By Jean Young, Vice President, ISM
I’m not a big fan of New Year predictions – or the next big thing. But, here I go. Based on ISM’s clients – a number of global best-in-class organizations – and the insights of the company’s founder and president, Barton Goldenberg, there are a number of “trends” that have become or are becoming institutionalized.
And, the “we are here to stay” winners are:
Social Media’s Impact on marketing, sales, customer service, product development and more is two-way, immediate and here-to-stay. Social media’s many iterations will continue to be integrated into daily business practices. This includes Social CRM, in which companies harvest “social insight” directly into their sales and marketing efforts, to “social” mobile devices increasing efficiencies at work and shopping and to just having fun. Speaking of fun, now gamification is increasingly becoming an incentive for adopting sales and marketing applications.
“Big Data” Analysis & Insight: In the old days, we called it predictive modeling but let’s face it, Big Data sounds, well, bigger. And, it is. With more customer data flowing into every organization (thank you social media), and with the advent of new data analysis tools, Big Data is “big” because it consists of all private and public data available about your customers/prospects from ERP and CRM systems; social insights harvested from public and private social communities; and from third party sources and more. As Barton says, “At the end of the day, all that counts is your organization’s ability to use this data to make more informed business decisions.”
eCommerce On the Go: I am always nervous with anything with an “e” in front of it but the term eCommerce has endured. And, so has the concept: when you can buy efficiently and save money, customers usually come a running. The statistics for online retail sales are daunting. Global e-commerce sales are predicted to top $1.25 trillion for 2013. The real drama is in the B2B world, which has relied more on traditional “relationship” sales. ISM is working with a number of B2B businesses, which want sales and marketing to go online ASAP. Watch for major inroads in that marketplace.
OK, we’ll do a “review” at year’s end. Until then, you better get onboard.