All business owners hear these days is how important social media is. Yet understanding how tools like Twitter and Facebook can be used for your particular business model is often difficult. In March of 2010, my company, Journyx, launched a Twitter campaign. For every day in March, we announced coupon codes on Twitter that could be redeemed for prizes such as free licenses to our software, an iPod, a Kindle, tickets to a local music festival, USB drives, and more.
Though this was a first-time experiment, we tripled the followers of @JournyxInc. The news was announced on more than 200 websites and the campaign landing page we set up got nearly 2,000 hits. Overall, the campaign was a big success. These followers who joined during March have stuck around, and now they keep up with news about our company.
How can you use social media tools to increase awareness about your business? It starts with knowing who your audience is, what tools they use, and what types of content/promotions they will respond to best.
Knowing your Key Performance Indicators
Do you know your company’s Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)? These are the very few things that you are measuring which you believe will make a huge difference to your business long-term. In other words, a KPI measures progress toward a strategic goal. If you have 100 KPIs, then you’re not going to be able to use any of them to drive organizational behavior because your company doesn’t have 100 strategic goals. Ten KPIs can be effective, five KPIs are better, and one KPI is ideal.
Martin Luther King Jr. had a morally compelling vision: interracial peace and equality. Your business needs a morally compelling vision as well if you want to hire and maintain the best people. King had a strategy to achieve his vision: nonviolent protest. In his case, a KPI might have been something like ‘number of violent incidents per protester.’ He would have encouraged his organization to reduce that number over time, which would have effectively measured the organization’s success.
The closer you get to a morally compelling vision, a clear strategy and calculable KPIs, the more successful your company will be, all else being equal.
Using Software-as-a-Service Solutions to “Green” Your Corporate Profile
What constitutes 90% of the value in recent asset sales on Wall Street by large companies? The answer is data centers and headquarters. When Lehman Brothers went bankrupt and sold its assets to Barclays for $1.75 billion, its data centers and headquarters constituted 86% of the value. This echoes the JPMorgan-Bear Stearns fire sale, in which Bear Stearns' two data centers and headquarters also represented most of the price. Why is this so?
A palatial headquarters generates no revenue for any business, and its upkeep depresses profits, sometimes significantly. Yet another reason to sell your headquarters and data centers is to switch to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions. Not only is this an excellent financial decision, but SaaS solutions are much greener than hosting your data on a local server.
SaaS solutions cut down on the use of fossil fuels because they enable telecommuting. SaaS allows the sharing of resources. Instead of one server in your company serving one population of users sporadically, an equivalent server can sit in the data center of a SaaS provider and serve multiple companies worldwide. SaaS solutions also mean less landfill waste (computers, cartridges, connectors, circuit boards and paper). Wall Street is ditching its servers, and perhaps you should, too.
About the Author:
Curt Finch is the CEO of Journyx. Since 1996, Journyx has remained committed to helping customers intelligently invest their time and resources to achieve per-person, per-project profitability. Curt earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Virginia Tech in 1987. As a software programmer fixing bugs for IBM in the early ‘90’s, Curt Finch found that tracking the time it took to fix each bug revealed the per-bug profitability. Curt knew that this concept of using time-tracking data to determine project profitability was a winning idea and something that companies were not doing – yet… Curt created the world's first web-based timesheet application and the foundation for the current Journyx product offerings in 1997. Curt is an avid speaker and writer. Learn more about Curt at http://journyx.com/company/curtfinch.html.
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Tips & Tricks from Software CEO Curt Finch