile device is highly personal. Now more than ever, it is critically important for digital marketers to be able to give consumers the right information, in the right format, at the right time and most importantly — on the device of choice.

The Evolution of Collaboration and Online Communities: Measuring what Matters

David Coleman (@dcoleman100): Communities may have different goals and purposes. Communities of practice try to help their members with the best process or solution in a specific topic area. In learning communities, the members help each other to learn and improve (for example, help with passing a standardized test). But what about enterprise communities? Is their goal to store documents and support internal communications?

Social Business Software or Enterprise 2.0 Platform?

Jed Cawthorne (@jedpc): I can just about understand the addition of the word “social” to the word “media” when we consider that conventional publishing or broadcasting were very much "one-to-many" models. The arrival of blog software that was simple to set up and use, and even more simple for the readership to use to post their comments, was probably the start of the "user-generated content" revolution on the public internet, and in that respect it certainly did bring a more social element to communications media.

However, in an internal context within an organization, an enterprise context if you like, this was nothing new. I am pretty sure the Documentum ECM platform allowed me to put a comment against a folder or document long before I saw an enterprise blog or wiki. Source code management systems (like CVS) definitely allowed people to comment on the latest version of source code that was uploaded by someone else. Anyone remember Lotus Notes applications with comments and even user-generated metadata (sorry “tags” in the new social lexicon)??

Customer Experience: If You Want to Hide it, Emphasize it

Gerry McGovern (@gerrymcgovern): On a website, lines are like walls, boxes are liked closed buildings and anything constructed to catch the eye is perceived as a marketing trap.

Social Business - Why Collaboration Matters

Jem Janik (@vsjem) So why does collaboration matter? How will more effective, ongoing employee collaboration ultimately help a company? Now that I have been using social business software and managing a community to improve employee collaboration over the last year, I can credibly say that improved employee collaboration does help a company achieve its goals — you just need to be clear about what your goals are and design your community with these goals in mind.

Deploying Business Social Networks to Create Online Exchanges

Len Rosen: Facebook has 700 million-plus members. LinkedIn, the business equivalent, has well over 100 million members. Twitter has a user population well in excess of 100 million as well. A business looks at these social media tools and wonders what benefits they bring to the top and bottom line.

Is there a business case for public social media? There certainly is a communication conduit in social media. This is well proven as long as businesses choose to represent themselves through a cause or event and don’t openly promote themselves as a brand. This strategy has resilience within social media platforms like Facebook.

It Takes Collaboration to Be a Social Business

Maria Ogneva (@themaria): It’s easy to do social media; it’s considerably harder to be a social business because it stands for transformation of culture, process and people. A social business doesn’t just manifest itself in quick resolution over Twitter; a social business is excellent in handling all customer scenarios (sales, marketing, service, etc.) in every channel that it occurs.

A social business knows that if you have a subpar experience on the phone or in a store, you may tweet about it, or you may just tell your friends. It doesn’t matter how high your Klout score is, because to our friends and family, we are all influencers. A social business knows that its best asset is its employees and treats them accordingly, compelling them to be your biggest brand champions. An externally social business is thus social on the inside, first and foremost.