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Posts Tagged ‘networking’

Canada 3.0: Creating Engagement and Collaborating With Digital Tools

During this week’s Canada 3.0 conference in Stratford, I was asked for my thoughts on how ORYX uses digital tools to collaborate with other individuals across our company as well as how we use these tools to engage our external audience. I’m not sure if it was simply a lack of preparedness on the topics or the on-the-spot nature of the video interview, but I feel like I gave a terrible interview – Hopefully it doesn’t make it off of the cutting room floor! I’m going to provide additional thoughts around these questions since I don’t feel that I was able to articulate my thoughts clearly and the possibility of you seeing my performance in this video worries me.

How does your company use digital tools to collaborate and share information?
With offices in Toronto and Kitchener-Waterloo, and clients from Vancouver to Miami, connectivity and collaboration are two important keys to ensuring our projects are kept on track and our clients are kept informed. We use Skype’s Video chat feature to hold weekly status meetings between offices to discuss current projects and deliverables. We also use Skype to hold regular update meetings with clients who are out of province or out of country. With gas prices soaring higher each day, Skype not only enables us to feel like we are meeting face-to-face, it also helps us control our travel expenses.

ORYX has deployed Salesforce.com internally as well. We use this cloud-based solution to stay on top of our new business leads, opportunities and to manage all of the contacts that flow into our business. Salesforce mobile enables us to keep a finger on the pulse of our sales pipeline and the stages that our clients are in within our sales cycle on the go. We have access to more timely information and can assign specific tasks to individuals across our organization no matter where we are.

At ORYX, we are also very heavy users of Google Docs. Google docs help us to collaborate on client projects, create and work inside project workflow documents in real time, create status updates and more. With Google docs, we not only feel like we are more connected on specific projects, it also helps us to keep on top of document versions, update in real-time and reduce our paper usage.

How does your company engage external audiences using digital tools?

The point I was trying to get across here during my video interview is that we are huge advocates of using social media platforms to engage our external audience. Through our personal and company blog and twitter accounts, we extend the marketing and advertising conversation to a wider audience, listen and respond to individuals who have questions or are looking for information on specific communications topics. As a company, our goal is to engage in conversations on twitter with at least one new person per day, and responding quickly to those who have questions for us individually, or as a company. The net result of this level of engagement has been increased awareness for our company, referrals, leads and even new business. Comments and questions on our blog have even resulted great conversations, and have led us to explore new segments of the market that were identified as being under-served.

How does your company use digital tools to collaborate across your organization and what tools do you use to engage your external audience? Keep the conversation going and visit our blog and Twitter accounts:

Matt Duench’s blog: mduench.wordpress.com

Matt Duench on Twitter: @mduench

ORYX Advertising on Twitter: @ORYXadvertising

ORYX Blog: oryxblog.com

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Why Twitter is Awesome

April 27, 2011 1 comment

“I know them from Twitter.”

I’m finding myself saying this more and more often these days. Twitter for me has become much more than just a source of information on the topics I’m most interested in. It has become a tool for creating new & meaningful relationships with people who have similar interests as me – especially locally. I now think of it as a steroid-infused-hyper-networking tool.

Let me tell you a story of virtual hitch-hiking or electronic carpooling complete with digital thumbs. One where otherwise complete strangers collaborate to schedule a carpool together to attend a marketing conference in a far away city.

To anyone not on twitter, this concept sounds completely ridiculous and unbelievable. Some may even be intimidated by it. You’re very likely to hear, “You’re doing what?” and  “What do you mean you haven’t met these people?” from your close friends and family.

Today, I was lucky enough to take part in just such an activity. Besides being an incredible Insurance and Technology hub and a great incubator of up and coming business and engineering minds, Waterloo Region boasts an extremely robust and well connected community that leverages each other’s strengths both online and offline.

Twitter helps to accelerate this.

I learned of a Marketing event called, “Marketing Exposed” that featured Scott Stratten from Unmarketing and Corey Vidal – a YouTube superstar, through Julia Rosien. Besides being very well connected in the KW community, Julia is very much in the know when it comes to SEO strategies and Social Media events. Scott Stratten is a sought after speaker and evangelist for social media (talking) and I’ve been looking forward to having a chance to hear him speak for some time now. After registering for the event, I thanked Julia for sharing the link and she mentioned there were a few others from KW attending and that we should carpool. So we did. Meet @ladycarni and @DanPolischuk.*

And so, these complete strangers who had no prior relationship other than being connected to one another on twitter, met bright & early and carpooled together to Oakville for the morning. As a result, my perception of carpooling with people I’ve never met in my life went from this:

Scary hitch hiker!

Scary hitch hiker!

To This:

No Hipsters were harmed in the making of this blog post.

Happy Carpooling

The point is that Twitter is a great source for information. What makes it awesome is the conversations you have with people within your network and the relationships that develop as a result of these connections and conversations.

*Due to an alarm clock malfunction, I ended up missing the morning departure time and location. In spite of this, I was able to connect with them in person during the speaker intermissions and breaks at the conference. 

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