Guest post by Andrew Jones (@andrewjns), analyst at Altimeter Group covering Social Media and Customer Experience
Modern marketing is about more than just informing prospects and customers about products, but building relationships with them. The contextual insight available in social media offers an opportunity to better know and engage audiences with compelling, personalized content and experiences across channels. The following is a condensed excerpt from a forthcoming report.
Last year, my Altimeter Group colleague Charlene Li and I published a series of research reports on the state and evolution of social business. In our research, we discovered that the most advanced businesses shared seven success factors in developing, launching, and measuring social business strategies. Our friends at Jossey-Bass asked us to turn it into an ebook and that we did!
The Seven Success Factors of Social Business Strategy
Every so often, Facebook hosts its f8, a conference in San Francisco aimed at developers, media, and partners. This year, in front of an audience of 2,500+, Facebook introduced its vision for the next year and beyond. With Mark Zuckerberg kicking things off, Facebook introduced a dozen or so new products organized into three including Facebook’s update to Login, which gives people more control over the information they share with apps, Anonymous login, which offers a way for people to log in to apps without sharing personal information from Facebook with developers, and the Audience Network, which allows advertisers to easily extend their Facebook campaigns into other mobile apps.
Guest post by Greg Narain (@gregarious) co-founder of Chute, a company that helps brands discover or collect relevant photos from social networks and incorporate the visuals into their websites and apps
Brands finds themselves at a challenging crossroads in their evolution. For decades, companies have utilized a command and control model as it pertains to their brands. Billions of dollars have been spent to carefully craft specific messages and deliver them via campaigns. However, as consumers continue to create and promote their own stories, brands now must decide how to integrate that content into their own stories.
Employee empowerment is about creating brand advocates to scale customer relationships and effectively compete in new digital markets. Organizations can no longer rely on inbound and outbound sales reps, people willing to jump through hoops and obstacles via call centers, or traditional marketing to boost awareness and demand. Customers demand engagement, in real time, and that takes human beings, training, and support.
As editorial director and conference producer of The Pivot Conference, I have the privilege to meet with the people who are bringing about real change inside organizations. During the 2013 conference, I had the chance to interview Dr. Rebecca Harris (@RebeccaHarrisDr), who leads the Social Media Center of Expertise at General Motors in Detroit. Her role is all about transformation and integration as she works across brands and around the world on social strategy, social tools, social processes, points-of-view on multiple social topics, and overall integration between brands, divisions and countries.
Guest post by Brendan Gahan (@BrendanGahan), a YouTube marketing expert. Gahan was Forbes 30 under 30 for Marketing & Advertising and has helped Fortune 500 brands with their YouTube and social media marketing.
This year has been particularly busy yet productive for Charlene Li and me having published two reports that detail the six stages of social business evolution and the true state of social business in 2013, an ebook on how successful social businesses are evolving, and an image-rich slide deck complete with all the graphs and charts you need to benchmark where you are compared to other social businesses.
In recent times, I’ve noticed a rise in discussions around the “death of social business” and also an increase in alternative “fill in the blank but don’t use the word social” businesses. Some of those discussions have been hosted here recently. There’s strong merit to the discussions of course, especially those I’ve hosted (be sure to read the comments). But as an analyst tracking the evolution of social businesses and equally the cause and effect of digital transformation overall, I’m learning that the most advanced organizations see social not as a technology movement but instead one of culture and philosophy. Openness, collaboration, transparency, communication…these aren’t buzz words. Among those leading change, these words represent a way of business and it all starts with vision and the ability to see how relationships and experiences with customers and employees can improve or accomplish new and greater goals.
When writing my new book, What’s the Future of Business, Changing the way businesses create experiences, I felt that text wasn’t enough. So, I sought the wit and creativity of my good friend from the ole Web 2.0 days Hugh MacLeod aka @gapingvoid to help summarize each chapter in the form of a toon. Then we got to talking, why limit the cartoons to just the book?
Brian Solis is a digital analyst, anthropologist, and also a futurist. In his work at Altimeter Group, Solis studies the effects of disruptive technology on business and society. He is an avid keynote speaker and award-winning author who is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders in digital transformation.
His most recent book, What's the Future of Business: Changing the Way Businesses Create Experiences (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold in four distinct moments of truth. His previous book, The End of Business as Usual, explores the emergence of Generation-C, a new generation of customers and employees and how businesses must adapt to reach them. In 2009, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.