Accelerate Your Enterprise Social Meida

Social Media Accelerator based on research, insights and case studies

Chicago, IL – Nov. 5, 2013 – Starcom MediaVest Group announced Tuesday, an alliance with PulsePoint Group that will give SMG clients access to PulsePoint Group’s Social Media Accelerator™, a cloud-based application that automates social media strategy and planning, while accelerating social media execution. With this agreement, SMG can now offer the Social Media Accelerator™ to its clients. PulsePoint Group will continue to serve their clients directly.

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Have any of you ever heard of Formspring.me?  Neither had I, until recently.  Mashable.com, the popular social media blog, recently reported that Formspring raised $10MM dollars in its second round of funding.  I mention that to demonstrate that this stuff is cutting edge.  But what is it, and why does it matter to the enterprise?

formspring-funding2

Social Inquiry Defined

At its core, Formspring is essentially a Q&A platform.  You find a friend (or stranger) ask them a question, using your name or not, and they answer it.  Some of the content is highly personal, some of it is completely superficial, but in essence it is an always-on, always-open Q&A session.  It's the Twitter version of the traditional Q&A, and aside from being unbelievably addicting, I think it represents a next big thing in enterprise social media, both internally and externally.  (For this post I'll focus on internal, but the opportunities are nearly as limitless outside as they are inside.)

Simplicity Drives Usage

Imagine if, with a simple search and a one sentence question, you could access the insights and thinking of practically every employee within your organization.  Imagine if you could, in a matter of moments on your Smartphone, answer a question on the company's updated approach to manufacturing safety or its new benefits package.  For that matter, imagine you could ask the manager of supply chain in Asia how they managed to get employee buy-in to the radical changes they've already adopted and you've been banging your head against the wall to make any headway on at all.  And you could do it without spending three weeks trying to schedule a meeting.  You could do it in minutes.

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Originally Published Risk Management Magazine, October 1, 2010

Click here to download the PDF.

It’s not unusual for companies to generate more demand for their products than they can handle. But when that company was AT&T, which has struggled to meet bandwidth demand of its ever-expanding iPhone customer base, the company got a lesson in how social media can damage a company's reputation.

Though the irony was probably lost on AT&T's management, angry customers acting as an online "smartmob" used the very connectivity AT&T supplied to organize a national protest against what they believed was the company's poor service. "iPhone Nation," led by blogger and activist Dan Lyons, issued the following call to arms of users in 2009: "On Friday, December 18, at noon Pacific time, we will attempt to overwhelm the AT&T data network and bring it to its knees. The goal is to have every iPhone user (or as many as we can) turn on a date-intensive app and run that app for one solid hour. Send the message to AT&T that we are sick of their substandard network."

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Originally Published PR Week, June 25, 2010

We’ve all been through SWOT exercises and, if you’re like me, you’ve often wondered if the process – sometimes painstaking and laborious – really yields actionable insight.
Lately I’ve had the opportunity to create and lead what I would call “Quantified SWOTS” and, perhaps not surprisingly, the quantification makes the end product more precise and actionable.

You may want to consider it. Let me explain.

Perhaps you’re considering the future of your own organization and want to do a self-assessment. Typical solution: SWOT.

But try this variation.

Work with your team and develop a master list of attributes that you believe your function has responsibility for within your company. The list, of course, includes things like leadership communications support, CSR, media outreach, employee engagement, etc. Break this down and be as specific as you like.

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Originally Published PR Week, May 14, 2010

In my last column, we looked at seven internal changes that can help prepare your organization to become an “engaged enterprise” (def: a corporate business model that achieves an authentic, dynamic relationship between the company and its various stakeholders in which conversation and business ideas are shared up, down, and sideways).

As promised, this column focuses on the nine external moves necessary to achieve full engagement:

1. Recognize that media relationships have migrated. The communications group should have knowledge of and strong relationships with the top 10 digital influencers in each business segment of your company. The concept is not that different than the old days of media relationships, but not knowing these influencers is as wrong as not knowing your top-tier journalists.

2. Engage with customers for product innovation. Engaged enterprises regularly tap into their customers for product design and innovation. Regular use of crowdsourcing techniques makes such broad-based insight easy – and powerful. Check out Dell's IdeaStorm for a good example. Great opportunity for communication executives to add real value across corporate functions.

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Bob Feldman, Principal of PulsePoint Group, on what activities a company should undertake internally on it's journey toward becoming an Engaged Enterprise.

Seven Characteristics of the Engaged Enterprise

Originally Published PR Week, March 12, 2010

In my last column, we explored the concept of “the engaged enterprise.” This is a corporate business model that suggests an authentic, dynamic, and deeper relationship between a company and its various stakeholders, in which conversation and business ideas are shared up, down, and sideways.

A constant value-exchange is the new norm.

Due to considerable response and curiosity on this subject, this is the first of two columns that will dig deeper into the model. In my next column, I'll look at what you need to do in external engagement, but first, let's look at what you need to do internally:

Strong internal collaboration. Lots of companies have implemented Microsoft SharePoint and other collaboration tools. But the issue is: how widely are these tools used? Does your department live on the site or is it the occasional repository of random documents? Collaboration and knowledge sharing exist in real time. Success depends more on culture and leadership than on technology.

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The fundamental rules of effective marketing are being rewritten. The rapid evolution of social networking technologies is making it easier for customers to get more precise information. It’s making it easier for them to consult one another, and it’s fundamentally impacting the way they make purchase decisions.

Customer experiences have never been more important. Word of mouth has been put on steroids.

So what does it mean to marketers? It’s the arrival of a new era, where engagement is the new currency that drives customer loyalty. But engagement must be defined as a true exchange of value and not just the act of pushing information. Getting someone to visit your web site is not engagement.

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Originally Published PR Week, February 12, 2010

The impact of social media on how business is run is just starting to mainstream in corporate America. I'm not talking about online promotional campaigns; I'm taking about the very heart of how business is conducted.

The consequence is a redefinition and reframing of how a company and its various stakeholders relate to one another and the impact each has on one another.

Call it “The Engaged Enterprise.” Engagement is the new currency. It suggests an authentic, dynamic, deeper relationship in which conversation and business ideas are shared up, down, and sideways.

In the Engaged Enterprise, stakeholders have deeper relationships with the company. Stakeholders actually talk to one another. Their voices are heard, respected, even acted upon in exchange for their loyalty. The result: The enterprise is smarter and more engaged with their constituents leading to better decisions and deeper, longer-lasting relationships.

Some examples? Consider these three:

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