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Connect with me at SXSW

When people think of SXSW, they often imagine hipsters, rockers, actors, and drunkards descending down upon my hometown Austin.  But I’m here to tell you that it’s more than “spring break for adults.”

I’ve attended SXSW Interactive for the last decade.  During these conferences, I’ve networked with amazing social strategists like Jeremiah Owyang and Guy Kawasaki; discovered new technologies (hello, I got on Twitter in March 2007); and learned practical tips on how to build a word-class social program. So, if you are going to this year’s event, I would love to connect with you!


Jive House Party

Take a break from the intensity of the sessions and the hustle of the bars.  We are hosting an old-skool house party.

We’ll have plenty of local food, including a mini-taco bar; an open bar stocked with Austin’s best brews; and tunes spun by my favorite mixmaster, DJ Chicken George.

It’s more than just a scene from a cheesy teen movie.  The best part of this intimate event will be the conversation. We are going to have plenty of networking opportunities, including real-life #tagging, and customers from companies like National Instruments.

Some of the Jive folks you’ll meet include:

Ryan Rutan – Jive Community Mastermind

Kristina Johansson – Brewspace Bada** (our internal community)

Mark Weitzel – Mr. “Open Social”

Karen To – Crushin’ Corp Comm Expert

If you plan on attending, please RSVP!

Interactive Sessions

There are more than 1000 sessions this year, but here are some of the ones I’m personally most excited about:

Social Business Meet Up

Big Data + Social Graph

Security and Privacy in Social Networks

The B2B Social Media Book

Programming Social Applications

@BettyDraper’s Guide to Social Storytelling

Social Role-Playing: Brands and Publishers

Everything You Need to Know About B2B Marketing

Humanizing B2B Brands with Video & Comedy

The Promise and Pitfalls of Real-Time Marketing

Where Will YOU Be?

Share in the comments below which sessions and events you are looking forward to so that we can connect.

Can’t Attend?

Stay updated throughout the conference by following @JiveSoftware on Twitter or me personally at @deirdrewalsh.


Do Social Technologies Cause Less Email?

Email. Email. Email.

Last week, I got to geek out about #socbiz with Michael Brito, SVP of Social Business Planning @EdelmanDigital.

During our conversation, I talked about an interesting question that was posed on the community this week by Esther Goh “does social actual decrease email or does it just move the same conversation to a new technology?” Esther was referencing a Jive customer survey we released last year that showcased the following employee engagement benefits:

Here are my thoughts: according to IDC, the average knowledge worker spends 13 hours per week writing and reading emails. That represents an annualized cost per employee of $21,000. This number likely stretches higher in higher-paying organizations or verticals, and for higher job roles. There are even indications the IDC numbers are quite conservative. A survey of 1,000 workers in the United Kingdom by Star, a provider of on-demand computing and communication services, found that employees spend, on average, 32.5, 8-hour work days a year on email alone.

The benefits of social tools are undeniable. Based on sheer adoption numbers (ie. hundreds of millions of Facebook users ), consumer social platforms have clearly illustrated a tremendous ROI in terms of allowing consumers to more easily communicate with friends and family and share information. For example, my best friend posts 100s of pictures of her baby on Facebook. Sometimes, she will send out an email with a link to the photo-album. This shows that social doesn’t eliminate email, but changes its purpose– it’s not a new message just different.

Reducing time spent by 27% would then represent a cost savings of greater than $5,000 per employee, per year. Beyond hard dollar savings, reducing email has other beneficial effects.

Social platforms for enterprise logically extend these capabilities. IMO, I don’t think the survey would be fair if it didn’t take into consideration things like email notifications so I would hope that the 27% is actually less email into your inbox, net of the alerts.

Social technologies, like Jive, make information more accessible and more searchable by the entire organization and breaking down information silos that lead to related inefficiencies. So it’s more than just a technology swap (ie. Email vs. announcement in a Jive group). Social actual helps organizations be more productive.

Social isn’t just a replacement for traditional communications either. For example, survey respondents also noted that meetings work better in conjunction with social business tools due to social mechanisms for capturing unstructured information through tags and other collaboration tools and annotation tools.

Even though we are now in the Post-Dilbert era, jokes about corporate life and copious time wasted sitting in unnecessary meetings and replying to useless email chains still ring true for many employees and senior managers alike. Social business appears to alleviate and moderate these woes and not just transfer them from one technology to the next.

What are your thoughts on this common debate?


The New Way to IPO

In my role at Jive, I’m responsible for the head-spinning job of doing social media marketing for the social business leader. In other words, up until recently, my parents had no idea what I did for a living. But that all changed when I helped market Jive’s IPO.

The core philosophy of our social program at Jive is to Engage Employees, Engage Customers, and Engage the Social Web in order to help accomplish real business objectives. This mantra came to life as we reached a major corporate milestone. I’m always preaching that we should “Jive on Jive,” so I wanted to share with you a brief case study of how we used our own products to accomplish a New Way to IPO.

Engage Employees.

Marketing Enablement. As you can imagine, an IPO takes lots of internal coordination and collaboration between executives, finance, legal, marketing, etc. It was key to be able to find the people, content and expertise needed to coordinate this important event, so we utilized our own software. Additionally, using out-of-the-box features in Jive, we were able to centralize knowledge and set strict privacy controls. These measures ensured that only key employees and outside legal and financial contractors could discuss and stay updated on the IPO progress.

Executive Communications. During major checkpoints throughout the process, such as filing the S-1, the Jive executive team including our CEO, CFO and Chief Legal Counsel provided key updates to the entire company through their internal blogs. Each post simultaneously reached our 400 employees around the world and enabled them to comment in real-time with any questions or thoughts.

Corporate Culture. Jive wouldn’t be Jive without a little fun. To celebrate listing on the NASDAQ, our internal community manager and designers launched a fresh new theme. This was an easy and fun way for employees around the world to see the impact of the IPO.

Engage Customers

Jive Community. At Jive, we know this exciting day wouldn’t have been possible without our awesome customers; therefore, we paid tribute to them on the Jive Community. From the huge thank you banner to showcasing their tweets and videos, we wanted to celebrate with our community. Jive’s CEO Tony Zingale wrote a corporate blog post announcing the news, we had a livestream to the opening ceremony (as well as a YouTube video for those who missed it), and a place for the community to discuss the IPO.

In-Person Event. We also realized that as much as we love doing everything online, there is no replacing face-to-face interactions. Therefore, we invited key community members to be onsite at NASDAQ. They live blogged the event, recorded time capsule video messages, and celebrated with by toasting each other and Jive executives.

Engage The Social Web.

Social Media Monitoring. Throughout the entire IPO process, we used Jive’s social media monitoring application Fathom Pro. This tool enabled us to mine the social Web for corporate mentions; identify key influencers and PR opportunities; and quickly uncover conversations impacting the brand. We were also able to analyze the effectiveness of product campaigns during the quiet period.

Social Media Marketing. Obviously, one of our business objectives was to share and monitor the exciting news; however, this was more than a public relations campaign. We also wanted to bridge the physical and digital worlds so that we could thank and celebrate with our entire ecosystem of employees, customers, partners and investors. Since we couldn’t bring everyone to the Big Apple, we decided to bring it to them. We created a unique Twitter hashtag for the occasion – #jiveipo – and invited folks to join the online conversation. We gathered, moderated, and then displayed tweets on the 7-story NASDAQ building in Times Square. We also had a livestream video display so that people could see themselves appear in Times Square and share it with their social networks. Beyond the marquee, we posted live updates to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn that included rich-media like photos and YouTube videos ( Jive Lists on NASDAQ – Opening Ceremony – YouTube).

Obviously, this social effort required the help of all-stars throughout the company including executives, the internal and external community managers, designers and developers, marketers, etc. And as an end-user of Jive since 2007, this was an extremely special day for me personally. I was thrilled to be able to showcase the power of Jive during an awesome event. Comment below with your questions and feedback!


Music + Social Business = Love

Everyone says, “I love music” but I REALLY love music. I own more than 2k CDs, and last year I saw exactly 88 live performances.

Part of my obsession stems from years of watching Austin City Limits on PBS. I still remember the first time I set foot in the original studio as a student at The University of Texas and my first show there-Corrine Bailey Ray.

As you can image, I was  thrilled when the social media club asked me to participate on a Social Business Panel on the ACL Stage! I was joined by all-star performers:

Even though I love evangelizing the new way to work, this particular event had me a bit nervous for the following reasons:

1. Austin has the biggest SMC behind San Francisco.

2. I would be on the same stage where Willie Nelson got his start. I couldn’t mess this up!

3. The panel was filled with some of my closest professional contacts, yet we all work for competitive solutions.

But when I walked into that studio, all of my anxiety went away.  I saw the lights from the fake, out-dated, Austin skyline and realized this was an amazing opportunity for a music-lover like me to talk about the thing I’m most passionate about – social business.

After I got the first question, “What is Social Business?” I settled into my chair and had a blast.  Not only was I extremely proud of the way I represented the company that I’ve loved since 2007, but I learned from my fellow panelists, got to network with innovators, and helped people just starting off on the amazing social business journey.

Thanks, Social Media Club Austin for an awesome event!  You can watch a recording of the panel here. (It starts about 10 minutes into the recording).


SXSW 2012 Proposal – Social Pangea: Bridging Public and Private Communities

Who OWNS social media?” This is a question that has come up on every SXSW social media panel for the last 5 years.

In most enterprises, social media is broken apart. IT drives internal collaboration; support and product marketing manage branded communities; and PR and marketing gurus handle the conversations happening in popular outlets like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.  However, the online continental plates are shifting.

Are you smarter than a 5th grader? Do you know what Pangea means?  That’s correct – it’s the supercontinent.

While several companies continue to fight internally, others building Social Media Supercontinents to not only force technical integration, but to make a measurable business impact by connecting the conversations inside and outside the firewall. They are connecting private employee communities with public customer communities with consumer social technologies.

If chosen, this session will feature real-world case studies of winning organizations that fully-integrate and design processes to facilitate expertise-sharing in order to improve customer loyalty, employee retention, sales, marketing, and product development.

Also, feel free to watch this video of me discussing Social Pangea at the Austin Social Media Breakfast.