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So What Can JonERP Do For SAP Solutions and Services Firms?

We get the question all the time: "Your web site is excellent/nifty/fun, but what can you do for clients?" So, we decided to address this with our SAP Services Blog, where you can read about what Jon Reed and the JonERP team do for clients in our typical frank language. For a broad overview of all our SAP client services, go here. Otherwise, scroll down for specifics on how Jon brings together SAP media, business strategy and Web 2.0 techniques to help his clients stay one step ahead. Also: there is plenty of bonus content here to apply to your current SAP business and marketing strategy.
SAP Services Blog
Announcing our New JonERP Speical Report: Success as a Third Party SAP Solutions Provider Print E-mail

August 17, 2012, Jon Reed notes: 

I'm pleased to announce the debut on JonERP.com of my special report, "How to Move from Opt-Out to Community Relevance: 31 Keys to Success in the SAP Ecosystem." This report is the culmination of more than 15 years of work with SAP solutions and services firms, figuring out what works and what fails in the attention economy. Head over to the table to contents page to read the report intro, download the free PDF, and/or browse any or all of the contents.

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SAP Ecosystem Success in an Opt-Out Economy - 31 Keys to Better Results Print E-mail

A JonERP Special Report

jreed.jpgThe rules of marketing are broken. What does that mean for the SAP ecosystem? It means that too often, we do spectacular things that go unnoticed. Our solutions get lost in the instant gratification "attention economy." And even if you have a war chest, you can't spend your way out of it. The SAP firms that try to buy eyeballs with broadcasting approaches only accelerate their failures. Meanwhile, SEO and social media "gurus" are ripping firms off left and right with overpriced and flawed approaches. So what's the answer? 

The answer is that anyone who claims to have all the answers is probably a fraud. But there is good news: even though attempts to "go viral" fail and tone-deaf stock photo marketing gets ridiculed in real-time, there's never been a better time to further your business by becoming part of the community rather than advertising into it. That means developing deep expertise, turning that into exceptional content, and making that content easy to access and share. 

In this JonERP Speical Report on SAP Solutions Success, I put all the best ideas I've seen, all the tactics that have proven themselves in the road tests of my own work (and that of my clients), into 31 keys to success.  For the last few months this piece has been available for download via TechTarget - now it's on JonERP, and you can either download the entire PDF (128KB) or browse the sections online. Read on for a few more details on the table of contents. 

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SAP Ecosystem - 31 Keys to Success: Keys 1-4 - Avoiding SAP Marketing #Fails Print E-mail

We're in a different marketing era, and those who don't get that are struggling to keep up. The SAP ecosystem is no different. The "New Rules of Marketing" mean that customers are empowered to research and evaluate companies on their own. They are resistant, sometimes even downright hostile, to receiving unsolicited promotional content. Even the trusty email inbox has become treacherous ground for the marketer as prospects weed out non-essential queries, and priority filters limit all but white-listed content. If the prospect doesn't invite you in, you're not sticking around.

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SAP Ecosystem - 31 Keys to Success: Keys 5-12 - The Challenges of Transparency Print E-mail

5. Do you have a top-down and/or a bottom-up approach to targeting decision makers?

Ultimately, you want to be able to reach those who can make purchasing decisions, but contrary to the hype, most of those folks are not on social media channels - yet. Frame it like this: 

Do you understand the behavior of decision makers in your area, what job titles they have, and how to reach them?

Do you understand the purchasing process and what role hands-on subject matter experts and SAP technical pros play in the decision making process? These hands-on experts are the folks more likely to be accessible on social channels. My research has found that social-media-savvy subject matter experts do have a "bottom up" impact on the SAP decision making process. Note: there is an in-depth piece on the topic of SAP, social media, and decision makers on JonERP.com.

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SAP Ecosytem - 31 Keys to Success: Keys 13-21 - Don't Get Fooled by SEO and Social "Gurus" Print E-mail

13. Do you insist that folks visit your hub to get your content, or do you go where the conversations are?

You want to strike a balance between building up your hub and recognizing that people want to access content in the form they want it, on the web site or application they want to consume it on. Note: This does NOT mean cross-posting the same blog content all over the place. Cross-posting is a no-no for a couple very good reasons: the community finds it irritating, and it can seriously hurt you with organic search. (Google is aggressive about penalizing duplicate content and is not very good at determining the site of origin for such content. This means, unfortunately, truncating your RSS feeds rather than syndicating full posts. And yes, make all your content RSS subscribable - it's not as popular as "like" buttons but a minority of super users and decision makers use this format.)

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SAP Ecosystem - 31 Keys to Success: Keys 22-31 - Why Buying Influence Doesn't Work Print E-mail

22. Have you made a careful, long term decision on your web site architecture? Have you chosen a content management system that makes it easy for those with no programming skills inside your firm (including executives) to easily post content?

 Does that web site framework also include social sharing plug-ins to make it easy for visitors to share your content socially? (Yes, for some firms, this action item should be higher up if you are planning a near-term web site launch or upgrade). The pain and investment of designing great site architecture will cost you in the short term, but it will pay off big in the long term. You won't have to pay your designer every time you want to make a change, and your people across departments will be able to easily add content, including  your executives if needed, which will have a noticeable impact on the amount of content on your site over time and the credibility of that material.

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The Power of Pull, SAP Style: How I use "pull technologies" to raise my game - and how you can too Print E-mail

jonerp_full_logo.PNGJon Reed notes, May 1, 2011: I originally wrote a version of this article on the "Power of Pull" for the SAP Mentors Quarterly, 1st Quarter 2011. This topic is core to what I do, so I'm publishing an expanded version of this article here on JonERP.com. I'm publishing this in my JonERP client services section because many of my clients have asked me how to better analyze conversations about their products. I tell them that if you only look at "pull" for analyzing sentiment, you're leaving a lot on the table.

The best thing about pulling information is developing a more sophisticated (and real-time) understanding of what's happening in your industry. Now you're building a reputation around thought leadership as opposed to pushing product. Picking up on fresh client leads is a bonus, and often a natural byproduct of pull as a discipline.  As you comment on (and share) information as it comes out, you deepen relationships in a way that is not possible if you are focused only on broadcasting your own messages. Unless you're a large company, the tools needed to pull this off are largely inexpensive or free. But it does mean debunking the fantasy that you can get all the info you need simply by checking in on Twitter a few times a day. Here's how I do it.

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A Defiant Guide to Search Engine Optimization for SAP Web Sites Print E-mail
(Why “SEO Gurus” are Overrated, and What to do About It)

This is a shorter version of a piece on SEO for SAP web sites I provide to new JonERP clients. The goal is to reclaim a ridiculously common sense approach to building effective web sites: better content leads to greater visibility. Too often, companies waste excessive money on "SEO experts" when their real problem is an absence of thought leadership and the content to back it up. There is also the problem of over-relying on quickly dated blog content when search thrives on deeper reference materials. The most basic concept for SEO in the SAP world is effort. There is such a huge amount of SAP content out there - you are not going to get search attention without originality and dedicated effort.

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How Are SAP Decision Makers Impacted by Social Media? A JonERP Briefing Print E-mail
Over the last few years, the most common question I get from my clients is some variation on this: Is social media effective in terms of reaching SAP decision makers? Or is it just an overblown, over-hyped waste of time? And what do SAP decision makers find relevant when they are online? I have conducted quite a bit of research on this topic, which I share with my regular clients. However, I'd like to share a few of the highlights of this research with JonERP readers. If you want to discuss this in more detail or look into how it might apply to your firm specifically, get in touch.

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How JonERP Defines "SAP Community Marketing" Print E-mail

Jon Reed notes: these are email excerpts from the email I send to new JonERP clients who are trying to get a better handle on what I call "SAP Community Marketing." A big part of this is making sense of social media hype and how the company's own web site fits into the picture. There are good lessons to consider here in terms of the limitations of commercial broadcasting (which most community members tune out) versus creating content and tools that have a powerful impact - giving you something worthwhile to tweet about.

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What is the JonERP Business Model? Podcast Excerpt With Andy Klee of ERPtips Print E-mail

So What is the JonERP Business Model?
How JonERP Helps Third Party SAP Services and Solutions Firms

Podcast: Listen Now!
[PC users: "right click" to download file] 

Jon Reed notes: One of my most common site questions is, "I love your site, but how do you make money?" I sometimes like to flip that question around as follows:

"So how do you help third party SAP firms?" 

In this podcast interview excerpt from Andy Klee, I answered that question.

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SAP and Web 2.0 Client Services - Examples of Work Performed Print E-mail

jonerp.jpgThe term "Web 2.0" is full of hype, especially when we take a more skeptical look at whether or not these tools can actually help businesses grow in a challenging economy. At JonERP.com, we help SAP services firms make more money, improve their data, and increase their market reach. (See our SAP services overview for a broad view of what we do.) Properly applied to an SAP context, Web 2.0 services can make a difference with all three of these objectives. Of course, each firm must take a close look at which tools can truly have an impact for them rather than simply assuming that "one size fits all." Jon Reed can help you sort through the hype and succeed with a range of Web 2.0 SAP initiatives.

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SAP Recruitment Optimization with JonERP.com - Project Examples Print E-mail
jonerp.jpgSAP recruitment is a challenging task in any economy. While it may be easier to fill job openings in a downturn, the truly talented SAP professionals - the ones with deep SAP know-how and the latest product knowledge - remain hard to find. Building relationships with these so-called "passive job seekers" involves breaking down barriers between services firms and the SAP community they serve.
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Better Talent Management for SAP Services Firms – How JonERP.com Can Help Print E-mail
jonerp.jpgAmongst SAP services firms, there is an increasing awareness that top shelf SAP talent is the competitive differentiator that separates them from their rivals. And yet, in the fray of closing deals, many of the key aspects of talent management are neglected - until it's too late to correct them. Jon works with clients to put an effective talent management plan in place, while avoiding common pitfalls.
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Putting SAP Web 2.0 Projects in a Strategic Context - What JonERP Can Do Print E-mail
jonerp.jpgThe biggest mistake SAP services firms make with Web 2.0 is getting "Web 2.0 fever" and heading onto some online web sites with a chaotic energy and an incoherent strategy. An equally problematic mistake is to ignore the innovations of some employees who have done some great Web 2.0 things "on the side" because the firm was not ready to move forward. The pitfalls can be avoided by developing a coherent Web 2.0 recruitment and marketing strategy - and that's where Jon Reed of JonERP.com can help.

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