IBM announced it is extending its social business platform, IBM Notes and Domino Social Edition 9, with an integrated social mail application. The company says the move aims to simplify and accelerate social business adoption in the marketplace, providing employees with a single access point to all of their collaboration tools, social media, email, group activities and blogs.

The platform is available through a choice of deployment options including on premises, in the IBM SmartCloud or via mobile devices. It now gives business users in marketing, development, HR and other areas a single access point for all of their social collaboration tools. 

With the new offering, an employee working on a new marketing project can check email as well as activity streams containing the latest work from each team member, share files with colleagues, and view new blogs on topics relevant to the subject—all through a single interface.

According to a study by IBM, 82 percent of chief marketing officers plan to increase their use of social media over the next three to five years. IBM's 2012 CEO study identified the same trend: While today only 16 percent of CEOs are using social business platforms to connect with customers, that number will rise to 57 percent within the next three to five years.

The vendor also cites statistics by Osterman Research showing that each day, 116 billion emails are sent and received by an estimated 800 million workers. When compared with Facebook and Twitter, which have reported 2.5 billion items shared and 400 million tweets a day, respectively, it is clear that email remains the dominant communication application in the workplace, IBM says.

IBM says more than 50 percent of the Fortune 500 has licensed its social software. It also leader in the midmarket collaboration space where it works with companies such as Celina Insurance. 

For IBM customer Celina Insurance, “being a social business has allowed our team to engage clients and agents so we can build better insurance products,” Rob Shoenfelt, senior vice president and CIO, said in a statement. “IBM has been at the center of our social transformation. By integrating messaging into our overall social business offering, we have access to powerful new capabilities that let us tap into the collective wisdom of our team and ensure our ability to deliver customers the level of service they demand." 

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