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‘Convergence Climbs the Social Ladder’ with Microsoft MVP Belinda Allen

This is the second post in the series “Convergence Climbs the Social Ladder” that features the perspective and insights from the Microsoft-appointed Convergence 2013 official bloggers.

Picture1Convergence 2013 was huge for many reasons, one of which was the prominent emphasis on the social community. Prior to the event, Microsoft tapped 11 bloggers to serve as the conference’s official bloggers and promoted the social community with its release of the Live Wall. Once onsite we heard from Wayne Morris, Corp VP of Microsoft Business Solutions Marketing, about the integration of mobile and social capabilities within its go-forward strategy. The Result… A measurable growth in the Microsoft Dynamics social community with a very impressive ranking for the Twitter hashtag #CONV13, climbing to one of the top 10 trending hashtags for the week (that’s global, that’s a huge success!)

On that success, featured Convergence 2013 Official Blogger, Belinda Allen of Smith & Allen Consulting, Microsoft GP MVP and author of the blog “Belinda, the GP CSI” shares her thoughts on the Dynamics social community:

[JR] How did you leverage social media during the event? For example, promote announcements, commentary on sessions, etc.?

[BA] I was not attempting to leverage social media for the gain of myself or company, initially. However, on day 1 when I saw my Flickr pictures appearing with my company name on the Social Media wall, and I realized not many were using Flickr (so I just gave away a big secret, huh?) I started putting more out there. The Social Wall would show my picture and just say “Smith and Allen Consulting, Inc.” As a result of this, a few attendees would comment on my pictures when they saw my name badge.

[JR] How do you think Microsoft's focus on social integration will affect the community in terms of engaging social channels?

[BA] With Office 365, SkyDrive, SharePoint and Yammer, the word “collaboration” moves from a noun, past verb, to a living breathing entity. Through the use of social media tools, my team that was unable to attend Convergence stayed up to date.

[JR] What would you tell community members who have not yet jumped on the social bandwagon?

Perhaps in the “Mad Men” era one could advance by working hard and keeping their head down. But in today’s swiftly moving technology era, we must embrace new ideas or you’ll risk being left behind. The more I talk with businesses, consumers and users of social media the more I find transactions and business relationships developing via the use of social media. I welcome all potential customers and/or followers to join me in the social media movement; for my competitors, feel free to stay behind.

Checkout what Microsoft MVP Joris de Gruyter had to say on the same topic.

About Belinda Allen
Belinda Allen is originally from Georgia, and started Infoserv Accounting with her husband in 1989, which was primarily a payroll processing and booking department for small businesses in South Carolina, basically being the liaison between the customer and their CPA. In 1991, they became Great Plains Qualified Installers. Once they became a Value Added Reseller in 1992, they closed the accounting side, and focused exclusively on Great Plains. In 1998, they sold their customer base in South Carolina and moved to New York City; renaming their company to Smith & Allen Consulting. With over 20 years of experience, in a variety of businesses up and down the east coast, Belinda has a vast knowledge in GP and how people use it, earning her the nickname “Belinda, the GP CSI.”

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