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Help! What/where are the key Microsoft partner social media connection points?

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Help! What/where are the key Microsoft partner social media connection points?

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compass_which_way_150_clrLast night, I received an online ping via social media from The VAR Guy (@TheVARGuy) asking for a little direction and assistance from a social media perspective when it comes to navigating and following the information coming out of Microsoft. After all, I don’t think you will find many people that would say that there is any lack in the quantity of information coming out of Microsoft. Based on this request, and also assuming that there may be one or two other people out there that might have the same question or who could benefit from the answer to The VAR Guy’s request, I thought I would share my answer here for any and all of you to utilize.

To approach this answer, I thought I would categorize the resources into a few logical buckets to help parse them out, with the note that depending on what you determine as most important will help guide you as well. For instance, are you someone who views information from the Microsoft Partner Network Team most important or someone who views information from one of the partner Executives like Jon Roskill most important? Depending on your answer to that question, that may change slightly what you choose as the best/most important resources below.

Official Microsoft Company News:

  • For official Microsoft company news, the one place you should definitely be checking out is Microsoft News Center. Here is where you will find press releases, the official Microsoft company blog, and more. There are a few different RSS feeds & blogs there you can subscribe to if you choose, and which you choose would be best determined by what you are most interested in. (I have a tip at the bottom of this post to make tracking this really easy)

Microsoft Partner Network related information:

  • The Microsoft Partner Network Team has a few official social media properties, depending on which social media interface you are most interested in using:
    • If Twitter is your preference, they tweet through the @MSPartner Twitter handle
    • If Facebook is more your style, then they also have a Microsoft Partner Network Facebook page
    • TIP: If you go to the new Microsoft Digital Worldwide Partner Community site, the Microsoft Partner Network Team actually has a stream from their Facebook page, their LinkedIn group, and their Twitter account (as well as other relevant tweets from the community) all rolled up into a “conversations” gadget on the far right-hand side of the page. You might find it easier to utilize this consolidated gadget if you want a single view across the accounts vs. managing subscriptions to each of them separately. In addition to this gadget I referenced, there is also the Microsoft Perspectives blog roll there which includes blogs from many inside the Worldwide Partner Group, including: Jon Roskill, Julie Bennani, Karl Noakes, me, Kat Tillman, and several more.
    • NOTE: I received an inquiry after the initial posting asking if there was a single US based resource that I could recommend regarding Microsoft Partner Network related information for US partners specifically. As such, I thought I would add a recommendation here for the Microsoft U.S. Partner Team blog, where they provide a fantastic collection of information and the team does a great job of connecting with U.S. partners. If you’re interested in a deeper look at US partner specific resources, you might also want to check out my Microsoft U.S. Partner Teams: Information, resources, and how to connect post.

People:

  • There are several people associated with the Microsoft Partner Network that would be key to keep an eye on as they tend to share partner specific information about the Microsoft Partner Network. For instance:
    • Jon Roskill (@Jon_Roskill)
    • Julie Bennani (@JBennani)
    • Karl Noakes (@Noakes)
    • While I am biased, I do believe partners can benefit from following me as well on Twitter (@EricLigman) and/or my Blog
    • (I have a tip at the bottom of this post to make tracking people really easy too)

Products:

Now this one becomes a whole lot tougher since there are many different product offerings we have as a company, people’s interest varies so widely around which solutions are most important to them, and each product team has a variety of Twitter handles and/or blogs that they communicate through. For this category, I’m going to give you that Tip I have been referring to a couple of times above:

TIP: We actually have a solution that goes out, grabs the various product related content from the different blogs, YouTube channels, and Twitter accounts and brings them all together into a single, chronological stream to make finding and using it easier. This solution is the Microsoft Partner Info Mobile App. I actually built this solution for the specific reason behind your inquiry: to help partners connect with all of the various information streams without having to know what or where they all are.

For instance, the Microsoft Office Team has a Twitter account, they also have a blog, and they have a YouTube account that they share information through. Do you know what they all are? You don’t have to. By pressing “Office” in the “Products” section of the app, you get the latest from their Twitter, blog, and YouTube brought back in chronological order for you. You’ll see the same thing under “Windows,” where over a dozen different information sources come together into a single stream. SNAGHTML1359b2c
In looking back at the People section listed above, the Microsoft Partner Info Mobile App also helps bring those important resources right to your fingertips as well. For instance, if you click on the “People” section of the app, you will see that the people I called out above are included right on the main list. (Note: Currently Julie Bennani and Karl Noakes are included in the MSPartner section. They will be split out separately in an upcoming release) As you can see, clicking on the MSPartner link actually shows the MSPartner content, but also some from Karl Noakes chronologically placed in. image
Remember earlier I said I’d give you a tip on managing the news feeds? Well, in the Microsoft Partner Info Mobile App, I have already gone in and chosen what I believe to be the best information feeds from all of the news feeds on the Microsoft Press Pass site (including press releases, blogs, Tweets, etc.) and pulled them into a single stream when you click on “Microsoft News” under the “People” section of the app. image
In addition to People, Products, and News, we also have a variety of resources available on a country by country basis for partners. To help bring those to light for the partners around the world, the app even has a “Countries” section that brings these local resources together. For instance, say you are a U.S. partner. By selecting “U.S. Partner” from the “Countries” section of the app, you get the information from a multitude of sources brought back as a single chronological stream for you. image

There are some pretty exciting plans for the Microsoft Partner Info Mobile App coming up here before WPC 2012, but I’ll hold off sharing those just yet. Smile

I hope this helps answer your question to get you pointed in the right direction for the latest Microsoft partner related information via social media channels. Please feel free to let me know if you have any additional follow-up questions or comments as I would be happy to help you out further should you need it. Thanks again for reaching out with your inquiry and I look forward to connecting online and hopefully in person at Worldwide Partner Conference 2012!

Did you find this information helpful? If so, you may want to make sure you are utilizing all of the areas I share information online, such as:

Get the Microsoft Partner Info Mobile App and get access to the latest from all of those plus: product teams, MPN teams, Microsoft News and hundreds more resources here at Microsoft right on your phone:

image

Thanks again for being a reader of my blog!

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Thank you and have a wonderful day,

Eric LigmanFollow me on TWITTER, LinkedIn, and RSS and see “What I’m thinking
Director, Worldwide Partner Experience
Microsoft Corporation
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  • Eric,

    The VAR Guy thanks you for this blog post. Very helpful. A keeper.

    -TVG

    The VAR Guy

    Blogger at Large

    www.thevarguy.com

  • @ The VAR Guy - My pleasure. Thanks again for reaching out and glad that you found the post to be helpful.

    See you at WPC 2012?

    Eric Ligman

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