Falling Behind the Social Media Times

Charlene OHanlon
Jive Software has come out with the results of a survey showing the business impact of social media (although they're calling it "social business") adoption. Like the others that came before it, it's an interesting survey that shows the benefits of incorporating a social media strategy into a company's marketing and customer service plans. In my opinion, however, the survey is about six months too late.

Any company that hasn't figured out how social media can positively impact their bottom line is way out of touch with rest of the world. Heck, even my local hot dog stand has its own Facebook page. Even if it's just used as a way to inform customers of upcoming events, sales or special offers, social media is a unique marketing presence that direct mail or e-mail can't be-with social media, customers want the information, unlike the barrage of unwanted e-mails or third-class mail overflowing mailboxes.

Even used internally, social media can be a useful tool for informing and empowering employees, from offering up YouTube videos on signing up for benefits to sending out alerts in times of emergencies.

But any company that knows the value in social media doesn't need me to go through the myriad of ways a social media strategy can help its bottom line. Companies that don't know, however, may want to take a look at Jive's survey, along with the numerous other corroborating surveys out there. The benefits of social media in business are well-documented, and social media users are out there. In the immortal words of Hollywood: If you build it, they will come.

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Feb 4, 2011 6:02 PM Christopher Morace Christopher Morace  says:
Charlene, Thanks for calling attention to the results of our customer survey. You are correct that it is exciting to see value being proven out with companies that have embraced Social Business, and that we have historically seen similar results in Social Media strategies. I just wanted to point out a distinction between the two. I think most companies call their Facebook fan page, twitter broadcasting/presence, slideshare, or posting videos to YouTube social media strategies. They are an important subset of what we think of as Social Business and critical for amplification of brand, positioning, messaging, lead gen, and to some extent customer engagement. Social Media has created a very powerful channel for PR. When we talk about Social Business we are including everything from how you use social techniques to enable your employees to work more effectively together, enable your salesforce, create leads, provide customer service, source ideas, and directly engage with your customer no matter what your job function or where they are present (your company community, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc). We do this through a variety of technology from our Engage Platform, broad mobile support, and fully integrated applications for monitoring and engaging with the social web from Jive (very important for companies that need to control who is representing them for policy or compliance reasons). These systems are integrated in with existing enterprise systems such as Unified Communications, CRM, and ECM and often touch tens of thousand employees throughout the enterprise. Anyway, I just wanted to point out that it was this distinction that caused us to be so excited about the results of our survey. From our point of view these numbers indicate substantial value beyond what we've seen from more pointed Social Media strategies, which are also important. Thanks again for your article and continued thoughtful perspective in this space! Reply
Jun 7, 2011 7:06 AM Office 2007 Office 2007  says:
Even used internally, social media can be a useful tool for informing and empowering employees, from offering up YouTube videos on signing up for benefits to sending out alerts in times of emergencies. Reply

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