SAP experts, Mike Myers (@M_Myers) & Tom DiAntonio, provide insight into top concerns from new SAP customers including support during a software project or implementation, connection between technology partners and SAP, and support from Day 1 with SAP.
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Well, well, well – it appears that yet another of the traditional ERP giants has embraced the social media world, as SAP today launched their new SAP Services show on Blog Talk Radio.
As you will recall, last week Ariba expanded their existing social media footprint through the electronic release of their new Ariba For Dummies book. Seeing that the branded publishing route was already taken, SAP decided that the virtual air waves of Blog Talk Radio was the way to go. From the perspective of building a rapport based on the concept of conversational marketing, SAP made the better choice on many levels.
To start, and from having the experience of producing and airing more than 200 shows on Blog Talk Radio, which have been listened to/downloaded more than 100,000 times, the medium is an ideal venue for connecting with your specific market in an informative and entertaining manner. This is an integral piece of a complete social media strategy that in conjunction with Internet TV, blogging and social network forums creates the meaningful community rapport that is now required to build new relationships while maintaining existing ones.
With only the first 8 minute segment under their belt beyond being new, its still too early to tell if SAP’s show will truly inform and entertain their listening audience but, at least they are here . . . virtually speaking.
With a Truman-type connotation of good morning, afternoon and evening, the affably earnest James Earl Jones sounding Mike Myers opened the first segment (appropriately titled New SAP Customers learn the essentials about Software Support), by welcoming everyone to join him in the software services and support conversation that is the new show.
As the tingling sensation that is the theme music fades, and the repeated references to SAP subsides (SAP is mentioned 8 times in the first 62 seconds alone), Myers welcomes Tom DiAntonio the Vice President from SAP’s (yes that’s 9 times) Maintenance Go To Market organization with the opening question “what are the top concerns you hear from new customers?”
Now I am not going to tell you anything more as you can use the above highlighted link to listen to the show at your convenience. I will however say this, that despite 11 more direct references to SAP (20 in total for an 8 minute segment must be some kind of a record), Mr. DiAntonio’s breathless gulps for air as if he were racing to get the words out before passing out, as well as the somewhat stiff dialogue that is reminscent of the old news reel interviews from the 1940’s, I have to say that I appreciate the sincerity of their effort.
After all it is not a familiar realm for those whose interactions are more frequently behind the scenes and away from the recorded posterity that is a live radio show. That being said while the intent is solid the show was more like a travelogue without the pictures. It was similar to overhearing a somewhat sedate conversation between two self-conscious indivduals talking loudly at a coffee shop where you only notice them because they are there versus actually having something worthwhile to say.
Once again, and I want to caution you, that this is just their first show so they may have something more in mind once they get their virtual airwaves footing. However, and if they were to ask me what I would do (besides limiting my references to SAP), I would suggest that they engage real people from their existing client base to talk about their SAP experience both good and bad. Let’s face it, it is no secret that there are a myriad of challenges that the vendor has and is facing, but they are not alone as the industry itself is going through a major paradigm shift that IS significantly altering the market landscape. Facing the reality of these challenges head on without falling prey to an unproductive “why I hate SAP” call-in show will definitely require a deft hand so as to maintain an even and productive relevance.
However, and despite the potential pitfalls, it is a risk that is well worth taking because those software vendors who have been in the game for the past 6 to 12 months have a decided advantage having already built credibility with the listening audience through thought-provoking, non-branded discussions focused on real-world client issues.
Tune in and stay tuned, as it will be interesting to see how the show and its format evolves beyond the actual broadcast itself.
In the meantime, might I suggest a good book that would prove helpful to the newest members of our broadcast fraternity: