JPMorgan to acquire robo-advisor Nutmeg | Wise seeks direct listing in London | How influencers fit into Twitter’s plans to double revenue by 2023

FinTech Ecosystem Insights by Bussmann Advisory is our weekly newsletter with over 40’000 subscribers across different social media channels, summarizing relevant news and reports related to ecosystems around disruptive technologies, highlighting key updates from the industry as well as our portfolio companies:

  • JPMorgan Chase to acquire robo-advisor Nutmeg ahead of U.K. digibank launch 
  • Wise seeks to be the first tech firm with direct London listing 
  • How influencers fit into Twitter’s plans to double revenue by 2023

The latest edition of the FinTech Ecosystem Newsletter is here:

5 Powerful Social Media Tips to become a Thought Leader!

As I have written about elsewhere, I strongly believe social media is an essential communications tool for organizations. Today’s platforms offer a powerful and cost-effective way for you to establish yourself and/or your organization as a thought leader in a specific topic, and so raise awareness – and gain important credibility – for your product or service.

The trick is leveraging these platforms in the right way. Here are some of my tips.

Tip 1: Map your product and service to an innovation topic or megatrend.

First consider what you want to say. Go back to your original idea and think about what insights and learnings you have that would be interesting to the wider community. Then see if there are any innovation topics or megatrends that you can link your product or service to – something that gives it a broader significance and/or puts it in a context that people will understand.

Tip 2: Create content that becomes useful knowledge.

Write about your particular insight and the innovation topic or megatrend in your blog. Feel free to talk about what your company does, but avoid a sales pitch (you have other channels for that). Here are some other details to consider:

  • Your headline is very important.
  • You should have a strong visual to go with the headline.
  • Keep your posts short and sweet.


Tip 3: Distribute your content via your website and social media.

Publish on your company website first and then link your blog to all your relevant social media channels. Spend some time on search engine optimization. I recommend buying keywords relevant to your blog and the megatrend you are mapped to. Less expensive solutions, like brandyourself.com, can help you with SEO as well.

Tip 4: Build up your network.

Share your content as widely as possible, but also be sure to share content from others. Some other tips:

  • Analyze your network as well to find out who the most important influencers are, the “net promoters of you.” A tool like commun.it can tell you who in your network has the biggest reach and how actively they are promoting your content.
  • Try to mobilize your most active influencers by giving them a heads-up about upcoming posts and asking them to cascade and endorse them (this will be most effective if you have a history of returning the favor).
  • On Twitter I recommend that you also tag your 10 biggest influencers in the image. This can work wonders: when I tag my top-10 influencers I can sometimes reach a million people or more.
  • Monitor your network and adjust who your top-10 influencers are. It’s normal that over time people will be more or less active on your behalf. I adjust my list once a week, looking to find a good mix of support and reach.
  • Actively manage your relationships with your most important influencers. Here a service like traackr.com can be extremely useful.


Tip 5: Measure your results

To make sure you are on the right track, constantly measure your results.

  • Tools like commun.it and buffer.com allows you to measure the number of impressions and the number of people reached. You can also see if certain topics are in high demand or if there is a part of your network that is particularly receptive to certain kinds of posts. In this way you can quickly take the pulse of your network.

Conclusion

I have been talking about social media for quite a while now, and have had plenty of time to test its effect. Using the techniques described here, and assuming you have an interesting story to tell, I am confident you can establish yourself as a thought leader in your area generally within 6 to 12 months. Diligently followed, this approach not only gives you credibility, it also encourages people to engage with you. And engagement means opportunities, and opportunities mean business.

On top of that, you will learn a lot: about your subject, about your customers, about your ideas and your company, and perhaps about yourself. This is knowledge that can only be of use.

Note: This blog post is adapted from a Founder’s Letter I contributed to the Webb Investment Network. Read more at www.oliverbussmann.com/blog and follow me on Twitter @obussmann. 

Image source

 

Social Media: Why it’s an essential tool

When I first became interested in the power of social media for companies, I was something of a lone wolf.

A 2012 study found that only one in four Chief Information Officers (CIOs) in the Fortune 250 had an active blog, only 10% had a Twitter account, and a third had either no LinkedIn profile or a profile with minimal connections. Since then the situation has improved greatly as more and more C-level executives and organizations embrace these forms of communication internally and externally. That’s good news.

Why? Because I believe more strongly than ever that social media approaches are essential for organizations who want to stay competitive in today’s environment. Let me explain.

Getting down to work

Don’t be fooled by the name: social media is not just about having fun. The same communications principles and toolsets that people are used to using externally – blogs,  chats, social platforms – are powerful means of communication that can be employed internally to help people and organizations work better. Among other things they:

  • increase productivity, efficiency and employee engagement by fostering two-way and multi-threaded dialogues. That means better communication and knowledge-sharing among employees, making it easier for all to keep up-to-date, and be engaged.
  • improve effectiveness of management communications by replacing typical top-down communications, which are increasingly ill-suited to the way people think and work today, with more dynamic, targeted approach.
  • help you take the pulse of the organization: by giving you a clear view of what the hot topics are, what people are excited about or afraid of, and even where pockets of hidden creativity and good ideas may be lurking unrecognized.
  • let you engage with clients and the public in an immediate, contemporary way, with the same advantages of dialogue, knowledge exchange and “pulse taking” you get internally.

Do it right

To get the most out of these tools, organizations need an effective approach. My experience spearheading efforts to introduce and encourage the use of social media tools as CIO at both SAP and UBS taught me a few things. I believe the following points are key:

  • See Social Media as a must-have component: Your social media effort should not be an add-on but a core element of your internal and external communications. and given that priority and resources.
  • Apply the same techniques internally as externally: Social media functions the same way internally and externally: you have to find your right network and establish yourself as an accepted and trusted player, involved in the give and take of information.
  • Keep the hurdle for use low: Make these tools available to as many people in the organization as possible.
  • Manage the line between internal and external. In today’s world you want to be as transparent as possible; the internal and external worlds are mixing more than ever. But depending on industry, you will draw the line at different places. Be as open as you can while maintaining a good risk control.

 

My interest in social media as a tool for work has paid off for me personally, helping me among other things be recognized with a Wall Street Technology Elite 8 award and be named by Forbes as the Most Social CIO. More importantly, it has I think paid off for the organizations I have been involved with, who have gained real benefits from using these tools. Based on my experience I can only continue to encourage C-level executives and management to go social. These are not nice-to-haves, but a mandatory management communication toolset.

Image source

4 Rules For Being Successful At Work While Living A Balanced Life

Every year, I travel to dozens of countries to speak with executives. No matter where I go or who I’m speaking with, three things are clear:

  1. Business leaders/Executives are exceptionally disciplined in managing their work-life
  2. They are also stressed to the limit.
  3. They tend to put all their efforts towards their jobs.

Having been one of those guys when I first became an Executive, I concluded that this type of lifestyle was not sustainable – I had to find a balance.

In the past few years, I’ve found ways to achieve balance in four, interconnected dimensions: Family, Health, Work, and Social Responsibility/Community.

These four rules worked for me in giving back and maintaining a balanced life, and I’m hoping they will do the same for you:

1) Family is First… No Exceptions!

Remember that your family is your foundation. Too often we take family for granted, assuming they’ll always be there for us. That’s a good way to ensure that someday they won’t. Making time for family will remind you of what you’re working for. During that time, be sure to be fully present. Turn off your mobile devices and devote yourself completely to your relationships with your spouse, your children, and other loved ones. The rewards are priceless.

2) Choose to maintain Healthy Lifestyle

While taking care of business and others, don’t forget to take care of yourself. Between long hours and travel, you can quickly compromise your health through lack of exercise and unhealthy eating. I’ve learned that it’s best to exercise in the early morning, before life and work can give me any excuses. As far as diet is concerned, it’s easier now than ever to make healthy choices.

I look for ways to combine sport with family life and social causes. For example, when my son and I are enjoying time together in the pool, I use part of that time to work out. The Race for the Rhino event is a great example of how to combine fitness, family & friends with social activism.

3) Find ways to Give Back 

I’m grateful for the education and experiences that led to the career I have today. I consider it a privilege to do what I can to give something back to the community and world that has given so much to me and my family. A measure of individual and corporate success is doing good for others and seeing how your actions, no matter big or small, can change lives.

In addition to the Rhino conservation cycle tour, my wife and I sponsor an annual Christmas event in Brazil to help people in need. We also contribute to a local program in our hometown in Germany to provide lunches to underprivileged school children. Beyond finding a cause that’s personally important to you, look for ways to continually give-back so that you are always connected and reminded of the impact you can make on the world.

Social media is a great way to involve friends, family and those interested in supporting your cause – don’t be shy with using it to ask for support!

4) Become more Successful at Work

Being dedicated to my family, my health and giving back gives me more energy and motivation to succeed in my work life. Maintaining a balanced lifestyle reduces stress levels and increases my ability to focus.

I’m often asked how I’m able to do it all and the answer is simple: effective time management. As professionals, we’re accustomed to scheduling our days for maximum productivity. Apply those same skills to community, family, and health, and you’ll find yourself among the fortunate few who live their lives in balance.

How are you giving back? Is your life in balance?

I’d like to hear more about the creative ways that you find balance.

Follow me on twitter @obussmann.

Photo: Yagi Studio/Digital Vision/Getty Images

4 Powerful Social Media Shortcuts that will Surprise You!

Deemed the #1 Most Social Chief Information Officer on Twitter my social media strategy goal is simple…

Drive social collaboration by being distinguished as a thought leader and influencer in the Enterprise IT industry.

Unfortunately, I often see social media newbies with no apparent strategies or goals that struggle to grow their following.

As a result, I recently shared a short, but effective SlideShare presentation: “My 2013 Social Media Tips,” listing my top four strategies to successfully leverage social media to drive awareness and engagement.

I’ve used these easy to learn tips for the last three years to run our well-acclaimed SAP Runs SAP innovation program, which focuses on the transformation of social media tools for collaboration. We generated over 21 million twitter impressions in 2012 alone!

So what are my absolute top 4 social media strategies?


STRATEGY #1: Find your community … then set up a place for them to find you!

First, find the right community. Then open 1-2 social accounts to identify people with similar interests, and take some time to observe. In my case I’m using

  • Twitter and Google+ to instantly connect to what’s most important to me, as well as follow my friends, experts, and favorite celebs.
  • LinkedIn to manage my professional identity and engage with my professional network.
  • YouTube to categorize, store and share my professional videos.
  • Instagram to share snapshots from my global business ventures…
  • Evernote and Buffer to track articles about my friends, colleagues or anyone else I care about.
  • Klout to manage my social media reach

Second, you need to set up a place for people to find you… a center for all your social media activities.

My homepage OliverBussmann.com is based on WordPress, which easily links to most of the social accounts I listed above. It’s free and takes few minutes to set up!

For an easy read, be sure to use a compelling personal photo for your background, and list your experience and accolades in short bullets.

STRATEGY #2: Spend 15 minutes a day Sharing articles you find compelling! 

Your next step is to participate and become a part the community: Share links, engage in interesting discussions, and connect to others. Sharing and engaging are the operative terms at this stage.

Given my very busy schedule, I use a few shortcuts to engage that you will find handy:

  • Using a mobile app called Feedly, I scan over 200 headlines in less than 10 minutes every day.
  • I then look for posts that are relevant to my target audience – and interesting to me, and bookmark them with Evernote.
  • Last, I share those quality links on Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn/Google+ via the Buffer app.
  • In 15 minutes I’m done!


STRATEGY #3: Deepen your connections …Keep your social profiles up to date!

Make sure to update your social profiles to show that you’re on the cutting edge of your field and on top of social media. In addition to LINKEDIN, I recommend to build your personal website.

Then to deepen your connection, consider starting a blog to expand your voice in the social media ecosystem as I did with the SAP runs SAP blog for instance. Important is that your blogs and tweets have to be authentic – no ghostwriting!


STRATEGY #4: Manage your social brand …as a thought leader should!

By implementing these four strategies and practicing them with excellence in your daily routine, you will become a genuine industry influencer and thought leader in no time. Reaching this stage strengthens your own credibility and benefits your entire organization.

  • Write and promote your blogs, your white papers and your articles from the traditional media
  • Team up with active bloggers to do interviews/article: leverage their network reach to expand your network
  • Do Twitter chats, webcasts and Google+ Hangout sessions on a regular basis
  • Set up your own YouTube Channel: Publish your videos
  • Mobilize your team to be social active

But don’t forget to manage your social brand! Simply type your name into Google and see what comes up. Remember: MOST social media followers will Google you.

Another free service I use is BrandYourself, to make sure search engines find and rank my most relevant results at the top, improving my personal brand.

I welcome your feedback, so please connect with me here and follow me on Twitter at @obussmann to share your thoughts.