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Technology #2: Social Business


You can’t go anywhere these days without reading about the growth of social media, and with 62 percent of all online adults worldwide connecting through social networking sites,(6) its influence is hard to ignore. So does social marketing change everything for business, or is it a waste of time that doesn’t yield measurable returns? While the answer likely falls somewhere in between, there’s no question that social is here to stay—and that harnessing its power can yield major benefits for your company.
Determining how social business pays off can be tricky, however. The temptation is to measure the value of your social efforts according to how many new customers it attracts and how much it boosts sales. Yet sellers with the best social results view it from a broader perspective. While it’s true that the right approach can deliver top-line benefits, social’s qualitative rewards are just as important. For example, skillful use of social media can help you:

 

  • Increase brand visibility by providing a new and far-reaching platform to share not only what you sell, but also what your company stands for and cares about
  • Improve target market insights and develop more effective campaigns by reaching out to specific audiences and using crowdsourcing and similar social approaches to identify the messages that work best
  • Develop valuable business and professional partnerships that help strengthen your network and, over the long term, lead to more customers and sales
  • Expand SEO opportunities beyond your website to include content you post on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, company blogs, and elsewhere—giving you more control over your message and greater chances that customers will find your business
  • Capture more leads through higher awareness of your organization and a broader social reach
  • Create closer connections with customers through the relaxed interaction and one-on-one exchanges unique to social media, increasing the likelihood that they’ll buy from you and recommend your business to others
  • Track public perception and catch problems early by utilizing social listening tools and continually monitoring and analyzing online conversations(7)

 

Regardless of your company’s focus or size, you can use social business to expand and enhance the nature of your communications with customers and trading partners as well as the broader marketplace. And in an increasingly networked world, the value that brings to your business extends far beyond simple dollars and cents.

 

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Technology #1: Cloud Computing

Technology #3: Enterprise Mobility

 

 

1 Source: Celent Communications

2 Source: Basex Research

3 McKinsey & Company, “The Rise of the Networked Enterprise: Web 2.0 Finds Its Payday,” survey of 4,394 executives, December 2010

4 McKinsey, “The Rise of the Networked Enterprise”

5 Collaborative Commerce for Dummies, Ariba Special Edition, Wiley Publishing, Inc., 2011

6 Reuters.com, http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/27/uk-socialmedia-online-poll-idUSLNE82Q02120120327, 27 March 2012

7 Sources: www.thinkmonsters.com, “Five Benefits of Social Media for Businesses Beyond Sales Numbers,” 11 May 2012; Harvard Business Review Analytic Services, The New Conversation: Taking Social Media from Talk to Action cited at http://www.jeffbullas.com/2011/02/14/12-major-benefits-of-the-social-media-revolution/

8 Deloitte Development LLC report, “Tech Trends 2012: Elevate IT for Digital Business,” 2012

9 Shehryar Khan, Founder and former CEO, Übermind, Inc., quoted in Deloitte, “Tech Trends 2012”

10 Deloitte, “Tech Trends 2012”