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CRM and Social Networking

Business managers need to take notice of the social web. With social software applications - social networking and community solutions combined with CRM, managers and employees can improve customer support and value while improving productivity.

Snagged this article and images from Selvas Cano, "Online Communities / Social Networking and CRM

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Innovation is about payback

What we quickly found out is that there is a plethora of ideas - everywhere. We've learned a lot about the innovation process from those early days and James Andrew and Harold Sirkin tackle many of the things we've learned in their new book titled, Payback: Reaping the Rewards of Innovation.

From Wharton, "Podcast, BCG's Harold Sirkin on How Firms can Reap the Rewards of Innovation ". (reg req)

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Realistic Customer Feedback

Social network software (Ideascape) pushes customer feedbabck further than was possible with traditional focus groups and surveys. Users submit product development ideas into an ongoing contest for approval by their peers. Ideas rated highly by other users bubble up to the top of the list, providing submitters with notoriety as well as reward incentives. Corporate marketers can take the highest-potential ideas into their own product development process.

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Selling Products and Services Using Social Networks

Empathetic Customer Service vs Sucky Customer Service

Of course, even if Dell was active in the blogosphere, who's to say that they would not follow The Pathology of Business Bullshit.

Empathetic Customer Service 

Life is customer service Jeff Jarvis, Buzz Machine has a post on Craig Newmark (Craigslist) that gets to the heart of why customer service sucks in most organizations.

 

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Blogging with Smarts and Guts

The ever generous and insightful Steve Rubel from Micro Persuasion offers the most down to earth advice for any business about who should be blogging for the company. Steve says, "Blog from the Gut of Your Company, " USA Today has a big story asking why CEOs aren't blogging in droves. I think they are making a bigger deal out of this than is warranted. Often the most interesting corporate blogs are the ones that are written by the rank and file. They come from the passionate "gut" of the company, not necessarily from the top."

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Social Software, Whatever?

Danah Boyd writes, " I’ve been meaning to write a paper on The Significance of ‘Social Software for some time, but… In the meantime, i’ve written an abstract for public criticism."

"In this paper, I will explore the contributions of social software. I will argue that there have been notable technological advancements, but that their significance stems from the rapid iteration of development in ongoing tango with massive user participation. In other words, the advances of social software are neither cleanly social nor technological, but a product of both.

I will explicitly address three case studies central to the narrow scope of social software - Friendster, blogging and Flickr. I will discuss how tagging, audience management (such as ACLs) and articulated social networks are neither technological advances nor social features, but emerge as a product of collective action and network affects. While parts of these technologies have been built in research, the actual advances are impossible to construct in a laboratory due to the sociological effects necessary for maturation."

The "rapid iteration of development in ongoing tango with massive user participation" is right on target. She is opening her research to anyone that is interested and that wants to particpate. I bookmarked it and tagged it with socialsoftware and research on del.icio.us.

What can businesses learn from this? From a marketing angle, check out the posts from Evelyn and Hugh.

Watch the Stories You Make Up About Your Customers Evelyn writes "Marketers are simply notorious for it: we segment, and slice and dice the population and make broad-ranging assumptions. We make up stories about sets of customer..."

make your customers the marketing department from hugh on gaping void is about what he and his partner sig believe. Sig: "Make the customer integral to the process, make the customer the central player in "The Flow"" and Hugh:  "Make your customers the marketing department."

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