Week 4 ESN Business Applications seminar

ESN Business Applications


The business adoption of ESN is evolving with particular business sectors and functions being amongst the early adopters, which is not dis-similar to the early adoption of websites and e-commerce.

This session will familiarise students with the the advice being given to business who are interested in adopting ESN, and the need to vet this information for credibility, quality, and value.


  1. Locate three internet sites offering advice to  SME’s (small media enterprise) in how to adopt ESN into their business activities.


Business Link is government’s online resource for businesses.

It contains essential information, support and services for  businesses – whether you work for a large organisation or are on your way to starting up.


Simple to use, up to date and practical, Business Link is the first place to go to find guidance on regulations and to access government services. It also has a number of useful online tools, calculators, and best practice case studies; and provides access to funding options, as well as wider support.

(taken from website)

It has a spesific section about Web 2.0 and how business should use and the legal obligations of using such a system, it establishes best practises found here //www.businesslink.gov.uk/bdotg/action/layer?r.l1=1073861197&r.l2=1073866263&r.s=tl&topicId=1081903314

on that website they also talk about:

How Web 2.0 can be used for business

” Customers have never had so many choices to buy online. So, to help ensure your customers keep coming back, you should try to generate an online buzz about your brand and products or services. Engaging directly with your target audience will help you do this.

Think about what your customers are looking for when they visit your website. Could they benefit from product reviews or advice from previous customers? What can you offer beyond simply selling products or providing information?

Build an online community

Think about how you can use Web 2.0 tools to enhance your relationship with your customers and build a community around your brand. For example, if your business sells tools and hardware, you might consider posting video tutorials showing how to carry out common DIY jobs. You could also have an online forum to let other users of your site share their own advice and tips.

This would encourage people to return to your site after making a purchase and should also attract new visitors. The more visitors you have, the more likely you are to sell. So, even if you can’t see an immediate benefit, improving your customers’ web experience will help your business in the long term. ”

– – –



wired is an online technology news website and has many blogs devolted to internet issues, although they do not have a direct HOW-TO on web 2.0 they have many articles about the dilemas web 2.0 has and a lot of relevant information

2. Identify the essential advice and actions being proposed.


Protect your brand

It’s important to consider monitoring user comments. Depending on your business, you may find that some users post inappropriate comments. This could include:

  • Inappropriate language – if your customers are likely to be sensitive to certain language, make sure you have a system for monitoring all new posts before they go live.
  • Libellous material – you may be held responsible for any user comments on your site that insult or libel someone. Make sure you monitor what users are saying.
  • Damaging comments – while customer opinion can be useful, you don’t want to have too many negative comments about your business. If you find this is the case, look into the reasons behind the comments and try to put things right.

Legal implications and best practice when using social media

Make sure you have the following on your site:

  • a privacy policy – letting users know how their personal details will be used
  • a disclaimer – setting out the limits of your legal liability
  • terms and conditions – letting users know what they can expect from the site

Web 2.0: a guide for business

What is Web 2.0?

Web 2.0 does not refer to a particular technology but to a general trend. There is no checklist to decide what Web 2.0 is and whether you can apply it to your business, but there are several features that tend to distinguish it.

It may be helpful to consider integrating some of the following into your website:

  • User-generated content – this is the ability for your customers to interact with your business online, eg by posting information, comments, or product ratings and reviews to your website. This adds real value for other customers and provides you with customer insight and content that is unique to your website. Business blogs are another example of how you can communicate directly with your customers, canvass opinion, and advertise new products or services – see the page in this guide on Web 2.0 tools.
  • Collaboration – nearly all Web 2.0 applications are community centred, so users can share experiences and knowledge. Increasingly the web is being used for ‘open innovation’ or e-collaboration, where organisations are opening up areas of their business to the online community. In doing so, business is using the online resources and expertise available to solve problems or create innovative products or services. Find out about e-collaboration on the open innovation website.
  • Online networking and social media – the ability for people to find others with similar interests and express themselves to a community of like-minded people – eg social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace and Twitter. Business networking sites such as LinkedIn can also be used to develop professional networks, to enhance career or recruitment options or simply to keep in touch with former colleagues and contacts. See our guide on online networking.
  • Personalisation – the facility to customise the way you view or interact with websites. For example, setting your local area so you get information based on your location such as the news or weather. Web applications or ‘web apps’ are also growing in popularity, giving users applications they can add to websites or mobile devices like a smart phone – providing personalised web experiences.

Common to all of these is the ability for users to add and edit content – contributing online using different types of technology and interactive media, and creating more personalised web experiences.


Establishing the credibility of the advice being given:

  • a. quality of source;
  • b. evidence that the advice/suggestions work;
  • c. the standing of the author;
  • d. the standing of the internet site.


  • Web addresses for the three sites (in Harvard referencing style);
  • Brief outline of the advice being given;
  • Summary of your evidence for the credibility of the information located (as indicated in Task 3).

              Further reading

See lecture slides

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