Social Business By Design – A Personal Summary (Chapter 10)

Chapter 10 – Social Business Ecosystem

Engaging with Business Partners

1a. Social Business Ecosystems : (Essential Examples) – American Express (Open Forum)

  • Shared Content Area
    • A shared content area where experts convey ideas and thought leadership where SMEs can comment.
    • Resources were original and exclusive, makes it unique and attractive and participant.
    • Strong Marketing Tools because of it unique resources as well as viral marketing by its members that are Amex business customers.
    • Allows customers to connect to Amex and each other
    • Allows customers to help each other  without substantial increase in customer service overheads or dramatically raising the communication required.
  • Social Network (Connectodex)
    • Social network where business not individuals to  connect as friends
    • Design especially for Entrepreneurs
  • Learning point – B2B social business enable business to cost effectively scale their partner relations while forging closer network of relationship not only for itself but also among partners that is richer, more diverse and useful for all parties.

1b. Social Business Ecosystems : (Essential Examples) -L’Oreal (Facebook)

  • Help its salons with a toolkit that overhauls their Facebook pages, a place where the salons’ customers spend most of their online time.
  • Learning point – Large business using social media to connect with business partners better by helping them improve their own business operations.

1c. Social Business Ecosystems : (Essential Examples) –Owens & Minor (Rollstream)

  • Making use of RollStream to support its Social Supply Chain Management.
  • New  and much lower-barrier workflow for new suppliers
  • Provided broader visibility across all supplier communications within the company
  • Learning point – Social media concepts can be adapted to specific types of business activities instead of the usual belief that those activities have to adapt entirely to social media.

2. Social Dashboard :

There are 3 primary types of social business activities that exist  :

  • Ad-hoc activities
    • Unplanned and informal communication
    • B2B  context maybe a simple social interaction between 2 companies or getting to know each other.
  • Process & Content
    • Ideal for deeper integration into workflow

3. B2B  Social Business Option

B2B social business tends to be a bit more structured than some other types  of social business approaches such as social media marketing. B2B relationships tend to be established for a particular purpose and there are at least 7 major applications listed in the book.

  • Innovation Communities
    • One form is that of enterprise innovation provider such InnoCentive. Using crowdsourcing to solve complex problems. Basically, companies post their problems for the experts from InnoCentive to solve
    • Uses principle from  tenet 1 and tenet 5
  • Products as Open Community Platform
    • Similar to Innovation Communities except that the organization open its internal supply chain to outsider and crowdsource directly instead of using a company like InnoCentive.
    • Examples are Goldcorp and GlaxoSmithKline
  • Partner Amplifiers
    • Well suited for large companies that have to support a large number of smaller companies under their care.
    • Example include L’Oreal but applicable to insurance agents, hotel franchises, e-commerce affiliates and any other relationship where B2B collaboration must occur for the business relationship to realize effective results such as increased sales in the channel and better customer acquisition and retention.
  • Affiliate and Partner Portals
    • Private online communities designed for B2B purpose.
    • Example include SAP Community Network and American Express OPEN Forum
    • 2 Primary participative models : Point to point and Networked
  • Social CRM
    • Based on Social Business Tenet 4,”Enlist a large enough community to derive the desired result”
    • Companies need not build their own communities but can make use of free public social media applications like twitter.
    • Companies can build their own such as what Pitney Bowes did.
  • Social Supply Chain Management
    • Social CRM when applied well can offer compelling new solutions to many Supply Chain challenges for the following reasons :
      • Tapping into and making use of social networks that have deep reach across the organization’s supply chain domain expertise
      • Real-Time social supply chain sourcing and self-service support
      • Social exception management will become standard
      • Social supply chain becomes a profit centre and a line of business in its own right. Reference
  • Open  Supply Chain
    • Open Supply Chain represent supply chain directly by self-service means. It refers to Business being about to exchange information in an open manner similar to EDI. However, it also incorporate community-based approach to engage and support participating business partners.

Personal Note :

a. With reference to L’oreal examples, believe that  Govt can adopt this methodology to help their local SMEs and NGOs. I am aware that IDA is trying to encourage and promote the use of technology among the SMEs here.  I am also aware of MSF is initiating efforts to promote the adoption of technology among the NGOs. I am aware of it before I applied to work for both this organization but not successful. I am sure their scope covers much more that what is highlighted here but I am not sure if their scope covers the adoption of using social media for business. I believe this is critical because when it is deployed correctly, it will not only help with productivity that Singapore is seeking but also for knowledge sharing .

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