My email inbox is officially out-of-control. I can’t find anything and it’s over the storage limit almost everyday. This is the reason I’ve been trying out Yammer. Have you heard of it?
Yammer, a “Twitter for business”, was launched in September of this year and also won the top prize at TechCrunch50. (TechCrunch50 is a showcase for startups to present their idea to venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and the press.)
Yammer allows co-workers to make quick status updates on what they’re working on. They require a corporate email address to sign-up which ensures privacy.
Once in Yammer, you access a feed of messages limited to folks working for the same company. You can create private groups to limit communications to a select team or project. Users can also have threaded discussions, “follow” co-workers, attach files, and create a professional profile.
Mobile nuts can use their phone to send and receive messages via SMS through either iPhone or Blackberry apps.
A co-worker and I have been testing Yammer for three weeks now. Our everyday use is mostly asking quick questions and posting updates when stuff is done. I’ve been using the desktop AIR app for PCs for posting. The app is convenient and has a pop-up window when there is a new message. With just two of us in the trail, I like the pop-up. I can imagine this would start to get annoying with a larger group.
So far, the overall technology has been dependable and user-friendly. We’ve found it reduces the volume of emails for short updates which was sorta the point from the beginning. My main concern is less tech savvy employees may resist using this. I can easily see someone intending to post in the “private group” and instead posting in the public group. That would be awkward…
Since the base product is free, you can give it shout without any investment at this point. Or you can just use it to chat with co-workers– nice. 🙂
Last night at MIMA (Minnesota Interactive Marketing Association), a panel of local social media experts assembled to discuss how big businesses approach social media. It was a lively and very interesting discussion.
Big names like General Mills, Best Buy, Fingerhut, and Target tackled questions and shared their individual philosophies on what it means to participate in social media and why they think it’s important.
I gave myself two post-it notes (hey…where was 3M?!) to jot down a few take-aways for the online marketer thirsty for knowledge in social media.
– All the panelists agreed that the value of social media to businesses is the opportunity to listen to customers. This ability to listen to consumers and glean information from them has never been so easy and cheap. Once you have stopped talking and start listening, act on that information. Provide social applications with a real, genuine use and value.
– Try. Try something new quickly to get out there rather than spend too much time on costly large social marketing initiatives. From these small initiatives, learn from the failures and try again.
– Successful social media programs the panel discussed were tightly aligned with building communities where the communities live. For example, Target’s back to college program engages students on Facebook with an application boasting over 33,000 users. Makes sense, considering 41% of users are aged 18 to 24 (During Jan 2008, according to Hitwise ). Best Buy too, created an internal social platform for employees eyes only called Blue Shirt Nation. It’s gotta be better than working…
– How do we consider different age groups in social media? Considering the fastest growing social network is Webkinz (7 – 12 yr olds) and visits from the 55 and older crowd represent the largest increase over the past 2 years (Hitwise), won’t we be missing the boat if we don’t plan for this opportunity now? Are college kids really the biggest consumers on the planet?
– ROI. Panelists did not have clear direction on showing ROI for social media. They suggested that social media costs be put in product research or other buckets. They suggested that “relationships” can not be measured in dollars or cents. Shouldn’t we be more accountable? This is why I’m glad I work in search, most of my stuff is measurable. If I’m getting you crappy results, you should fire me. I deserve it.
Wanting More Social Media
They are the most brilliant social marketers! I left feeling motivated, social, and engaged. They left me wanting more. More answers. More testing with social marketing tactics.
I started right away and signed up for twitter. I intend to use the powers of social media (twitter, Facebook) to follow these social media mavens and learn all the secrets not left behind…
I really enjoy my job from the fun atmosphere and the smart and charismatic co-workers (see, Lisa R., Margaret Hegg), all the way to the wide variety of clients we have. One of the only glaring downsides is the fact that it remains open between Christmas and New Years. Although I was out drinking a tall one with some advertising peers last night, they are at home relaxing while I’m at work today. At least I’m used to it, my last agency was open during this week as well!
The bright side of this is that I’ve gotten up-to-date on some filing, caught up on the trades, and although I have a million more urgent things to do, they can take the back burner since no one else in the agency world is at work. Smooth! And lucky for you, I’m taking my lunch to write you a blog.
In the spirit of feeling like I want to be a slacker this week even though I can’t, I’ve decided I don’t want to be serious until the official start of 2008. It looks like other, more seasoned industry bloggers feel the same. 🙂 Read more…
We are thrilled to have Margaret Hegg as a guest writer for the Online Marketing Mavens blog. Margaret is a maven herself– a media supervisor at an independent ad agency managing online media plans for several well-known clients. She regularly makes sense of the good, bad, and ugly in online marketing.
Well, it’s December and here I am, scrambling to think of good gift ideas for the holidays. Honestly, who has time anymore to go store to store to find that perfect gift? I know some of my friends consider shopping their cardio program, and that’s all good; but I prefer to multi-task. Phone calls, laundry, tv-watching and online shopping in one fell swoop. And judging from the latest stats on Cyber Monday, I am not alone. According to ComScore, Cyber Monday had online sales of $733 million, and over $4 billion was spent online during that week. It isn’t surprising that the big retailers like Amazon, Wal Mart, and Target topped the list as the most visited web sites that day. And, interestingly, more online shoppers made purchases from work computers (45%) than from home (44%). Hmmmm…..
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