The Best Blogs, Talks, and Conferences all Continue Conversations

Jeff Barr wrote a post about conferences and it had a reference to a comment on my blog. He's saying how the best speakers at conferences don't just drop in, deliver a speech, and leave. They participate and reference conference themes (like submarines!) in their speeches. They forward the conversation. I love when your comments start and forward conversations.

The best way to stifle a conversation is to try to control it or to downplay it. I've been guilty of that but it doesn't work very well. Marketers like me at times have to fight themselves from controlling conversations (hey, look at my product!).

When I've listened to any good speaker or read any blog, the ones I resonate with most are ones that I can see myself in. My absolute favorite is when someone makes me laugh and it's light-hearted and real. It's all fun and I'm learning without even being aware of it. Then out of the blue they say something profound. It alters me. I'm moved. Stopped in my tracks. This is the punch line. It takes skill to get the timing right. Guy Kawasaki did this at an Affiliate Summit he spoke at. I still remember it. I was getting choked up!

As far as religious talks I love the ones that make me stop and think, wait a second, I have some work to do (I see some lies in my thinking or way of being that now I want to address). I literally am having a conversation about what they are saying within myself, with them, and with God – in real time.

I like the concept of mixing mediums, like artists do in collages. Taken together all these conversations going on and mashups create a rich life. So the conversation on on my blog started from a real life conversation or a blog post, carries to Twitter, MySpace, to a blogger's dinner and to a class. I like how “Memory” on Twitter uses geek terms for common things. Rather than strip her hair of color, she's deleting it.

I like how on Paul Allen's blog today it's not just family history, it is people getting married and making babies (yes, sex: something so alluring that even on academic Wikipedia it's one of the most read topics). Suddenly it's not a dating site, it is the beginning of a conversation about future families. That is something I can resonate with. Jeff Barr just Twittered about holding a Second Life family reunion. There needs to be a Second Life dating service too (there probably is).

This leads me to how the best businesses start and continue important conversations. After all, sex and business, though not at all the same thing, are really about creation. And creation starts with conversations.

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