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The social life

DELPHINE REMY-BOUTANG, IBM SOFTWARE

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Delphine Remy-Boutang, worldwide digital and social media manager for IBM Software, has been at IBM for 11 years and in her current job for three. Her role is to support IBM's social media strategy in digital marketing activities around the globe, working with social media managers in other business divisions and regions. She declined to say how many social media managers IBM employs, but noted that the company has been active in social media since 1997. In the early days of the Internet, IBM introduced social tools internally to facilitate employee collaboration and also sent people out on the Web to find out what was being said about the company, the precursor to social media monitoring. Today, almost 200,000 IBM employees have Facebook pages (nearly half of its global workforce), 25,000 have Twitter accounts and more than 17,000 maintain blogs. “We have IBMers active in the social Web who are part of the conversation on behalf of IBM,” Remy-Boutang said. “Our employees are publishers. When you go to our site [www.ibm.com/software], you see IBMers as your first experience. You see pictures of IBMers and have the option to connect with them. It's all about humanizing the Web.” A big part of Remy-Boutang's job is training IBM employees in effective uses of social media to engage customers and prospects. “We have conference calls, workshops, face-to-face meetings, webcasts and our own internal tools,” she said. For example, her social media team trains IBM Software reps on effective ways to share data with customers and prospects using Twitter, LinkedIn, Q&As (on the website) and other social media networks that are popular in different countries, such as Viadeo in France and Xing in Germany. “The guidance is to always add value before engaging, such as suggesting links to white papers,” Remy-Boutang said. She also works with IBM's digital marketing teams around the globe on best practices in social media. To keep up on the latest trends in social media, she uses Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, and does a lot of reading about social media, which she shares with her global teams. “I have my tweets and I lead by example, to show what we should be doing,” she said.

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