What’s an Enterprise Social Network Got to Do with Sales?

|   Jan 15, 2016
Randy Ferree

By Randy Ferree, Mid Market Account Executive at VMware AirWatch

Account Executive Randy Ferree shares how the sales team here at VMware AirWatch uses enterprise social network Socialcast to work faster, elevate the customer experience and build camaraderie.

As an account executive, it’s my job to ensure our customers not only love the products they buy but also learn about all of the other ways they can enhance their mobile strategy with the full VMware AirWatch product line and each new product release.

My job is to have all the answers, but for organizations like ours with robust product lines, each with constant improvements, having all the answers is the hardest part of my job. Even with an intranet and a site packed with product resources, it feels like a lifetime for me to get up to speed when they’re only updated every few months. And if something’s not working before I’m about to speak with a customer, I don’t always know the best expert to reach out to.

To get my job done faster and better, what I really need is a shortcut to the right information and the right people, and that’s what our enterprise social network, Socialcast, is to our sales organization.

An Easy Button for Finding Answers

Once, I was preparing for a demo and noticed something wasn’t working on my device. So in Socialcast, I posted my issue to our sales engineers group, and before I even got to work, one of the head engineers had replied and helped me solve my issue.

Demo Conversation

Outside of a social network, I have to escalate questions through layers of people or email an entire distribution list, which eats up time and creates a lot of noise for everyone. Now, even if I do send an email, most of our sales team directs the conversation to a specific group in Socialcast.

I raise my hand a lot on Socialcast to ask about product roadmaps, feature timelines and offerings to fit specific use cases, and experts reply the same day or often within minutes. And every time I get a question answered or bring up an issue, I help other employees do their jobs better and improve our products, too, because all of that activity is public, archived and searchable.

I also follow my team and post voice mail scripts and email templates to our group to share strategies. I follow the sales engineers group for the inside scoop on updates coming, known product issues and fixes to bugs. We have a group for every product, too—Socialcast, Content Locker, Identity Management, etc.—and the sales enablement group is practically my home base. We have tons of sales enablement news, slides and other resources, but they only post what’s most relevant so we don’t have to filter information to find what’s most important.

A Place for Teamwork–and Trash Talk

The cool part is this all occurred organically. Initially, people were just curious and intrigued about this new app we could access.

But once early adopters started using it to get answers in real time, word spread on the sales floor. Dabblers started creating team groups, and conversations moved from emails and meetings to Socialcast groups. Our entire sales organization here now uses Socialcast, and I’m on it daily to get up to speed on the most important updates.

No one told us to use it or hung a carrot in front of us to log in. We adopted Socialcast into our workflows because it made our jobs easier—and more fun.

Our sales coordinators create a group for every new sales event. If we have a contest or a demo, for instance, there’s a central place to spotlight things that otherwise might not get a lot of attention. We have a place to rally around events and announcements, and sometimes we get into the competitive spirit with trash talk between teams.

Socialcast brings life to otherwise stale interactions and keeps our sales team engaged even with seemingly small features. I even have a fun way to publicly recognize the people that helped me on Socialcast by sending thank you badges.

Thank You Badge

Having truly up-to-date information and instant access to experts across the company gives our sales team a competitive advantage. We’re now a small army of know-it-alls on all things VMware AirWatch and mobility, and I’m excited to see us take on 2016 with more speed and agility than ever.

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What is Socialcast?

Socialcast by VMware (NYSE: VMW) is a social network for business uniting people, information, and applications with its real-time enterprise activity stream engine. Behind the firewall or in the cloud, Socialcast enables instant collaboration in a secure environment. Socialcast is headquartered in San Francisco, California. www.socialcast.com