Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Saturday, April 3, 2010
Chatter is a new way for people to communicate in the company. It is considered Salesforce.com’s collaboration cloud. It allows an individual the opportunity to follow anyone in the company on any project. Everything is in one place, Chatter has the same collaboration features on Facebook or Twitter combined with the sharing and security rules of Salesforce. One of the coolest things about Chatter is the filters, you can follow just your team or you can follow your largest account, it is your call. Twitter is also integrated into this tool, when relevant accounts or topics get mentioned on Twitter it goes into the Chatter feed. Preview and comment on a newly posted project plan directly in the feed. It also allows you to follow back end applications such as HR. Custom apps that are developed on the force.com platform will update automatically to a live feed that filters into Chatter. You can follow everything that goes on inside of the company making sure no one is left out of the loop. With the force.com platform, you can track any data you want, such as orders, discounts, references, competitors... anything. This CRM app reflects your business in a real time feed which, allows developers using force.com to build a social app with just a few mouse clicks. Of course Chatter works with your iPhone and Blacberry. Real time insights that lead to better decisions that is what Chatter stands for!!
Thursday, April 1, 2010
On 3-30-2010 I talked with David Skyberg an alum of the CSIX Cloud Computing SIG. He is a technical product manager for Ping Identity. His job is to seek out what the market needs and where the market is going. He then delivers his ideas to the engineers that create the product for Ping Identity customers. Ping Idenity has over 125 SaaS customers and Federated Identity is his business. Federated Identity, in a non technical description, allows you to make a reservation for a flight and that same check in (Identity scan) would allow you to make a reservation for a hotel, allowing you to surf the internet with one ID scan. What Dave loves most about the position Ping Identity has in the Cloud is that it makes it viable and accessible. He mentioned to look out for SAML claims based integration of authorization and authentication of Federated Identity. He also mentioned claims based authentication by Microsoft leveraging WCF and WIF smart clients Integration with AZURE. One thing he expects to change is the adoption or migration away from OPENID. A big thanks to David Skyberg for making room in his busy schedule to participate in a short interview, CSIX Cloud Computing SIG wishes him the best at Ping Identity.
Sunday, March 21, 2010
Friday, March 12, 2010
Saturday, March 6, 2010
Using social media as a marketing tool is growing rapidly in virtually all segments of the market today. Marketing teams dream of coming up with a strategy to engage large numbers of potential customers with compelling messaging – the YouTube video that “goes viral”; the Twitter superstar who attracts an instant following; or a Facebook page that creates “fan-demonium”. If you are looking for the magic formula here, please move on to the next post. However, I do think that there are three principles that are emerging, that, not surprisingly, echo some of the key learning from internet marketing, and even from good old-fashioned direct marketing, and that make success more likely.
First, let’s be clear. Social media marketing is not “free”, nor is it “easy”. The basic tenets of marketing still apply. Know your audience. Know what you want to say to them. Know what you want your audience to do next. And know what you want to do next. That said, here are three things to consider.
1) Content is king. What you say is important. If what you say is important to your audience, they will follow along. If it looks like a commercial, they will skip it. So, it is critical to create interesting, relevant, and timely content. The goal is to get potential customers to hear your message.
2) Follow-through is the name of the game. Most marketing teams know what to do with someone who responds to an ad, offer, or invitation. Social media contacts are no less important. Deciding how to reinforce the messages that attract fans and followers is one thing. But keeping the interest of the fans and followers is a time-intensive and thought-intensive process. Let them drift away at your peril.
3) Fans and followers don’t just happen. And, they are not permanent. From a business perspective, they follow because there’s something of value for them. Attracting them takes time, as does finding the right content to keep them around. Once you start the process, the worst thing you can do is let it get stale.As always, comments are welcome, encouraged, solicited, and hoped for.
Saturday, February 13, 2010
Cloud Computing in its various forms like Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) can reduce costs normally associated with setting up a company’s technology infrastructure base. The key area the business executives immediately draw attention too is the reduction or elimination of IT personnel and the associated savings saved by not investing in servers.
It is true, putting key services in the cloud can have an impact on head count but you will pay subscription fees for every service you sign up for. We’ll come back to subscription fees shortly. An area most companies forget to address as they move more services to the cloud or bring on additional staff is in the actual technology infrastructure needed to get everyone out to the cloud provider(s)! That’s right, we’re talking bandwidth, switching and routing. Go cheap on equipment and bandwidth you choke productivity and create problems you hadn’t expected.
Back to the cost savings by reducing headcount, licenses are less expensive than personnel but there is a breakeven point and it’s not the typical support person salary vs. licensed seats. The breakeven point will occur when your business needs to make a change and the current subscription/Service Level Agreement does not cover changes you want/need to make to your business. This becomes very evident when you have several different SaaS applications from different venders and you need to move data and/or expand a key application or add something else to your cloud infrastructure.
Cloud based computing can save dollars via headcount but has associated costs to purchase, maintain, expand and change and access. Understand that the cloud computing arena is still very young and still changing. In my opinion the market has not seen major fallout from merger and acquisition and the usual consolidation that has traditionally occurred in the technology sector.
So what does all this cloud stuff mean to the business owner or CEO? It means you can reduce or eliminate headcount but you will still have operational expenses that will need to be adjusted over time. The cloud is a good thing but seek out an expert if you don’t have one on site to help you navigate through the fiction so you don’t get rained on under your cloud.
By Ted Franklin