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There’s a reason sellers can be inappropriately labeled as having ADD.  On any given week they are getting countless emails from corporate, management, and buyers as they work dozens of opportunities.  Yet, the agility of a sales team to align to new directives from executives while being nimble to the needs of the buyer are competitive differentiators.  In the video below, our head of sales jay.larson alks about how we drive this at Jive to drive strategic alignment of the sales team and win deals faster.

 

 

Field Communications & Strategic Alignment

Even sitting at headquarters, keeping up to date with information can be a challenge, but many times we mistakenly assume that sellers have heard about the latest market changes, product update, or competitive alerts. Out in the field and around the world, things are far different.  Due to information overload, lack of connectivity, and inconsistency in communication (mostly via email) the reality is very little can reach what some clients call “the edge”, or where front line sellers meet buyers.  When I was selling in a channel environment, I literally felt like I was on the edge of the world as vital sales information didn't reach me until almost 6 months later.

 

At Jive we have a different philosophy that Jay talks about in the video above, combining many best practices our customers implement:

  • “The edge” is where breaking news is sent to corporate and alignment begins via feedback channels.
  • We have a cadence of communication that reps can expect with a weekly Monday morning call that is virtualized and saved with all materials presented.
  • A video blog called JayTV updates all our sellers, both via web browser as well as offline on their tablet with Jive Present.
  • patrick.merritt, our Director of Sales Enablement creates newsletter from called Merritt’s what Matters, aggregating and referencing hot topics and discussing best practices in the field.
  • When things are unexpected, relevant and targeted announcements and alerts buzz reps phones on their Jive mobile apps.

 

Sales Collaboration & Deal Coordination

Whether you are working on a larger deal or managing a strategic account, things can quickly become late night nightmare.  Many times sellers don’t know who to invite to the meeting, follow-ups can be dropped, information is everywhere, and deals fall through the cracks.  Never mind the fact that the average seller is working dozens of deals an their team is never at their desk.  Unfortunately the person that suffers is typically the buyer with a horrible experience, in addition to worn out pre and post sales team that feel like they’re spinning their wheels.

 

In the second half of the video Jay talks about the most critical portion of opportunity management, the deal desk.  This is where you win or lose a deal, and something that can easily be tied to outcomes and revenue. Creating the final presentation and proposal along with structuring the solution at Jive is managed in a single deal room, accessible via any device.  All conversations, CRM data, documents, emails, and relevant information is referenced without the sellers worrying about where it came from.  People are tasked, decisions made, and business outcomes documented.  Management can inspect the deal room and steps completed in our sales methodology, served up from CRM.  The result is quicker, larger, and lower cost deals.

 

We would love to hear more best practices in keeping the field up to date with the latest communications, or making it easier to close business through team selling.  To learn more on how other Jive clients transform their sales team, you can also register for the B2B Sales Summer Series, and we will also have a track on how Jive enables our sales team at Jive World.

Have you ever wondered if you could foster a strong enough customer community that can serve as an effective extension of your sales team? You can, with the right tools and guidance.

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This live webcast will highlight use-cases showcasing companies that have successfully promoted a brand that customers love, respect and evangelize organically. Join us on Thursday, August 1st at 11am PT (2pm ET) as featured speaker Laura Ramos, Vice President and Principal Analyst at Forrester, and Jive's elizabeth.brigham discuss how to:

 

  • Create a satisfying online community experience for your customers.
  • Transform customer enthusiasm into brand advocacy.
  • Engage mobile customers and prospects.
  • Measure results that show real return.

 

This webcast is the first in Jive's Marketing Summer School Series where we invite industry leaders to discuss current trends, solutions and the opportunities social business creates for marketing.

 

Reserve your seat here today! Marketing Summer School Series | Jive Software

While the competition is basking in the sun this summer, you’ll be ahead of the game by attending our B2B Sales Summer School Webcast Series! You’ll give your sales reps opportunities to win deals faster while leveraging investments in existing sales tools before your competitors even know what happened. Experts James Ninivaggi, Service Director of Sales Enablement Strategies at SiriusDecisions and Jarrett OBrien, Sr. Product Marketing Manager at Jive Software, will give you the secrets, tips, and know-how to close business and boost revenue. You’ll discover how leading organizations:

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  • Increase sales per rep by 13% while decreasing turnover by 12%*
  • Transform the customer experience with in sync account management.
  • Increase win rate by 23% with a single hub for all deal activity.*
  • Enable sales teams to understand business issues and articulate the solution.
  • Get newly hired sales reps selling 23% faster, with 14% less sales support.*

 

* Verified by a top 3 consulting firm.

Attend one or all webcasts in the series. Either way, we are confident that you’ll get a ton out of this series that will catapult your sales ahead of the competition. The first webcast, Make 50 Hours of Selling More Productive, James Ninivaggi from SiriusDecisions will show you how to ensure that your sales team is making the most of those 50 hours.

 

Reserve your seat today!

We're excited to announce that over this past weekend every cloud instance was upgraded to our Summer release!  In addition to some exciting new features, we've taken customer feedback and incorporated improvements and suggestions from our Spring release to go even further ahead in many of the areas we focused on for that release and wanted to provided a recap of this latest release.

 

The 2 minute overview (more details further below)

Driving intuitive, purposeful collaboration

  • Structured Outcomes with improved workflow & Action history (see what Actions have been resolved!) and search filters (eg, find Final documents only).
  • An entirely revamped Place creation flow to carry people into Purposeful Places, along with template categories - e.g. people in sales can easily locate all place templates related to their role, marketing can quickly find place templates related to their role, etc.
  • Advanced Gamification is now available as an add-on module in Jive Cloud.

Business value intelligence – personal & company-wide

  • Impact Metrics now have statistics broken down hourly, plus the ability to "share your Impact" with all viewers of content (versus just editors).
  • Jive Business Analytics which provide in-depth visibility of trends that relate to specific business use cases of Jive.

Bringing Jive to wherever you work

  • Jive Anywhere has a whole new look and enhanced usability to now support connecting to multiple Jive networks.
  • StreamOnce for Jive moves beyond Outlook and Gmail - adds 4 more integrations including Dropbox, Chatter, Yammer, Evernote

Making Mobile work for work

  • Jive for iPad adds SSO support and a sleek new Explore tab to discover trending content in your network.
  • Jive Mobile supporting external activity (such as SFDC Chatter entries).

Several other User experience enhancements

  • An option for a new super slim top navigation that stays pinned at the top of your screen no matter where you scroll. (You can opt into this change but it will not be applied by default.)
  • Jive for Office/Outlook - several UX enhancements


More details

Driving intuitive, purposeful collaboration

Structured Outcomes

In this release we've focused on refining the workflows introduced in the Spring release based on your feedback, including:

  • Collaborating privately on Action Items

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  • Keeping a record of when an Action Item is resolved and showing the history of how it got resolved.

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  • One view into all your Action Items – a home base for what needs doing.

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  • Filtering by content with specific outcomes in Browse and Search, making it easier than ever to find the the right stuff.

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  • And the addition of "Most Liked" – when any comments have a lot of likes, we roll them up at the top so they're easy to identify!

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Purposeful Places

Super slick, streamlined new Place Creation flow makes it easier to get to doing work, fast.

  1. Create.
  2. Name it.

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3.  Optionally, apply a template

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Voila! Your new Place is ready for getting work done!  We've also shrunk down the banner image by 30%, and when combined with the new skinny stick nav (see below), you have approximately the same real estate as from before the Spring release.  Our customers asked, we listened.


Advanced Gamification

Our popular Advanced Gamification module is now available to Cloud customers. Award points and build missions out of more than 140 base gamifiable actions! The impact customers have seen when turning this on has been huge and we're excited to make it easy to add in cloud. It's available for all tiers but is an additional fee per user.

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Business value intelligence – personal & company-wide

Impact Metrics

Impact Metrics got some great improvements based on user feedback. First, for your own view of Impact Metrics, starting with that first moment after you publish, of course you want immediate feedback, so we're adding an hourly view that starts showing data right away. We also bucketed the sentiment into Neutral, Good, and Exceptional to provide more context on your results.  And, we're continuing to tune the impact calculations.

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Additionally, when you have great Impact Metrics you want to be able to share them. You will now be able to make your Impact Metrics public so you can brag to your peers, your manager, or have healthy competition between teams on your reach and impact!

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Jive Business Analytics

Jive Business Analytics reports are designed to test the business value Jive is bringing to customers. They track specific user behaviors as users use their Jive instance. These behaviors are then profiled into buckets that are hypothesized to align with a specific business value. As an example for employee onboarding we would hypothesize that if new employees get connected to other employees across the organization faster, then they become more productive sooner. Jive Business Analytics tracks if users are following the right employees, joining the right groups and commenting on the right content.

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Bringing Jive to wherever you work

Jive Anywhere

We've made Jive Anywhere ready to be the best solution for socializing any enterprise app: add commenting capabilities into crusty old apps without any coding! We've simplified the experience and customers willd see the tab renamed from "Jive" to "Discuss" to increase adoption and help people understand what it's for. And, once you do open the tab, sexy stuff happens!

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StreamOnce for Jive

We now have many more additional systems integrated with just a few clicks with our StreamOnce technology.

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Jive for iPad (and Mobile)

The new Explore tab will be going live later this month, highlighting trending content within your network in one visual, newsletter style view.

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We've also added filtering to iPad search.

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For customers leveraging Jive in the Cloud, we'd love to hear what features you're most excited about.  Comment below and let us know!  Thanks in advance.

Back at JiveWorld 12, I facilitated a mini-session about all the things we often ask of our advocates in a community. The intent of the conversation was to explore the ways these different "roles within a role" may affect our advocate recruitment and motivation approaches, since it is all too easy to think of advocates as a one-size-fits-all collective in our community planning efforts.

 

A mere 8 months later, I've managed to capture the outcomes of that session—and added some thoughts on a few other roles too, to hopefully make it almost worth the wait. In the spirit of the collaborative conversation that inspired this post in the first place, please chime in with your comments below! I'd love to hear how you've seen these roles (and others) play out in your communities and what you've done to support and empower them.

 

See you back in Vegas in October for JiveWorld 13!

 

 

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Who are they?

 

  • Helpful—frequently assist others
  • Patient
  • Good communicators
  • Involved in the broader initiative—know the details
  • Trusted
  • Technically savvy
  • Subject matter experts
  • Love to learn
  • May be in learning-focused roles such as Training or support roles such as Exec Assistants
  • Walk through features and benefits with peers 1:1

 

What do they need from you?

 

  • Train the trainer materials: scripts, handouts, etc.
  • Documentation to ensure consistency
  • Permission/support to go "off script"
  • Ongoing communication and recognition: Emphasize how much they are helping others and how the community is benefiting as a result
  • Vision and context—they need to "get it"
  • Enabling technology to assist others remotely: WebEx, Skype, etc.
  • Opportunity to be viewed as leaders/intrinsic rewards

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Who are they?

 

  • Role models
  • Set the tone and model social norms within the community
  • "Cool kids"/thought leaders, well respected by peers
  • Group owners and community managers
  • "People like me"—diverse population so everyone can find a role model

 

What do they need from you?

 

  • Give them specific things to do: e.g., respond to posts from leadership, resuscitate key conversations, etc.
  • Training on both how and why to leverage the community
  • Use-case-specific examples and inspiration/success stories

Champions

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Who are they?

 

  • Guerrilla marketer, cheerleader
  • Spread the word to colleagues
  • Help paint the vision for skeptics
  • Feed others' passion
  • Passionate about social collaboration
  • Frequent, savvy users of other social tools

 

What do they need from you?

 

  • Tools to help spread the word: Leave-behinds, slideware/handouts, swag
  • Key messages (help them articulate key benefits)
  • Freedom to get the word out in their own way via their existing networks
  • Positive reinforcement and inspiration: Give them a reason to believe their energy is going toward a worthy cause
  • Social outlet with their fellow advocates to feed off each others' energy

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Who are they?

 

  • Early adopters
  • Eager to help
  • "Street team" of volunteers to help get community ready for launch and keep it lively over time
  • Help seed/migrate content
  • Document favorite features (help create training content)
  • Answer others' questions (and/or route to appropriate SME)

 

What do they need from you?

 

  • Specific task lists of straight-forward, relatively quick items
  • Deadlines
  • A few open-ended tasks so they can get creative if they want to
  • Opportunities to inform future community projects/foster a sense of ownership

For marketers, customer centricity can't just be about abstract talk and the latest jargon. In an era of high customer expectations, increased brand competition and the explosion of social channels, successful marketing teams must take meaningful, in-the-trenches action in order to create compelling, long-term value for customers.

However, while this action-oriented attitude can pay valuable dividends, it also leads to a long list of must-haves: You need to listen to your company's customers and gather data. You have to glean insights from that data and bring them into your organization to drive product development and enhancements, messaging and strategy. All of this, within the framework of a strong, clear brand identity. Simple? Not!

Clearly, becoming truly customer-centric is complex. But what if you had a secret weapon in your marketing arsenal to help with every step on the customer-centric journey? What if you could take the confusion and anxiety out of the process and seamlessly engage in what is truly a cultural shift in how organizations relate to customers?

With Jive, you do. And you can.

Jive's comprehensive social business solution creates, cultivates and supports a culture of collaboration and insight-driven connection between employees, partners and customers. This strong dialogue (or even tri-alogue), uses the power of internal and external social communities, as well as cross-functional collaboration tools, to empower and enable everyone involved to advocate for the brand and keep improving products and services. Now, employees and teams can easily listen to and respond to customers and partners, and weave a customer focus into all product and marketing strategies.

Want to build a laser-sharp customer focus? Start now with these 8 concrete steps:Screen Shot 2013-06-24 at 5.20.12 PM.png

1. Listen to what customers are already saying about you.

A clear brand identity is essential for any successful marketer. But to understand how customers and prospects perceive your brand, you need to know what they are saying to friends, family and peers. Jive Fathom social media monitoring lets you listen in on social web, tracking conversations and spotting trends that impact your company and brand. Jive Anywhere lets you capture reports from any web-based social media tool, such as Visible Technologies, and easily share them with colleagues within Jive. And Jive Resonata analytics mine the interactions in your Jive external communities to produce deep, actionable insight into prospect and customer needs, motivations and sentiment.

2. Dig into customer support data.

Customer service is an essential brick in your effort to build a customer-centric focus, so it makes sense to dig deeply into the support data you already have. Jive customer support communities provide a motherlode of information -- on customer issues, concerns, perceptions and suggestions -- which you can marry with trends in support cases to help you develop a stronger strategy and prioritize actions.

3. Make sharing the latest customer feedback simple, easy and fast.

Jive makes it simple to tear down your departmental silos so customer feedback can be freely shared, discovered and addressed. Internal employee communities provide a central hub where cross-functional teams can gather to have discussions, give status updates, and pinpoint actions. And integration with your external customer community and customer support allows everyone has a 360-degree view of what customers are saying.

4. Develop your own branded external community to facilitate deeper engagement.

An external community in which you own the content and media -- as opposed to a Facebook page, for example -- allows for authentic interaction with and among customers and prospects like no public social network can. With Jive, you can customize it with your own identity and connect it to internal customer service and marketing teams. You can observe, participate and identify trends that can then be brought internally to discuss and take action -- driving new product enhancements, improving customer service, and strengthening your messaging.


5. Co-create content and product ideas with customers & partners.

Customer-centric marketing means no longer just pushing ideas out through email blasts, Facebook posts and in-person events, but inviting your best customers and partners to become an empowered part of your messaging efforts, sales process, product innovation and content development. Jive's external customer and partner communities provide the rich interaction and collaboration capabilities that go far beyond conventional online forums, allowing users to connect, form groups and discussions, share a wide variety of content, write blog posts and more.

6. Empower and incent anyone in the company to participate.

You should inspire, empower and incentivize everyone in the company to work towards boosting the customer experience, from the C-suite to the front lines. Employees who are informed and engaged within a tightly aligned and coordinated organization will want to drive innovation and customer engagement -- and with Jive's gamification capabilities, you can recognize and reward their participation with game mechanics such as points, badges, trophies and other achievements.

7. Recognize and reward customers and partners for their participation.

A customer-centric ecosystem nurtures brand champions and advocates by encouraging customers and partners to participate in your public community, to give feedback about your new products and services, and to spread the word across the social web. With Jive's gamification tools, you can reward the behaviors you want to perpetuate, whether it is reading or commenting on a blog post, sharing an update, creating new content or completing a specific task such as going through a training session.

8. Use internal collaboration to strengthen strategic planning.

So, you've got a goldmine of feedback and analytics gleaned from social web data, customer service cases and public community profiles, comments and discussions. Now what? With Jive, you can use one platform to come together to share data and insights, make informed decisions and take action. With all teams aware of the latest data insights and how they can take advantage of them to drive the business forward, you can strengthen the strategic planning process across the entire enterprise, from marketing and R&D to product, finance, legal and creative.

Moving towards true customer-centricity can seem like a daunting challenge. But Jive provides an end-to-end answer that provides assistance along every step of the way, from gathering and harvesting insights to sharing data across functions and crafting strategies and programs. By aligning around a strong customer focus, you can quickly move beyond just talk to specific actions that lead to better results.

Learn more about how Jive can help you transform your organization into a customer-centric powerhouse here.

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