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Social Networking for Business: Choosing the Right Tools and Resources to Fit Your Needs (paperback)

By Rawn Shah

Published by FT Press

Published Date: Jan 13, 2010


Today, organizations increasingly expect their social computing applications and communities to create meaningful, measurable business value. That won’t happen by itself: it requires careful planning and active, intelligent management. In Social Networking for Business, Rawn Shah brings together business social computing patterns and best practices drawn from his extensive experience running online communities at IBM. He systematically covers all four key aspects of successful planning and management: people, place, purpose, and production. Drawing on many real-world examples, he identifies key success factors associated with launching online communities that meet their goals, and guides you through managing the crucial “micro-challenges” businesses face in keeping them vibrant. You’ll discover how to successfully architect social environments and experiences; build participation, trust and reputation; empower participants without creating anarchy; identify the right social functions for your communities; use social computing to collaborate and create valuable new information; build a social culture; staff online communities cost-effectively; avoid pitfalls that lead to failure; even measure social capital and link it to financial results. Whether you’re a social computing strategist or in-the-trenches manager, chances are you’ve been on your own, until now. This book gives you the expert guidance and support you need every step of the way.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments     xiii

About the Author     xiv


Chapter 1   Social Computing on the Ascent     1

Reshaping the Way We Work     5

Integrating into Business Processes and Activities     8

Summary     9


Chapter 2   Sharing a Social Experience     11

Modeling Social Experiences     17

Different Experiences for a Complex World     21

Summary     23


Chapter 3   Leadership in Social Environments     25

Governance and Leadership Models     28

A Selection of Leadership Models     29

The Centralized Models     29

The Delegated Model.     32

The Representative Model     34

The Starfish Model     35

The Swarm Model     36

Choosing a Leadership Model     37

Leaders and Influencers     40

Summary     42


Chapter 4   Social Tasks: Collaborating on Ideas     45

The Structure of Social Tasks     46

Identifying Beneficiaries     47

Describing the Form of Aggregation     48

Building a Template for a Task     49

Different Models of Social Tasks     49

Idea Generation     50

Codevelopment     53

Finding People     58

Summary      60


Chapter 5   Social Tasks: Creating and Managing Information     61

Recommendations and Reviews     61

Reviews     62

Direct Social Recommendations     63

Derived Social Recommendations     65

Creating and Categorizing Information     66

Sharing Collections     67

Folksonomies and Social Tagging     68

Direct Social Content Creation     70

Derived Social Content Generation     71

Filtering Information     72

Social Q&A Systems     73

Summary     74


Chapter 6   Social Ecosystems and Domains     75

Grouping Instances     75

Grouping Tools     77

Grouping Audiences into Domains     78

Who in the Organization Should Run the Social Environment?     81

Summary     83


Chapter 7   Building a Social Culture     85

Defining a Culture for a Social Environment     86

Ideology and Values     87

Behavior and Rituals     88

Imagery     90

Storytelling     92

Culture and Maturity of Social Environments     93

The Cultural Impact of Social Architecture     94

How Social Experience Models Impact Culture     94

How Social Leadership Models Impact Culture     97

How Social Tasks Impact Cultural Values     99

Summary     99


Chapter 8   Engaging and Encouraging Members     101

Belonging and Commitment     101

Creating a Model for Identifying Commitment     103

Maturing over a Lifecycle     108

Programs to Grow or Encourage Your Social Group     112

Membership Reward Programs     112

Recruiting Evangelists and Advocates     114

Member Training and Mentoring Programs     116

Summary     117


Chapter 9   Community and Social Experience Management     119

The Value and Characteristics of a Community Manager     120

Personality Traits and Habits     125

Where Do Community Managers Fit in an Organization?     127

Community Manager Tasks and Responsibilities     129

Member and Relationship Development     129

Topic and Activity Development     132

Administrative Tasks     133

Communications and Promotion     135

Business Development     136

Summary     137


Chapter 10  Measuring Social Environments     139

What Can You Measure?     140

Dimensions of Measurement     143

Types of Metrics     144

Metrics and Social Experiences     147

Measurement Mechanisms and Methods     149

Quantitative Analytic Measurement Mechanisms     149

Qualitative Measurement through Surveys and Interviews     150

Summary     152


Chapter 11  Social Computing Value      153

Defining the Structure of a Social Environment     154

Choosing a Social Experience     154

Setting a Social Leadership Model     156

Defining a Social Task     157

Grouping Experiences and Identifying the Audience Domain     159

Cultural Forces Shaping Social Environments     160

Social Computing and Business Strategy     161


Index     163