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Selfies Explode but ROI comes from sharing value! Let's do "other-ies"

I was thinking this weekend about Selfies after I saw so many taken at SXSW and highlighted in the Oscars.

I looked for some research on how prevalent this trend is becoming.  For example, a recent joint study of self-portraits in social media by three universities in the U.K. found that aggressively posting self-portraits on Facebook can alienate our friends and loved ones.  In another example, the study found that selfies compose a 30% of images snapped by everyone’s favorite demographic — the much-beloved millennial!!

So much focus now on “it’s all about me”. But you get more success when social is used for “value” of all opinions and offering a point of view.  

I think the leaders of social should push for sharing and valuing others.   determining what others need helps to spur on innovation and a focus outside yourself, vs inside your company.

The top ten most innovative companies had two-year compound annual growth rates of 60 percent more than the overall Standard and Poors Global.  For these companies, innovation is much more than a “big idea.” Innovation is an ongoing process of creating value from something new, such as new ideas, new technologies, new products or new processes. For example, 75 percent of successful companies rely on social networks to vet new ideas for success. They use them for:

  • Openly communicating strategy
  • Openly generating and prioritizing non-traditional ideas for new products and services
  • Innovating operations by teaming with external specialists and business partners
  • Innovating business models by combining emerging technologies with business imperatives to redefine the value chain or move into entirely new industries

Your influence matters!!  Encourage others and companies to :

  • “Engage the crowd” (internal and external) to vet new ideas not just sell their own
  • Deploy a portal that combines content, social and advanced mobile features to provide an exceptional digital experience for customers, partners, and employees to make it easy to share ideas
  • Deploy social gamification and social rewards systems to improve engagement and sharing

Top 6 Social Business Patterns for ROI!

It’s easy to see how the world has adopted social media to help strengthen ties between people all over the world. People like to share and the explosive growth of Facebook and all the other social media platforms out there are surely a testament to the fact that we like to share and discover what our friends are up to.  (IBM is, of course, the market leader at applying social techniques to business situations. Our entire Social Business Platform is the best in the market, four years in succession, according to IDC. )

Why these 6 Patterns Matter to Your Company:
While you might see how social could apply in a business setting, and understand that somehow harnessing some of these principles might be beneficial to improving how your organization works, you might not know where to start, or how the common business processes you work with could be transformed with social business.  Or you may be looking for the top ROI yields.   Or how to embed social without the S word (yes, that’s Social that some people view Social as Play!)
It’s for these reasons that we have created the Social Business Patterns or Use Cases.

  • Identify top ROI cases
  • Showcase the value and business outcome with having to use the S word
  • Allow you to learn from others

These are a suite of example business processes common to many industries. We show how these processes can be improved using IBM’s Platform for Social Business and, most importantly, what return on investment you can expect to realize from implementing the use cases.  These are not IT solutions, however. They are examples of business processes which will be very similar to your own. Using and adapting these examples can allow you to improve the communication, collaboration, awareness, knowledge-sharing, morale and efficiency of your organisation in simple but very effective ways.

Over the coming blog posts I will look at each of these in more depth, but let me outline to you the areas IBM’s Use Cases fall into:
Finding Expertise
Being able to locate the expertise in your organization is vital in many situations. Almost any service organization relies entirely on the knowledge of its subject matter experts. Manufacturing organizations such as car manufacturers, oil & gas producers and many others need to know how to solve problems quickly and easily without re-inventing the wheel and by accessing the expertise of the right people. Travel and transportation organizations’ entire business is built on being safe and reliable. These two facets are based on them being experts in their chosen fields and making the most of their staff’s expertise.  Finding Expertise focuses on how any organization can make the most of their experts. Whether it’s finding the right person in critical situations or unlocking the tacit knowledge in the experts’ heads to build the collective expertise of the organization.

Knowledge Sharing & Innovation
Social Business solutions are at the forefront of helping organizations all over the world increase their level of innovation.  Social helps to drive the process of innovation by giving ideas and new concepts places to grow and adapt based on the collective knowledge of the participants.  Use of social demonstrates how you can create a more nimble and flexible organization with dramatic return on investment opportunities backed by real client examples.


External Customer Insights
Many organizations nowadays have a presence on social media. They now have Facebook and other popular social network accounts, some use these to great effect and are generating real new business.   You can boost your selling power by unifying your sales people and distribution chain together with the most important people to your organization – your customers.

There are a set of sub cases around the external focus:

  • Customer Service.  Since empowered customers with social tools are changing the focus of business from selling to “partnering” , engaged employees lead to…higher service, quality, and productivity, which leads to… higher customer satisfaction, which leads to… increased sales & profit.
  • Sales.   Using social to better target individuals, not just demographics and segments to better sell to your client.
  • Community Building.  Using community to target your advocates and drive loyalty into your base or to recruit and learn from a new client set is a powerful ROI case.


Recruiting and On-boarding
Your organization lives and dies by the quality of its people. Attracting and retaining the best people in the market is one sure way to make sure that you are investing for your future.  To be able to demonstrates how you can enormously increase the time-to-value of new employees, increase the retention rate of your employees and provide much faster access to experts, highlights the focus on people as an important part of your strategy.
Everyone involved in bringing new people on board, including the new recruit themselves, wants their endeavour to be a success. How do you go about ensuring that happens? More than simply “inducting” a new member of staff, how do you streamline the recruitment, assessment and hiring processes?

new hire

Mergers and Acquisitions
Did you know that between fifty and eight three percent of mergers and acquisitions fail? This is an enormous cost for everyone involved, both financially and in terms of morale of the staff and customer and stakeholder confidence.  A focus on social in acquisitions can help reduce this failure rate by improving the key business processes involved in mergers and acquisitions. It focuses on the people and the culture associated with the organizations coming together and demonstrates how employee retention, failure rate of acquisition and communication can all be improved.
Social can assist in helping your organization improve its safety record and have a huge impact on ROI for worker’s compensation and injuries.  . The social tools within our solution can help you reduce incidents, increase effectiveness for your existing safety programs and accelerate the adoption of a culture of safety amongst everyone concerned.   Many industries use simple, but effective and tested approaches to using social collaboration can improve the safety record of your organisation and its reputation.

Join Me
We’re going to explore each of these Use Cases in more depth in the coming blog posts here, so I hope you’ll join me as we deep-dive into how social business, and IBM’s Platform for Social Business in particular can help your organization.

As always, I’d really appreciate your feedback and comments!  To get more information, you can get the summary report here!

2/3 not sure they understand the benefits of Social – Do you?! #ibm #ibmsocialbiz #socbiz #ibv

IBM surveyed 1,160 business and IT professionals to understand the state of social business adoption to take a pulse on how organizations are tapping the power of social technologies to advance business objectives. From the IBV survey, 2/3  of respondents were not sure they sufficiently understood the impact that social technologies would have on their organizations over the next three years.  Check it out here!

I really want to help all companies on this one.  This POV is from working with 1000s of clients.  I’d love to know if this helps you!

A social business transforms itself by activating networks of people. Whether through online communities and meetings,
team spaces, blogs, wikis, profiles or other social tools, people can explore new ways to build and leverage their networks
beyond those dictated by traditional organizational structures or means of communication. Information also becomes more
transparent and accessible, opening up new wells of knowledge and expertise. As a result, people can be more efficient in their
tasks and more responsive, authentic and familiar in their interactions. In turn, the organization as a whole becomes
increasingly nimble, engaged and creative.
The key to implementing social software is to set clear, realistic objectives for your social business initiatives and to embed
social tools into existing role-based processes.

The end point for your organization includes the following:
• Enable an effective workforce: Operations, human resources and other departments can increase overall employee
productivity and job satisfaction through improved knowledge capture, expertise location, and collaboration. Travel, training
and teleconferencing expenses also can be reduced.
• Accelerate innovation: Product research and development teams can quicken internal idea sharing and discovery, as well
as transform how they generate ideas, share strategies and gather feedback from key customers and partners.
• Deepen customer relationships: With more immediate access to content and expertise, customer service representatives can
work more efficiently and provide higher-quality service. Marketing and sales teams can have more time to spend with
customers and to dedicate to customer-focused initiatives.

From the McKinsey Study, there are measureable results.