It seems that it has become “de rigueur” for those writing blogs to set out their “predictions for the new year”. Instead, I thought I’d share some insights I have gained in the past year. As I’ve noted in prior posts, I spend a significant amount of time – nearly 35% – meeting with CIO’s, CMO’s, and other executives of partners, customers, and other organizations. Those conversations, and the questions that emerge, I synthesize in my work to develop marketing strategies for OpenText, and the plans for the next year. Here are some of the insights I have gained…
1) The voice of the customer continues to grow in strength and focus. Expectations about Business-to-Business service, support, product capabilities and ease of use, instant understanding – all of the components of software, services, and products driven by a user experience pioneered by Apple, Nespresso, Jawbone, and others – are being applied as a standard to enterprise services. And, at the same time, the “needs of the business” continue to be essential to any enterprise. The insight for all products and services is – be better. Better at design, delivery, experience, and ease of use, but don’t lose the core elements which are necessary for your customers.
2) Globalization is accelerating. Our customers now expect products in 9 languages instantly upon release, with others coming fast based on their needs and expansions into their new, emerging, niche, geographical, or ethnic market segments. The key to success – move faster. Develop new ways of “Agile Marketing” so you can ideate, create, deliver, refine, and message faster, and in more ways, to a more diverse audience.
3) Privacy concerns reign. After recurring highly publicized debacles (SONY, Wikileaks) this year, expect even more scrutiny of data privacy capabilities, policies, and business practices, by individuals, governing bodies, and corporations. The action – make sure you are squeaky clean in your own shop as your partners and customers examine their relationship with your organization for flaws.
Just three elements of my ongoing conversations. Heed them wisely for the new year, and avoid the damage that ensues from even one individual attacking the brand in a public way. Heed the lesson from “United Breaks Guitars”. I wish you all well in the new year.