Friday, April 30, 2010

Social Media A CIO View

Social What?

Social Media, Social Networking, or Social Business as I prefer to call it. The name itself doesn't really matter but the end goal is clear, for business users the ultimate goal doesn't change, impact to the bottom line. The dot com era taught us that the models may change but the fundamentals of business remain constant.

The Stereo Typical CIO View

Many of my peers including myself took an initial approach to social media that because it was unknown, feared, or even considered just a waste of time that to protect our business organizations we must block and restrict access to it. While many still feel that way, some for very valid reasons beyond their control (think compliance reasons), the result is that what can be another valid channel for many things is being ignored.

We know based upon some of the latest stat's we hear that these networks are growing, Twitter only had 12 million users when I started, now there are over 50 million based upon statistics released last month at Twitters first developer conference. Of course the king of social media today is Facebook, with over 350 million users last time I heard any stat's.

Some where along my journey I felt that this couldn't be right and my goal this year is to reverse our current policy of fear and concern, with one of knowledge, awareness and access where appropriate.

What did you change?

This piece isn't about my views on the social journey, see my series on CIO to Marketing Guy!

So What is it Good for?
Also Known As: what do I use it for

Personally - I network with folks much smarter than I, I learn about things through chat exchanges, I find out about try before you buy opportunities, I keep up with friends

Business - it's all about connecting with future customers

Overall it is an interesting mix of: exposure, status, blogging, connection, IT support, knowledge sharing that drives me to see social media as a viable network we need to be engaged in and as such our corporate policies must match that vision as well.

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