Social Business Driver: Delphine Remy-Boutang CEO of the Social Bureau


Delphine Remy-BoutangDelphine Remy-Boutang is the founder & CEO of the Social Bureau. Created in 2012, the social bureau is a London / Paris based, social business consulting agency. In today’s environment collaboration is more vital than ever. Her mission is to work with organisations to move business in the new paradigm of customer, partner, employee participation. Delphine is ex – WW Social Media Marketing Director at IBM. She was at IBM for 11 years ago and lived in London for 14 years.

She was in charge of digital influence strategy and execution at IBM. In Charge at a WW level in moving IBM Software Group marketing into online and social media marketing, focused on driving innovative marketing capabilities via the web. Helping drive the transformation of digital communications and marketing at IBM,  deploying digital social intelligence , and social business advocacy.

For the last 4 years, she led the enablement of a successful transition towards adopting social media as part of the marketing mix. This in support of IBM’s strategy of enabling and activating IBM’s 470,000 employees as representatives of the brand.To understand her legacy at IBM, read more here.

She is a frequent speaker at seminars, on the subject of social media marketing and its effective use. She was the Co-Chair of IBM Social Media Marketing Summit 2010 in New York City. She has also been interviewed numerously on the subject of Social Business: BtoB Magazine USA: The Social Life, guest blogger on France Television blog, and helped shape their Social Media guidelines.  She also runs a daily newsletter on the subject of Social Business.

IntelligentHQ: Tell us about the social bureau’s additional services.

Delphine Remy-Boutang:  Well firstly, a social business is built upon three pilars: people (culture/leadership), process and technology. As my company focusing on strategy, we look at developing social media strategies; Employee Engagement and Collaboration Strategy (by Tapping into the social framework of employees and partners to improve company performance); Bespoke social media training One on one executive management workshops and Social Brand Engagement.

We help brands  to listen to conversations on the social web and conduct Conversation audits. Finally we drive engagement by Helping Brands engage in conversations on the social web for better customer acquisition, retention. We also do Advocacy programmes and Community building and management programmes.

We help organisations to transform their business by harnessing the full power of the social web. Social business is changing the way we engage with people inside and outside the company.We are moving from social being a peripheral to a central activity across the web. At the social bureau, we create influence through expertise and help develop relationships.

IntelligentHQ:  There are many social media monitoring tools on the market place. Does the social bureau work with any in particular?

Delphine Remy-Boutang:  Yes, depending on the need the company and the type of budget ,you know, some could actually be free for example, Google alerts ect, but there are sophisticated tools out there and it comes really comes down to the company’s objectives, for example is it lead generation? Is it customer engagement? we always try to quantify that first before making a recommendation. we have recommended Radian six, in the past as well as Social Baker’s suite. We are also working with e-Cairn on some specific listening projects.

IntelligentHQ:  What is your view on social media take-up within  financial services?

Delphine Remy-Boutang:  There is a real opportunity for anyone and in particular financial services. I have been following use of social media in insurance and would like to share with you an example; Services like Foursquare  allow you to tell your friends, family, and social networks where you are at any given time. These services are a marketer’s dream come true. Basically, you are giving them tons of information about your habits and preferences and it feels like it’s just a game. when you check-in at airports. Wouldn’t it be good for the customer to get reminders about travel insurance or even home insurance as they are no longer at the premises?

IntelligentHQ:  Do you think that social media could make companies become more efficient?

Delphine Remy-Boutang:  Absolutely, social is really efficiency, there have been studies that have shown that the more socially engaged the company them more efficient they become. Delivering speedy access to information so employees can make solid business decisions is a challenge nearly all SMBs face. Social Communication Networks that are slow, frequently down, or unsecured don’t allow employees to move quickly, which could result in lost opportunities and revenues. IBM comes to mind as an example of a socially active company.


In 1997, IBM actively recommended that its employees use the Internet — at a time when many companies were seeking to restrict their employees’ Internet access. In 2003, the company made a strategic decision to embrace the blogosphere and to encourage IBMers to participate. We continue to advocate IBMers’ responsible involvement today in this rapidly growing environment of relationship, learning and collaboration.

Today, almost 200,000 IBM employees have Facebook pages (nearly half of its global workforce), 25,000 have Twitter accounts and more than 17,000 maintain blogs.

IntelligentHQ:  During your time at IBM, please share a memorable interaction that happened in social media.

Delphine Remy-Boutang:  Our IBM at 100 campaign drew these results:

The Centennial and Celebration of Service evoked a public expression of enthusiasm and pride by IBM employees. Celebration of Service participants worldwide uploaded over 1,500 photos on Accordingly, IBM saw a dramatic shift in the tone of its online buzz, moving from a predominantly neutral topic of conversation to one in which one-in-four mentions are positive.

IBM’s worldwide presence dominated — with active social participation from IBMers across the globe. Key conversational themes reflected IBM’s Centennial programs, demonstrating that those engaged in social discussions worldwide understood and embraced them.  Another great outcome of social media interaction was that the social media strategy for Lotusphere 2011 was one of the seven Twitter Marketing Campaigns to Learn From. The Lotusphere team created a social media hub, a single landing page providing a live stream of blogs, Twitter comments, Flickr photos and videos from the conference, resulting in 41 million total impressions on Twitter.

Using LinkedIn‘s search capabilties, one of our employee gained access to potential customers previously difficult to contact through traditional channels such as telephone and email. He managed initially to identify the right contact  through a LinkedIn search, and initiated contact through LinkedIn’s messaging service. The customer had not heard of our offering but was happy to arrange a call. The result: a signed contract

IntelligentHQ:  Is there value using Pinterest?

Delphine Remy-Boutang:  Absolutely Pinterest is the natural way to share viewpoint using images.

Pinterest has grown from less than 1 million users in May 2011 to about 20 million users worldwide, according to comScore. .Small businesses have started to see the value in Pinterest. Take for example graphic artists, photographers, interior designers and fashion designers, they are able to create storyboards showcasing their work. They have the freedom to display their work using their creativity, personal style and personality creating fantastic portfolios that can be seen and shared by other Pinterest users.

This allows consumers to check out their work, prior to contacting them. “If you’re Honda [which launched its official Pinterest page in April] and you see that somebody has ‘pinned’ a CRV to a pinboard called ‘SUVs to consider,’ you want to see what other vehicles they’re considering and maybe even leave a comment or reach out and see if you can provide them with more information on their decision.”

You can also use it as a tool for your own market research, what colors people are drawn too and what products are being repinned.

IntelligentHQ:   What advice do you have for others considering social media?

Delphine Remy-Boutang:  Social Business is the world of possibility that occurs when all of the energy and opportunities generated around consumer-side models, such as Facebook and Twitter, bring business challenges to bear. The critical turning point for Social Business is the realisation that the collective knowledge of networks of people can provide business with a unique competitive advantage. The shift to embracing social is no longer about just blogs, wikis and tweets. Now, social concepts are fundamental to real work getting done, and to collaborating with partners and clients.

Find Delphine Remy-Boutang on Twitter(@delphineRB) and at her blog