Herd the Cats [Social Business Team Building]

Herd the Cats [Social Business Team Building] Case4[UPDATED] Herd the Cats is usually initiated by the CMO/CDO (Chief Digital Officer) or other enterprise practice or brand executive who discovers that various business units or brands in the organization have diverse social media presences without much apparent direction or business results. S/He wants to use strategy to provide a keel that resonates with corporate strategy, addressing issues as diverse as corporate citizenship, community, health or policy.

In 2013, digital marketing and firm executives are thinking about building their internal teams to provide more continuity and scale, so the champion often wants to create a social business “center of excellence” to serve several businesses or brands, leveraging enterprise resources to improve social business performance and contributions.

Herd the cats is the fourth of the five-part social business team building series The series describes team building in the context of various scenarios in which firms build social business capability, step by step, while investing wisely. Social Business Strategy Use Cases outlines and compares all five use cases while Social Business Team Building gives general guidance for how […]

Fix Fire Drill [Social Business Team Building]

Fire Drill [Social Business Team Building] Case2[Updated] The (social business) fire drill is sparked by an external or internal event that suddenly creates a sense of urgency and elevates management’s interest in social business/social media. They often respond in crisis mode and end up wasting considerable resources because they spend more than they need, they stay away from using social technologies to relate to stakeholders (they’ve been burned), and they hire a team that cannot produce maximum social business results because it is reactive and fearful rather than proactive and confident.

Fix Fire Drill is the second of the five-part social business team building series The series describes team building in the context of various scenarios in which firms build social business capability, step by step, while investing wisely. Social Business Strategy Use Cases outlines and compares all five use cases while Social Business Team Building gives general guidance for how to create social business teams as well as recommendations for what characteristics leaders have, so I recommend reading them, too.

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Pureplay Report: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012

Pureplay Report: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012 Pureplays address social business as transformation by definition because they have been launched to address emerging market needs that established players either do not yet understand or have yet to organize to address. Moreover, Pureplays are not adding social business to their existing services; they have been formed to practice social business. They are a small cohort in this research survey because they were constrained to social business and transformation as were advisory firms in other categories.

Pureplay firms are often smallish startups, so they are quite limited in some areas when compared to established legacy firms as in this research survey. From a market and client perspective, Pureplays represent a vital part of the market and can offer unique capabilities; however, clients need to approach them with “eyes wide open” because the way they serve clients varies considerably.

There are thousands of social media advisory Pureplay firms that are focused on marketing and promotion. Pureplays’ capabilities are largely colored by their founders’ backgrounds. Dachis Group, SideraWorks and SocialxDesign directly address […]

Social Business Team Building [Recruiting]

[UPDATED] Several times over the past few years, I have been contacted by major brands to advise them on finding a “social media executive” to help them “figure out social media” and “create a strategy.” In 2012, many firms began building social media teams in earnest, and this trend will continue to grow in the years ahead. Firms are also bringing “social media work” inside after having outsourced it to agencies. All of my client work has involved helping clients to build social business competency and teams, so here I’ll offer some pointers for how to build teams and avoid the pitfalls most companies experience.

Although each organization’s culture is different, the CEO, CDO, CMO or CAO will be happier with the social business investment if s/he doesn’t invest far ahead of return on investment, which remains low at firms that insist on “business-meaningful” metrics, not the PR- or “brand-building” variety. It’s a chicken-and-egg challenge: how do you know what kind of team to build until you’re achieving real business-meaningful returns on your social business initiatives?

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How Social Networks Change Strategy, Prediction and Decision-Making

Unusual strategy & management guide shows how to use social data to solve complex problems How Social Networks Change Strategy, Prediction and Decision-MakingBook Review: Everything Is Obvious* Once You Know the Answer/Duncan J. Watts

Everything Is Obvious* is an excellent how-to guide to understanding how social networks change strategy, prediction and decision-making. It offers practical techniques and profound insights for using social networks, big data and new ways of thinking to solve complex problems in business and government.

Intriguingly, the book also cites research that debunks several social media sacred cows.

Watts has an interesting point of view because he combines several disciplines: he began his career as a physicist before moving into sociology, so he strives to combine the quantitative, experimental methods of physics with maddeningly complex social problems. Moreover, he’s been running practical experiments at Yahoo! for several years, using search, Web and social data. Watts backs up his assertions with primary research that he has led or in which he has participated. He is also a very engaging writer.

I also highly recommend “Obvious” because it enables the […]

Knowledge Economy Products and The Future of Manufacturing

Knowledge Economy Products[UPDATED] Several profound market forces are preparing the ascendancy of Knowledge Economy products, which result from collaboration among designers, artists, engineers, customers and firms. This represents one of the Knowledge Economy’s most exciting-yet-disruptive elements: “products” will cease to be dominated by monolithic factories that mass produce virtually all items that people use and consume. Moreover, people have an inherent joy when they can make things for themselves, their friends and their families—and a dramatic new wave of creativity and innovation is imminent. To help you wrap your mind around Knowledge Economy products, this post will recall what happened to mass media and entertainment industries.

Knowledge Economy products are conceived, designed, prototyped and fabricated in the Social Channel. Best practices in open source, Agile development, design and Web development will unleash continuous innovation at a scale and pace we’ve never seen before. Knowledge and innovation will be free in the Knowledge Economy because all supporting processes will become an order of magnitude faster and cheaper. Firms and brands that do not recognize and respond quickly enough will become irrelevant.

Most brands can […]

The Social Business Organization Audit and Social Business Strategy

The Social Business Organization Audit and Social Business StrategyThe social business Organization Audit serves as the second half of the due diligence process that is the foundation of the social business strategy. The first part is the ecosystem audit by which the firm has assessed the external digital world that’s relevant to its business. However, this is only half the picture: now we need to assess the firm’s capabilities to engage the ecosystem, so this is an internal analysis.

By conducting external and internal due diligence, we arrive at a social business strategy that optimizes the what the ecosystem values most highly with the firm’s ability to deliver. The social business strategy marries the ecosystem audit with the organization audit to determine optimal sharing scenarios (pilots).

The social business Organization Audit begins with a basic core competency analysis, drills down to stakeholder issues & actions and synthesizes these steps into several “trial pilots” that it will then vet through several other steps: social business good practices uses the ecosystem as a filter to learn from other firms’ similar initiatives, resource analysis gauges employees’ […]

The Enterprise Social Business Life Cycle

Social Business Life Cycle: StrategyWhen CSRA released the Social Network Roadmap in Q2 2008, we were a unique voice speaking at conferences about enterprise adoption. Due to my prior work helping enterprises adopt disruptive technologies like distributed computing, Web applications, service-oriented architecture and Web services, it was easy to see what enterprise adoption would look like, so I designed Social Network Roadmap several years before most of the market was ready to use it. Our client work has enabled us to test, tweak and expand the roadmap since then. As 2012 draws to a close, enterprises have experimented, adoption of social technologies (“social media”) among most stakeholders has set records, and executives wonder how they can coordinate social business across the enterprise. To realize “compounded” enterprise social business benefits it’s important to understand the social business life cycle, so here is a brief treatment.

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The Global Social Channel: How to Compete Globally

Social Channel Three: Using the Social Channel to Defend Native Markets and Penetrate Foreign Markets

The global Social Channel will reintroduce “home court advantage” to national brands because those that use social business to compete globally by collaborating with users will have the cultural advantage; “foreign” firms may have better product features for the money, but they will not match home brands’ cultural fluency. Personalized service and attention are culturally specific, and deep cultural fluency directly correlates to intimacy. However, brands can only develop the home court advantage by practicing social business at an advanced level. Most have a long way to go and, meanwhile, they will get hammered when they persist in competing on product features in the Productized Channel of Value.

The blade cuts both ways: the home court advantage will make exporting to emerging markets much more difficult in the years ahead. The Social Channel will raise the bar because users in all markets will increasingly expect brands to relate to them and to solicit their input and advice. Brands will have to invest significantly in developing in-market social business […]

Top B2B Salesperson Trust Killers Revealed

Top B2B Salesperson Trust Killers Revealed discusses the results of targeted B2B sales research I conducted on LinkedIn and features comments from many survey respondents.

Top B2B Salesperson Trust Killers Revealed

One of the key takeaways of The Dynamics of Change video was trust’s importance to B2B prospects’ risk management practices. To explore trust’s importance to B2B sales, I surveyed dozens of seasoned B2B sales executives, including clients and salespeople, in this LinkedIn Poll. The results reveal the nuances of trust and how salespeople must constantly challenge themselves to focus on trust, relationship and execution. For example, respondents said that too many salespeople fumble the ball on fundamentals.

B2B sales is a challenging proposition in normal times, but the challenging global economic malaise has only made budgets tighter and sales more daunting. In large B2B deals, salespeople have to build a significant level of trust with prospects before any deal can be done. This analysis aims to help firm executives and sales leaders improve performance by increasing trust with prospects and clients.

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