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Guest Post: Salesforce.com says Marketing Cloud. I Say Social Cloud.

Guest Post: Salesforce.com says Marketing Cloud. I Say Social Cloud.

Natasha Oxenburgh

10/17/2012

This post originally appeared on the official Bluewolf blog.

By Natasha Oxenburgh, Social Programs Manager, Bluewolf
Natasha Oxenburgh@njoxen

What’s been going on around Social within the Salesforce ecosystem? Last month, there were some big announcements at Dreamforce that we’re all eager to get started on:

1. Marketing Cloud

Salesforce CRM has proven itself on the sales and service parts of of the enterprise. Enter the artfully named Marketing Cloud. It fits nicely into the salesforce.com CRM suite of apps—the final piece of the customer lifecycle puzzle.

The Marketing Cloud is an integrated solution of two very powerful tools - social marketing solution Buddy Media and listening platform Radian6. At its most basic, the former helps marketing ‘push’ content and establish its brand presence. The latter provides a listening hub for marketing and the ability (via the Social Hub) to push social posts across departments within Salesforce. In truth, what salesforce.com announced was a nice integration of Social apps—it would be much more accurately named the Social Cloud.

The suite is not going to wipe out the use of other stand alone social management tools. For example, many social media teams that use Buddy Media—who are thrilled about the integration with Radian6—still use the Twitter interface to respond to their community, and/or Hootsuite to schedule tweets.

2. Social Key
 
Data.com’s “Social Key” is about tying the social contacts brought into your CRM to the business contact (which includes the traditional data such as name, employer, phone number, etc). This is crucial step for a 360 degree view of your customer—approaching that elusive social customer profile that salesforce.com has been talking about.

Think about the enormous advantages of knowing your prospects’ interests and what motivates them professionally and personally. Your sales reps should already be 'sniffing' out their prospects on Social, but the Social Key will put that information right under their noses.

3. Chatter Communities
 

Chatter Communities look very promising. Communities are private, branded social communities for customers and partners—that integrate with your business processes. What the demo doesn’t show is the handy ‘global header’ that can reside on the top of your Salesforce org, making it easy to switch back and forth between your Chatter Communities (reducing the annoyance of multiple logins). There’s also the ability to toggle certain groups/people so that you can collaborate privately on an opportunity within the community.

Today, we know that companies are losing control of their brand. Consumers own company brands on the social web. The best we can do from the business side is to funnel our enthusiastic fans into communities where they can expound upon our products/services—and try to turn them into citizen marketers. Chatter Communities is going to be a great tool to realize this goal all while bringing that rich customer data into your CRM system.

Of course, these are just social tools and focused mostly on the customer. What about your employees? How do you expect to get even a few of your employees involved with Communities, if they haven’t even adopted Chatter internally?

We’ve been asking the Salesforce community—the voice of our customer—about how they’re bringing Social to life in their organizations. We’re predicting that Chatter adoption is about to explode, but 76% of salesforce.com customers are still struggling with realizing their goals around Social (if they even know what those are!).

We’ve also been asking our community on Twitter, what does Social really mean to them? And what do they want to use social for in their business? Check out this story by Storify to see some of the responses.

We like to look at Social as a means to garner employee and customer engagement. And, at Bluewolf, we believe the best path is start with your employees. When you get your workforce engaged through social technologies, this will ultimately drive customer engagement.

For a more in depth discussion around leveraging social technologies in your business to drive employee and customer engagement, we’ve put together a free webinar: Gamifying Social Collaboration. We’ve invited Marcus Nelson of Addvocate.co and Rajat Paharia of Bunchball to join us in the discussion. Marcus shares our vision of the importance of employee engagement and making social content fresh and shareable amongst your workforce. Rajat is an industry expert on using game mechanics within communities to drive employee and customer engagement. Corinne Sklar, Global VP Marketing Bluewolf and strong proponent of the idea of people over platform, will also join us to share our story on Going Social Inside-Out—how we’re driving employee and customer engagement through social networks.

Join us on Tuesday, October 30 at 10am PT / 1pm ET for this industry thought leader discussion.

 

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