Want Success from the Social Networks? 1MC Social Media Campaign Engine is available for Less than $242 per month
Want Success from the Social Networks?            1MC Social Media Campaign Engine is                   available for Less than $242 per month
Shopping Basket

Microsoft tries to head off Facebook at Work by turning on Yammer by default

Microsoft is stepping up its push to get more business users to engage using its Yammer enterprise social networking service.

As of today, February 2, Microsoft is beginning to turn Yammer on by default for all of its eligible Office 365 commercial customers. This will happen in waves over the next couple of months.

The move comes at a time when more than a few Microsoft customers and company watchers have been wondering whether Microsoft was still committed to the enterprise social service that it acquired in 2012 for $1.2 Billion.

Since that time, Microsoft has been working to refocus Yammer around a teamwork-sharing model, and folding a number of its core technologies directly into Office 365.

With the rise of startups like Slack, with which Microsoft recently inked a Skype integration deal -- as well as the expected, full-blown launch of Facebook at Work later this year -- Microsoft officials seemingly have decided to put more energy into trying to market Yammer.

Last summer, Microsoft officials said the company would continue to offer a standalone Yammer client for those who wanted it. They also outlined a roadmap for Yammer, which included commitments to bringing Yammer more tightly into the Microsoft fold by moving Yammer into Microsoft's own datacenters and integrating Azure Active Directory with the Yammer service in order to ensure it met various compliance and security criteria.

Microsoft is still aiming to tie Yammer into Office 365 Groups by June 2016.Once Yammer is integrated with Groups, Microsoft will encourage users to take advantage of "cross-suite scenarios," such as moving Yammer conversations to Skype calls; schedule meetings using Outlook calendar; access files via OneDrive; create tasks in Planner all from inside a Yammer group.

As of last week, Microsoft made good on its commitment from last year to allow Office Online users to do multi-user coauthoring in Yammer. A spokesperson said the company had no updated timing on when Microsoft will allow invited outside participants to be part of Yammer Groups.

According to Microsoft's blog post today, every Office 365 user with a Yammer license will be able to access Yammer from the Office 365 app launcher or start a Yammer conversation from SharePoint, Office 365 Video Portal and, soon, Delve and Skype Broadcast.

Office 365 customers who do not want Yammer turned on by default can shut it off, a Microsoft spokesperson confirmed.

"Similar to SharePoint Online and Exchange Online, Yammer is enabled by default for all users who are assigned an Office 365 license. IT admins who are not ready to fully adopt Yammer in their organization, can un-assign Yammer licenses for those who should not access Yammer from Office 365," the spokesperson said when I asked.

And in other Social Media News....

Loading RSS feeds...

And Finally....

Twitter launches 'engaging' new homepage

Twitter is rolling out a new homepage designed to engage people who have not logged in to the website.

The new page shows real-time updates from celebrities and news websites, and lets people search through tweets.

The design was trialled in the US and Japan and will now roll out in a further 21 countries, including the UK.

One analyst said the company was trying to widen its appeal, but needed to tackle issues that could put people off using the service.

"The old homepage was targeted at getting people to sign up for an account or download the app," said David Wilkinson, managing partner at digital consultancy Soho Strategy.

"This is a bid to expand its appeal beyond the registered users, and get people to engage with content regardless of whether they're signed in.

"But it's also a recognition that algorithmic curation of content is beating human curation, and that its timeline model could be flawed."

Twitter has struggled with competition from rivals such as Snapchat and Facebook, and its share price has tumbled since its stock market debut in 2014.

The social network currently attracts about 500 million visitors every month, but has only 320 million registered members.

The redesigned homepage, which will roll out on the Twitter website and mobile site, draws in live updates from some of the website's most prolific tweeters.

"Starting today, anyone can explore and discover different topics and stories as they occur, including some that are tailored just for you based on your location," the company said in a statement.

Previously, the website's homepage outside the US and Japan displayed only a large photograph and a log-in panel, without indicating what registered users could do or see on the website.

"It shows Twitter's recognition that an algorithmic way of curating content, like on Facebook, is something that might interest people," said Mr Wilkinson.

"It's still a huge platform for brands and celebrities to communicate with the public, and they can now reach a larger audience outside of those who follow them.

"But they're playing catch-up when it comes to curating content, and this shows they're developing their own means of filtering."

Contact Socially Tuned today to find out how our expertise and contacts can give you the competitive advantage that will propel your business to success.