23 November 2011

Who needs a lede?

Copyblogger founder Brian Clark has a classic piece on how to open your article with a bang. Those tips in his blog are basic strategies that belong in every writer's toolkit. (Or at least, we should all know them so that we can avoid the cliches).

They can be summarised as follows:
  • the Question Opener ("What's a good way to start articles?")
  • the Anecdote Opener ("'I'm really tired of this,' said Robert Scoble as this interview started.")
  • the "Picture this" Opener ("Imagine: Wouldn't it be grand if all your readers paid you a dollar?")
  • the Shocking Statistic Opener ("Study: 95% of your readers are bored")
  • the Analogy Opener: ("What does your dog and my fruit basket have in common? Answer: Nothing.")
I happen to hold a somewhat contrarian view on the subject of ledes. I don't think blog content needs to have ledes at all.

11 November 2011

The 'factory model' vs the social business

For some reason, I have been roped in KM (knowledge management) projects in almost every organisation I've ever worked in. All of them have failed. (No fault of mine, I swear.)

Years later, when Web 2.0 came around and the Intranet-based wiki became fashionable, it felt like déjà vu all over again.

It's recently occurred to me why social media hasn't taken off in the enterprise space. It's because of the factory model.