Renee Ducre, Director of Marketing Social Business with IBM, agreed to talk with theCUBE co-hosts John Furrier and Dave Vellante during the exclusive coverage from IBM Information on Demand 2013 in Las Vegas, shedding some light on the challenges of adopting social in the enterprise.
Social Business is one of four IBM focus areas, representing the intersection of social and Big Data/analytics. Talking about the new orientation towards social business, Ducre noted the unprecedented growth and innovation taking place in this field.
If a couple of years ago people were frowning at Twitter, failing to grasp its value and usability, nowadays its reputation has long been rehabilitated. Renee Ducre relayed the story of a group of physicians who are keeping in touch with each-other via social network hubs. They are using social media to broadcast medical procedures live, for the other doctors to see. What was once a very costly procedure (attending an operating room in a different part of the world), has morphed into a simple login online. These people are literally saving lives by leveraging a networking hub.
Traditional media is about building brands – you see the ad on TV and you are expected to buy it later offline. With mobile, and Twitter, you can do that online now. How do you see Twitter changing the game for consumers? asked Furrier.
Paying for attention
There is an “attention and deficit environment,” said Ducre. Businesses are fighting for the attention of customers and there are way too many news sources. These days “Attention is definitely a commodity.”
Twitter is a nice way to get attention, with a very quick feedback. The short blurbs and links to articles send out information, and things have the potential to get viral very quickly.
A fine example of Social Media marketing is Oreo at the Super Bowl. When the lights went out at the Super Bowl, they tweeted “You can still dunk an Oreo in the dark.” It was perfectly timed, and an article later described how they managed to pull it off. They had all their senior executives around the table, deciding over posting this tweet. It’s mind boggling, considering that it was the Super Bowl evening. In large organizations this would be pretty hard to pull off, admits Ducre. “It’s always that real-time nature of Twitter that makes it a real challenge to large organizations.”
Oreo resorts to real-time marketing using Twitter as well as leveraging Vine, encouraging people to come up with new recipes and post their pictures.
There is also a need to have a secure social infrastructure. Leveraging all the social data and providing social analytics around that data is helping people make better decisions.
Leveraging the crowd
Crowdsourcing product development is being able to improve upon products by being able to leverage the social communities. P&G were the leaders of tapping into social networks to find out what people really liked about their products, what performance people were getting out of their products, and making sure that they also improve upon that. As social technologies have advanced and improved, they’ve been able to leverage that.
“Crowdsourcing is just a buzzword now, but we’ve been doing that for a long time, listening to our customers and giving them what they wanted,” boasted Ducre. As far as Product development is concerned, more and more crowdsourcing will be seen in the future to come. “You’ll see more social technologies, leveraging all of the social collaboration tools is a must.” Social will be part of any application experience.
If a while ago the smarter person in the room was an individual, today we have a new phenomenon: the wisdom of the crowd.
Reading from their twitter feed, theCUBE co-hosts reached the conclusion that “the new commodity is attention and the new currency is time.”