Social Business

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The Key to Social Media Success Within Organizations

Though the use of social media can be a valuable way to enrich a company’s culture and enhance its productivity, it isn’t a sure thing. The main reason some social media initiatives fail to bring benefits to companies is because the initiatives don’t create emotional capital — that is, a strong emotional connection between stakeholders and the company. That’s the main finding of a survey of 1,060 executives about their experience with social media, along with a number of in-depth case studies.

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How Finding “Exceptions” Can Jump Start Your Social Initiative

Many senior executives still think of social media as something you do after hours for fun, says John Hagel, co-chairman of the Deloitte Center for the Edge — they haven’t bought into the idea that social can drive the core performance of the business. He’s committed to showing them why they’re wrong.

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Risky (Social) Business

A new study released by the Altimeter Group helps companies identify, manage, mitigate and even prevent the risks that come with embracing social media.

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Using Facebook Helps Customers Solve Problems

MetroTwit is a tool that helps Twitter users track their Twitter feeds, see several columns at a time and easily tweet, reply or retweet. MetroTwit’s managers use Facebook to talk to customers and let them help each other with questions.

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Mark Yolton, senior vice president of SAP Communities & Social Media

SAP: Using Social Media for Building, Selling and Supporting

SAP runs a 10-years old, online community network that has more than a million unique visitors a month. Mark Yolton, senior vice president of SAP Communities & Social Media, tells how his company is using social media for “outside-in” market insight and as a mechanism to immediately tell the world about its new products.

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Social Business By the Numbers

The general interest magazine Harper’s includes a famed feature every issue called the Harper’s Index. It’s a list of random and yet sometimes connected facts about anything and everything in the world. Here, our version of an Index highlighting the facts and stats we’re intrigued by in the world of social business today. Contrasts percentage of CEOs and CIOs who believe social media is important to their business today. Also, contrasts market estimates for enterprise social software.

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What Managers Really Think About Social Business

Given that technology-based social networking has been transforming social norms for the past decade, will social networking and social software have a similarly transformative effect on business? Are they already doing so? How are enterprises benefiting?

MIT Sloan Management Review and Deloitte asked thousands of managers about how their companies are using social media tools — and how important those tools are becoming to their organizations. Here’s what they said.

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How IBM Builds Vibrant Social Communities

“I see IBM as a social business,” says Jeff Schick, IBM’s vice president of social software for IBM. “We’ve broken down the barriers of reaching out to the people within the organization” — not to mention partners and clients as well. And the company is making it easier for its client companies to do the same thing.

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Enhancing Relationships With Customers Through Online Brand Communities

Online brand communities can bring customers closer to a brand, generate “buzz” and enhance brand loyalty. Yet, important as online brand communities are to consumer markets, little is known about the role they play in consumer decision-making. Although the popularity of online brand communities as a means of gathering pre- and post-purchase information continues to grow, knowledge about how to effectively manage those conversations remains scant.

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Social Business: What Are Companies Really Doing?

The rapid adoption of technology-based social networking has been transforming politics and social norms on a global scale for a decade. Will social networking and social software also transform business? MIT Sloan Management Review and Deloitte surveyed 3,478 managers from companies in 115 countries and 24 industries. This report identifies how social technologies are creating value and innovations in the marketing function, but also in product development, operations and leadership.

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The Perils of Social Coupon Campaigns

Social coupons have become a popular form of marketing promotion. Businesses such as restaurants, car washes and dry cleaners pitch coupon discounts through Internet sites such as Groupon and LivingSocial in hopes of attracting a new crop of customers. But a poorly designed coupon campaign can do serious harm to a business’s profit margin. While the coupons can generate value for customers and the social coupon service providers themselves, they can lead businesses into a thicket of problems.

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Why Strong Ties Matter More In a Fast-Changing Environment

It has become accepted wisdom that weak ties — your acquaintances, distant colleagues — can provide more novel information than close ties. But new research by Marshall Van Alstyne, associate professor at Boston University and a visiting professor at MIT, suggests that in some cases strong ties are better.

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Size Matters in Social Business Adoption

In the recent survey on social business that MIT Sloan Management Review conducted in collaboration with Deloitte, respondents were asked how important social business was to their business. When we looked at which companies answered “important” it became clear that size matters.

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Collaborating With Customer Communities: Lessons From the Lego Group

Customer-oriented companies pride themselves on understanding the marketplace and integrating the best ideas into future products. But what would it be like if you found that you had hundreds, if not thousands, of knowledgeable users ready and eager to spend nights and weekends acting as extensions of your research and development department? For the Lego Group, the Danish maker of children’s creative construction toys, this close bond with the user community is not a pipe dream but a reality.

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