While it was possibly unlucky for some in the cloud that 2012 was a leap year, for our feature writers it was a boon. They took full advantage of the extra day to share their insights on what social business means for corporate America, approaches enterprises can take to transform into social businesses and looked at the technology that drives the evolution.

Our experts also reviewed the potential of DAM-API integration, looked further into big data, examined the commodification of content and shared practical steps to making your taxonomy more intuitive. Read on to learn more and to get a sneak peek of next week's features.

Social Business has a Posse

Social Business is About Conversations

John Newton @johnnewton: For so many years, the round trip of information between company and customer has been an arduous process of exchanges from designer, to engineer, to manufacturer, to marketer, to sales person, to customer, to market research and back to the designer.

Each step in this process was fraught with Chinese whispers that corrupted the intended message. This wasn't so much a conversation, more a rickety chain of ideas.

Social Business is About Conversations: The Social Technology Landscape

John Newton @johnnewton: As mentioned in yesterday's article, there are two critical considerations for businesses trying to transform into social businesses. We already looked at the business processes that can act as the foundation of a social business. With this article we will explore the technology that drives the change.

Some form of social in a given application is becoming commonplace. But just because you add a social feature to your ERP application doesn't mean that you have transformed into a social business. Recognizing who is participating, whether they are inside or outside the organization, inside or outside the firewall, and what role they play in the business and various business processes, should indicate what type of technology could be used.

Top 3 Considerations for Deploying Social Technology in the Enterprise

Rich Blank @pmpinsights: While we might expect social within the enterprise to be easy as Facebook or Twitter, it’s not. Deploying social technology within the enterprise is a journey filled with organizational hurdles that include compliance, security, culture change, executive sponsorship, budget and integration challenges to name just a few. In some organizations, this social journey begins when the business wants to embrace social before corporate IT is ready.

Getting Started with Social Business: Making Proper Investments

Hyoun Park @hyounpark_AGIn last week’s Social Business blog, I wrote about building the culture for Social Business. For companies to successfully become social businesses, they must implement core processes and gain organizational buy-in dedicated to supporting knowledge transfer. However, culture is not enough in and of itself. To optimize Social Business, companies must also use the proper tools associated with high value collaboration.

Going Social: Lessons From a Manila Envelope

Heather Gossard @newsgator: Remember the manila envelope with the column grid on the front, filled with names (most crossed off), as a way of circulating inter-office information? When that envelope hit your desk you opened it, read the note inside, signed or took what you needed from the envelope, tied it back up, crossed your name off the grid, and passed it to the next person on the list. That was before email. It was simple. We all knew what to do with the envelope. It was every organization’s cultural legacy. But it had real limitations.

How Facebook is Destabilizing the Foundations of Corporate America

Eran Gefen @fanganger: Impressions from a Social Media Week that shook up New York.

So what are your plans for this week?" my father shouted over the phone, at decibels only parents on trans-Atlantic calls are capable of attaining.
"I have a convention this week. It’s Social Media Week."
"Where is it taking place?"
"At hundreds of venues worldwide."
"What do you mean?" he said in surprise.
"Really. Just here in New York there are dozens of venues. We are also planning an event, for 200 people."
"Wow!" My dad sounded impressed. "They invited you to present? That’s great!"
"Well, not exactly. Anybody can organize an event and publicize it on the website."
"What do you mean – anybody? Who is managing it?"

At this point, I realized that Social Media Week is apparently something quite unique. For three years, 60,000 people in 21 cities around the world (with New York taking center stage) assemble for a week of meetings addressing the topic of social media and its impact on humanity in the fields of culture, business, the media, economic and politics. 

Social Business 101: Framing Your Strategy

Rob Howard @robhoward: In my previous article, I shared the first five tips and recommendations for getting started with social business:

  1. Social is the new normal
  2. Target the social ecosystem
  3. Social isn’t a destination
  4. Facebook, Twitter and other social media
  5. Strategy, not technology

As promised from the last article, I have compiled five additional recommendations to help those looking to integrate social into their existing business.

The Hub of Enterprise 2.0: The Social Intranet

Toby Ward @tobyward: Enterprise 2.0 was once a trendy designation, a moniker for corporate social media use that has been in decline in the past 18 months. Such is the way of popular and acceptable nomenclature; trend setters, mavens and gurus generate and push buzz words to the background while elevating new ones to the public discourse.

Enterprise 2.0 is still a relevant label and designation that’s been around longer than intranet 2.0, the social intranet, and nearly as long as web 2.0, all being related in their focus on social media (though the application and audience varies). Social business has become the more common, de rigueur term used to describe an increasingly important discipline: using technology (namely, social media) to achieve and advance business goals.

SharePoint can be Social, Too

SharePoint as a Social Business Hub: Tips to Transform

David Lavenda @dlavenda: As we learned in last Wednesday’s Social Business TweetJam, creating a social business requires a unique combination of people, process and technology. For SharePoint users, the technology is the easy part, but getting the people and process in place can be challenging.

While many enterprise platforms like Microsoft SharePoint are plagued by low user adoption, it needn’t be that way. In an effort to promote better SharePoint adoption, we consulted some of the most experienced and influential SharePoint experts who made our Top 25 Most Influential SharePoint Thought Leaders in Social Business Today.

Video Blog: Sharing Tags Across the Enterprise

Mike Doane @mikedoane: In light of this month's focus on Social Business, today's post looks at the collaborative potential of tags and how they can help inform taxonomies.

SharePoint's Mark Kashman on Cloud vs. On Premise Solutions

Chris Wright @scribbleagency: I recently had the opportunity to interview Mark Kashman, a Senior Product Manager for SharePoint at Microsoft. I wanted to get his views on Office365, SharePoint Online and how he sees this cloud offering co-existing with SharePoint "On Premise" in the future.

SharePoint Planning: Focusing on 4 Key Areas

Christian Buckley @buckleyplanet: In the early days of SharePoint, the emphasis from experts and Microsoft's marketing teams was on how easy it was to deploy and begin using the platform. And they were right. Teams found that they could (and still can) quickly set it up and build simple solutions to meet their specific needs. But those that pushed the platform for its simplicity often left out one little detail: planning.

Buzzwords Du Jour?

Content Strategy: Pinterest, Storify Turn Content into Commodity

Ahava Leibtag @ahaval:  Ah, the Holy Grail of content strategy: content as a commodity. For years, those of us in digital strategy have known that content is both king and a commodity. But it’s been difficult to get others to see our point of view. However, two new interesting social sites make content feel like a commodity by the very nature of the way they present said content.

Beneath the Buzz: A Big Data-Data Scientist Primer

Virginia Backaitis: There’s almost as much buzz around Big Data as there is around Pinterest. Chances are that most anyone you run into at a premium coffee shop in an upper middle class neighborhood will have heard of, and be curious about, both.

And while Pinterest is the world’s fastest growing, stand-alone internet site of all time, it’s that way because it’s full of attractive images and it’s geared toward consumers. You use Facebook to log-in. check a few boxes and voila, appealing images curated especially for you appear on the screen in front of you.

Awards, Solutions and Simplicity in a Complex World

The Oscar Goes to: 3 Adaptive Case Management-powered Performances

Deb Miller @debsg360: It's awards time for the film industry and like many, I took some time out to watch the Oscars last Sunday. It's great to see high quality performances recognized. But Oscars aren't just for the movies, so I thought it would be a good time to look at award-winning performances in our own industry.

How do you effectively make changes to your operation to improve costs and productivity while delivering greater value to your customer? The answer lies in the performance of your knowledge workers. What tool can you use to enable those knowledge workers? As might be anticipated based on my continuing articles series of the same name, Adaptive Case Management (ACM) is my recommendation. So in the spirit of the film awards season, let’s take a look at three ACM-powered performances in the “Value” category that in my opinion deserve an Academy Award!

Does Your Digital Asset Management System Need an API?

Edward Smith @damgeek: Digital asset management (DAM) helps groups of people manage and find all of their digital media in one location, and APIs promise the same benefits — but to other computer systems. Is an API integration necessary to improve your workflow?

Marketers Want Simplicity in a Complex Online World

Aaron Dun @ajdun: The long, sordid history of web content management system (Web CMS) complexity is finally catching up with us. End users are revolting and demanding an easier way to manage content because the old ways are just too hard. At the same time, some in the industry are instead touting this complexity as “inherent” or “OK” because that is “just the way it is.”

I disagree, and I’ll bet you do too.

That's it for this week. Be sure to check in with our features next week, when we debut a new series of video blogs demonstrating how to leverage Office 365 for project collaboration and a two part series from Deb Lavoy exploring the humanity behind social business.