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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.
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.

Here's what SAP community marketing means to me: enhance image, visibility, and community reputation for the purposes of increased lead generation. There are many new ways in the social media world of attracting some attention; the catch is that there are many missteps. Few companies I know in the third-party SAP ecosystem are executing a good community marketing strategy. Below is an excerpt of those services from my JonERP client services blog.

Here's some insight into the SAP marketing strategy I advocate via a recent podcast I did with Andy Klee of ERPtips.com:

My community marketing services are divided into two distinct areas:

1. Define a marketing strategy

2. Implement that marketing strategy

I view the marketing strategy as one that is:

- web site centric (NOT social network centric), paying attention to overall web site "organic search/inbound marketing" trends

- centered on thought leadership and SAP community contribution (rather than pushing products)

- creating a compelling company storyline that is interesting to media and has obvious value to community members

- informed by smart use of social networks to enhance that strategy and drive traffic to the web site

Note: Too many firms overemphasize participation on social networks and forget their own site must be the focal point, centered on an information-providing message over a "service broadcasting" message.

Customer case studies can be very powerful. Driving a storyline via customer testimonials can be a key place to start when the marketing gets rolling. Quantifying the benefits is a key part of a successful case study, and that can take some work, but it's well worth doing. 

Gaining media attention and visibility for projects is another big part of how to build name recognition and warm up colder calls. There are ways of making this happen by creating a compelling storyline.

Approaches I have done in the past that build a storyline:

- sharing customer stories, documenting case studies, and when possible, creating networks of customers who share facilitated peer group intelligence

- combine "bottom up" influencer strategy with targeted marketing to decision makers (top down)

- monitor trends and progress via web-based analytics and/or conversion tracking

- integrate online participation and content generation with in-person appearances and user group activity (all part of a coordinated effort informed by an underlying strategy)

- set up a "sentiment analysis" engine that allows your team to monitor mentions of your company, as well as trends pertaining to your products that we can then comment on or connect to

- ensure the web site itself is easy to add meaningful content to via some type of content management system or blogging structure

- create relevant LinkedIn groups, newsletters, or Facebook Fan Pages and develop worthwhile content that can "autopopulate" once created on all these "content outposts"

Another important aspect of marketing strategy:

- Big bang marketing doesn't work. What works is creating a long-term plan that can be applied consistently over time.

- Affordable: must be something that is doable over the long haul. Spending big money on a logo redo or web relaunch only to run out of money for marketing after that - a mistake I see often - is not effective.

- Marketing must be clearly tied to lead generation and conversion, meaning close coordination with the sales team to understand the types of leads that are preferred and the kinds of marketing messages most effective to closing deals.

For more background on what I do, check out my client services overview and my personal bio.

 

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