Friday, November 19, 2010

The new era: Social Business

A few months back, I can recall having some discussions around definitions.  What are the similarities and differences between social computing and social media, and how do they relate to things like Social CRM.  We created some charts about the nuances of the terms ... but does it really matter what it's called? 

For business, it comes down to being able to listen, participate and respond socially in a way that provides your business value.  At a summit hosted by IBM about a month ago, I heard a new term:  Social Business.  That really resonates for me.   It's about business.  Social is just another way to provide value, just as the internet was 10 years ago.  It requires changes to management systems, processes and culture in order to fully embrace it in a way that mitigates risk.  I'm sure we all remember the days when companies were 'afraid' to let their employees surf the web.   They thought that they would waste too much time, and it would negatively impact their productivity.  Fast forward to today.  Social is the new internet.  It will change your business in the same way. 

It's all about finding business value.  Start with what you are trying to accomplish.  Identify ways in which you can supplement your current processes with social business.  I am sure all businesses have a way to listen to customer feedback.  Social business now enables you to not only listen in real time, but to respond.  The key difference this time is that your customers will demand this.  The biggest Social business risk is not participating.  Jump in and get started today.