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How to Boost Your ROI through Social Networking - Guest Blog by Annie Cooley

by on ‎05-05-2010 12:32 PM (2,129 Views)

How to Boost Your ROI through Social Networking

by Annie Cooley


Swiftpage’s Thought Leader Series hosted J.B. Holtson, CEO and President of NewsGator, yesterday.  He walked us through how to boost your ROI through social networking.


Here are a few tips that he shared:


There are two types of community – communities of practice and communities of interest.  A community of practice collaborates around a core business product, services and knowledge.  A community of interest is where people can share ideas and have fun around a common interest.  For NewsGator, fantasy football is their interest.


Enterprise social computing provides an avenue for easy collaboration and finding experts faster.  It also flattens an organization allowing all participants to have an equal ability to share.  When starting such a community, watch how the organizational dynamics may change.


Internal and external communities can provide great business value.  However, there is a fine line between how to integrate the two.


HR 2.0 is the combination of knowledge and talent management.  A new role in companies is arising, the Community Manager.  This role makes sure its business community is active in the right ways, creating avenues for collaboration and feedback.


Social networking is getting more and more integrated in traditional workflow.  People’s attention is already focused within the social realm.  If you can add collaboration to this focus you are able to reach a greater audience and get more sophisticated feedback.  You never predict who the real experts are.


You can reach out to customers by integrating your social network within a CRM application.  When you provide a place for customers to talk to one another, you open the door to new business ideas.  There is no need to filter such a community because people will act in a trustworthy way because they are known within it.
Starting a social network for your own audience can be an intimidating process.  J.B. offers three things to ensure participation.


•    C-level participation
•    Easy to use tools
•    Reward participation

Crowd sourcing is new way to generate ideas from your community.  For example, a client of NewsGator was looking for a new name and design for their community interface.  They reached out to their community of employees to receive feedback and ideas for going forward.  A young employee located in Ireland with a background in graphic design created the name and design for them without hesitating. The company used this design and promoted the employee.  It saved the company both time and money and enhanced the employee’s career.

People need to start embracing the movement towards mobile devices.  The web is quickly becoming woven into the mobile world.  However, it is a much different experience from the big screen we are so used to.

One of NewsGator’s features allows you to determine experts within your community through cloud mapping, depending on what an individual talks about and who they are connected with.  This expertise can help others within the community who are seeking more information about that specific topic.  Once again, you can’t always predict who those experts may be.


Email marketing serves as the reach out component in this world of communication.  It is the useful method to connect to traditional means and drive people to where the discussions are.

Listen to the recorded webinar.