Keith Collins: big company insight + marketing + strategic social media

Keith Collins is a relative newcomer to active blogging but he has a lot of big-company marketing experience. (Dell, Xerox…)

To keep things simple, let’s call him a strategic blogging evangelist. That’s not to say that he thinks a blog is the answer to every company’s communication prayers. It’s not. But if he thinks it is, he will explain the whys and wherefores in business terms.

Since we both live slightly to the west of London, we met for a chat yesterday morning. Turns out we had lots of business acquaintances in common and, having met online anyway, our get-together got off to a fast start. The meeting made me think hard about my own role in life. As we left each other, I said "we’re complementary. My interest is in the use of social software inside the firewall and yours is in its use outside."

Driving home I realised that, while true, that only related to my journalistic focus. My training/mentoring focus is entirely about companies communicating effectively with the outside world – whether that’s the press, venture capitalists, the blogosphere or anyone else. In that sense, Keith and I are a lot closer. The big difference is that I’m coming principally from a media perspective and he’s coming from a big company/marketing perspective. Instead of being back-to-back at the edge of the enterprise, we find ourselves face-to-face.

I’ve met loads of social media evangelists but this is the first one I’ve met who also has an intimate practical understanding from the marketing and business perspective. (I hope the many PR and marcomms people I know will understand why I’ve excluded them from that statement.)

I have no idea whether Keith and I will meet again, or work together. Anything is possible. But I thought I’d tip you off about his existence.