Opinion: Businesses not fully engaged with the shift to social media are doing themselves and their customers a disservice.
Companies that have chosen to embrace and engage cloud, analytics, mobile, and social strategies are cleaning the clock of their competitors who have chosen the path of cautious resistance or even abstinence.
Management at these pacesetting businesses have asked themselves the four questions below, and have built strategies around them.
• Why are big companies interested in big data?
• Why are formerly non-social companies suddenly scouring and analysing social data?
• Why is ‘mobile’ the new ‘social?’
• Why is ‘cloud’ the new data room?
On a personal note, when I saw the statistic that 68 per cent of Facebook usage is mobile, I realised the revolution was in full swing and those not playing hard would lose sales, loyalty, goodwill, reputation, and profit.
• Customers are smarter. You must be at least as smart.
• Customers are social. You must be at least as social.
• Customers are mobile. You must be at least as mobile.
• The availability of online information about you and your competition is instant.
• Customers expect an easy-to-buy process.
• Mobile is not an option, it’s an imperative.
• 24-7-365 is the new nine to five.
My friend Sandy Carter was one of IBM’s general managers, and their social selling evangelist. She fed me some support data from a 2014 ‘Business Tech Trends report’, which says that previously emerging trends like big data and analytics, cloud, mobile, and social are now being implemented across corporate enterprise beyond just experimentation and wait-and-see.
The report also found the gaps in IT skills that used to exist within these core segments are starting to narrow as organisations are uncovering the skill sets needed to use these technologies to their full advantage.
These big pacesetter corporations have discovered that, by partnering with smaller, specialised companies, they are able to obtain the critical skills they need to gain a competitive advantage – thus paving the way for innovation and increased market share. They also learned that total integration of all four pacesetter elements was their breakaway move.
Pacesetter organisations are now finding partners in myriad places including academia, startups, clients, citizen developers, and established specialised leaders. Pacesetter corporations that integrate cloud, analytics, mobile, and social technologies across their business are four to seven times more likely to use cloud to deliver social, mobile, big data, and analytics.
In short, pacesetters use technology for the competitive advantage and the results are more profitable business outcomes.
Here are a few concepts beyond buzzwords that will help you think about and understand why these strategies are being deployed and bringing amazing returns.
• Cloud strategies
Where can I store data and apps that are accessible on demand globally?
• Social strategies
How am I in touch with my customers to give them information and social proof, and how can they be in touch with me to tell me all is well?
• Mobile strategies
What are my customers using to communicate ideas, needs, and desires? How are they accessing my information? How are they purchasing?
• Analytics strategies
Data helps make better and smarter decisions. Data shows the past, reveals the present, and helps predict trends in the future. Another word for analytics is profit. In reality, an app without analytics is a washing machine without a motor or a car without petrol. How is your existing data being mined, analysed, and used to target trends, analyse profits, and increase sales?
• Partnering strategies
How are you using SEO experts, app builders, bloggers, and social awareness companies (global outside experts) that can help you achieve amazing success in a fraction of the time (and cost) it would take to do it yourself?
Your bottom line
Now is the time to get your social mojo working in your favour. The opportunity is ripe and the expertise you need is at your fingertips.
“The companies we deal with that listen to us with ‘all ears’ and eagerly implement the pacesetter solutions quickly convert their investment to ‘all clicks’ as their social interactions skyrocket and sales quickly follow suit,” Sandy Carter said.
Jeffrey Gitomer is an American author, professional speaker and business trainer, who writes and lectures internationally on sales, customer loyalty and personal development. © 2017 All rights reserved. Don’t reproduce this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer.