What is ‘authenticity’ in blogging and social media?

What is ‘authenticity’ in blogging and social media?

January 16, 2013


January 16, 2013


What is ‘authenticity’ in blogging and social media?


Tony Hallett
Managing director

Tony set up Collective Content in 2011 so brands can more easily become publishers and tell stories. This built on 15 years in media, from reporter to publishing director at Silicon Media Group, CNET Networks and CBS Interactive.

This is a big question. It’s big because if a company – just like a traditional media title – loses its credibility, then it will fail. One way to lose credibility is for the that modern curse to strike – lack of authenticity.

Blogging and other forms of social media have for a while now been seen as a way to cut through layers of crap and hear it from the horse’s mouth. (That might not be the mixed metaphor it first appears.)

But Collective Content, along with others, offers ghost-writing services. For example Speech-to-blog is specifically a way for a company to create blog posts.

So are we big fat hypocrites? Are people like us killing authenticity?Ghosts

Over on the Holtz Communication + Technology blog earlier this month this whole debate really kicked off.  Shel Holtz nails it. You can get someone to ghost-write – a blog, a letter, a whole autobiography – but be open about it.

Before Christmas, we heard about a trend in the US, certain people and organisations calling for ‘pure’ posts on social media – namely no-one posting in someone else’s name. This doesn’t just mean agencies – quite a few of which generate significant revenue from such work now – but includes internal help.

It sounds like going organic-only with food.

Earlier this week we mentioned this on Twitter. Caroline Broquere Lartigue, MD at marketing agency Ohh La La (@ohh_la_la ), told us: “The key is to be true to values/individuals, otherwise it’s just spin.”
I think we can all agree on that.

We’ll hear lots more about ‘authenticity’, lots of variations on its definition for one thing. (A bit like What is ‘engagement’?) But we find it hard to believe non-media organisations won’t need help communicating, including ghost-written posts in blogging or other social media. The key is to do it with integrity and do it well.

*photo credit: randii2015 via photopin cc

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Need a corporate blog but don’t have the time or editorial expertise? Try Speech-to-blog, a new corporate blogging service from Collective Content. Funnily enough, we “do it with integrity and do it well”.