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A Sneak Peek into Our New Social Media Training Center

A Short Trip Down Memory Lane…

On the quest of becoming a truly social-minded culture, about a year and a half ago, we rolled up our sleeves and created a multi-level, multi-track social media training program that used game principles and integrated with our Education Management System to encourage and reward participation. We augmented our on-demand courses with a vibrant community filled with self-service resources, online discussions (we call them “social chats”), team challenges, and recognitions and testimonials.

What I’m most proud of is that we did this in house and on a shoestring budget (imagine toddler-sized shoes and shoestrings). The original team was very small, namely the wonderful Elizabeth Houston (please give it up for @elhoust) and yours truly (@petra1400). Having seen great success with our internal program and inspired by the possibilities of growing and even bringing it to our customers, partners and general public, we have added some resources and upgraded to kid-sized shoestrings. Soon, the external-facing training program pilot, a scaled down version of our internal program was born. (For the record, the current team is still really small and also includes @kmgibbs and some of @nrrivas07 and our fun intern, @efannie’s time).

We knew it was just a matter of time before we wanted to expand the customer-facing program and mirror it after our internal program as much as possible.

Driving in the Fast (and Furious) Lane

Over the past few months, we have been working furiously on making this dream become a reality. While we have a little longer to go before you can test drive our new social media training center, we want to share some screen shots of this new environment. Read More »

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5 Steps to Success: Encouraging Employee Social Media Engagement

Aristotle was spot on when he said, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” This holds true when we look at the benefits of employee engagement in the socialsphere. Why not leverage your organization’s built-in social media army to evangelize the brand? Encouraging employee engagement across social channels on behalf of the brand seems to be a hot topic in social media these days.

Fast Company recently published how Cisco employees are contributing to the brand in their article, The Social Employee: The Secret Sauce that Cisco, Southwest Airlines and Adobe Use to Win.

Now the question is what are the steps for successfully encouraging employees to participate on behalf of a brand? In a recent Let’s Chat #Ciscosmt Twitter Chat we heard from Cisco’s Petra Neiger (@Petra1400) and Salesforce.com’s Jennifer Burnham (@JennyDBurnham), on ways to engage employees. In addition to their insightful tips, here’s my take on 5 steps to successfully encouraging employees to participate in the socialsphere:

Step 1: Training

  • It all starts here. Educate your employees with social media best practices, checklists, playbooks, toolkits, etc. Help your employees feel comfortable using social media on behalf of your brand. Interested in social media training? Check out our complimentary Cisco Social Media Training Program and follow the #ciscosmt hashtag. To request customized one-on-one team training sessions, email ciscosmtraining@external.cisco.com

Cisco Social Media Training Program Opportunity:

Step 2: Stretch Assignments

Once your employees have participated in training and are comfortable using social media best practices, create opportunities for their participation across multiple social channels. Leverage the masses to assist with social media campaigns, launches, events, etc. Even if social media is not their main role within your organization, develop these assignments as a great way to increase your program’s reach in addition to allowing employees to test out their new skill sets.

Step 3: Recognitions

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What motivates your employees? Is it a milestone badge, management recognition, or perhaps a prize of some sort? Knowing this will help you to motivate additional employee participation. Along the way, create incentive programs to entice your employees to participate. Adding an element of gamification and rewarding beneficial behaviors can go a long way.

Read More »

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Social Media Measurement Twitter Chat Recap

Can there ever be enough discussion around “social media measurement”? While I joke as part of the opening of this post, it is a topic that we’ll continue to explore in upcoming #Ciscosmt activities. And as a follow up to my recent “Decoding Social Media Measurement” post, last Thursday Charlie Treadwell, Manager, Digital and Social Media Marketing at Cisco, shared his insights through the monthly #Ciscosmt Series Twitter chat. Below is a transcript of the interesting conversation as well as a few key takeaways.

Social Media Measurement #Ciscosmt Twitter Chat Recap

Social Media Measurement #Ciscosmt Twitter Chat

I think this is a great start to the ongoing conversation we’ll explore further as we move forward. As it evolves,  it provides more and more critical data points for business impact. I’m interested to hear how you are using social media measurement to benefit your business and also what types of metrics are most important to you.

Key Takeaways

  • Social media measurement is a key element in showing business value…social media benefits are no longer taken at face value. Businesses must align metrics to overall goals and benchmark along the way.
  • Metrics will vary from company to company based on individual goals. However, some basic types of data to measure includes: cost and/or support savings, revenue, influencers, share of voice, engagement, and crowdsourcing.
  • Social media measurement can be implemented even on limited budgets. Use tools like Google Analytics, individual social channels, or other resources to gather data and make informed decisions.
    Pilot and test social media strategies on an ongoing basis and create measurement benchmarks throughout the initiatives to ensure efforts are maximized.
  • Quantity is an important part of the social media measurement equation. However, “quality” is an even more crucial element to consider. Take time to look deeper into the metrics to understand the types of engagement, influencers, or other data points that can be retrieved.
  • Measurement can and should be implemented across the organization when it comes to social media. HR, sales, support, marketing, and other areas can benefit from strong measurement best practices.

October Twitter Chat

And mark your calendars for next month’s Let’s Chat! #Ciscosmt Twitter chat, taking place on Thursday, October 24th from 9-10 a.m. PT. More details will follow shortly on this blog and through the @CiscoSocial handle on Twitter. Stay tuned for more details by following the Cisco Digital and Social Blog and the #Ciscosmt hashtag!

Let’s Chat! #Ciscosmt Series: Engaging Employees in Social Media Twitter Chat Transcript

Cisco Social Media Training Program Opportunity:

If you have any questions or are interested in other types of social media training, check out our complimentary Cisco Social Media Training Program and follow the #ciscosmt hashtag.  To request  customized one-on-one team training sessions, email ciscosmtraining@external.cisco.com.

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Decoding Social Media Measurement

Have you ever felt like measuring social media was like a trying to crack a secret code? Sometimes it’s difficult to figure out what data is important to measure out of all the information we are receiving.

September 26th Let's Chat! #Ciscosmt Twitter Chat

September 26th Let’s Chat! #Ciscosmt Twitter Chat

And as social media continues to become more of the way business is conducted, I’ve seen a shift in what experts are focusing on and recommending.

Join me and our special guest,  Charlie Treadwell, Manager, Digital and Social Media Marketing at Cisco, for a #Ciscosmt Twitter chat on Thursday, September 26th from 9-10am PT. As part of our monthly “Let’s Chat! #Ciscosmt Series” chats, Charlie will share his listening, measurement, and monitoring expertise and we will:

  • Discuss ways to make sense of all the social media metrics
  • Share measurement, listening, and monitoring best practices
  • Identify metrics to focus on
  • Explore examples showing social media measurement’s impact on business
  • Determine how to make sense of all of the data
  • Review ways to up-level measurement practices in a company
Let's Chat! #Ciscosmt Series Measurement Twitter Chat

Let’s Chat! #Ciscosmt Series

 

Let’s make this a really interactive session. Bring your questions for Charlie and share your own insights and examples throughout the chat or even prior to the session. We’re looking forward to your interactions!

 

For those that might be new participating in a Twitter chat, here are some quick details:

What is a Twitter Chat?
Twitter chats are scheduled gatherings of Twitter users to discuss a given topic, using a hashtag to keep track of conversation.

How do I participate?

  • There are many ways to participate in a Twitter chat. You can use a dedicated chat platform, (i.e. Twubs, TweetChat, Tchat.io, etc.), your favorite Twitter client (TweetDeck, Hootsuite, etc.) or you can even just user Twitter search to follow the chat hashtag.
  • We want it to be an interactive chat, learning from each other. Join in the conversation with your insights and experiences using #Ciscosmt. And also interact with others, re-tweeting, exchanging ideas, and commenting on other points of view.
  • Questions will be labeled Q1, Q2, Q3. If you are responding to a question, please start your tweet with the corresponding answer number “A1”.

Cisco Social Media Training Program Opportunity:

If you have any questions or are interested in other types of social media training, check out our complimentary Cisco Social Media Training Program and follow the #ciscosmt hashtag.  To request  customized one-on-one team training sessions, email ciscosmtraining@external.cisco.com.

We look forward to your insights here and during the #Ciscosmt Twitter chat!

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Cisco Network Threat Defense Training at SecTor 2013

UPDATE:  Due to low registration numbers for our training, Cisco Network Threat Defense, at SecTor 2013 we unfortunately had to cancel our course.  For those who registered, we appreciate your support and look forward to meeting and delivering the training to you at another venue in the near future.

SecTor 2013, the seventh annual security conference in Toronto, Ontario, CA, will be held October 7-9 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in downtown Toronto. The conference provides an unmatched opportunity for IT and Security Professionals to learn the latest security research and techniques.   My colleague, Joe Karpenko and I will present Network Threat Defense Hands-on Training on October 7.

Our training will help you learn about securely deploying network services and to detect, classify, and prevent threats targeting a network. You will use Cisco network devices to configure and deploy advanced IPv4 network threat defenses and countermeasures. Once these defenses and countermeasures have been implemented, you will then validate the effectiveness of the defenses and adjust them to changing network conditions and attack profiles. This will help you to verify, measure, and update your defenses for real world threats.

Cisco is a proud sponsor, as well as training provider, and can save you 10% using discount code ‘CISCO-2013′ or ‘CISCO-Expo2013′ for a free expo pass! Registering for the full conference also provides an additional $100 discount towards training courses.

Please join us at SecTor 2013 in October. Register soon for discounted pricing. Please reach out with questions and we look forward to seeing you in Toronto!

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