Enterprise 2.0 and Social CRM: A Match Made in Heaven?

Disclosure: Last week, I attended the Enterprise 2.0 Conference , Boston, MA, on a free press pass, which covered the pre-conference workshops on Monday, as well as the full three-day conference, held June 21 – June 23, 2011, at the Hynes Convention Center.

I’m still reviewing the numerous presentation slides and additional commentary, available from, or spinning off from, the Enterprise 2.0 Conference, held last week in Boston.

The official attendee reception, “CRM at the Social Crossroads: Dinner with Paul Greenberg,” related especially well to this blog’s themes, as it explored the convergence of Enterprise 2.0 with Social CRM.

The Difference between Enterprise 2.0 and Social CRM

At the E 2.0 attendee dinner (sponsored by BroadVision), Greenberg, a CRM expert and author of CRM at the Speed of Light, offered his distinction between Enterprise 2.0 and Social CRM.

Enterprise 2.0 involves all “the internal collaboration and discussion in service of greater customer insight, including segments, intelligence to better understand customers, and improved processes,” Greenberg explained.

Social CRM, on the other hand, is “a customer’s engagement with the company’s products, services, tools, and experiences,” he noted.

Internal Transformation as Important as External

Together, Enterprise 2.0 and Social CRM make up “Social Business,” which,Greenberg described as “greater than the sum of its parts:”

When combined in a way that there is a whole greater than the sum of its parts – it is what is now being called “social business” and in a few years will be called “business,” the same way “social CRM” will be “CRM.”

What makes social business greater than the sum of its parts is also why it needs both parts to work seamlessly inside out and outside in. Customers and the need to acquire and retain customers are driving it.

What Happens without the Internal Culture in Place

In his talk at the E20 dinner, Greenberg asserted that for social CRM to be successful, the internal culture must be in place.

To illustrate his point, he mentioned Comcast Cares, a real-time customer service channel, which Frank Eliason successfully spearheaded on Twitter. However, Greenberg observed, Comcast viewed (and funded) Comcast Cares as a public relations promotion–not as a fundamentally different way of engaging with customers, across all parts of the organization.

Greenberg warns that without the accompanying internal transformation, the initiative is more of short-term tactical success than a long-term strategic solution.

A Call for Transformation

‘Til now, I’ve been exploring convergence mainly as a metaphor for a whole-brained approach to creativity and leadership. In a more specific way, I’ve been examining approaches to content convergence, in my role as a technical communicator.

Transformation continues to be an important objective for me, both personally and professionally.

That’s why, listening to Greenberg describe the ongoing need for transformation in large enterprises–and his belief that both Enterprise 2.0 and Social CRM processes must work in tandem–really felt a lot like coming home for me.

Which Comes First? The Chicken or the Egg?

Again and again, I see analysts in the social media space debate which comes first or is more important–Enterprise 2.0 or Social CRM–including all the processes which extend from each. Moderator Richard Hughes from BroadVision posed this question to Greenberg, in the familiar “chicken or the egg” format.

I loved the way Hughes posed the question because it highlights to me the somewhat futile nature of the question. My feeling is the answer of which comes first doesn’t matter so much as the need to have both sides of the equation working together, as Greenberg expressed in the ZDNet article, “…the inside out and the outside in. The back office and the customer-facing. The internal and the external…:”

[What’s] apparent is that Social CRM and E20 are now married, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health and are combining into a coherent whole that is being labeled “social business.”

Your thoughts? Are Social CRM and E20 a match made in heaven? Do you agree that they need to work in tandem?

Comment, 6/14/22:

On Which Comes First, in 2022: Here are some links, about upcoming bipartisan legislation, under draft review, to strengthen data privacy. Though I am catching up on quite a lot of missed time, in the world of technology, even my more lay impression, these days, indicates a shift toward greater privacy. These links are not endorsements, but are what I’m reading right now, to try to come up-to-speed, on the latest technology trends, and a better reflection, than my 2011 blog post, of current discussions. I also include links from some of my prior go-to-sources, which again, are not endorsements, but reflect the discussion, going on, right now, and where I am starting to catch up. As the STC Intercom article notes, the Internet is a changed place, since in 2020 “organizations across the world were breached by the SolarWinds cyberattack” (Coreil, 2021). Here’s why this is a very big deal:

Over 18,000 of the 300,000-plus SolarWinds customers of network software were affected, including the United States (U.S.) Treasury and U.S. Commerce Department, National Institute of Health, State Department, and Department of Homeland Security, as of the writing of this article (Jankowicz and Davis, 2020). The need for organizations to clearly communicate cybersecurity threats, analyses, and cybersecurity concepts in a meaningful way is critical, now more than ever, to facilitate knowledge sharing across industries, governments, and borders.

Coreil, A. (2021, July 21). Technical Communication & Cybersecurity. https://Www.Stc.Org/Intercom. Retrieved June 15, 2022, from https://www.stc.org/intercom/2021/07/technical-communication-cybersecurity/

Be careful out there!

Related Links

Here is an additional resource, from a nonprofit global information privacy community and resource, which I started following on LinkedIn, during the last year or so. As of 6 / 2022, the site describes the differences, between privacy and security, and helps clarify for me, some of the issues I encountered, writing this blog, trying to bring folks from very diverse professional backgrounds, together. The IAPP defines privacy and security as related, but not the same concepts.

International Association of Privacy Professionals, What does privacy mean?

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E 2.0 Conference: The Evolution of the Networked Organization

Disclosure: Last week, I attended the Enterprise 2.0 Conference , Boston, MA, on a free press pass, which covered the pre-conference workshops on Monday, as well as the full three-day conference, held June 21 – June 23, at the Hynes Convention Center.

My favorite keynote from the Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston last week was “Managing People and Process, across a Networked Organization,” by Jim Grubb, Vice President of Corporate Communications Architecture at Cisco Systems Inc. (For more information about Jim Grubb, check out  Cisco at Enterprise 2.0 2011.)

The keynote was especially relevant to me, because the organizational issues Grubb described about how to structure the large enterprise are similar to the organizational issues technical communicators often face, when deciding how to structure information. In each case, we are moving away from traditional hierarchical structures towards a networked model, which places participants (whether that means our colleagues, customers, or ourselves), at the center of the organization.

Seven Ways to Organize Companies

In his fifteen minute talk, Grubb concisely outlined the evolution of organizational structures in companies, from the start-up to the networked model. According to Grubb, here are the seven ways companies organize themselves:

  1. Start-up/No Organization: When everyone is sitting in the same room, there isn’t much need to have leads or distinct organizational divisions.
  2. Functional: As the company grows, it makes sense to start organizing by function (Sales, Engineering, Marketing, and so on), so that those who are doing similar work are grouped together. However, as companies continue to expand in this functional model, they soon start losing sight of their customers.
  3. Customer Segment: The next phase of growth involves organizing by customer segment (in Cisco’s case, by Enterprise, Service Providers, and Commercial). Organizing by customer segment starts to be inefficient, when for example, there’s a separate router (or in the case of  readers here, a separate router manual, with redundant information), for each customer segment.
  4. Lines of Business/Product Type: To streamline, companies start organizing by lines of business or product types.
  5. Geography: The next evolution involves organizing by geography.
  6. Matrix: Companies start trying to organize for more than one objective, by for example placing customer, across the top of one axis, and geography or product- type, along the side…This matrix-ed approach may solve two of the business problems companies are trying to solve for, but not for the other axises.
  7. Networked: In a networked organization, companies strive to operate continuously and dynamically across all the axises. According to Grubb, “Your org chart becomes a people chart, bringing the right people together to focus on a business problem…Through technology, we now have the flexibility to do this…We are no longer forced into a given hierarchy…Moving forward, we now can allow people to self-organize and dynamically move between virtual organizations…Through the technology, networked organizations allow each participant to be at the center of the hierarchy…”

Examples of a Networked Organization, In Motion

In a networked organization, Grubb explained that information workers don’t “do” in the traditional sense we apply “doing” to work. Instead, Grubb explained, information workers create intellectual capital by collaborating, talking, thinking, making decisions, passing on those decisions, and so on, all through human interaction.

The ability to record and index these real-time human interactions and make them available to the entire network–eliminating the barriers of time and space–is the goal of unified communications. Grubb offered posting voicemail or WebEx meetings for the entire virtual community, as examples of re-purposing synchronous, real-time components of collaboration as asynchronous communications, available to anyone, anywhere, at any time.

Profiling members of the community becomes very important in the networked organization, so you can find the right people to work together, on any given virtual community.

Challenges for Networked Organizations

Grubb noted that despite the benefits of networked organizations,  traditional hierarchical models are much easier to measure and reward. Changing process requires new mechanisms for accountability and reward structures as well. For example, at Cisco, measuring the success of each geography/country now involves factoring in the success of each customer segment across that geography. For virtual teams to be successful, there needs to be the technology, process, and culture in place to establish and reward these kinds of collaborative behaviors, Grubb concluded.

Parallels for Technical Communicators

The evolution that Cisco’s Jim Grubb described for the networked organization directly parallels the evolution of structured documentation standards.

With structured authoring, we are striving toward putting our customers at the center of the information hierarchy–allowing them to dynamically view tagged information, in whatever ways work best for that person.

The projected benefits are greater efficiency over the documentation process and ultimately a more personalized experience for our customers.

The key challenges that face the networked organization–technology, process, and culture–are often the same collaborative challenges facing technical communicators within the large enterprise, and require similar incentives for a successful outcome.

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Hear All About It: Enterprise 2.0 Conference (Boston 2011)

Disclosure: This week, I attended the Enterprise 2.0 Conference , Boston, MA, on a free press pass, which covered the pre-conference workshops on Monday, as well as the full three-day conference, held June 21 – June 23, at the Hynes Convention Center.

According to Steve Wylie, the General Manager of the Enterprise 2.0 Conference at TechWeb, the event attracted approx. 1600 participants, from lines of business, marketing, and IT, as well as senior executives.

Enterprise 2.0: Supporting Critical Functions & Driving Revenue

The event site describes the annual Enterprise 2.0 Conference as focusing on “how to use technology to support a variety of critical functions such as HR, People & Performance, Sales, Customer Support, and Product Development to increase productivity, improve collaboration, and drive revenue.”

Many participants at the event shared an interest in how enterprise-class collaboration and productivity tools can help organizations solve business problems and create new opportunities (see Enterprise 2.0: It’s Still About Improving Business Performance).

In-Depth Workshops

The pre-conference workshops on Monday examined key Enterprise 2.0 topics, including detailed analysis of customer engagement, innovation management, and the latest collaboration tools and platforms.

Visionary Leaders

On Tue. and Wed., the keynotes featured a cross-section of industry thought leaders, representing companies such as Jive Software, Microsoft, IBM, Avaya, Adobe, and Cisco. (To view the recorded keynotes, visit Information Week’s Brainyard–the community for social business.)

Tue. night, BroadVision, Inc., a cloud-based social business solution provider leader, sponsored the official attendee party with CRM expert Paul Greenberg, for a discussion on “CRM at the Social Crossroads.” In his talk, Greenberg, author of CRM at the Speed of Light, described the convergence of Enterprise 2.0 with Social CRM, as part of the trend increasingly known as “Social Business.”

Diverse Conference Tracks

Conference tracks included an impressive range of Enterprise 2.0 topics: Analytics and Metrics, Architecture, Business Leadership, Community Management (Engaging External Audiences), Community Management (Inside the Enterprise), Governance, Risk, & Compliance, Mobile Enterprise, People, Culture & Internal Communications (HR), Sales and Marketing, Social Apps and Platforms, Technology Leadership, and Video & Unified Communications.

Expo Pavilion: Top Vendors (Large and Small)

There was also the opportunity to meet top vendors of collaboration technologies in the Enterprise 2.0 Expo Pavilion, where Microsoft and Cisco hosted receptions, Tue. and Wed. nights, respectively, and where participants could learn how the latest technologies are reinforcing collaborative cultures and helping to change internal processes.

Recognizing Innovation: Enterprise 2.0 Launch Pad

Another conference highlight occurred right after the Tue. morning keynotes, when Saba Social Learning, was announced as the winner of the “2011 Launch Pad Award.”

General Impressions

I was happy to cover the Enterprise 2.0 Conference, a second year in a row. For me, the event represents a comprehensive and timely look at the benefits, risks, and changes required in emerging Enterprise 2.0 organizations. The speakers were high caliber, the vendors among the top-most in the industry, and the atmosphere was consistently collegial. The post-conference resources (including slide presentations available at the E 2.0 event site) and related E 2.0 coverage at the Barnyard community are just as thorough and well-organized.

Moving Forward

As Steve Wylie notes in his recent Barnyard column, the spirit at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston was celebratory, recognizing all the ways that Enterprise 2.0 has come of age. However, to take the necessary next steps, Wylie suggests lots more must be done:

While great progress is being made in understanding the value of a socially connected, collaborating enterprise, the reality is that most enterprises are just beginning to peel back the organizational layers of operational inefficiency and outdated technology that hold them back.

Their challenges will require equal parts organizational readiness, workable technology solutions, and the resilience to see these initiatives through.

In the meantime, stay on the lookout here, for posts detailing what I learned at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference (Boston 2011), especially ways organizations need to change or are in the process of changing, to continue making E 2.0 a reality.

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Social Business (also known as Enterprise 2.0)

In a recent post at the MarketingProfs Daily Fix, Don’t Forget About The Enterprise: A Glimpse Of Enterprise 2.0, Jacob Morgan explains that oftentimes when we refer to social media, we mean “how a brand can engage with customers or prospects to build relationships.” Morgan notes that these relationships are external facing:

…meaning brand to consumer, and are used for functions such as product development, customer service, increasing sales, and marketing. Through social media, companies seek to understand and do things such as: empower their customers, collaborate with their customers and prospects, and gain actionable insight from their customers.

Internal versus External Collaboration

Morgan goes on to explain that “a very similar type or relationship with collaboration, actionable insight, and empowerment also needs to happen internally WITHIN the enterprise; oftentimes called Enterprise 2.0, a termed coined by Andrew McAfee a few years back.”

Morgan believes that most companies should begin their social business transformation internally before branching out externally. He explains the rationale for focusing first on internal change:

There are several benefits to doing this such as building a social corporate culture, familiarizing the company with new tools, and understanding how to gain actionable insight and drive business results from collaboration. Once the company as a whole understands this, then it becomes much easier to build relationships and collaborate externally, with prospects and existing customers.

Taking Social to the Core of Your Organization

Morgan’s presentation complements very well the themes in a recent O’Reilley webcast, “Taking Social to the Core of Your Organization,” with an online panel featuring Stowe Boyd, Peter Kim, Jeremiah Owyang, and Joshua-Michele Ross. The webcast (tagged as socbs#  on Twitter) defines social business, provides successful examples, and discusses long–term challenges.

According to Stow Boyd, social business is “business organized intentionally around sociology and social tools.” Peter Kim adds, “social business is business,” being done with the same objectives as always—building brands, driving sales, and sometimes even changing lives—but business which simultaneously recognizes that the environment we’re operating in, including the world we work in and the ways customers engage, is very different.”

Jeremiah Owyang states that social business is not just marketing. It applies to all customer touchpoints, and across the entire organization, including product innovation, collaboration with partners, supply chain management, recruiting, and talent management.

Levers for Becoming a Social Business

As moderator, Joshua-Michele Ross helps summarize the following levers, mentioned in the panel discussion, which bring about an enterprise’s internal transformation to a social business:

  • A process with social guidelines is already in place. (For example, IBM co-created their guidelines, with  employees.)
  • Employees use social tools to collaborate internally, before opening up external gates. (Examples: employee networks on Facebook, Yammer, Jive, and Social Text.)
  • Companies reconsider the role of individuals in the company, with greater value of and incentives for extra market forces and nonfinancial drivers, including an individual’s sense of meaning and purpose.

Exemplars of Social Business

According to the panel, the most successful examples of social businesses include those who are already using social processes and tools internally. Those business that systematically encourage openness inside the organization are the most likely to empower employees to engage with the outside world. Panelists mentioned Intel, Dell, IBM, and Comcast Cares as exemplars.

Obstacles to Social Business

The panelists also noted common obstacles to becoming an Enterprise 2.0, as problems in scalability, increased signal to noise ratio, and resistance to change. Panelists agreed that measuring the ROI of social capital is difficult, but that organizations can measure the ROI of social media the same as any other effort that involves objectives. For example, marketing metrics often measure social mentions and that is measurable in social media as well.

How to Get Others Involved

According to Peter Kim, the way to get others in your organization involved, depends on where in the organization you’re placed.

For those at the top, Kim recommends making the executive commitment, putting a budget and resources in place, and letting people allocate time. For those in the middle, it means examining where the tools fit in the overall business strategy. For those at the lower levels of an organization, it means using the tools to be more productive at work.

For more tips on getting others involved, see Kim’s presentation, on Social Business.

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Links of Note, Fall 2009: Guidelines for a Social Media Policy

The following links describe how to establish a social media policy, at your company or nonprofit organization. They also provide examples of successful social media policies, such as IBM’s Social Computing Guidelines: Blogs, Wikis, Social Networks, Virtual Worlds, and Social Media, and the American Red Cross Social Media Guidelines, which are often cited as models. I plan to  annotate this post, or write a more detailed follow-up post, after I better review these examples and guidelines.

In the meantime, here’s a great place to get started, ensuring that your employees understand their responsibilities, when using social media. As employees, these resources will help you better understand how to best protect your company, and just as importantly, how to protect your own personal and professional interests, when embarking in the world of social media.

Do you use social media during your work day, or as part of your job? Does your company have a social media policy in place? What’s working? What issues most concern your employers? What minimum guidelines do you advise?

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Links of Note, May 2009: Social Media Use in the High-Tech MKTG & Sales, B2B, and Corporate Space

Get to the Point Newsletters:
This link represents the inaugural issue of the High-Tech Marketing & Sales Get to the Po!nt newsletter from MarketingProfs. “This once-a-week guide is specifically intended for marketing and sales staff in the high-tech field.” In this issue, learn how inbound links not only drive sales but also improve your Google search ranking.

Put Sociability in B2B Sales:
Another High-Tech Marketing & Sales Get to the Po!nt newsletter from MarketingProfs, this issue suggests giving sales teams clear guidelines on social media and using a a social-savvy individual or small team (millennial/generation Y), within your organization to determine “the most strategically relevant venues that will offer the greatest return for your time.” “Figuring out the best use of social media for your organization can be more complex than the screening process, so delegate this task to someone with a pragmatic approach and a broad business perspective.”

A Brilliant (and Simple) Follow Up Email for Any White Paper or Webinar:
At the blog for Savvy B2B Marketing, Michele Linn describes herself as “a serial downloader,” always on the lookout for information. Michele offers how effective receiving a personal, follow-up response from ExactTarget was in the conversion process, after she downloaded a whitepaper, responded to the follow-up e-mail, and then received a personal response back. After engaging in an e-mail conversation, Michele signed-up for the company newsletter. She could have opted in to receive the newsletter when she downloaded the white paper, but “didn’t check the box for whatever reason. But, after engaging in this email conversation” she did.

Top 20 Risk Factors for U.S. Tech Firms:
Mass High Tech’s The Journal of New England Technology summarizes risk factors from the BDO Seidman RiskFactor Report for Technology Businesses. According to the report, “Competition and bringing new products to market” are the most common risk factors among large U.S. tech firms. BDO Seidman further found that “economic uncertainty and international instability” are among other frequently cited issues. (Peg’s Note: I include this link because the risk factors [see the complete article] look like good information to consider when developing user personas for the U.S. high-tech space.)

Is Social Media Making Corporate WebSites Irrelevant?:
Mashable‘s Editor in Chief Adam Ostrow poses the question of whether pointing to your corporate web site is the right marketing strategy, “given the emergence of the social web and the opportunity to engage with fans elsewhere.” As an example, Ostrow cites VitaminWater‘s recent ad campaign, which directs people to participate in social media, rather than visit the branded website. The multi-channel campaign features NBA superstars LeBron James and Kobe Bryant.

CEOs Who Use Twitter:
BusinessWeek reports “how Virgin Group’s Richard Branson, Zappos.com’s Tony Hsieh, and dozens more CEOs harness the simple powers of Twitter.”

Social Media Strategy

There is No Social Media Kit:
Altitude Branding’s Amber Naslund, also Director of Community for Radian6, blogs that “there is no social media shortcut.” Most social media answers depend on a variety of businesss circumstances and other factors. As companies plan out their own social media approach, what Naslund does offer are specific questions to help companies customize their respective strategies in these areas: Research and Groundwork, Auditing and Readiness Assessment, Goal Setting, Resource Planning, Internal Education and Training, Immersion and Participation, Learning and Evaluation.

Social Media ROE/ROI

ROI vs. “Impact on X” – Understanding what Social Media ROI is and isn’t.:
In the Brandbuilder Blog, Olivier Blanchard describes the difference between impact and ROI. “Impact can be measured in eyeballs. Impact can be measured in comments on a blog post. Impact may be measured in conversations. Impact can be measured in responses to a BOGO offer or discount offer. Impact can even be measured in smiles.” “But then you have ROI”, which according to Blanchard, “is a completely different animal: ROI is a very specific subset of Impact in that it relates specifically to the business’ bottom-line.” Blanchard cautions, “[a]nyone who talks about Social Media ROI as being somehow radically different from other types of ROI is demonstrating a profound lack of understanding of ROI as a whole.” To see “broad Social Media adoption for business actually happen,” Blanchard advises that participants correctly apply social media impact versus social media ROI terminology.

Social media success doesn’t start with ROI:
Owner of Spark Media Solutions, David Spark blogs that “you can’t make decisions on new media if you’re measuring it with old media metrics. A media plan’s building block is the CPM (Cost Per Thousands). It’s the metric that advertisers know, understand, and negotiate on. The problem is when you use an old media metric (CPM) to measure new media, you can’t measure it properly, and as a result, you miss out on fantastic opportunities. It’s the same reason why you don’t use a slide rule to measure the sky.”

“We’ve been trained that everything gets measured down to a sales lead. If that’s how you measure social media, then forget it,” said David Meerman Scott, author of The New Rules of Marketing & PR and World Wide Rave . Scott mentioned this during a panel session entitled, “The Conversational Corporation: How Social Media Has Changed the Enterprise” held at Dow Jones in Palo Alto, Calif.

15 Ways to Measure Return on Engagement (ROE) of Social Media:
Sarah Evans is the director of communications at Elgin Community College in Elgin, Illinois. Last week, she tweeted 15 things public relations professionals can use to show a RETURN ON ENGAGEMENT (ROE)–the new return on investment–on their social media efforts. This link represents a recap of those tweets, as summarized in Evans’ blog post.

 Social Media Policy

Bosses concerned about Facebook, Twitter:
According to a Deloitte LLP survey, “60 percent of executives believe they have a right to know how employees portray themselves and their companies on online social networks, but 53 percent of employees say content posted on their Facebook and Twitter accounts are not a boss’s concern. That belief is even more prevalent among younger workers. Sixty-three percent of workers ages 18 to 34 say employers have no business looking at their online activity.” For more commentary on the Deloitte survey, see Mitch Joel‘s post at TwistImage: Reputation, Social Media and Your Boss.

Free social media ebook and video: New Media and the Air Force:
David Meerman Scott, author of The New Rules of Marketing & PR and World Wide Rave , calls attention to The United States Air Force Public Affairs Agency, Emerging Technology Division, which just released a new ebook and video about how social media is used in the Air Force. In a recent Awareness, Inc. webinar, Scott said that if even the Air Force can adopt social media, other organizations can as well. He recommends the ebook for any organization seeking internal guidelines on how to implement social media.

Crafting Your Company’s Social Media Policy:
Michael Sheehan, also known as HighTechDad on Twitter, is the Technology Evangelist for GoGrid, a Cloud Computing Infrastructure provider. In this post, Sheehan describes how he and his company’s HR department worked together to develop a social media policy. The company policy, which Sheehan drafted, defines social media as “Blogs, Forums, Wikis and Social Networks and commenting therein.” In 14 bullet points, the company policy then succinctly describes the Do’s and Don’ts of Social Media.

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