Sunday, August 2, 2009

Why I love blogs and Yammer in addition to twitter. And the opportunity for someone to add MPS to Google Apps.

Early this morning I posted about enterprise twitter to fix email. At 10:11 AM I got the following comment:
Chris Yeh said... The main Enterprise Twitter product is Yammer. Other folks like Socialtext have built Twitter-like functionality into appliances. August 2, 2009 10:11 AM
So then I googled Yammer and learned once again there are no new ideas, just different implementations. From Yammer's website, I took this;
Used by Employees at More Than 40,000 Businesses Worldwide:
client logos
A quick look at the About page got me this:

The basic Yammer service is free. Companies can pay to claim and administer their networks. Yammer was founded by former executives and early employees of PayPal, eGroups, eBay, and Tribe. It is backed by venture capital firms Founders Fund and Charles River Ventures.

The team is composed of serious experienced people and it looks like money is in the game. Here's the video:

But, like almost everyone in tech, the missed the power of print.
It's a longer story for a different post. But the short story is:
1. Every enterprise email is opened in the context of power, not as information.
2. The goal of people in power is to make sure everyone heard what they had to say.
3. The problem with email is that it doesn't have constraints so people tend to protect themselves with lots of words.

The Use Case for Print + enterprise twitter.
The supervisor tweets. Once a week the twitter stream is printed out and distributed to each employee. Since everyone is mostly too busy, being busy to read a twitter stream, it is the distributed Print which eliminates "I didn't see that" or "You never told me." or "Gosh. Information Overload is blablabla."

140 characters with a tinyurl is clear message. Clicking on the tinyurl says you saw it. Handing out a dated print version says "I expect you to know about this."

That's the way it would work in a high school class or most enterprises.

People make enterprise sales. Tech is for everyone else.
Yammer or Google Wave or Google Apps has API's to manage the print fleet, that means resellers on the ground who sell copiers. Copier salespeople, as we all know, are the most ferocious hunters in the marketplace. The independents who have moved to MPS are the best farmers in the marketplace.

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