In the second article for the series "Hum Blogistani!" we have Gautam Ghosh focusing on the subject of Business blogging and predicting that Blogging will evolve into something much more than blogging. Gautam, an alumni of XLRI-Jamshedpur is a HR and Training professional. He works in the areas of Management & Professional Development, Organizational Learning, and Knowledge Management. Gautam's other areas of interests are Organizational Development, Human Resource Development, Communities of Practice, Cross-Cultural Working, and Learning Organizations. His blog was nominated in the best Indiblog category at Indibloggies 2004.
When I started blogging at Gautam Ghosh on Management, more than 3 years ago it was to use it as a tool of personal knowledge management. I was a hopeless contributor to some HR and KM e-groups and first approached a blog as a repository for all the mails that I used to send out to the groups.
Soon I discovered that people were linking to me and since my writings were related to HR and Management, I was getting some little traffic from other HR related blogs. These were not desi blogs and I started interacting with other bloggers outside the country. Of course, I came across Dina and Rajesh's blogs as both are interested in KM and we interacted a couple of times. My blog has followed my career interests, so going through the posts from 2002 you can see how my interests have changed.
My interaction with the rest of the desi Blogosphere started after I was nominated for the IndiBloggies last year. I really discovered India based blogs then and was really blown away by the quality of depth and insight that some of them have. I'm really hooked on to a lot of Indian blogs now and you can see the mix of my reading list on my blogroll :-) I set up my blog on blogger.com and am quite content and don't want to confuse readers by changing my URL :-) anytime soon.
Although I am a blogger on business and management issues, I think the day is still very, very far away that big Indian business will start blogging. May be more professional services firms, specially the small and medium ones that do not have the money power to mass advertise their expertise and whose clients have access to the net would start blogging to showcase their expertise. But often, they lack the technical expertise to blog. So, all you technical blogging gurus, there might be a big business proposition for you. Mid sized advertising, law, architecture, real estate, market research, designers, consulting, training, recruitment firms are all potential clients. You just have to show them the benefits of blogging vis-à-vis online marketing (better Google rankings, global reach). It's not going to be easy, but the focus of India media on blogging as a 'phenomenon' make the settings quite ripe for the rise of blogging consultants.
On the point of when a Tata, Birla, Ambani would blog...my guess is not anytime soon. The payoff (and that is the yardstick that businesses use to judge any new investment) for large organizations is not clear.
I am also hopeful that translation services on the net will become a lot more ubiquitous and we'll be able to read any content on the net in the language of our choice - that would really fuel the growth of social and business blogging. Right now, the non-English blogosphere is a dark web to us in India, while I feel we have more in common with the Persian or Filipino blogosphere than the US blogosphere. The growth of such translation interface/service would also trigger a boom in the growth of Indian blogosphere.
Coupled with speech to text softwares such services will help to make social software “really" social. Imagine a farmer in Kannauj in UP being able to talk and thereby blog his thoughts and farming methods and interacting with an Agricultural professor in Japan, another Farmer in Austria, and a fertiliser company in Karnataka. How many possibilities does that open up? It boggles the mind.
In fact, I can safely predict that blogging will evolve into something that won't even seem like blogging anymore. We won't access the net through PCs, notebooks or cyber cafes alone. So all the discussion around permalinks, trackbacks, google ads, comment spam will be redundant then!
We invite all Indibloggers to share their thoughts with us. If you feel strongly about the theme of this series, don't hesitate to send us a short writeup at indibloggies at gmail dot com and we would be glad to publish it. Please note that the piece sent to us cannot be cross-posted to any other website, though you may link to here. Thanks!