Thursday, October 1, 2009

Building Alliances With Social Networking Tools

Find your customers and fish where the fish are, advised panelists at the first Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals, Silicon Valley (ASAPSV) program event of the year, held September 30 at the Cisco campus in San Jose. Next bait the hook with social media, and keep your message immersed in the conversation.

Speakers agreed that we are living in a time where the Conversational Era, a revolution whose direction is being shaped by its participants, is replacing the Broadcast Era.

Rajesh Setty, entrepreneur, author, and speaker, shared pictographs about the Twitter experience of “buzzability.” At one end of the spectrum is chatter and at the other is information that has immediate and future relevance and also brands its sender as a node.

Next up to bat was Tim Bailey, founder and president of Alliance-Strategies, Inc., who urged business leaders that in building relationships, to check LinkedIn for company profiles, and not to miss the names of current employees, the recently promoted, and the recently moved on. He also urged the audience to have a “PowerPoint strategy” of their own goals. Know your bullet points.

Introducing the next group of presenters was Norys Trevino from Cisco, a Collaboration Solutions Manager in the CA Web Strategy & Collaboration Solutions Team and Y-Space coach. Cisco is now primarily using WebEx for collaboration and Web-conferencing, she said. Email is passé.

The Y-Space team describes themselves on Twitter as “A Team of Generation Y employees…who contribute to an internal concept blog and are passionate about changing the way business is done through Web 2.0 tools.”

Trevino explained how the Y-Space team are “reverse-mentoring” some of Cisco’s senior leadership on the use of social media tools. Did you know that the number of members of Facebook now represent the fourth largest country in the world? Neither did I.

Jennifer Vessels, CEO of Next Step, rounded the evening off with a call not to be overwhelmed. “How many people feel that they can’t find the time for the collaborative social media world? Let’s not just add social media,” she said, “but shift the way we interact.” She said that most members of Generation Y have already set up their community before the first kick-off meeting.

Director of Global Services Channel at Cisco Systems, Raja Sundaram referred to Comcast’s presence on Twitter. Twitter has allowed the company to support customers at lower cost while yielding higher rates of success.

Here are a few resources to help you move through the social networking world:

Next meeting of ASAPSV is October 28, 495 East Jave Drive in Sunnyvale. Networking begins at 5:30pm. “The Impact of Alliances on Cloud Computing.”

Lenore Weiss


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