Online Collaboration: A B2B Case Study from cbanc


by Myers Dupuy – president, cbanc Network

In the banking industry, every banker sits on their own personal gold mine of knowledge, best practices, policies, spread sheets, vendor experiences, etc. What if all of a sudden every banker got access to everyone else’s work? Imagine how much money they could save, benefitting from all the new ideas they would each have to improve their business – it would change the way everyone does their jobs. The playing field could finally be leveled for small and large banks alike.

But that doesn’t happen, does it? The reasons are purely human nature: Between being too busy, leery of posting items on open discussion forums, protective of the time invested in a project, and reluctant to have their work fall into their competitors’ hands, few are inclined to relinquish their intellectual property online.

Through trial and error over the past three years, cbanc Network has built a model that addresses all of these natural concerns, and we have successfully convinced risk-averse, low-tech, competitive business professionals to proactively, willingly share their best work online.

cbanc works on a free market concept, where bankers ‘buy’ and ‘sell’ intellectual property using points instead of dollars. People are incented to share because the more they sell, the more points they earn to buy what they need. No one gets taken advantage of. No one can free load. Users can hide their content from their competitors. This is an online portal that is safe, secure, and certain to help save banks time and money. Everyone wins.

While the platform creates engaged users, introducing the points economy increases the back-office complexity. All of the sudden, you have to think about micro-economic factors that can influence members’ usage, such as point inflation, point velocity and ensuring that the value of the content sufficiently backs the points.

With positive growth and adoption from a normally risk-adverse industry, cbanc is now the largest repository of banker-authored, board-approved, exam-tested content on the Internet. Is this the next generation for social media engagement, i.e. a LinkedIn on steroids? Hard to say. Our takeaway in the end is that the word ‘collaboration’ can have real meaning and impact if structured in a way that resonates with users.

New Case Studies Added

We try to feature social media marketing case studies on Now Is Gone.  Though this list is far from comprehensive for all the great work being done out there, it continues to reaffirm the power of this medium.  We’ve recently updated the Case Studies Page (see tab in the masthead) with these case studies:

  • Sony drives approximately 11,000,000 million visits to 30 Days Night moviecontests page using Facebook widget (reported by Jeremiah, January 29, 2008)
  • Nokia’s Mosh creates more than 200,000 rabid friends, almost 30 million downloads through crowd-sourcing initiative (reported by the Buzz Bin, March 3, 2008)
  • The Human Capital Institute uses its liveblog to engage its membership, determine if they are social media savvy, Livingston Communications (March 18, 2008)
  • H&R Block Friends Stressed Out Taxed Americans on Twitter (reported by Social Media Explorer, March 21, 2008)
  • Disney’s continued MySpace Step Up 2 the Streets success yields a surprise box-office hit; it also managed to expand the movie’s already sizeable and enthusiastic group of fans. The movie’s MySpace profile has more than 156,000 friends (March 24, 2008, AdAge via Social media Optimization).
  • Have a social media marketing case study? Want us to feature it on Now Is Gone? Email your link to geoff [at] livingstonbuzz [dot] com, and we’ll write it up and include it in this list.

    Three New Case Studies

    There are three new case studies housed here on Now Is Gone.

    The Gold Group brought is Five Lessons Learned from the SIGGART campaign, a social media effort revolving around eco-friendly water containers. I love case studies that feature hard numbers. Check this out:

    SIGGART drew more than 12,000 visits from about 8,000 people. Each visit was a whopping 17 minutes on average; compare with Nielsen’s most recent benchmark of 49 seconds per average U.S. web visit. In total, SIGGART was viewed for 204M user-minutes or, we’d like to offer, 204 mums.

    Lewis Green documented how blogging has benefited his business. How is this for hard numbers? “L&G Business Solutions increased revenues by 100 percent in 2007 over 2006, 40 percent of that due to the blog attracting new clients as well as referrals and leads…. [Blogging] accounts for about 25 percent of the marketing budget (includes time) and 40 percent of the revenues.”

    Last, but not least is Dell’s Incredible Turnaround, which was written up here yesterday. Moving from Jarvis’s Dell Hell to an intense social media campaign over the ensuing two years, to having Jarvis laud Dell in BusinessWeek = the greatest brand image reversal to date in the social media world. Kudos to the Dell team. I like this one because ROI can be more than just sales. Dell was not a well-liked company out here two years ago, and they’ve done a 180 in two years.

    Corporate Social Media Links: Three New Case Studies

    The Gates Foundation has been using a wide variety of social media tools to get the word out: Facebook, MySpace, YouTube videos. The goal: Change perception of Generation Y towards education issues for the forthcoming presidential election. The results?  More than 80K YouTube views, significant community development on Facebook and MySpace, and 4,000 information kits ordered.

    Kyle Flaherty brought us this Social Media Case Study: CMP’s TechMash. This was a micro campaign targeted at a very small community.  What I liked about it was that it used a variety of social media tools to produce an actionable result: with direct access to more than 100 people to attend the TechMash show next year. Kyle’s goal is to continue this effort and garner 400 by spring time.

    Yesterday, Todd Defren wrote up another example of a social media news release from Eurekstar.  Lots of juicy links in here, photos and even an embedded video.  The SMNR has viral enablers with email, tags, etc.  In short, the ability to “easily re-purpose and broadly share this news” is what makes this news release form so exciting. It would be great if Todd came back and amended the study with some coverage or resulting posts.

    All three of these case studies are permanently linked to on our case studies tab. If you have a case study you would like highlighted here, email me at geoff [at] livingstonbuzz [dot] com.