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From the Wild West to Organized Social Business

April 19, 2011 at 3:58 pm PST

I was invited as a speaker and panelist to the B2B Social Communications Leadership Forum presented by PR Newswire and Business Development Institute. First of all, kudos to the organizers and our moderator, Michael Pranikoff (@mpranikoff) of PR Newswire. I also want to give a shout out to my fellow keynote speaker, Matt Ceniceros (@mattceni) of Applied Materials and our fellow panelists David Hargreaves (@DavidHargreaves) of Beyond and Tony Uphoff (@TonyUphoff) of UBM TechWeb.

In a nutshell, my presentation focused on how we organize social business at Cisco and how our internal social efforts have an effect on external social engagement. If you just did a double take, here is what I mean by that:

1. Defining the sand box: we encourage our employees to participate in social media but we realize that we need to do so in a way that protects both the company and individuals. You know the old saying “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas”? The new saying should go more like “What happens in Vegas ends up on Twitter or Facebook”. Hence the need for social media governance. Our policies and guidelines are the first step for anyone at Cisco looking to engage in social media. Knowing the expectations and rules of engagement is a prerequisite.  

2. Providing the tools and know how: once a person has familiarized him-/herself with our policies and guidelines, our next step is to arm this person with various tools and resources to help him or her on his or her social journey. And being a large company, the ability to scale our education and enablement programs is critical. We look at education and enablement Read More »

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News@Cisco Week in Review and Look Ahead: April 11-15

TGIF! Busy week? Us too! Check out some of our top news stories of the week.

1.)  Cisco Opens New Green Data Center in Allen, Texas

Cisco today announced a new green data center in Allen, Texas, with an architecture that deploys Cisco’s entire data center technology portfolio — computing, switching and data storage access — to support Cisco’s internal private cloud and deliver IT as a service. Read more about the construction here.

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10 Ways to Improve Your Business’s Facebook Security

Brought to you by the Cisco Innovators Program

Small businesses are a growing fan base for Facebook. Seventy percent of U.S. local small businesses interested in online marketing now use Facebook for marketing, up from 50 percent one year ago, according to a February report by MerchantCircle. Many businesses consider Facebook their best friend for low-cost brand marketing. Some also enable shopping on their pages, using Storefront, Payvment, or another ecommerce application.

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Social Media Spotlight: How to Get Started in Social Media

April 14, 2011 at 2:08 pm PST

Over the past few years, so many partners and even Cisco employees have asked me time and again “How do I get started in social media?” Having heard that question so often, it seemed to me that before we use our new Social Media Spotlight series to highlight best practices when blogging, or using Twitter or Facebook, we should explain how to get into the social media game.

I myself came to social media by way of journalism, so when someone asks me how to get started, I usually turn around and ask the person who’s talking to me, “What do you want to achieve in using social media?”

Perhaps you’re not certain what you want to achieve, beyond knowing that you want to use social media at your company. According to a recent survey conducted by IPED and commissioned by Cisco, about 50% of partners are interested in learning how to expand online engagement to drive business. Does that include you? Then read on for some advice on how to start process.

1) Identify Your Goal(s)

Defining what you want to achieve is the major starting point—if you haven’t used social media before, and you are looking to get started, you need to ask yourself what you want to use social media for—what is your goal?

For most businesses, social media can help amplify your company’s message, help you engage with your customers, start conversations, and deepen relationships. So keeping that in mind, you should start thinking about a social media plan by developing a list of clear goals. It should be more than just gaining followers and fans. While gaining followers is one metric, the conversation, interaction, and even leads you generate are important ways of measuring success.

Once you have that list of goals (my rule of thumb is that two or three is ideal) then your next step will be to identify which social media vehicles align with those goals. Read More »

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Free Webinars: Social Media and Mobile Learning in Education

We have three very interesting on-demand WebEx recordings from leaders in the education field talking about emerging trends in education including social media and mobile learning. Each of them contains specific advice and case studies. We hope you find these sessions helpful and thought provoking.

You don’t need any special software to view the WebEx recordings. Simply click on the title that interests you and you’ll be taken to a landing page where you can begin listening.

Blending Traditional and Online Learning: 101 Best Practices for Getting Started

Using online tools is bridging the achievement gap and marking the biggest single shift in public education in more than 100 years. Innovative public schools are opting for blended or hybrid classroom environments, with 70% of learning taking place in a traditional brick-and-mortar setting and the remaining 30% of learning happening online.

Hybrid models offer a powerful mix of synchronous and asynchronous learning styles, enabling students to master core content online while deepening critical thinking, problem solving and application of content mastery in a face-to-face setting. Blended or hybrid learning models not only make pedagogical sense, they also make financial sense.
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