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Last updated on April 21, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

“Grown Up” White Label Social Networking Targeting the Enterprise, Says ABI Research

July 18, 2008

Networking through online communities in the consumer world has become a huge success, and now enterprises are beginning to embrace this form of technology. To enable such communication in a business environment, white label social networking vendors provide platforms that can be rebranded to meet the requirements of enterprises. ABI Research forecasts indicate that this market will be worth nearly $1.3 billion in 2013.

Potentially linking employees, customers, and other stakeholders, enterprise social networking is most commonly seen as an aid to marketing, CRM, and general information distribution.

“Social networking within and around the enterprise can deliver a number of benefits to a company, though some may be difficult to quantify,” says industry analyst Zippy Aima. “For example, many networks can be searched by keyword, offering fast and easy access to company-wide pools of expertise. One vendor of these solutions targets only trade show and conference organizers. Their networks allow people attending the event to save time by learning who else is going, and setting up meetings in advance.”

Setting up and running a social network is a specialized task, however, and can be costly. So most white label social networking vendors offer the technology through an SaaS (Software as a Service) model, based on a subscription fee, which can be fairly economical for the customer. Client companies can add their own branding, look and feel, but have no other responsibilities or burdens.

“White label enterprise social networking is a very young market, but a busy one,” notes Aima. “It is flooded with vendors, but most of them are only a few years old and still see annual revenues below $5 million. Despite this market’s promise, they must overcome several challenges, including lack of customer education, competition from open standards, budget constraints, and the need for feature-rich applications.”

While the potential market for white label enterprise social networking is worldwide, the majority of vendors today — including HiveLive, Intridea, KickApps, Drupal, Cisco, and Mzinga — are based in North America. “The White Label Social Networking Market” (http://www.abiresearch.com/products/research_brief/Digital_Media_ Research_Brief/119) discusses the opportunities in this market, and the challenges facing vendors entering it. It identifies the parameters that enterprises use when choosing a white label social network, and examines the pricing models of a number of vendors. It forecasts revenue grow through 2013.

This Research Brief is a component of the firm’s Digital Media Research Service (http://www.abiresearch.com/products/service/Digital_Media_Research_ Service)

ABI Research is a leading market research firm focused on the impact of emerging technologies on global consumer and business markets. Utilizing a unique blend of market intelligence, primary research, and expert assessment from its worldwide team of industry analysts, ABI Research assists hundreds of clients each year with their strategic growth initiatives. For information, visit www.abiresearch.com, or call +1.516.624.2500.

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