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A little social media marketing helps EMC Break Records

EMC Breaks Records

Last week, in case you hadn’t heard, EMC launched a record 41 products. You can view the Record Breakers simulcast replay on EMC.com, if you’d like. But, I’m not here to talk to you too much about the product side of things – I’m no product expert although I think that there are some awesome new products out there from EMC. Instead, I’d like to talk to you about the social media side of things that went very well, and that I’m extremely proud of. It’s also a demonstration of how well things can go when you have the passion and drive to move them forward, budget or no budget.

How things came together

Pre-Event: January 3 – January 17

First off, we started out with a direct mailer of “broken record puzzles” to key folks around the industry. The feedback was positive on these, and the intent was twofold – 1) Invite them personally to the Record Breaking event on January 18th, and 2) Encourage them to tell others about it in the hopes that their networks would also be interested in the event and accompanying announcements – this is WOM (word of mouth) marketing at its best! (Photos courtesy of Michael Cote)

Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5327583777/in/photostream/   Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5327584807/in/photostream/   Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5328235196/in/photostream/   Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5328235628/in/photostream/

EMCCorp Facebook Challenge Close on the heels of the puzzle, we launched a nifty little Facebook game to drive awareness and encourage fans (yes, I still call them fans!) to break their own records! It’s still up there if you’d like to give it a whirl. Warning: It’s rather addictive!

At the same time, we launched a couple of viral videos on EMC’s YouTube channel, which have accumulated over 700,000 views between the two of them, and successfully drove registration to the EMC event.

All this time, we were also tweeting about the event using a common hashtag - #EMCBreaksRecords - to drive awareness, registration and buzz. We were sharing the videos, making folks aware of the game, and also tweeting world records that had been previously broken – asking them in the form of questions in the morning to gain responses, and giving the answer at the end of the day.

I should also mention a practice that has worked very well for us to keep EMC employees around the globe in the loop of our activities in the social space, as well as enable them to join in on the activities in a consistent and measurable fashion – “social media activation kits.” These kits contain a high level overview of the program at hand, as well as links to content and collateral (both traditional and social), tracking links, hashtags, suggested tweets/posts, social hubs and just about anything else you can imagine to participate in a truly organized social marketing campaign. These are hosted the internal employee community that I used to manage, EMC|ONE – now thoughtfully managed and curated by our own community manager extraordinaire, Michelle Lavoie. Michelle was kind enough to host a front and center widget on the home page to drive further awareness of the activation kit, as well as the overall social media plan for the launch.

In-Event: January 18

The tweeting continued around things that were going on during the simulcast – EMC actually arranged to break a couple of world records with the folks at Guinness during the event. I’ve shared the videos of each within this post – check them out.

 

#EMCBreaksRecords The tweeting during the event also resulted in EMC’s first ever trending topic on Twitter across the entire United States. Last may, we reached trending in Boston for EMC World 2010 – but this is the first U.S.-wide achievement – so you could say we set a record in social media, as well!

EMC Community Network Also, for the first time ever, we held a live Q&A session within our own EMC Community Network. Envisioned and championed by the folks on the ECN team – this was the company’s first ever live simultaneous Q&A session – so another record for us, in a matter of speaking!

Also, the day of launch, our super stellar EMC Blogroll of subject matter experts along with other industry folks produced over 40 blog posts released on the day of the launch, further generating buzz, awareness and affinity for the EMC brand.

So what does all of this mean?

Well, at the end of the day, it means that social media engagement played a critical role in generating awareness and buzz about EMC’s most important and most impactful launch!! Here are a few key statistics and milestones:

  • 1,000+ Broken Records Mailed out to key influencers >> generated buzz, awareness, brand affinity, and ultimately registrations for the event
  • EMC’s first Facebook game generated 80,000+ tab views and over 6,500 new fans of the EMC Facebook page >> generated buzz, awareness, brand affinity, event registration and increased our social audience and the potential realm of our future conversations with these enthusiasts
  • Thanks to our viral videos, EMC’s YouTube channel was ranked #55 in the Gurus Category on YouTube >> increased awareness, buzz, brand affinity, and free advertising
  • The #EMCBreaksRecords hashtag achieved trending status across the entire U.S. during the event on January 18th with over 1,500 tweets across multiple geographies around the world! >> increased awareness, buzz generation, brand affinity, and free advertising
  • The EMC Community Network attracted new users to the community with the live Q&A –in fact, 42% of the visitors that day were new users to the ECN! >> Increased awareness, affinity and exclusive access to the subject matter experts people wanted to talk to the most!
  • EMC bloggers, as well as other bloggers generated over 40 blog posts on the launch >> generating buzz, awareness, and access to the SMEs on the topics surrounding the launch, as well as the products announced.
  • All of this amounted to thousands of mentions in the social space – blogs, tweets, Facebook posts and shares, and industry articles amount to an uber-magnified awareness of EMC and the company’s offerings, messaging and plans for 2011. Heck, even our stock price reached one of the highest points in the past 10 years.

Up Next?

With all that activity and success, you might be wondering what’s next – how will we keep the momentum going?

RBTour1

The EMC Record Breaking Tour, of course! You’ll be able to follow the tour drivers around the world as they make stops, break records, and demo all the latest and greatest from EMC! You can follow the drivers on the Twitter account we set up for them, and keep an eye out for the Record Breaking Tour blog coming soon! There will also be Facebook components, and an invite to all EMC customers, partners, and enthusiasts to share their own record breaking moments!

I’m looking forward to seeing what this next chapter holds!

 

 

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Jamie 

Blog: www.jamiepappas.com

Twitter: @JamiePappas

 

 

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Tips for Corporate Bloggers

Blogging1 This past week at EMC World, I had the pleasure of chatting with Linda Bock of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, as she interviewed Len Devanna and me about social media at EMC and how we’re using it as a company, how it’s transformed our culture, and what benefits we’re getting out of the tools we’re using.

One of the topics that came to the forefront of the conversation is blogging and how EMC views blogging. Given that we were sitting in the Bloggers Lounge at EMC World, it was pretty clear that we’re all for blogging. In fact, we love nothing more than enabling our employees to have a voice, whether it’s an internal blog on EMC|ONE (the enterprise community I used to manage) or externally via their own blog, such as those listed on our Community Page on EMC.com.

One of the things that Linda asked me to do was provide her with a list of five tips for corporate bloggers, but I thought I’d take an opportunity to do a bit of deeper dive, along with a blog post of my own on the topic.

Blogs are a great way for employees, companies, customers – people – to have a voice in their organization and write about topics they find interesting and are passionate about.

For those of us that love writing, they’re also a great way for us to share our thoughts and become even better writers and communicators. I love blogging because it helps me to write things out and think them through thoroughly. Blogs also offer a nice reference point for past thoughts and perspectives.

From a conversation and awareness perspective, blogs make you easier to find, or more visible. Most blogs are indexed by Google, which means you’re searchable, and people can more easily enter into a conversation with you. You have the ability to syndicate your content out via your social networks (think Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) and the ability to broaden your network and reach more people who share the same interests and passions as you do, as well as engage in a healthy dialogue and debate once in a while.

If you’re considering beginning your own blog, I suggest you answer the following questions:

  1. What are you trying to accomplish with your blog? List your objectives and keep them in mind when writing. And be flexible with your objectives – as your interests change, you objectives might change along with them.
  2. Who is your audience? Have your audience in mind when writing. Who are trying to communicate with and how do you want them to interact with you?
  3. How are you going to handle comments? Think about how and when you’ll respond to comments. And make sure that you do respond to comments – you should be participating in the discussion!
  4. What are you passionate about? Write about it! Don’t pick something that you’re not really interested in to blog about. It will not be fun, it will not be productive, and ultimately, you’ll get sick of it and quit. Stick with things that are interesting to you and the blogging will come more naturally.
  5. How much time can you commit? Set reasonable expectations for yourself. There is no right or wrong amount of time – whatever you’re comfortable with and committed to is the right amount of time. Set expectations with your readers and stick to them. You’ll develop a trusting relationship with them that will keep them coming back.

If you’ve already got a blog and are interested in growing your audience or looking for new ideas to engage your audience, think about this:

  1. Have you set aside time to participate in your own blog and the conversations it sparks? Remember that your readers want to converse and engage with you – are you there for them?
  2. Are there influential voices already out there discussing your topic? Be sure to join in their conversations, too. Don’t make it a one-way street.
  3. Are you trying to have a conversation or just talking? Are you asking questions of your audience? Are you answering questions of you?
  4. Are you listening? What is your audience telling you based on their comments? What can you learn from your audience?
  5. Are you showing your audience love? Show that you value your readers by engaging with them, interacting with them, and answering their questions. You can even invite one of them to be a “guest” blogger now and then.

 

Finally, if you’re wondering how blogging can help you or your company, consider these success stories:

  1. Blogging provides a platform to share your opinions, expertise and your point of view with the world, generating exposure for yourself and your company
  2. Blogging provides you a direct connection to your audience and their thoughts, feelings and sentiments on any given topic
  3. Blogging enables you to establish a thought leadership presence
  4. Blogging enables you to drive awareness around a variety of events and activities, including product launches, conferences, new solutions, etc.
  5. Blogging enables you to build new strategic partnerships and connections throughout the world
  6. Blogging enables you to identify and network with influencers and like-minded professionals
  7. Blogging enables you to gain a competitive advantage by providing honest insight into your viewpoint and expertise, as well as showcasing listening and feedback mechanisms
  8. Blogging enables you to get your message out to many people fast by providing syndication opportunities and ease of access around the world
  9. Blogging enables you to bring in new leads by providing an honest viewpoint about the organization and its portfolio of offerings
  10. Blogging enables you to recruit new employee candidates by providing insight into the organization, as well as a human element to the people that work there

 

Blog So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and get blogging! Join the fun!

 

Cheers,

Jamie

 

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Jamie

Blog: www.jamiepappas.com

Twitter: twitter.com/jamiepappas

 


 

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Live from EMC World 2010 - updated with #emcworld blogs

Bl We've had a great week here at EMC World 2010at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center right in the heart of Boston.

In case you've missed the fun, here's a listing of the bloggers covering the event, many blogging right from our own Bloggers Lounge on the Exhibition floor:


LOTS OF NEW BLOGS ADDED!

 

 

Alexandra Larsson

Next stop: EMC World 2010 in Boston

EMC World 2010: DFS Real World Examples, Best Practices

EMC World 2010: At Blogger’s Lounge

EMC World 2010: My presentation around using Documentum in a SOA-platform

EMC World 2010: There is an App for Documentum now (iPhone OS)

EMC World 2010: Customizations of Centerstage

EMC World 2010: What is New and What’s Coming in Documentum xCP?

With Jamie Pappas in the Blogger’s Lounge at EMC World 2010

EMC World 2010: A moment at Momentum with Me

EMC World 2010: Chiming in with Word of Pie about the future of Documentum

 

Beth Pariseau

EMC World Day 2: Backup and Unisphere - Storage Soup

EMC World Reporter’s Notebook and Photos - Storage Soup

 

Carlo Costanzo

How to remove CRR or CDP in RecoverPoint

EMC World 2010 : What’s New for the Celerra

EMC World Session: Data Domain Best Practices for VMware

EMC World 2010 – The Journey to the Private Cloud.

 

Chad Sakac aka VirtualGeek

The calm before the EMC World storm… 

EMC World – thank you all!

 

Charles Hood

EMC World 2010 – Arrival Day

EMC World 2010 Update – Days 1 & 2

EMC World 2010 – Day 3 and Wrap-up


Christopher Kusek

EMCWorld Day 0 – At a glance, revisited, and Andy you’re a star #emcworld

EMC and AOL use VPLEX to reduce complexity in migrations, eliminating downtime!

EMCWorld Day 1 – Aching feet, dead phones, Brocade and what heaven is like!

EMCWorld Day 2 – Social Media, Roxanne, Sessions, Karaoke!

 

Chuck Hollis

Redefining RAID

The Real Rock Stars of EMC World: EMC IT

Building The Atmos Storage Ecosystem

Mid-tier Storage Accelerates

Live From EMC World! 

Helping To Chart The Course Of Private Clouds

EMC World 2010 -- A Retrospective

 

Colin Steele

Joe Tucci’s EMC World Q&A highlights 


Dave Hurst aka The Super Dave

Brave New Matrix

EMC World Day 1 – Preshow

There’s Gold In Them There Words!

Information Intelligence


Devang Panchigar aka StorageNerve

EMC World 2010: It was an exciting week

EMC World 2010: Keynotes and The Cube

 

Don Wake

Emulex at EMC World: Convergence, Security and the "Iron Man" HBA

 

Edward Haletky

VPLEX – The buzz from EMC World


Gina Minks

EMC World 2010 - The Wrap Up Post

One of the neatest things I did at EMC World

 

Hugh Griffin

EMC World Day 1

EMC World 2010 Day 2



Jennifer Gargis

Countdown to EMC World 2010

EMC World Day 2: Blogging through the Private Cloud

Going Strong at EMC World 2010

Dell’s Wild Ride at EMC World 2010 – Wrap Up

 

John Troyer
EMC World day 1 - VPLEX, Joe Tucci & Michael Capellas drop by, and an interesting private cloud TAB

EMC World 2010 - let's talk private cloud - live streaming

 

Kim Wisniewski aka kimputa
EMC World 2010 Prologue  

EMC World Wrapup – Day I

EMC World Day II – Building the Grid of the Universe (GoTU)

The EMC World Underground

User Experience and the AtmoSphere

EMC World 2010 Epilogue

 

Kiwi Si

EMC World – Boston 2010. Sunday Evening Photos 

 

Laurence Hart aka Word of Pie
EMC World 2010: DFS Real World Examples & Best Practices

EMC World 2010: Documentum Powering a SOA-Platform for an Operational Military HQ

EMC World 2010: Mark Lewis Keynote

EMC World 2010: Using Media WorkSpace for Collaboration and Review of Documents

EMC World 2010: EMC xCP / Documentum Performance, Scalability, and Sizing – Part 1

EMC World 2010: Documentum Architecture Overview

EMC World 2010: The Information Advantage for Solving Today’s Business Problems 

 

Len Devanna

Live from the Bloggers Lounge at EMC World

Talking Culture at EMC World with Joe Tucci and Jack Mollen

Talking Social @ EMC World 2010

 

Luigi Danakos

What is EMC World?…To me…

Are you following me? EMCWorld 2010 Day1

Bloggers Lounge EMC World 2010 Day 2

Emulex isn’t what I thought it was..

Fun with a shirt! EMC World 2010

Little things made EMC World 2010 The-Shanizzle

 

Mark Lewis

Episode 91: EMC World 2010 - The Birth of the Information Intelligence Group

 

Mark Twomey aka Storagezilla

This is VPLEX

Notes on Convergence

Notes on the team

 

Michael Trafton

EMC World 2010 - Day One Initial Thoughts

 

Mr. Denny 

EMC World Day -1

EMC World Day 0

EMC World Day 1

EMC World Day 2

EMC World Day 3

EMC World Day 4 (The final day)


Paul Dyck

Observations from EMC World

 

Polly Pearson

Brand Power. Big in Beantown with EMC in EMCWorld

Storytelling in Tech Land; Big Business Equals Human Beings (interview with Jack Mollen by Len Devanna)

Varsity Web 2.0 Behavior from a Big Brand (interview with Jeremy Burton)

The Courting of a CEO -- Michael Capellas on Joining EMC and Cisco

How Dusty is Your People Strategy? (Joe Tucci's live session with The Cube & the Employee Quarterly at EMC World)

What Good Social Media at a Company Looks Like, IMHO (Len Devanna, Jamie Pappas & Thom Lytle on The Cube)


Ray Lucchesi

VPLEX surfaces at EMCWorld

FAST, Cache & Boost – Day2@EMCWorld 2010

 

Rich Bocchinfuso

EMC World 2010 Initial Thoughts

Intro to Unisphere session at #emcworld

CLARiiON FAST Cache #emcworld

EMC World 2010 – Day 3 Update #emcworld

VMotion Over Distance with EMC VPLEX

 

Rob Enderle

EMC World Boston: The Death of Tape and What’s More Important than Technology

EMC World Wrap: New Corporate Structures, Listening to Customers

 

Robin Harris aka StorageMojo

StorageMojo @ EMC World 

 

Stuart Miniman

Joe Tucci Joins the Blogging at EMC World 2010

EMC World Cubed: 30 minutes of video on Converged Networking

 

TechTarget

EMC conference recap: EMC World 2010



Check out the photos from attendees, too!



Or, if video is your thing, check out the summary vids from each day:


 



 



 


 

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Social Media is key at the 100 largest Fortune 500 Companies - A Burson-Marsteller White Paper Review

Burson-Marsteller White Paper "The Global Social Media Check Up"I read a very interesting white paper this week “The Global Social Media Check Up” by the folks at Burson-Marsteller, a global PR and communications firm, regarding a study they did assessing social media use at the largest 100 companies in the Fortune Global 500 index, and it was very good news indeed, which is why I’m sharing it with you!

 

They start off with a quote that I completely agree with: 

Start_quote It is time for companies to embrace, not fear, emerging media. There is no other way to remain competitive.

Global Companies Using at Least One Social Media Platform - Burson-Marsteller "Global Social Media Check-up" Their study takes a look at these companies use of specific social media tools – Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and corporate blogs – all things that I evangelize for and develop use cases, best practices and guiding principles at EMC, so this study was of keen interest to me.  Amazingly, of the companies included in the study, a whopping 79% of them are engaging in at least one of the social media platforms mentioned previously!  

Percentage of Fortune Global 100 Companies with... - Burson-Marsteller "Global Social Media Check-up"


Corporate Blogs

What did surprise me about the study was that only one-third of the companies were using corporate blogs to reach their audience. This number was much lower than my expectation for blog engagement, although if one takes into account the time and effort commitment to sustain a blog, it’s not such a surprise. Still, I was thinking the number would be at least 50% of companies, if not higher. The other surprising corporate blog statistic for me was that the utilization of corporate blogs is higher in the Asia-Pacific companies at a rate of 50% of the companies having blogs, than the 34% in the U.S.

Corporate Responses and Retweets - Burson-Marsteller "Global Social Media Check-up" Twitter

Twice as many companies overall use Twitter to engage with their audience, which is not all that surprising to me, as Twitter is relatively easy to sustain given character limits – short and sweet is easier than what’s expected (although certainly not required) for lengthier blog posts.

The beautiful revelation about Twitter use is that companies are responding and retweeting others and engaging in genuine dialogue. It’s all too easy for a company to simply use Twitter as nothing more than another broadcast channel without actually retweeting or engaging with their followers, but the study shows that is not the case with these companies! Yay!

What I would like to see across these companies is a more balanced reciprocation of following those that follow them on Twitter. In their summary deck (embedded below) Burson-Marsteller states “[companies] are taking the initiative to follow others, building a more symbiotic relationship with Twitter users” but I do not think that companies are where they need to be with this. Unfortunately, the companies were following less than half of the people that were following them, which still shows a bit of a bias towards a one-way relationship – a huge opportunity for improvement, in my opinion.

The neat thing is that of the companies using Twitter, forty-two percent of them are being tweeted about by others, so there’s clearly an interest in engaging with companies on Twitter.

Start_quote The study demonstrates… that simple, responsible engagement in social media can reap big rewards in building relationships with stakeholders online.

Facebook Fans - Burson-Marsteller "Global Social Media Check-up" Facebook

Over half of the companies surveyed are using Facebook Fan Pages as a way to engage with their audiences. Again, I would have thought this number would be higher, but what it tells me is that Facebook is still facing the challenge of overcoming the perception that it’s not a business tool or is “just for college kids.”

What is neat to see though, is that 43% of the Fan Pages out there had posts from fans – so when the fans are there, nearly half of them are posting, and considering that the fan page average for these companies is 40,884 (wow!) – this is total goodness!

Companies with YouTube Channels - Burson-Marsteller "Global Social Media Check-up" YouTube

YouTube is a popular venue for sharing content and engaging with stakeholders, with 50% of the companies having a YouTube channel and several hundred subscribers. Shockingly, the average number of views per channel is nearly 39,000 and over half of the channels have comments from viewers! That’s much higher than I would have guessed, and tells me that we are not utilizing YouTube as much as should be at EMC.

Renegade Accounts

I have to admit that I laughed out loud when I saw that most companies have multiple accounts on each of the social media tools, but that the averages were so much lower than our totals on each of these platforms – 4.2 Twitter accounts, 2.1 Facebook Fan Pages, 1.6 YouTube Channels, and 4.2 corporate blogs. Oh, how I wish that our numbers were that low!

The study also indicates that it was sometimes hard to determine which accounts were “official” accounts versus which accounts were rogue accounts. As Burson-Marsteller indicates, this is incredibly problematic for someone looking to engage with a company on any social platform and encountering many accounts, some even duplicate – the risk is that the person could get misinformation from a non-official account and/or just get frustrated and not try to engage with the company via social media. This only serves to re-emphasize the importance of the work we’re doing now to step back, inventory, and evaluate all of our existing social media presences and re-engineer where we can.

In conclusion

I found this study to be very interesting and informative, and I’d recommend it for anyone wanting a better view into the social media activities of the largest Fortune Global 500. It was a great way to sanity check my own thinking, as well as reinforce existing areas in need of much attention and improvement.

While only 20% of the companies are using all 4 platforms simultaneously, I still think this number is full of hope. There is opportunity to integrate the platforms with other social media platforms, as well as more traditional forms of media, such as press releases. Our strategy from the beginning has always been that social media activities cannot live in isolation, and this study supports our strategy:

Start_quote No single social media tool can stand on its own. For a company that wants a truly effective communications strategy, leveraging multiple social media tools for their individual strengths is required.

The end of the white paper offers invaluable advice that all companies thinking of engaging in social media must take into account to be successful:

  1. Monitor your own – and competitors – social media presence
  2. Get top management “buy in”
  3. Develop a social media strategy
  4. Define and publish a social media policy
  5. Develop internal structure
  6. Contribute to the community
  7. Participate in the good times and in bad
  8. Be prepared to respond in real time
  9. Beyond monitoring, measure the impact of social media engagement

Check out their summary slide deck (full report linked above):

Global Social Media Checkup

View more presentations from Burson-Marsteller.

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EMC Enterprise 2.0 Case Study Webinar

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of sharing EMC's Enterprise 2.0 story with a large group of webinar attendees.

I tried to cover the whole gammit of topics from our journey. They include:

  • Tools and Milestones
  • The Business Case
  • Getting Buy-In
  • Dealing with the Critics
  • User Adoption
  • Moderation Process
  • Creating Communities
  • Training and Education
  • Benefits
  • Defining Success
  • EMC's Key Ingredients

Here are the slides from the presentation. I'll post audio as soon as it's available.

EMC Enterprise 2.0 Case Study Webinar for The 2.0 Adoption Council & Newsgator

View more presentations from Jamie Pappas.

Thanks to EMC (of course!) for giving me such a great job that has enabled me to create such a wonderful story to tell! Thanks also to The 2.0 Adoption Council for all of the wonderful opportunities they provide, including being able to participate in webinars such as this one! Thanks to Newsgator for sponsoring The 2.0 Adoption Council webinar series, and providing the opportunity for many of us to share our stories. Finally, thanks to Jive Software for their great product and supporting us along our journey.

Check out the first two webinar presentations, as well!

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The "Before" (Click for audio replay)

Featuring Bruce Galinsky from MetLife, Anu Elmer from Swiss Re, and Greg Lowe from Alcatel-Lucent

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The Before

View more presentations from The 2.0 Adoption Council.

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The "After"  (Click for audio replay)

Featuring Claire Flanagan from CSC, Megan Murray from Booz Allen Hamilton, and Kevin Jones from Dynetics

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The After

View more presentations from The 2.0 Adoption Council.

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Please, share your journey - have you seen some common themes? Some common challenges? Some common success?

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Happy Birthday to My Friend, the Web! #20Years

Happy Birthday! The web is something that many of us take for granted now. We don’t even think twice about popping open a browser page and reading about the latest news, weather, sports, fitness, parenting, or whatever our passion. If you can think of it - chances are good that you can find it on the web. In fact, I’d be curious as to what there might be anymore that you can’t find on the web.

I have always been fascinated by the web. I remember the stars in my eyes the first time I was able to search on something and find information about that topic from people and sources I’d never even heard of before. It was amazing! And for me, it still is.

 ON MagazineThat’s why I found the current issue of ON Magazine to be fascinating! You see, the entire issue is focused on the web and its 20th birthday!  Many of us, in fact, here at EMC have found this issue to be one that resonates deeply with us. Our Blogging Corps has each been taking a turn in sharing our own thoughts on the questions posed by ON Magazine. I was tagged by fellow blogger and EMCer David Spencer, so here are my thoughts…

 

How has the web changed my life?

I can’t even begin to list all of the ways that the web has changed my life. I’m on the web every single day. It’s hard to imagine a day without it, to be honest.  Does that qualify as an addiction?

The first obvious thing that comes to mind is the fact that I have chosen a career focused on the web. Every single day I use the web to communicate with others, both inside and outside of EMC, about what I’m working on. Part of my responsibility is to be on the social web, to understand it, and to teach others how to use it while also developing best practices, use cases, and guidelines for participation that help people to understand how to use it to represent EMC well.

Stargate SG-1 The second thing that comes to mind is the ease with which I can access information. As a Stargate SG-1 fan, I like Chris Brogan’s analogy of “gate jumping” in this issue. The web allows me to jump around and view what I’m interested in, for as long as I’m interested in it and then move along and check out the next thing. As I said before – you can search on and find information on just about anything you can possibly think of. I don’t have phone books in my house any longer because I look everything up on the web. I watch news, TV shows, and movies on the web. I have even sold some (not all because some books I still love to hold in my hands while reading them) of my books that are available on the web. Every one of my research papers for my MBA had more web resources sited that physical books and periodicals. I even turned in my papers for my degree online.

I’m trying to find a facet of my life that the web doesn’t touch these days…We planned our wedding in Maui online down to the very last item. We shopped for our condo online, researched neighborhoods and communities online, even applied for our mortgage online – I never even met our mortgage broker in person. I shopped for my car online, and car insurance and a local dealer near where I lived for service. I print grocery coupons from online, and view the weekly sales ads online. I subscribe to newsletters that I’m interested in online and receive them via email. I share photos, videos and updates with colleagues and our family online. If I’m presenting at an event, my family can often view it online as though they were there. I even design and order our holiday cards online.

How has the web changed business and society?

In addition to all of the above examples of information accessibility which have certainly impacted business and society in general, there are businesses around now that are strictly online. They don’t even have a physical office that people go in to every day – business is conducted remotely via email, web meetings, phone calls, and even telepresence. Tools like Skype allow me to view and chat with anyone in the world with an internet connection and an account for free, which is still an amazing concept to me.

The web, and particularly the social web, has enabled businesses to connect with companies and individuals like never before. The possibilities for sharing and gathering information are immeasurable. Listening in the social web enables us to be that “fly on the wall” we’ve all wished we could be at one time or another when looking for feedback on our companies and products. The social web enables us to send messages far and wide for very little investment (generally only someone’s time) in such a viral nature that we’ve still not fully harnessed how far our reach is with such social platforms.

Worldmap The web has connected the world and made it much flatter and enabled worldwide collaboration in ways that we might never have imagined 20 years ago. I can talk to anyone, anywhere, at any time, many of whom I’d have never had an opportunity to meet, had it not been for the web.  

What do I think the web will look like in twenty years?

It’s hard to say for sure…but I think buzz words like social media, Web 2.0, Web 3.0, social web will be long gone. There will be no need to define it that way because it will already be that way, and will have been for a long time…

Kids coming of age now have already always had the web all of their lives. They think it’s the norm. Imagine how it will be in another 20 years – the children coming of age in 20 years will have always had the social web and conversations and interactions that are still new to many.

I think too that the notion of websites will likely go away – content will be served up more based on individual user preferences. It will be like an uber personal landing page experience or something like that.

The web as we know it today will likely be unrecognizable in twenty years, it will have evolved and changed so much. But, imagine the possibilities….Just too cool! I can’t wait!

I've tagged Christine Christopherson to carry on the topic.

So, what about you - What do you think the web will look like in twenty years?

 

Check out the other blogs on this topic:

Barry Burke - #20years of the web, as seen by the storage anarchist

Christine Christopherson - The Web at 20…looking good, kid!

David Spencer - The web at #20years old

Edward Newman - The Web at 20!

Gina Minks - The web has been around for #20years (and I’ve been around for 14 of them)

Kathrin Winkler - The Web and the World

Len Devanna - Celebrating 20 Years of Web

Natalie Corridan-Gregg - Internet is 20 years old. Ah, to be twenty years old again!

Stuart Miniman - Imagine the Web in 20 Years & Celebrating the Web at 20

Yo Delmar - The Web is 20 years old, what now in the next 20?



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Captivated by the force that is Gravity Summit, Boston 2009

Gravity Summit This past Monday, I had the absolute pleasure of attending Gravity Summit at the Harvard Faculty Club in Cambridge, Massachusetts put on by social media wizards Beverly Macy (also teaches social media marketing at UCLA) and Rodney Rumford (also co-founder of TweetPhoto which I’m looking forward to checking out!) 

The line-up for the day included big name brands sharing their social media experiences, strategy and advice for using social media successfully.  And the folks in attendance literally came from all over the country to witness the event, which speaks of the level of information one can achieve when attending.

Me, Hammer and Carina Cristiano Leoni @ Gravity Summit, Harvard

Hammer

MC Hammer – Life-long entrepreneur, blogger, tweeter, rapper, and all around nice guy - need I say more?

Gary Vaynerchuk – Also a life-long entrepreneur, creator and host of the famous Wine Library TV, and newly published book author

Troy Kelley – EVP & Chief Digital Officer @ Arnold Worldwide

Andy Mitchell – VP of Digital & Development Marketing @ CNN

Todd Defren – Principal @ Shift Communications

Josh Levine – Rebel Industries

Scott Gulbransen – PR & Social Media @ Intuit

Wendy Harman – Social Media Manager @ American Red Cross

Christi Day – Social Media Maven @ Southwest Airlines

Mike Spataro – VP @ Visible Technologies

David Puner (aka Dunkin Dave) – Social Media Manager @ Dunkin Donuts

Ramon deLeon (aka The Pizza Guy to Know in Chicago) – COO @ Domino’s Pizza Chicago

Polly Pearson – VP of Employment Brand & Strategy @ EMC Corp

If you missed the live streaming of the event on CNN.com/live on Monday, you can view videos of some of the folks on my YouTube Channel (some also embedded below). Hard to pick a favorite…Of course, I know EMC’s story very well, since I live it every day and am proud to be a part of the force and strategy.

Rather than do a play-by-play of the day, I thought I’d summarize the key points by picking a few keywords to describe the ongoing message of the entire day at Gravity Summit. I’d have to say they are listen, learn, engage, and empower.

Listen

Listen to what people are saying about your brand, whether it’s your personal brand or your company brand. Listen. Listen to what is being said, take it in, and use it as an opportunity to learn. In the opening remarks with Beverly Macy and Rodney Rumford, it was said “even if you’re never going to use social media in your business, you need to know how to listen to what your customers are saying.” I couldn’t agree more.

Learn

Learn from what is being said by others. There is an unprecedented ability to gain insights into what people are saying about your brand like never before through all social media channels. It’s like having the ability to finally be the fly on the wall we’ve all wanted to be at some point. As Rodney Rumford said “use social media to solicit feedback and be ready for what you’re going to hear – the good, the bad, and the ugly.” Take it as an opportunity to learn how to be a better brand and educate. Negative comments are such a huge opportunity to learn and keep people engaged. And, as Polly Pearson said, if people are complaining, it’s a sign they still care.

Engage

Engage with people via social media. I’ve always said that people want to connect with people, not nameless, faceless brands. Troy Kelley shared “markets are reporting getting more engagement out of social media than any other traditional marketing tools,” so now is your chance to get out there, engage, and be the central voice for your brand. As Hammer said, “perception has trumped reality, and if you’re allowing somebody else to control the perception of your brand, you’re in trouble […] being at the center of the flow of information about you and your brand is the key to managing your brand.”

Empower

Empower others to not only find out about your brand via social media, but also empower your employees to use social media in a transparent way. I agree with Gary Vaynerchuk that “social media’s power and potential are massively underrated.” I love Todd Defren’s take on social media: “social media is not about public relations, it's about public relationships […] social media is not about creating something new every day, but leveraging what you already have in creative ways.” It’s all about empowering people to take advantage of the opportunities social media presents to them and using social media to enhance information and relationships as we know them.

The only constructive feedback I have is that it seems like people were jumping out of their seats to engage with the presenters a bit more, and at times things felt a bit rushed. So, perhaps having one or two fewer presenters with a touch more time for Q&A would be a good thing? Hard to say for sure, but I’d love to see a bit more interactivity in the summit. After all, social media is about having conversations and building relationships.

All in all, a fantastic summit! My first of many, I hope! Kudos to Beverly and Rodney for a fantastic showing and event!

A few vids I shot from the event. See more on my YouTube Channel

MC Hammer Keynote, Part 1


 



Gary Vaynerchuk Keynote, Part 1 

 


Polly Pearson, EMC Case Study, Part 1

   


Todd Defren, Shift Communications, Part 1 

---- 

 Jamie 

 Blog: http://jamiepappas.typepad.com/ 

 Twitter: http://twitter.com/jamiepappas

 


The search for a donor for Nick Glasgow Continues - We need your support!

The search to find a matching donor for Nick Glasgow continues.

Please use the Twitter tag of #helpnick when posting on Twitter.

We've also decided to use the banner graphic above on our future posts to further increase awareness, even for posts not specifically related to Nick. We want to welcome all bloggers (company or affiliation is no matter) to use this banner and to link it back to Mark's blog, where official updates will be posted.

As a part of the ongoing efforts, our creative videography department made this video so that others can listen to Len Devanna share Nick's story, as well as the inspiring story of support in folks getting tested for donor matching, even at EMC World!


Thoughts on Executive Blogs

One of the cool things I get to do at EMC is talk with people about the tools that are available to them, both via EMC ONE or in the “outside world” and how they might use these tools to accomplish their goals. In recent weeks, I have spent a great deal of time talking with some very passionate and interested EMC executives who would like to blog on ONE to share their own experiences, goals and perspectives with the vast EMC employee population.


As I have met with these folks, some recurring themes continue to emerge in the conversations. I have captured the top 3 below (more to come soon) along with my advice to them.


Please jump in with your own advice, experiences and lessons learned, too.


Time and energy or How much time are we talking here?

 

As we know, executives are busy, busy, busy. Not only are they the face of the company in all that they do, but they are in high demand for just about everything because of this. Every activity or meeting they choose to participate in comes at a cost of not doing something else, or turning someone else’s request away. Blogging is no different.


The typical first reaction when an executive is thinking of blogging is to compare themselves to any of the well-known and more prolific bloggers at EMC or another company and think that they have to live up to those same standards for their blog with the same frequency of posts, level of responsiveness, interactions, dialogue and debates. This is simply not true, and anyone diving into something as new as blogging is to some of these folks would instantly feel overwhelmed with that kind of expectation right out of the gate.  


My advice –

Set realist expectations for yourself. How often do you hope to post? Is that reasonable given your schedule? Start by setting a realistic goal for frequency of posts, and if you’re available more often, then that’s great. Don’t be afraid to change your goal if it’s not working for you. This is your blog, and it only needs to be as often as it is comfortable for you to do it – consider once a week, once every two weeks, or once a month as a starting point.


Commitment or How long am I going to be doing this?

 

Nobody likes to fail. Plain and simple. Starting a blog for some people implies that it must go on forever, with no end in sight. The thought of not being able to sustain it sometimes brings about thoughts of failure.


This is really sad for me when I hear this because blogging, in my mind, is supposed to be fun. It’s supposed to be something you enjoy. It’s supposed to help you de-stress, not make you feel trapped into doing something forever or risk being viewed as a failure.


My advice –

Go into this blogging adventure with an open mind. Do it as often and as long as it is enjoyable and works for you. Do not let it become a source of stress. Instead, let it become another, very valuable means of communicating to people you are trying to reach in a different way. Never, never, never go into it thinking “If I can’t sustain this, I’ve failed.” Some people are natural bloggers and writers, while others are not. That’s ok. We all have different strengths and weaknesses. We’re only human, after all.


Authenticity or Can’t someone else write my posts for me?

 

Back to the time constraints and considerations…Given that time is an invaluable asset in the lives of executives, one of the questions that comes up often is the idea of having a ghost writer for blog posts. “I can have someone else, who knows me and what I do well, write my posts and I’ll just post them. That’s how I’ll get around the time issue.” That’s what they do for their other communications, so the feeling is that it’ll work well for blogging, too. 


No-No-No. No-No.


Not only is this against the authenticity that is at the very heart of blogging, it complicates things incredibly. Elaborate plans and schemes have to be concocted in order to sustain this, and many people have to do the right things at the right time in order for it to work. Not only that, responses to comments and questions become crazy to handle – who’s responding to what? What if they say something other than what you would have said? Then what? Do you correct them? Do you add your own comments? And what happens then? And on, and on, and on…


My advice –

Keep it real, and keep it you. Do not start a blog just because it’s cool. Do it because you want to, for whatever amount of time it works, and do it because you’re committed to doing it authentically. Think of the reasons why you want to start a blog, one of which I’m pretty sure is because you want to connect with and communicate with people, right? Well, this is your chance to let them hear from you. Share what you want them to hear from you.


More themes to come soon…