“Today’s my last day at Sun. I’ll miss it. Seems only fitting to end on a #haiku. Financial crisis/Stalled too many customers/CEO no more”
These are the parting words of Jonathan Schwartz on Twitter. No multi-page letter like Scott McNealy did when he resined this post.
I am constantly amazed at just how much the social media phenomenon has changed the corporate attitude in just a couple of years. I see it reflected greatly in our own efforts to get everyone to partake in the goodness that is DB2. We have embraced social media out of necessity. As more and more of the IBM marketing budget and efforts focus on the big marketing programs and corporate messages, we find that generating awareness for a particular product, no matter how big and important this product is, becomes very difficult. How do you get a PHP developer to give DB2 a try in the next Cloud Computing project when IBM marketing machine is focused on the Smarter Planet message? And frankly, I am not a big fan of corporate marketing when applied to individual products. I cringed my teeth every time I saw a highly produced video posted on the IBM TV that nobody would watch because it smelled like traditional marketing drivel. IBM TV is gone; good riddance is what I say. I like our ChannelDB2.com with its 250+ movies shot with a shaky camera and lots of ambient noise. It is no Hollywood material but people watch it (just look at the view counters).
Bottom line, social media works. Last year we have seen the downloads of DB2 Express-C grow by about 50% from what already a very healthy number. In the last 5 months we saw Data Studio downloads increase 9x, yes 9 times! All of that generated through social media. No amount of advertising even if we had a budget would bring us results like that.
My advice, fire your PR firm and get a Twitter account, get your geek on. You will sell a lot more product. And if that does not work you can resign in less than 140 characters.