That’s right- I don’t see any other WLAN vendors on Twitter.
Like really “on” Twitter.
Sure, I see lot’s of other WLAN vendors with a Twitter presence. I follow as many as I can. But it’s all so much marketing and promotion of webinars and other droll foofah. Not that these communications don’t have a place, but there should be so much more… like what Aerohive does.
No, this isn’t an Aeorohive suck-up session. They have innovative product and a fresh story that stands for itself. But what also sets Aerohive apart is how their senior tech folks interact with us geeks on Twitter, in a way that is not only welcome but also sorely needed in a wireless world that grows ever more hyper-complex.
When folks with titles like Chief Wi-Fi Architect, Senior Wi-Fi Architect, and Director of Product management routinely engage customers and non-customers alike on social media, the information exchange is dynamite. This is what all vendors need to be doing. Aerohive has either purposefully or without realizing it empowered their wireless power people to get the message of their solutions out as vigorously as the marketing team does- but even better, they are providing guidance and facilitating discussion on topics that customers of ALL vendors have a stake in. In other words, Folks like Devin, Andrew, and Matthew are also upstanding citizens in a fairly small wireless community, and we all benefit from it.
As we all march towards 802.11ac, more complicated feature sets, unification of everything under the wireless banner, and an immersion in the Sea of Mobility, we need more Twitter-style interactions from vendors’ tech folks. Sure, it’s risky letting non-marketing employees talk directly to customers and potential customers. But to those of us that read the whitepapers, do the webinars, and visit the vendor booth at the tech shows yet still want more engagement on topics that shape our thoughts and strategies, the more informal interactions we have with the tech folks are invaluable. Sometimes it’s technical nuts and bolts stuff, sometimes it’s theoretical or contemplative, and sometimes it’s silly. But the mutual shaping of perspectives is valuable on many levels.
Come on, wireless vendors, you all have some amazing minds behind closed doors. That’s evidenced by the insanely cool products and features that you put out. At the same time, we can’t typically reach them- and they can’t reach us. It’s not your model. You give us division names for Twitter handles like “xxx mobility” and “yyy solutions”… fine, they have value. But we also want to interact with named people on occasion. Like Devin, Andrew, and Matthew. People who not only represent their employers well, but who are passionate about wireless networking and want to share that passion with others.
To balance the risk of letting your tech folks off the reservation a bit,,, you’d get better reads on what matters to those who use and manage wireless networks, we’d better understand why you chose some of your product decisions and feature sets, and powerful relationships at personal levels would get built among WLAN professionals. Yeah, it might feel weird in the beginning, but if Aerohive can pull it off (and quite nicely, I might add), so can you.