CIO’s Explore Twitter for Business – Webinar Recap

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CIOs explore twitter for business

The CIOs of Sony Pictures and Clorox weren’t sold on Twitter at first, as they explained during the webcast yesterday, “CIOs Reveal Why They Tweet”.

Ralph Loura, the CIO of Clorox, made a promise to himself that he would stick with it for a month to see what he got out of it. David Buckholtz, Divisional CIO for Sony Pictures, had established hundreds of LinkedIn connections before sending one tweet. It was using the Twitter search feature to ferret out fellow tweeters for strategic reasons that convinced them of the value of Twitter for business.

Ralph and David are not alone. In a survey of 75 tweeting CIOs that was discussed during the panel, virtually all of them-92%–agreed that Twitter is an effective business tool. When digging deeper into the data it’s evident why. Most of the CIOs who use Twitter, 70%, have forged new business relationships via the social network. Since connections are the currency of business, Twitter is clearly paying off for CIOs daring enough to jump into the long-tail conversations.

Twitter for business isn’t obvious to everyone, however. Ironically, as a small community of CIOs are busy putting Twitter to work for them, 49% of them cite the perception that Twitter is a waste of time as the biggest barrier to enterprise adoption of Twitter. But even though Twitter has a bad rap for being a time suck, over half of CIOs surveyed said that employees are free to use Twitter as they fit.

Sony Pictures is moving away from social media “lockdown” mode, according to David, and Ralph said that employees at Clorox are increasingly managing and promoting brands on Twitter, which includes Burt’s Bees products (The realization that Clorox owns the Burt’s Bees brand generated a couple of tweets all on its own at #ciowebinar).

Kristin Burnham, the Web 2.0 reporter for CIO Magazine, who was also on the panel, predicted that more businesses are going to embrace the notion of enterprise tweeting. She added that the “new Twitter” that was recently announced will have features that will make it easier for newcomers to manage their Twitter streams and to more easily reap the benefits of the real-time platform.

According to the survey, CIOs are also using Twitter to:

– Follow news that impacts their job (92%)
– Learn best practices from other CIOs (75%)
– Position themselves as thought leaders (66%)
– Share news about their company with outsiders (56%)
– Monitor how competitors are using social media (44%)

Thanks to David, Ralph, Kristin and all of you who participated in the webinar.  I would love to get your feedback on it and the survey and to learn what other questions and topics you’d like to see in future discussions.

cc licensed flickr photo shared by Y0$himi

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