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If you’re the CEO of a B2B company, does all this social media stuff matter to you?  Or, is it just some trend for young social-media-22consumers and the companies that sell directly to them.

It’s a fair question.  The answer, from the perspective of a strategic communications professional is – ABSOLUTELY!

Look at this way, how many functions within your company have moved online?  Do you think any of your employees are involved in online communities?  Do you marvel at how comfortably and seemingly innately the younger employees embrace, attach and understand new technology applications in the work place?  Don’t your new hires seem to get younger each year?

Here’s the point, your business is probably moving online, your suppliers and vendors businesses are probably moving online, your customers are probably moving online, and your new employes are definitely already online.

Read this link to a great blog post by Todd Defren, one of the early pioneers in the blogosphere and CEO of a PR firm with consumer and B2B clients.  He nails it:

“The world of business is increasingly moving online.  And businesses are comprised of people.”

Two terms I love: “digital immigrants” and “digital natives.”  If you’re wondering about or confused by the social media stuff, you’re a digital immigrant – you’re new to this world and you want to fit in but you’ll probably always speak with an accent.  If it all comes natural to you, if you are perfectly comfortable with all things online, you’re a digital native – it’s innate, part or your life.

Read this interesting post by Jeremiah Owyanga, Sr. Analyst in Social Computing at Forrester Research in San Francisco.  It will help B2B CEOs understand all this from a real geeks (affectionately intended) perspective.

Don’t panic.  You don’t have to start blogging tomorrow.  No one expects you to “tweet” by Wednesday (if you ever do).  When you post your profile on Facebook, your kids won’t get creeped out (well, maybe!).  Getting linked on LinkedIn can happen in time.

However, you do need to explore (or at least empower an exploration by others) the potential impact of social media on your business.  You should want to demonstrate to your existing employees and to all potential future employees, that your company, “gets it.”

Any good B2B social media stories out there?  Please share.

Happy Valentines Day

Post by Nick Vehr – 2.14.09


Check out this great post and case study by Todd Defren of SHIFT Communications on his PR Squared blog. 

A good read for strategic communications pros.

He offers a case study of how a social media release targeted to multiple bloggers provided great ROI for his company’s client – beta users from 5,000 to 200,000 in two weeks.

The client’s product “slydial” is cool.  It enables you to bypass a connection on a cell phone and go straight to voice mail.  Some folks still like voice mail over speaking directly to that special someone, texting or Twitter.

He offers five , pretty diverse highlights as examples of succesful blogger hits: TechCrunch (tech blog), Perez Hilton (gossip blog), U.S. News & World Report: Dave’s Download (business blog), GearCrave (guys’ gadget blog) and ShinyShiny (women’s tech blog).

Anyway, I am happy to pass this on as a great case study.

Also, I really like the cute little chicken on his masthead (see below).

Post by Nick Vehr – 2.4.09

Masthead for Todd Defren's PR Squared Blog - Cute Chicken

Masthead for Todd Defren's PR Squared Blog - Cute Chicken

insightsWe launched this blog several months ago for the purpose of learning as a community of professional communicators.  We try to share relevant information, or perspectives of how communications plays a major role in big time things going on.  We look for feedback.

In addition, our company (Vehr Communications) writes and shares “INSIGHTS” on topics of interest in the strategic communications field.  In the last year, we published 10 different “INSIGHTS” on topics ranging from PR Measurement to Online Media Rooms to Place Branding.

Finally, we began publishing a monthly newsletter (March Forth) last March and also try to focus on timely topics.  This month’s edition (February) shows a little love.  We play off Valentine’s Day as an example of successful branding – it promises fulfilment (love) and usually delivers (unless he ends up in the dog house).

This is how we try to communicate, learn, share and, yes, raise awareness of our right as a company to be in this space.

Please excuse what may appear to be self-promotion.  The reason for the post is that we’d love to hear what you want to learn about.  We’d appreciate your feedback on the choices we are making.  Of course, suggestions are always welcome.

Post by Nick Vehr – 2.3.09