Tag Archives: Cloud

Salesforce Journey : From CRM to SCRM & becoming a Social Business Strategist Vendor

I attended a Salesforce.com presentation here in Hamburg two months ago and was positively surprised at the genuine way Salesforce Germany presented their company and its (S)CRM-cloud services to the audience.  
Salesforce has been on a shopping spree now for the last two years so I decided to review and log in, hopefully most if not all, the services available to this “Group of companies” they seem to be building at the speed of light! One can also wonder if the integration of all these added services are as swift as Marc Benioff’s proactive, agile and moving forward shopping style! Their latest acquisition is GoInstant a powerful co-browsing interactive Internet tool sharing! GoInstant lets you engage and interact with family members, friends, customers in a “dead-simple & frictionless way”! No software is needed, no downloads!
 
Having an issue with signing documents? Marc Benioff comes to your rescue with Docusign a platform that let you receive and sign any document online on any device thus anywhere! Need to buy a house on the go: No problem, just sign electronically with Docusign and you are ready to go!  Now let’s say you are stuck in Hamburg like me today and would love to spare yourself the exhausting over the pond ride to San Francisco via London or Copenhagen but still need to hold this important meeting while enjoying the commodity of communicating, sharing any form of content via a video conferencing webinar: Here comes Marc Benioff’s help handy again with DimDim, which has also been acquired by Salesforce! 
 
But there are much more tool; here again all of them listed for you with a slide with this slide including the companies’ respective logos:
 
 
1. Buddymedia including Profilebuddy, Reachbuddy, Conversationbuddy, Buybuddy Conversionbuddy, Analytics & Dashboard tools included and allowing user to create and deploy customized interactive content on social network, share the content on the networks, generate engaging conversations, create and manage effective social media campaigns, drive content across social networks and finally analyze your interaction within your network!
2. DimDim: version collaboration, recently acquired by Salesforce, is a video content sharing for webinars & webmeetings of all sorts.
3, Docusign: makes it easy and fast to get your documents signed. Whether you need to close a big sales contract, keep your company trade secrets safe with an NDA or buy a home, Docusign is the easiest, fastest, most secure way to get a signature—anytime, anywhere, on any device.
4. GoInstant: Truly interactive co-browsing is now possible! GoInstant lets us engage and interact with our partners or potential partners in a dead-simple & frictionless way. No clunky software or downloads, just the click of a link and you are sharing in no time!
5. Desk: Ealier known as Assistly is for companies that support a worldwide market and in need of a solution to manage their support communications. Now there is one: with Multilingual Customer Support, you now can support your customers in a language they understand.
6. AppExchange: Need an app? Find, try, and install the right apps—plus find developers and services—for your business.
7. Chatter: Bring the power of social networks inside your company with Chatter—a free, private and secure social network just for your business. With Chatter.com you can connect with your coworkers to work together and be more productive. Updates on the people, projects, and files that you care about most are automatically pushed to you, so you always know what’s going on
8. Data.com: The trusted, proven cloud database for all your social enterprise data.
9. Do.com: Easily create and share tasks, projects, and notes with your team so you always know what needs to get done, no matter where you are
10. Force.com: is the proven cloud platform to automate and extend your business and deliver the social enterprise.
11. Heroku: Build powerful customer apps in Ruby or Java, and instantly deploy and scale them to millions of users.
12. Radian6: Make sense of the social media buzz with social monitoring. Listen, measure, and engage with your customers across the social Web.
13. Remedyforce: was developed by BMC Software and salesforce.com to revolutionize your approach to IT service management. You get ITIL functionality out of the box. Plus you gain peace of mind because it’s built on the Force.com platform.
14. Rypple: Build a results-driven culture with social goals, real-time feedback, open recognition, and easy coaching.
15. Sales Cloud: Give reps and execs what they need to connect with customers and close deals faster.
16. Site.com: Design and publish websites, social pages, and mobile experiences in lightning speed with the first Web CMS in the cloud. It’s built for social, so you can easily add Twitter streams, Facebook likes, and more.
 
Did I forget anything? Please let me know and drop me a note: would also like to read about your personal experiences and thoughts on Salesforce.com and all the acquisitions it has done so far! 
 
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Why “big data”, and properly mining it with predictive Business Intelligence Tools, Should Already Drive Our Business Decisions

The data-mining gold rush goes on, but we are reaching new levels all the time as “big data” brothers grow. Data is everywhere but how do we filter the noise? It is called Business Intelligence“ data mining” with BI clients such as IBM, Teradata, Tableau offering SaaS services and out of he box programs to help us make sense of it all. But make sense of what? Let’s put things into perspective with a couple of facts nicely put together by Business Intelligence vendor DOMOEvery minute of the day, 48 Hours of uploaded YouTube videos, 2.000K Google search queries, 571 websites are created, 700K users share a piece of content on Facebook, 100K  Twits sent. Apple receives 47K App downloads … and the list goes on for much more!

Read this carefully: according Birst’s blogue: “By the end of the decade, given the plummeting prices thanks to Moore’s Law, digital sensors will be almost free and embedded in the world in numbers that will make even those consumer product numbers look tiny. . . and all are going to be compiling data on the world and everything taking place in it. This means that, as busy as the digital world is now, by then we’ll likely be spewing out a year’s worth of today’s data in an hour”..

At the time of their IPO process, Facebook made public that they themselves were already moving 20 terabytes of data every day! Marketers and decision makers need specific tools in order to find  out, as Market Samurai puts it, the mots significant gold-nuggets and bits of strategic information in order to make the appropriate business decisions don’t you think? But as Birst writes on its blog: “As for the old IBM’s and Oracle’s: if they don’t adapt, they will be reduced to becoming niche, high-end data specialists. Who needs a gold pan, especially one made of real gold, when you have to find four nuggets of gold in an Everest of rock and dirt”.

Being able to find the right BI tool, filter an over-crowded data universe and   locate this little “je ne sais quoi” has become a matter of business survival! This tiny gold nugget of data will hopefully be transformed into an invaluable marketing strategy or product novelty, which in turn could change our ever growing business acumen for the better but unfortunately also for the worst!

Which BI tools are you using or considering acquiring for your company or clients? What is your decision making process? How do you pick up a vendor?

3 Core reasons why BYOD is only the crawling baby of Enterprise 2.0 competitiveness

Our highly communicative human needs and digital technologies made available have completely overturned the social landscape of the highly connected world we are leaving in! Most of us possess at least two or three public accounts where we share professional & private information with friends, business contacts but also loved ones: It is striking to see how technology trends are driving businesses & marketing but the real revolution of it all is the “People centric” society we are moving into and as CMO Jonathan Becher from SAP says: “big, large, glass buildings do not buy software People do”! SAP, Oracle & IBM used to be IT centric, where you and I had to “adjust” to “their” ways of telling us what to do; now the same vendors are turning around and becoming social, a lot more social being forced to change from a hierarchical to a “wirearchical” thinking! (“Wirearchy” compliment of John Husband @jonhusband)
 
1. Exploding Mobile data consumption
 
BYOD or what I prefer to call BYO3 because there is more than one device by now (Tablet, notebook & Smartphone) are populating our business world as never before! According to Guillermo Escofer: “Mobile data consumption is to grow tenfold over the next five years” He goes on to say “Mobile phone users will, in 2016, on average consume 6.5 times more video, over 8 times as much music and social media, and nearly 10 times as much games as in 2011 according the latest forecasts from Informa Telecoms & Media”. This growth is staggering and much more is to come upon us but particularly upon our mobile phone carriers with a traffic increase from 3.89 trillion MB in 2011 to 39.75 trillion MB in 2016! 
 
2. Big Data Tsunami just started to lashing out on CXOs and Company leaders
 
BigData is completely changing the way we ought to perceive information. According to Dick Weisinger: “Big Data and the related data analytics market segment are expected to grow 40% over the next three years, taking 2010’s annual market size of US$3.2 billion to $16.9 billion by 2015 according IDC. Analyzing data from the past, Business Intelligence will have to adjust and adapt in order to apply a more predictive strategy thus working closely with IT, marketing, controlling & above all customers in order to analyze present trends but also foresee the future as precisely as possible. We all have heard of new companies such as ClouderaKarmasphere or Datammer. All those business are doing much more than “Changing the world one Petabyte at a time”. According  Cloudera we have now 10 times more data than 3 years ago, but “do we know 10 times more about our businesses”? This is a fair and relevant question: How do we store, process, analyze all this in-real-time-data and integrate it seamlessly in all our IT structures and transform it into a predictive analytic-tool made available to our mobile “BYODed” workforce? How are we going to make sense of all this data and synthesize it for our customer’s needs, benefit & superb before and after sales-service? Customer’s virtuous experience circle of excellency must go on right? 
 
 
3. Predictive Data and what it means for the future of our companies
 
Big data is become the limitless marketing’s information blood-flow not only overwhelming Generation X, Echo Boomers or Millenniu ms but especially baby-boomers: a tsunami of “Velocity, Variety and Volume” completely crushing and overtaking our traditional “Old European” hierarchical IT platforms mentalities right? Companies like Apache and their Hadoop approach could increasingly 
become fundamental open source platforms for many companies’ CXOs, who’d better worry about “destroying silo hierarchical” prevailing mentalities as swiftly as possible and start leveraging company crowd-sourcing talents! Time has come to seamlessly integrate Cloud, Storage, Business intelligence, Security IT, Management Software, CRM, SCRM, Operating Systems, Intranet & Extranet to what better place than the Cloud? 
Bigdata forces us to replace our traditional hierarchical management approach to a more wirearchical one: thanks to Jon Husband’s (@jonhusband) fascinating term that macro-captures so well our Enterprise 2.0 trends! Furthermore Charles Zedlewsky Cloudera VP of Products reports that it is not unusual for companies to sift through 100 to 500 Terabytes of data on a daily basis! Will we be soon speaking in yottabyte, zettaby, exabyte or most likely petabyte? How do we make sense of all of this?  BigData “crystallizes as Extreme Information Management Challenges” as Gartner presents it in  a very interesting Cloudera webinar! Big Data comes mostly from “Enterprise Dark Data”: an amount of data which could be coined “unstructured data”, while adding partner, employees, customers, suppliers, public information, social Media and much more!
 
Interesting to notice what BT SecureThinking blog reports in its latest article: “BYOD — it’s now ‘when’ not ‘if’, and China’s leading the way: An incredible 92 per cent of employees in China can take advantage of BYOD, but in the UK less than a third can do this — what does China know that we don’t?” This is again where the traditional “IT Door Keeper” blocs and stops progress. Jeff Schmidt, head of security technology for BT Global Services cuts to the chase: “the security team has to be seen as the enabler not the barrier”! According to Garner, “85% of Fortune 500 organizations will be unable to exploit big data for competitive advantage & Business analytics needs will drive 70% of investments in the expansion and modernization of information infrastructure”
What are your challenges with big data and how do you see the future of dataholic marketers in the upcoming months and years?
 
In my next blog we will look at predictive data and the challenges and chances connected to companies 
 

12 Reasons Why Enterprises Will Be Forced To Bring More Cloud Computing Into Their Own IT Environment

Cloud is more than ever the 2012 buzzword for both CIOs and CMOs! Your business wants to stay afloat?  Read on and prepare your company for your IT’s mandatory creative disruptive reconstruction!

1. Cloud is nothing new: as a matter of fact there is a suggested one billion users using cloud-based applications such as Gmail, Hotmail & Yahoo without being completely aware of it!

2. Social Media Platforms: It would be redundant to remind ourselves that all our social media pictures, music and favorites are now saved on the cloud! Think of services such as Flickr or Instagram to name just two!

3. Free private cloud “hard disk” space for everyone, which should be very dear to some of my German friends:  Google Docs: 1GB for non Google documents; ITunes’ ICloud: 2GB; Dropbox: 2GB; Box: 5GB formerly Box.net and its handy Microsoft Office extension allowing user to save directly to the cloud;  4shared: 10GB; Microsoft’s Sky Drive: 25GB; Adrive: 50GB a mega vault  recommended for bulk pictures , sound and video files.

4. Giant PC software manufacturer Microsoft wanting to compete with Google’s array of free online applications and finally moving up its fabulous Office Suite to the cloud: Office365, a secure anywhere access to professional email, shared calendars, IM, video conferencing and document collaboration.

5. PC manufacturer Dell reinventing itself and is on its way to becoming a Cloud Company having made lots of acquisitions in the last months and weeks: Dell already acquired Make Technologies (Software solution relieving organization from legacy application and platforms), Wyse giving them an entry into thin computing and mobile technology,  Sonicwall a leader in advanced network security and data protection, Clerity  a provider of mainframe migration, modernization and optimization solutions.

6. CRM Cloud Company Salesforce has also been shopping lately: already acquired Social Media marketers’ well known Radiant6  and recently Heroku a cloud application platform and Ripple  a telecommunication client providing chat and conference services throughout the US and obviously moving from traditional CRM to Social CRM aka SCRM.

7. Cloud giant Amazon with its Amazon Cloud Drive: 5GB of free private online storage or AWS (Amazon’s Web Services) providing professional users with free cloud storage space thus assisting them to access data at any time from everywhere and on every imaginable platforms or device!

8. Technology Commercialization:  the challenge “par excellence” for IT leaders struggling to integrate BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) to the existing IT structure! If companies want to attract savvy workers, management will have to integrate the smart-phones and tablets to 21st century E-Portfolio workforce!

9. API-fication From Applications to Apps: quote from Gartner’s website:

“When the way that applications are designed, delivered and consumed by users changes, it has a dramatic impact on all other aspects of the market. These changes will have a profound impact on how applications are written and managed in corporate environments. They also raise the prospect of greater cross-platform portability as small user experience (UX) apps are used to adjust a server- or cloud-resident application to the unique characteristics of a specific device or scenario. One application can now be exposed in multiple ways and used in varying situations by the user.”

10. Mobile Technology: unimaginable to plan a website which is not Multiplatform ready! Computer patrons want to access their data everywhere and at anytime and from all sort of device!  The Cisco report also predicts that:

“Smartphone traffic will grow by a factor of 50 between now and 2016. a) The network traffic from tablets alone will grow more than 62 times between now and 2016. b) Mobile video will take up 71 percent of 2016 mobile data traffic. c) Service providers will increasingly look to offload mobile Internet traffic to fixed or Wi/Fi networks. d) There will be 5 billion tablet devices by 2016. Each mobile user will consume more than a gigabyte of mobile data each month in 2016, compared to .5 percent who did so in 2011.”

11. Mobile Payment systems have been developing with recent Silicon starters such as Square already followed by Paypal and others will obviously come

12. Ambient Social Networking: one of Austin’s 2012 SXSW buzz words! Ambient Social Networking instead of connecting people to places such as Foursquare connects people to people in real time including startups such as Catherine Fake’s Pinwheel and upcoming companies Highlight, Sonar, Glancee,  Gindr , Banjo or Discover Circle!  

More and more IaaS, PaaS and consequently SaaS will have to be included into IT portfolios in order for companies to fully harness social marketing and keep up with real time consumer conversation. Social networking within companies itself has become a priority for astute entrepreneurs searching for social enterprising tools such as Yammer and exploit the power and wealth of knowledge within their own group, pro actively addressing the SILO mentality, which stifles  mobility, creativity and innovation!

When are you moving to the cloud? What is your company undertaking this year to make things more “cloudy”? Let me know and let’s update these points together because as the cloud progresses so will this list!

Constructive IT times to you with partly sunny but cloudy days ahead and wishing you a wonderful Passover Season! 

5 Keys Areas to Proactively Manage Your Business

Today’s corporations are working hard to keep up! Is this a wonder? Strategy curation just like content and information, is crucial for the development of (y)our corporate vision! Vision 2020 challenges your present accomplishments in order to increase turnover, reduce costs, improve efficiencies and set up action plans while ratifying priorities! In this “hyperlinked” and hyper-connected society both existing businesses and “start-ups” have to rapidly adapt! Every mobile user is not only a potential buyer but a reporter having the power to promote or demote!

Vision 2020 assists you into developing your hyperlinked corporate strategy with the utmost priority of increasing sales, productivity and real time communication while concentrating on 5 key areas:

1. Social Culture: Establishing a social culture in a 21st century company is obligatory! Social Media dialogue with engaging customers or prospects (positive or negative) ought to be monitored and answered in real time! US Business Think Geek promotes a “one head one heart” social culture but also states: “We need to hire for passion and train for skills” because it is impossible to have a board meeting every time a negative comment pops up on Facebook or Google+. Zappos exemplifies social culture in a remarkable way with CEO Tony Hsieh Zappos’ Culture Book and how Tony defines branding: “Your Culture Is Your Brand”!

2. Social Media Strategy: in the 1870s Graham bell developed the Telephone; the Facsimile was invented by Giovanni Caselli in 1865 before the telephone even existed! Email came in the early 1980s. Mobile phone was invented by Motorola in 1973 and first commercialized in 1983. Social Media as a web-based and mobile technology has literally transformed our daily communication into an interactive dialogue also promoting “user-generated-content including (micro) blogging (twitter), content community sites (Vimeo YouTube), social networking sites (Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest) and finally location-based social networking (Foursquare or Pinwheel). Social Media demands to be fully integrated into the marketing strategy of a company! It is a business prerequisite to properly roll out inbound marketing tools, foster brand awareness and develop communication between brand, prospects and customers and transform followers into passionate brand advocates.

3. Inbound Marketing: Over are the days where companies could blast marketing emails, brochures and fliers to prospects and customers! Traditional outbound marketing (buy, pay & bug) is in the process of being replaced by inbound or content marketing. Sharing resources, vlogging, blogging, EBooks, Earticles, whitepapers and all together relevant curated information not only attracts customers but promotes, develops and solidifies brand loyalty.

4. Cloud Computing (IaaS): As wireless devices (smart phones & tablets) commercialization becomes a pressing IT issue, mobile technology (Dropbox, Box) and mobile payment systems (Square & Paypal) develop, IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), PaaS (Platform as a Service) and SaaS (Software as a Service: SAP, Oracle, IBM or Salesforce) become a matter of speed if IT wants to timely react in our dynamic cloud environments! Modern CIO needs to budget these areas if companies want to keep afloat and compete with Internet Cloud Giants such as Amazon!

5. Mobile Technology: Tablets & Smartphone including the broadband development have both created a Networked Society. Wearable computing is already here; connecting home to adjust temperature via your smart phone is a given! In 2012 windows will sell tablets while 4G networks will develop and grow! Companies like Square & Paypal already compete for mobile payment systems market shares! Commercialization of mobile computing hardware will merge private and professional life into each other whereby workforce won’t have to physically be at work in order to produce and connect. This is a nightmare for IT leaders as they strive to move additional parts of the traditional IT to IaaS (cloud computing) while constantly worrying about data safety!