Social Collaboration

Social Collaboration

Posted on June 11, 2012 by TheStorageChap in Selling, Social

I have spent today putting together more internal GTM training (Positioning, Competitive etc) and although I try to make it interesting it is still very focused on delivering ‘content’ to people who may or may not choose to pay attention and consume it. The same applies to external customer facing content, the challenge is how do we keep information relevant and engaging.

There certainly has to be a better way to engage the audience in conversation and more importantly to maintain ongoing knowledge transfer. We have various collaboration tools based on things like Jive but the reality is that you still have to login and read through the posts that have been made and if you wish, provide answers accordingly. This normally results in a small number of contributors committed to the cause, but I am not sure that it is efficient or gets the mass adoption that is hoped. Likewise we have external customer facing collaboration sites, but again if you look at the number of customers versus the adoption of these technologies there is a massive gap partly I expect due to limited or irrelevent content on these sites.  Why do we actually have separate sites when probably 99% of the content published on the internal site would be relevant to a more public audience. Also what about new prospective customers, how are we able to influence them, when in many cases they will have done a large amount of research before they pick up the phone to talk to someone (hopefully us).

In todays connected world we expect answers immediately, but what is the best way of engaging internally and externally? I like the idea of a team of people accessible via Twitter so that questions can be asked and answered in a public forum enabling anyone who is interested to learn through ongoing knowledge transfer; but I expect that a 140 characters may not be enough! But the thing about Twitter is that it always on and always accessible from some device that you have on your person.

As I was pulling together the competitive deck it occurred to me that to the best of my knowledge the information was correct at least for today, but what about next week or next month, what is the best way to get real updated information that is publicly accessible and most importantly publicly updateable. A lot of organisations, including sometimes my own, are often scared to  engage in openly competitive debate for fear of coming off second best, but what better way of getting real world feedback on what you need to do to make your product better and keep abreast of ongoing competitive developments. Think Wikibon type scenarios where the users of these different technologies can openly update information to add detail, correct inaccuracies and talk about their own experiences.

There has to be a better way to use “Social Media”, I am just not 100% clear on what it is!