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Learn strategies and tactics for the effective implementation of social media for business.
See and hear testimonials from past attendees of Eric Schwartzman's social media training workshops.
What you need to know before you take this course.
Learn how social media forever changed mass media communications and why businesses must embrace it.
Learn realistic goals of social meia for business.
Learn to define the value proposition of social media for business.
Learn to articulate the business case for social media to co-workers, managers and clients.
Why there is an inverse relationship between control and credibility on social media and the web.
Achieving reach and frequency through likes, comments and shares.
How social media impacts organizational disciplines and how to ensure lawful use.
Learn how social media gives individuals a way to keep large organizations in check.
Left unchecked, here's how social media can tarnish corporate reputations.
Strategic and tactical considerations of social media for business.
Launch a blog and publish a post. Learn visual and HTML modes. Use bullets and link anchor text.
Set up Google Analytics and monitor unique visitors, top content, search traffic, refferals and more.
Set-up Feedburner and measure blog subscribers via RSS.
Learn to embed Flickr photos in your new blog.
Embed a PowerPoint presentation on your new blog.
Parse an RSS newsfeed in the sidebar template of your new blog.
Record and upload an audio interview to your new blog from a smart phone.
Stream live video to your new blog from your smart phone.
How the world's most risk averse organization successfully deployed social media.
How the energy utility Public Service of New Hampshire used social media during the worst ice storm in the state's history.
How Toyota used their online newsroom to live stream the Prius reveal at the Auto Show in Detroit.
The use of mobile devices to conduct business locally based on social recommendations.
Why your job security depends on your digital literacy skills.
If you are taking this as part of the Social Media Boot Camp, advance to the 2nd course "Social Media Monitoring."
National Labor Relations Board General Counsel issue their first report on employer-employee social media case developments, including wrongful terminations and unlawful social media policies, in the United States of America.
National Labor Relations General Counsel finds 5 of corporate social media policies to be unlawful in the United States of America.
In this audio resource, Rashmi Sinha, the founding CEO of SlideShare talks about lead generation, user ratings, B2B social networking, making sharing beneficial to community members and encouraging meaningful discourse by discouraging anonymity.
00:47 -- Rashmi Sinha's previous appearance on the Supernova Podcast, hosted by Christopher Carfi on Blog Talk Radio, where much of the discussion focused on object-oriented social networking, and what makes these types of services different from more popular social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook and MySpace.
01:15 -- As in the real world, and particularly in a business-to-business context, interaction is usually focused around a particular activity, like a meeting, convention or demonstration. Popular social networks like Facebook and Twitter, when interaction is not focused around a specific activity, are sometimes awkward because there is no construct for that experience in the real world, where exchanges are organized around actions.
02:07 -- SlideShare branded channels, a new area of the site which allow organizations to establish a custom, micro-site with their own look and feel inside the service, so they can engage with the broader SlideShare community. Microsoft and Adobe have established their own branded channels, as has the White House and the Pew Research Center's Internet and American Life Project. As part of the launch, SlideShares new branded channels are now open to other organizations and brands by request, which at the time of this podcast can made be submitting a form within that section of the website.
03:09 -- The majority of SlideShare's community members are business decision-makers. Community members use the service mostly in a business context, since the social network is designed to host, share and promote discussion around PowerPoint presentations, which are used mostly in business to help make a point. As a result, SlideShare is primarily a business-to-business social network. On Feb. 6, 2010, just days after SlidShare's branded channels launch, there were 11 featured business channels, 2 featured education channels, 4 featured nonprofit channels and 1 featured event channel.
03:54 -- The Slideshare Virtualization Channel, a new, curated channel put together by the B2B social networking service is one of many they intend to add over the coming months, to provide organizations with an opportunity to associate their product, brand or service with premium content appealing to a specific business audience segment by way of a sponsorship.
04:49 -- According to Rashmi, Facebook is a personal social network that has been edging towards business. Twitter is a social network that has always had a mix of personal and business applications. And Linkedin is a social network that is completely professional, with no room at all for personal interactions. She calls SlideShare a social network occupying the space between Facebook and Twitter. She acknowledges that SlideShare is very business oriented, but says that because it is such a visually oriented network where the most popular presentations usually incorporate a great deal of personality and flair, the service is conducive to interactions that are more personal than on Linkedin.
05:49 -- SlideShare may be business-to-business, but the service's real strength is its ability to promote business with personality. For example, on SlideShare's homepage, the presentations that tend to rank high, combine a great deal of personality with their subject matter, rather than more dry, reference-type presentations, which may be packed with relevant, useful content, but are often suffer from dense copy block, too few images and no real visual punch.
07:12 -- From a user-interface standpoint, there should be no difference between a B2C and B2B social networks, according to Rashmi. She reminds us that as is true in all forms of social media, ease of use drives adoption. And popular social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter are benchmarks for just how easy a social networking service needs to be to lure members. We have become accustomed to interacting with others online in a certain way, and if a B2B social network is going to be successful, it should be as user-friendly as popular online social media.
08:21 -- Connecting with perspective business customers in hopes of generating leads is the dominant behavior on SlideShare and Rashmi says her B2B social network is built around that purpose. Presentations are used to pitch products, brands and services. They support more extended, in-depth explanations. Display ads may work to entice you to click and go somewhere, but they can't walk you through the types of explanations that are typical of more complex products and services. It is the explanation that determines the length of a company's sales cycle. At this point, presentations are a good consultative sales tool, since they make it easier for marketers to incorporate the various business processes, case studies and best practices decision-makers like to appraise when evaluating business products that could be incorporated into a company's everyday processes.
10:17 -- Currently, from a measurement standpoint, Slideshare reports the number of views, embeds, favorites, comments and downloads. In the future, the company plans to report referrals as well and offer more in-depth reporting capabilities.
11:29 -- People upload their presentations on the site not just to share them with their existing business partners, but to get in front of other members they may not know, but who may have a need for their products and services. As is the case with popular networking services, if you see other members there who you want to connect with, it encourages you to join. So the network effect is just as important in a business-to-business social networking environment, as it is on Facebook and Twitter. For business-to-business marketers, niche networks may also have additional value by aggregating a more targeted, premium audience.
12:20 -- Rashmi reveals the typical pattern by which SlideShare embed codes wind up getting used to display member presentations. First, members tend to embed their presentations on their own sites Then they tweet it out or share it on Facebook. Next, people who find them on SlideShare may embed those presentations on other sites. The owner of the presentation tends to embed it only on their own side. But if it's good content it just takes off. Slide share offers numerous ways to syndicate presentations. But the quality of the presentation, as determined by the SlideShare community, determines how broadly it permeates online. In some ways, this makes it impossible to game SlideShare to generate leads. "Your content has to be good," says Rashmi. "We provide the tools for sharing, but if your content is getting distributed everywhere, it's because your content is good."
14:31 -- In a business to business social networking environment, the absence of spam is a key component of getting people to comment. The quality of conversation must be high. "People have higher standards for B2B sites than on B2C sites. They don't want to put up a professional conversation in a place where they might encounter trolls," says Rashmi. She also points out that not all comments about SlideShare content occur on her company's site. Those conversations can and do take place on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin as well.
15:42 -- In contrast to the SAP Community Network (featured in a previous episode of this podcast about B2B social networks), SlideShare manages their community by hosting a forum for discourse, with ease-of-use as a core focus.
16:28 -- Rashmi estimates that while only about 20% of the presentations posted on SlideShare get comments, 60% of all presentations draw either comments, embeds, favorites or downloads.
16:55 -- Rashmi Sinha has mixed feelings about user ratings as a feature, so SlideShare opted not support that option. She references a Sept. 22, 2009 YouTube blog post which reveals that site users, generally, are more inclined to grant YouTube videos five stars than any other rating. In some cases, if they really dislike a video, they'll give it one star. But people seldom rate videos two, three or four stars.
On the blog Social Commerce Today, a Jan. 21, 2010 post titled "YouTube & The Death of User Ratings" by Paul Marsden offers the following interpretation:
"Psychologically, it's far less taxing on the brain to give feedback in simple binary likedislike form, and binary feedback is arguably easier to turn into a useful format to inform choices. And culturally, binary feedback is less open to cultural bias, as anyone who has done a balanced scorecard review will know. Americans overrate, Germans under rate." Marsden argues that when it comes to online social networking, likedislike ratings are more valuable than star ratings. He prefers to, "... leave ratings to professional reviewers -- it's what they're trained to do...."
As a side note, this opinion is in stark contrast to Mark Yoltan's, who says that on the SAP Community Network, a business to business social network recognized as one of the most successful in the world, user ratings actually improve our performance, because poor user ratings in a public environment serve as a wake up call to either improve the product or encourage those who like it to rate it highly. Perhaps this is more a function of just how important what I'm rating is to me. Could it be the more professionally relevant what I'm rating is, the more willing I am to invest the time to give it a star rating? Any thoughts on this out there?
As far as Rashmi is concerned, she choose the simple favorite button as the best practice for drawing in members to rate presentations. But perhaps most important is the fact favorites and comments drive presentation downloads. "When you have a lots of favorites that means that you are showing up on the screens of people across the site, because if I favorite your present station, your presentation will show up in my area of the site. So you get a lot more distribution when you get favorite and commented upon," says Rashmi.
18:19 -- Tech-oriented content is the dominant subject-matter on Slideshare.
20:09 -- And it's the visually attractive and provocative presentations tend to draw the most downloads on Slideshare. Shift Happens is a presentation uploaded by Jeff Brenman three years ago is a great example of the type pf presentation that tends to do well on SlideShare. As of Feb. 6, 2010 it had been viewed 901,425 times, received 258 comments, 2237 favorites, 79,092 downloads and more than 10,000 views on various sites where the presentation has been embedded.
Rashmi Sinha says high quality presentations that are long and rely on dense copy block with fewer images tend to draw less attention, even though they may be packed with great information. the premise supports the notion that good media is quite different from good research. The former promises quick insights, while the latter arrives at a perspective by covering all aspects of a rational process, but requires a more significant time investment.
As a side note, this argument reminds me of Steve Rubel's 2009 interview with Shel Holtz and Neville Hobson of For Immediate Release: the Hobson and Holtz Report, in which Steve said that as a result of he is looking to shorter, more abbreviated media formats to connect with broader audiences, suggesting infographics as a format he is interested in experimenting more with. From a sociological standpoint, filtering information through one's online social network seems apt to promote the rise of pithy, sensationalist content, as EPIC 2014 predicted.
23:08 -- Rashmi Sinha has learned a great deal about what it takes from a legal perspective to protect intellectual property rights in a B2B social networking environment. SlideShare does receive Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) complaints, but they are very infrequent. From the beginning the service has sought to encourage responsible sharing of content. Presentations on SlidShare are much more popular when they're downloadable, and content owners have the option of whether or not to make their presentations downloadable when they post them. "Overall, we've put in the hook for people to benefit from sharing their content and set up a positive loop so that if you go and share your content, you are getting rewarded from it. Which means that often, the person sharing the content is the creator of the content or has the copyright," says Rashmi.
24:09 -- When people share under their true identity, which is predominantly the case on SlideShare, and it would follow would be the case in most business-to-business social networking environments where lead generation is an primary objective, people are less likely to violate copyrights then they may be in environment where participants can achieve their goals anonymously. In a social network where people use their real identity, you get much more responsible actions and much greater respect for copyright.
24:53 -- The biggest misconception people have about B2Bs social networks is that the ease-of-use, functionality and usability standards for them can somehow be less than what they are in popular B2C social networking sites. People have a certain way of using the web, and they want the same ease-of-use and they get from a B2B social network as they get from a B2C social network.
25:51 -- Currently, Rashmi says the "white paper download" is the dominant paradigm for online B2B marketing. But she also it's really a broken paradign. Because you forfeit your e-mail address and contact information before you know whether or not the content is worthwhile. SlideShare solves this problem by adding a layer of social networking. Most favorites and commented content, rises to the top, making it easier to find and more likely it's worthwhile. And you don't have to relinquish your e-mail address either. Rashmi calls the SlideShare approach more permission-based, rather than interruption-based, which business buyers are more resistant to.
28:11 -- End
Photo of Rashmi Sinha by Luca Sartoni
If you were denied a proper Cotillion or never had a chance to be presented at the debutante ball, it’s not too late for you. You can still learn how to act and behave politely from Philip Galanes (@SocialQPhilip) who writes the Social Q’s column in the New York Times every Sunday in Style Section. Social Q’s offers lighthearted advice about awkward social situations and is sure to prepare you to present yourself appropriately in social circles.
In this interview:
Philip's new book "Social Q's: How to Survive the Quirks, Quandaries and Quagmires of Today, " which comes out November 1, 2011.
How Philip's book is different from Dale Carnegie’s “Win Friends and Influence People” and Emily Post’s “Ettiquette” which were both recently revised for the digital age.
Are companies like Facebook and Netfilx being rude when they change their services?
Snooping on your friend’s Facebook feed without leaving likes or comments, showing your humanity, chiming into the newsfeeds of younger Facebook friends.
Appropriateness of married men friending married women without friending their husband first.
Geno Church who's daughter used Facebook and her cell phone to plan and actually run way from home. When it comes to monitoring how your children use social media, is it rude to set up software to monitor your child’s online behavior without disclosing it to them?
Using smart phones in social situations.
In the world of search marketing, the term “black hat” refers to a search marketer who uses unethical practices to try and game search algorithms to come up first. But what if those marketers come from other countries and cultures where unabashed capitalism is NOT necessarily frowned upon? Are they still unethical, or do we need to adjust our expectations of fairness?
Buy Philip's book Social Q's: How to Survive the Quirks, Quandaries and Quagmires of Today
I know what you’re thinking. Private social networking is stupid. Be open. Right? But there are plenty of situations where private social networking actually makes a heck of a lot of sense.
Think about it. Today, we use activity streams on social networks for marketing, sales and customer service. But there’s nothing private about Facebook, and if you could social network with your coworkers and business partners privately, you could do more with less. But how do businesses social network privately? How do you get your own private Facebook?
In his keynote at Dell’s B2B Social Media Huddle in London last month, Brian Solis said that he never shares information that gives him a competitive edge.
So what do you do if you want to use activity streams for collaborating with your coworkers and share proprietary information? Email is great for person to person communications, but it’s a lousy collaboration tool. Is there a safe way to build your own, private social network? Google Wave was an early attempt at private social networking, but it was before its time.
Salesforce.com introduced Chatter, its exclusive social networking service as an extension of its SaaS CRM platform 2010. And in February 2011, it made its private social networking service free.
Access to a safe activity stream in a private social network behind a firewall brings new efficiencies and added productivity to the workplace. In this audio resource Robin Daniels, (@robin_daniels) VP of Product Marketing, Chatter talks about...
The Step-by-Step Guide to Painlessly Moving your RSS and Email Subscribers to FeedBlitz, a Premium FeedBurner Alternative
After 15+ years of marketing, public affairs and digital product management experience, I can lead multidisciplinary teams with the urgency of an entrepreneur, the sensitivity of a diplomat and the effectiveness of a scrum master.
I founded the first content management system for corporate communications, iPRSoftware (formerly iPressroom) before applying the merits of big data analytics to public affairs initiatives for the U.S. Dept. of State and DoD. Currently, I lead digital innovation at a $1B industrial manufacturer responsible for critical infrastructure power equipment.
I'm also a digital product management, demand generation, search engine optimization, email marketing, and marketing automation expert with experience integrating and implements multiple platforms.
In 2011, I cowrote the best-seller “Social Marketing to the Business Customer," the first book on B2B demand generation and created a portfolio of self-paced online courseware used by more than 36k students.