Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Elizabeth White, Andy Thurai, Ed Featherston, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: Agile Computing, Java IoT, Microservices Expo, Cognitive Computing , Machine Learning

Agile Computing: Blog Feed Post

B2B Social Networking | What’s In a Name?

I frequently find myself thinking that the dumbest thing we Internet marketers ever did in social networking was to rename it

I frequently find myself thinking that the dumbest thing we Internet marketers ever did in social networking was to rename it social media.  In the early days of Web 2.0, there was no such thing as social media. Everyone was just working to make software more social, whatever that meant. Then for a while, the terms “social networking” and “social media” were used almost interchangeably.  Today, it’s all social media, the Web 2.0 heir apparent of Web 1.0 new media. Social networking is largely reserved for describing the purest of social networks like Faceook and LinkedIn, or the more technical discussions about social graphs and the like.  Personally, I strongly prefer the term “B2B social networking”; because once you recognize that the smart way to use B2B social media is to drive B2B social networking, your fundamental understanding of the potential opportunity shifts.  Just for fun, I did a quick Google trend analysis on the terms to visualize the issue.

social media - social networking - trend

As it has grown in popularity, the term “social media”
has clouded our thinking about social networking with advertising concepts.

So, what’s the big deal Joel?  After all, it’s just a kind of new media, only social, right? The problem is that the term “social media” clouds our thinking about social networking with advertising concepts.  In particular, when it comes to B2B social networking, the term “B2B social media” misses the mark entirely.  It makes me cringe when I hear statements from B2B marketers and salespeople such as these:

  • “Social media is more relevant to B2C than B2B.”
  • “B2B customers aren’t on Twitter, so we don’t see the relevance of B2B social media.”
  • “I started a blog, but no one followed it and I really didn’t have the time to keep it up.”
  • “LinkedIn is full of unemployed job seekers, not business buyers.”

B2B social networking is not the descendant of new media, like a banner ad, only social. B2B social networking is the new technological enabler of face-to-face meetings, industry events, phone calls, email, sales calls, field marketing and public relations, because it’s the networking, not the media that counts! Would you ever expect a B2B marketer or salesperson to make statements such as these?

  • “Networking is more relevant to B2C than B2B.”
  • “B2B customers don’t network, so we don’t see the relevance of networking.”
  • “I started building my network, but no one would meet and I really didn’t have time.”
  • “My network is full of unemployed job seekers, not business buyers.”

Cast in this light, these statements are obviously and completely ridiculous. The fundamental purpose of B2B social networking technology is to facilitate B2B networking through automation. In plain English, the purpose of B2B social networking is to increase the frequency, velocity, and quality of business referrals and references.  When applied to sales and marketing, this translates into accelerating the B2B purchase process and driving viral revenue growth within an industry.  At the core of a referral are two things: a positive, trusted relationship and useful information. Now that sounds just a little bit like sharing a blog post or a comment on LinkedIn.  At a minimum, B2B sales and marketing professionals should be using B2B social networking to increase the frequency and velocity of referrals throughout the sales process.  At a maximum, B2B social networking can be combined with search, Website marketing and marketing automation to completely automate the B2B purchase process of the new breed of B2B buyer.

b2b social networking

Business referrals are the mature B2B cousin of B2C word of mouth marketing.  Much of what I propose here in regard to B2B social networking also applies to B2C social networking with the one caveat that B2B social networkers are there to do business, whereas consumers use social networks for personal reasons, so B2C brands must tread carefully on their social turf.  In the case of B2C, the term “social media” may serve as a useful reminder to B2C marketers that consumers on social networks are not there in the service of their brands.  On the contrary, B2B marketers should find B2B social networking more relevant and more straightforward than B2C, provided they view it as networking and not advertising.

I also did an experimental search on Google for the term “B2B social networking” and Google decided what I really meant was “B2B social media.”  It’s really incredible how Google handles synonyms. Thanks for nothing Google!

social media - social networking - search

Even Google treats B2B social networking and B2C social media as synonyms

The is the first post in a series designed to help B2B marketers create better B2B social strategies by thinking in terms of “networking” over “media.”  Future posts will tackle the following increasingly complex B2B social networking challenges.

  • Professional networking with B2B social media
  • Social Networking for B2B Sales Enablement
  • Leveraging Social Media for B2B Demand Generation
  • Social Networking for B2B Public Relations

So, stay tuned for more!

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Joel York

Joel York is an Internet software executive and popular SaaS / Cloud blogger at Chaotic Flow and Cloud Ave. He is well known for his work in SaaS / cloud business models, sales and marketing strategy, and financial metrics. Professionally, he has managed global sales and marketing organizations serving over 50 countries, including local offices in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and India. He holds degrees in physics from Caltech and Cornell and received his MBA from the University of Chicago. Joel York is currently VP Marketing at Meltwater Group and Principal at the Internet startup consulting firm affinitos.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Everything run by electricity will eventually be connected to the Internet. Get ahead of the Internet of Things revolution. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Akvelon expert and IoT industry leader Sergey Grebnov provided an educational dive into the world of managing your home, workplace and all the devices they contain with the power of machine-based AI and intelligent Bot services for a completely streamlined experience.
It is of utmost importance for the future success of WebRTC to ensure that interoperability is operational between web browsers and any WebRTC-compliant client. To be guaranteed as operational and effective, interoperability must be tested extensively by establishing WebRTC data and media connections between different web browsers running on different devices and operating systems. In his session at WebRTC Summit at @ThingsExpo, Dr. Alex Gouaillard, CEO and Founder of CoSMo Software, presented ...
DXWorldEXPO LLC, the producer of the world's most influential technology conferences and trade shows has announced the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO "Early Bird Registration" is now open. Register for Full Conference "Gold Pass" ▸ Here (Expo Hall ▸ Here)
Amazon started as an online bookseller 20 years ago. Since then, it has evolved into a technology juggernaut that has disrupted multiple markets and industries and touches many aspects of our lives. It is a relentless technology and business model innovator driving disruption throughout numerous ecosystems. Amazon’s AWS revenues alone are approaching $16B a year making it one of the largest IT companies in the world. With dominant offerings in Cloud, IoT, eCommerce, Big Data, AI, Digital Assista...
Recently, REAN Cloud built a digital concierge for a North Carolina hospital that had observed that most patient call button questions were repetitive. In addition, the paper-based process used to measure patient health metrics was laborious, not in real-time and sometimes error-prone. In their session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sean Finnerty, Executive Director, Practice Lead, Health Care & Life Science at REAN Cloud, and Dr. S.P.T. Krishnan, Principal Architect at REAN Cloud, discussed how they built...
As ridesharing competitors and enhanced services increase, notable changes are occurring in the transportation model. Despite the cost-effective means and flexibility of ridesharing, both drivers and users will need to be aware of the connected environment and how it will impact the ridesharing experience. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Timothy Evavold, Executive Director Automotive at Covisint, discussed key challenges and solutions to powering a ride sharing and/or multimodal model in the age ...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
Detecting internal user threats in the Big Data eco-system is challenging and cumbersome. Many organizations monitor internal usage of the Big Data eco-system using a set of alerts. This is not a scalable process given the increase in the number of alerts with the accelerating growth in data volume and user base. Organizations are increasingly leveraging machine learning to monitor only those data elements that are sensitive and critical, autonomously establish monitoring policies, and to detect...
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, discussed the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dr. Robert Cohen, an economist and senior fellow at the Economic Strategy Institute, presented the findings of a series of six detailed case studies of how large corporations are implementing IoT. The session explored how IoT has improved their economic performance, had major impacts on business models and resulted in impressive ROIs. The companies covered span manufacturing and services firms. He also explored servicification, how manufacturing firms shift from se...
IoT solutions exploit operational data generated by Internet-connected smart “things” for the purpose of gaining operational insight and producing “better outcomes” (for example, create new business models, eliminate unscheduled maintenance, etc.). The explosive proliferation of IoT solutions will result in an exponential growth in the volume of IoT data, precipitating significant Information Governance issues: who owns the IoT data, what are the rights/duties of IoT solutions adopters towards t...
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settl...
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, examined the regulations and provided insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence arou...
Organizations planning enterprise data center consolidation and modernization projects are faced with a challenging, costly reality. Requirements to deploy modern, cloud-native applications simultaneously with traditional client/server applications are almost impossible to achieve with hardware-centric enterprise infrastructure. Compute and network infrastructure are fast moving down a software-defined path, but storage has been a laggard. Until now.
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...
IoT is at the core or many Digital Transformation initiatives with the goal of re-inventing a company's business model. We all agree that collecting relevant IoT data will result in massive amounts of data needing to be stored. However, with the rapid development of IoT devices and ongoing business model transformation, we are not able to predict the volume and growth of IoT data. And with the lack of IoT history, traditional methods of IT and infrastructure planning based on the past do not app...
"Akvelon is a software development company and we also provide consultancy services to folks who are looking to scale or accelerate their engineering roadmaps," explained Jeremiah Mothersell, Marketing Manager at Akvelon, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smart...
IoT is rapidly becoming mainstream as more and more investments are made into the platforms and technology. As this movement continues to expand and gain momentum it creates a massive wall of noise that can be difficult to sift through. Unfortunately, this inevitably makes IoT less approachable for people to get started with and can hamper efforts to integrate this key technology into your own portfolio. There are so many connected products already in place today with many hundreds more on the h...