Clara Shih: The Social Media Imperative In Banking
CEO and Founder of Hearsay Social, Author of The Facebook Era, Member of Starbucks Board of Directors
- Named one of Fortune’s “Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs”
- Uses social media to redesign business models
- Helps clients target constantly connected consumers
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Clara Shih, a pioneer in the social media industry, is the CEO and founder of Hearsay Social, a leading software company which develops social CRM applications to empower the world’s largest companies to build stronger customer relationships, grow revenue, and bolster their brands across social networks, including Facebook and Twitter, among other social media sites.
Clara kicked off the social CRM movement in 2007 after developing the first social business application on Facebook with her Faceconnector application, which integrates Facebook and Salesforce CRM. Faceconnector was the first business application on Facebook. Clara is credited for helping evolve thinking about Facebook from "just for fun" only to a serious platform with business potential.
She is the author of a New York Times-featured best-selling book, The Facebook Era: Tapping Online Social Networks to Build Better Products, Reach New Audiences, and Sell More Stuff, about Facebook and Twitter for business, which has been featured in The New York Times, Fast Company, CRM Magazine, and is being used as a textbook at Harvard Business School. Her latest book, Social Business Imperative, the sequel to her first book, The Facebook Era, encourages companies to adapt to today's customer not only with new Twitter handles but with entirely new business models. The Facebook Era is a practical guide for executives and professionals who wish to understand social technologies like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and LinkedIn and how to take advantage of them for sales, marketing, and innovation. The book likens the "Facebook revolution" to the emergence of the internet in the 1990's. Shih says the internet revolution was marked by the World Wide Web of information and the power of linking content pages. Today, we are seeing the World Wide Web of people emerge across the social graph of sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social sites. She predicts the business impact will be on the same scale as with the internet.'
Clara has received several awards for her achievements, including being named one of Fortune's "Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs," Fast Company’s "Most Influential People in Technology," Businessweek’s "Top Young Entrepreneurs," CNN Money’s “40 Under 40: Ones to Watch,” Fortune's "40 Under 40", and Ad Age's "40 Under 40". She has also received recognition as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.
Clara is a frequently invited social business keynote speaker covering social media at global conferences, including Ad:Tech, Web 2.0 Expo, Enterprise 2.0, South by Southwest (SXSW), Digital Age 2.0, and many others. In December 2011, Clara was also elected to the Starbucks Board of Directors, replacing Facebook's chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg.
She comes from a technology background, having previously served in a variety of technical, product, and marketing roles at Google, Microsoft, and Salesforce.com. Clara holds undergraduate and Master's degrees in computer science from Stanford University, where she graduated number #1 in her class. In addition to receiving an MS in Computer Science—User Experience and Design from Stanford University, Clara also holds an MS in Internet Studies from Oxford University, where she studied as a US Marshall Scholar.
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Shih clearly articulates the opportunity for businesses on the social web, breaking it down into simple, actionable steps for companies to reach and connect with customers and prospects from around the world.