30 Enterprise Leaders Reveal the Top Digital Transformation Trends

 In Blog, Transformation

The digital transformation is happening, whether C-suite executives are ready or not. Of course, some CIOs and other C-suite execs are leading the charge within their organizations and embracing the latest digital technologies that can drive their business forward. Others, however, remain partial to the tried-and-true, old-school methods that have worked effectively for years.

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Wherever you fall on the digital transformation spectrum presently, the time to act is now. To gain some insight into the most impactful digital transformation trends taking shape right now and what enterprise leaders should be doing to take advantage of these opportunities, we asked a panel of business leaders and C-suite executives to answer this question:

“What’s the #1 trend in digital transformation and how can enterprise leaders (CIOs, etc.) capitalize on it in the coming year?”

Find out how CIOs and other C-suite professionals are capitalizing on digital transformation by reading our experts’ responses below.

Meet Our Panel of Enterprise Leaders:


Alex MillerAlex Miller

@Alex_B_Miller

Alex Miller is an Analyst at Clutch, a Washington, DC-based B2B ratings and reviews firm that highlights leading software and professional services firms. He is responsible for the cloud research segment at Clutch. Alex is originally from Dalton, PA and holds a degree from The George Washington University.

“I don’t think it’s a surprise that Cloud will continue…”

An upward trend for enterprises in 2017. The majority of large organizations have already found the benefits of cloud technologies, such as high scalability and availability, and utility billing models for a lower capex. The trend here is a movement even deeper into cloud usage.

Multiple reports have shown that the majority of enterprises expect their cloud spending to increase in 2017. This is the result of organizations moving more operations to cloud technologies and leveraging its capabilities.

Organizations who fail to take advantage of cloud technologies will simply be left behind. It is nearly impossible for a legacy system to be competitive with cloud offerings on any front (costs, performance, etc.). Executives have to double down on their cloud plan. Although worries will continue to circle around security in the cloud, organizations that migrate and manage data responsibly have nothing to worry about.


Emory CraigEmory Craig

@emorycraig

As Director of eLearning at the College of New Rochelle, Emory Craig is responsible for instructional technology initiatives, faculty development and the integration of emerging technologies in the curriculum. A writer, futurist and co-founder of Digital Bodies, Craig’s work focuses on the personal and social impact of wearable technologies and virtual reality platforms.

“To select a single trend, I would focus on…”

The transformation of our visual display technologies. We are moving into a new era of the digital revolution where virtual reality will provide us with deeply immersive experiences. Parallel developments in the mixed-reality area (through devices such as Microsoft HoloLens, Meta Smartglasses, and the forthcoming Magic Leap headset) will populate our physical world with highly realistic digital objects and information.

This shift from staring at external screens on our walls, desks or phones to stepping inside virtual environments – or having virtual entities reside in our world – will bring profound changes to the ways we work, learn and play. While the major focus right now is on high-end virtual reality devices such as Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive headsets, the real impact will come from the mobile space. The rollout of Google’s Daydream platform for mobile VR and Tango enabled phones will provide us with immersive experiences on our smartphones. Mobile will shift from its current reliance on text and video to platforms that are experiential in nature. Tango phones will map interior spaces, giving us the option of creating persistent digital objects and events that will transform work and commerce. And our social interactions with others will change through emerging social VR developments such as AltspaceVR and vTime.

The combination of immersive experiences and social media will be an incredibly empowering and disruptive development. From an organizational standpoint, virtual and mixed reality will raise profound challenges to our technology infrastructure (VR will result in an exponential increasing demand for bandwidth) and our current approaches to security. We currently protect files and data (challenging enough) – in the future, we’re going to have to protect virtual spaces and experiences. However, forward thinking enterprise leaders will uncover fascinating opportunities in these developments. It’s too early to recommend specific strategies, but the developments are far enough along that we need to understand and experiment with them.

Immersive experiences will transform our sense of presence and interactivity throughout our organizations. We will collaborate in ways that seem straight out of science fiction and we will all become storytellers and creators in a world where the boundaries between the real and the virtual are increasingly blurred.


Lindsay BoyajianLindsay Boyajian

@Lboyajian

Lindsay Boyajian is the Chief Marketing Officer at Augment. Augment is the leading Augmented Reality as a Service platform. With its mobile application, users can simulate their products in 3D augmented reality in the real world in real time. Augment has raised over $4.7m and boasts an impressive list of clients including Coca Cola & Siemens.

“The biggest trend in digital transformation is…”

Augmented reality. The technology is being leveraged as a powerful enterprise solution. From the initial design phase through the final sale to the consumer, augmented reality is proving to be the backbone of product visualization. For instance, Coca-Cola Germany has equipped its field sales team with Augment’s augmented reality mobile solution. This allows field reps to simulate Coca-Cola coolers on site with the client, removing the guesswork during the sales process. In the coming year, as augmented reality hardware and software continue to improve, the technology will become pervasive.


Edwin AcevedoEdwin Acevedo

@BKONconnect

Edwin Acevedo is a Technical/Marketing Copywriter at BKON.

“The number one trend in digital transformation for the retail sector is…”

The evolution of mobile technology. Smartphone users consult their phones when they are out and about. This is particularly true in retail, as savvy consumers instantly compare prices, features and reviews of products and services. This common in-store pattern will be transformed into a compelling mobile experience with beacons and the Google-inspired Physical Web. Now this micro-moment technology can serve as a virtual ambassador that says the right thing in the right place at the right time.

  • Beacons can give users frictionless access to relevant content right when and where they want it.
  • Context in proximity marketing is becoming increasingly important to delivering persuasive content that engages with visitors who use their mobile phones while shopping.
  • Apple’s proprietary iBeacon protocol will start losing ground to the Physical Web, the open beacon format introduced by Google. Among the reasons are high cost to deploy and maintain iBeacon, the Physical Web’s use of familiar web tools and protocols, and the recent announcement of Google’s Nearby technology (which locates and displays Physical Web signals).
  • The Physical Web relies on natural human curiosity and discovery. This improves user experience when people are near your product or service.
  • Physical Web content is universally accessible through Physical Web browsers, as well as custom-built native apps (using the Physical Web SDK).
  • Physical Web solutions like BKON and PHY.net make managing context and content of engagement easy and affordable.
  • It’s easy to integrate proximity marketing with other digital strategies, including web, social, video, reviews and more.


Neil MichelNeil Michel

@neilmichel

Neil Michel is the Chief Strategy Officer at Wire Stone, an independent digital marketing agency for global Fortune 1000 brands.

“The top digital transformation trends we see among brands/clients are…”

1) integration of the marketing tech stack, and 2) consolidation of digital agency partners. Both of these trends target the same outcome: a need for better customer experiences – and one that’s enabled by a unified vision for CX across channels and delivered by tools that can exchange data. During a period when customers are expecting increasingly personalized experiences from brands, most brands have been investing in standalone technologies that are awesome at managing one touch-point (like ads, web content, social, email, or sales) but can’t talk to the next touch-point. Five years ago there were about 150 tools marketers could choose from. Today there are nearly 4,000. Delivering a singular experience starts with a single view of the customer, and getting there is a huge digital transformation trend.


Deniz JohnsonDeniz Johnson

@denizajohnson

Deniz Johnson is the founder of Pera-Partners and a major player in Boston multinational financial services.

“Digital transformation trends seem to be around…”

1 – Growth – digital transformation to create new markets, new products to generate growth for the companies
2 – Competitive advantage through change – either with change the way we do business or changing the way we interact with our customers/clients
3 – Data and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are in the foundation of the digital transformation. Algorithms are used to predict behavior of investors, shopping trends, etc.

The C-suite can capitalize on this by:
1 – clear identification of the digital transformation vision and the expected value. It is not possible to work on every digitalization initiative. Leaders need to be very clear in their expected end result and value. The transformation needs to be measurable.
2 – focusing on the client or user experience – how your users or clients interact with the company’s digital assets define the success and penetration of the transformation. It is imperative to focus on interaction.
3 – Investing in the new skills, processes and technology within the organization to support the transformation. In the traditional projects IT and Business might be on their separate silos. In a digital transformation projects, the teams have to be working as one team, one focus, one vision. Data architects and scientists as well as UX designers might be new to the organization but much needed. Modular technology, allowing for open source plug and play also might allow for new technologies to be experimented.


Dinesh DhanasekharanDinesh Dhanasekharan

@Excelacom

Dinesh Dhanasekharan is the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Excelacom. As CTO, he helps drive the company’s technology strategy, leads the engineering team towards continued delivery of innovative products, and provides executive-level consulting services.

“One of the biggest trends we’ll see in terms of Digital Transformation moving forward is…”

The attempt by companies to break down the silos across their organizations, including the functions that support these silos. Companies are collecting and analyzing an increasing volume of data, and using it to make intelligent decisions about one or more parts of their business. But they now need to find ways to use it across the business and integrate it with their business processes. Some companies are already starting to figure this out, but it’s really just a few. Going forward, leadership will need to challenge their teams with looking across the company and implementing technology and processes that can transform the business.


Someshwar ChiduralaSomeshwar Chidurala

@TechOrchestrate

Someshwar is a Digital Marketing Analyst for Orchestrate Technologies, LLC, a U.S.-based business process management organization with headquarters in Dallas, Texas.

“One of the biggest trends in digital transformation is…”

The Internet of Things that connects the modern computing systems and various other digital devices through machine-to-machine communication can be considered as one of the hottest trends in digital transformation. IoT heralds a new era of advanced connectivity through which devices can automatically collect and utilize required data across a range of channels that would be used to make our lives better. With billions of devices estimated to be connected through IoT in the near future, massive amounts of data from diverse locations would be generated. Business leaders will have to find and apply innovative tools and techniques to aggregate and utilize this data effectively and efficiently.


Shelia LindnerSheila Lindner

@octacom

Sheila is President of Canada’s foremost provider of high quality document management and business process outsourcing solutions, Octacom. Octacom provides a wide range of customized solutions for large, international enterprises.

“One of the biggest trends in digital transformation for business and enterprises has been…”

The switch to paperless offices. With the rise of the environmentally conscious mentality in the workplace and the expanding digital demands on businesses, including an increasingly remote workforce across numerous sectors, going paperless has become a necessity for any company looking to remain competitive. Digital filing systems allow companies to maintain a permanent electronic record of their important information, and easily share documents with clients, employees and partners around the world. This area of digital transformation is truly reshaping the workplace as we’ve previously known it.


Brock MurrayBrock Murray

@SEOBrock

Brock Murray is a Web Marketing Specialist for seoplus+.

“A significant and increasingly crucial trend in digital transformation has been…”

The optimization of a strategic online presence. A business’ website and digital strategy is now a fundamental tool that many businesses must rely on for generating leads and effectively reaching their target audiences. Optimizing your website for SEO has to be one of the main priorities in any effective digital marketing strategy. You must focus on on-page optimizations to speed load time for better user experience (a major factor that affects Google rankings, not to mention consumer leads). This includes disabling bloated plug-ins, compressing excessively large images, optimizing code, and ensuring you are set up on an adequate server to handle your average traffic volumes (and more importantly, the volumes you wish to achieve).


Colin BovetColin Bovet

@ColinBovet

Colin Bovet is the Head of Marketing at Enplug, which helps organizations of all sizes improve their marketing and communications using digital displays.

“Digital signage technology is changing the way people view and interact with digital screens worldwide, causing a…”

Digital transformation for both marketing and communications. While digital signage is established technology, more modern platforms like Enplug are transforming traditional signs into interactive communication tools.

With more engaging content like live, automatically-filtered social media feeds, users can instantly see their real-time posts on any digital displays powered by the software. With live polling, organizations can get feedback from employees in real-time and share it transparently across multiple offices.

As CredenceResearch.com on PR Rocket observes, “Digital signage solutions are steadily gaining widespread acceptance across private as well as public environments on account of their ability to offer dynamic content and real-world interface.”

Enterprise leaders can capitalize on this trend by assessing how implementing modern digital signage can change the way employees communicate within their organization and how it can be used to market to customers. CIOs should also evaluate whether their current technology is capable of displaying dynamic, engaging content.


Remi AlliRemi Alli

@Bravmovement

Remi Alli holds a JD, Master’s Degree in Health Law and has a background in Psychology. Remi works for Brāv, which trains people to aid other’s conflicts on its face-to-face platforms.

“One of the biggest trends in digital transformation is…”

Chat bots, as they are the new apps. Machine learning, including artificial intelligence, creates an experience where users feel like they are interacting with a real human for whatever need, and brav.org capitalizes on this by using bots as a third party to manage conflicts that may arise at work, home, school or more. For the serious nature of these issues, we also use bots to communicate with those who feel they are in hostile environments and bravmojis for use by those who need help identifying the emotion they are feeling and want help managing conflicts.


Mel JonesMel Jones

@motivationphil

Mel Jones is a Powerful Thinking Coach, Author, Motivational Speaker, Sportswear Entrepreneur and Fitness Professional from Williamsburg, VA. He speaks to groups and individuals to flip the switch in the average persons mind to give them the edge they need to win in life.

“The biggest trend in digital transformation I would have to say is the way companies are…”

Utilizing the Snapchat platform. It’s advertising platform for big corporations, media outlets, sports, news, and even Presidential Candidates looks to outdo Facebook. The use of 10 second video footage has moved far beyond the person to person friendly interaction. Snap Chat has now become our new media outlet for all the worlds news. It’s easy to navigate, the ads don’t pop up while you are interacting with friends, and companies can effectively have their ad displayed on the home screen right above all of your contacts stories. It’s incredible, I watched the whole NBA Finals through Snap Chat because I was too busy to sit down and watch it. And guess what? The NBA still got paid by an advertiser to show a Gatorade commercial on their Snap Chat Feed. Winning!


Travis KimmelTravis Kimmel

@traviskimmel

Travis Kimmel is the CEO, co-founder and product visionary behind GitPrime. He is a Y Combinator alumni, experienced in building high-performing teams, and empowering people to do their best work of their careers.

“The digital transformation trend set to have the biggest impact is…”

The accessibility of data. In the early days, big data was all about asking the same old questions, just on bigger and more accessible data sets. The biggest trend emerging in forward thinking organizations, is that data is now leading the investigation. This is very different from simply having more data. We’re beginning to see the transformative effect of this in businesses like Uber, who are use data to quickly out-compete entire industries. To capitalize on this trend, industry leaders are paying close attention to concrete data of their businesses, and using tools that help them draw meaningful conclusions. Highly accessible, highly consumable, and action-oriented data is what’s driving today’s innovation.


murraysuidMurray Suid

@MurraySuid

Murray Suid is the co-founder of the International Movie Trailer Festival (IMTF) and Mobile Moviemaking.

“The golden age of mobile movie making is fast approaching…”

For a few years, most of us have been carrying around high quality cameras. Powerful editing software–much of it free–is widely available. Gear–such as tripods, lenses, microphones–is astonishingly cheap. Indie filmmakers increasingly shoot using mobile devices, as evidenced by the rapid increase in film festivals devoted exclusively to mobile-shot movies. But the real change will happen when the non-film-school-trained users begin to create their own work-related videos. Categories include instructional videos, marketing videos, behind-the-scenes videos, and news–all distributed via company websites, Facebook pages, Twitter posts, and so on.

Just as blogging has encouraged the masses to using text in a myriad of ways, mobile technology will mean that now everyone can be a filmmaker.

The key is mastering a few basic information-sharing concepts (how best to stage an instructional video; options for marketing videos) plus a handful of simple but powerful cinematography techniques (shooting wide, using available light, breaking the presentation in a few shots, etc.)

Marketing experts have been telling us that video presentations online are vastly more effective. Now, it will be possible for people throughout a company to produce quality videos–shot on shoestring budgets – that will support a company’s efforts across the board.


Kean GrahamKean Graham

@monetizemore

Kean Graham is the CEO of MonetizeMore, a leading ad tech firm that is a Google Certified Partner.

“The number one trend in digital transformation is…”

Outsourcing. The digital environment is only becoming more complex. Companies are able to capitalize on these increasingly complex sectors of the digital industry by outsourcing to the experts and only paying on performance. Instead of hiring someone in-house on a salary and adding that additional management burden, companies are outsourcing to experts that are financially incentivized to maximize the value they create for their clients. As a result, the company can put greater focus on their core competencies rather than spreading themselves thin.


Andrew JohnsAndrew Johns

@larkswoodsays

Andrew Johns is Founder of Larkswood Digital, an ethical web design agency in London. He has worked in the tech industry since 1999 across a number of sectors on both Business to Business and Business to Consumer websites. He is also a STEM ambassador for schools, inspiring young people into one of the many facets of the tech industry.

Virtual and Augmented Reality will transform the workplace and open up exciting…”

New ways to deliver products and services to customers. It will help immerse users into their surroundings and allow them to appreciate the scale of things. As a user interface, VR and AR have inherent spatial advantages over the flatness of 2D interfaces, making navigation more natural and intuitive, reducing clutter and presenting information in a clear way. It may also allow businesses to reach new audiences, such as disabled users, where VR and AR is helping independence and quality of life.


Swapnil BhagwatSwapnil Bhagwat

@swapnildigital

Swapnil Bhagwat is a creative design and digital marketing professional with a global experience. Strategic and result driven leader with extensive experience in project, stakeholder and team management. Accomplished MBA graduate with strong management skills and working experience in the United States, United Kingdom & Europe. Successfully implementing design, web & digital strategy and delivering high impact results for B2B and B2C enterprises.

“In the entire digital transformation process, marketing has gone digital for most of companies…”

In 2016, the digital marketing activities of companies were noted to have the most of the commercial impact. The implementation of creative content marketing, use of big data, marketing automation and mobile marketing are on the top.Enterprises are looking for better customer engagement on digital channels. Digital marketing spend is forecasted to increase of total budgets in this year compared to 2015. One of other trend noted is the increased usage of cloud services. In a survey by RightScale last year found that 93 % companies used Cloud based applications.


Steve VermeirenSteve Vermeiren

@svermeiren

Steve Vermeiren is a marketing technology and analytic professional that has worked for organizations such as Bell Canada, SIRIIUS XM, Sears and Points.com. He is currently Vice-President of Customer Success & Marketing for itracMarketer.com

“The biggest trend in digital transformation is…”

The ability for organizations to harness and optimize the content creation and distribution cycle in a way that is measurable and meets an organizations objectives and goals. Many businesses have bought into the hype of building audiences and customers through engaging content but are challenged with measurement, distribution, syndication and ways to get their content consumed by their target audiences. This will be a significant focus that will leverage technology and expertise for businesses to see results from their content resource investments.


David PerkinsDavid Perkins

David Perkins works with Cerdant. Cerdant has made it their mission to provide the most comprehensive and valuable managed security and consulting practice for Dell SonicWALL in the world. Their team of engineers and industry professionals has decades of experience in keeping information secure for small businesses to enterprises
with thousands of endpoints.

“The leading trend in digital transformation is…”

The growth of bring your own device (BYOD) environments. This is a shift from company owned IT devices to an increasingly mobile and remote workplace. In order to allow employees to access corporate data securely, more companies can are now utilizing virtual private networks (VPN’s). Another trend is the proliferation of encrypted web traffic. In order to protect the network from attacks over an encrypted connection enterprise leaders can use secure sockets layer (SSL) decryption to inspection. Both of these trends show the growing need for network security among an increasingly digital workplace.


Luca AlessandriniLuca Alessandrini

@_Luca_Luca

Luca is a Digital Marketing Specialist at Online Optimism, a digital marketing agency based out of New Orleans, Louisiana.

“The number one trend in digital transformation will be the…”

Ever-growing importance of content strategy. To engage with your customers as the majority of contact turns digital, you will need great content. For my colleagues in digital marketing, it is something that we hear everyday, content is kind. There is no debating it. The truth is that companies are creating content to publish on various social channels, but their content strategy is not clearly aligned with the business’s goals. As we are experiencing this digital transformation it becomes necessary to include experts from every facet of a company in content strategy development. This includes human resources, sales, and customer service coming together to create a cohesive content strategy that addresses the needs of all parties. The result is quality social selling and social recruitment, fundamentals especially for a growing digital millennial market.


Rebecca BrooksRebecca Brooks

@Alter_Agents 

Rebecca Brooks is a co-founder and partner at Alter Agents, a seasoned market research company committed to helping admired brands ignite action with powerful shopper insights.

“One of the biggest trends in digital transformation is…”

Having information at their fingertips means consumers are approaching purchases with fresh eyes every time.

Even if they have favorite brands, if a pre-purchase search is involved, they are open to something new. Brands are no longer earning loyal-for-life consumers. Rather, they are getting consumers who think their brand is the best for now. Brand equity and reputation lives only in the moment prior to a decision. When that shopper re-enters the category, that brand must earn them anew.


Michael LaurieMichael Laurie

@Mike256k

Michael Laurie is the Vice President of Product Strategy for eSignLive by VASCO.

“The top trend in digital transformation is about…”

Enabling anytime, anywhere transacting. That’s the goal of every company so it can minimize drop off during a transaction, meet customer expectations and deliver exceptional service on any device. Going digital inherently involves eliminating physical paper and “wet” signatures, and that’s where the value of e-signatures comes in. E-signatures are not only the last link to enable a completely digital transaction, but are also necessary to ensure a legally binding agreement between multiple parties. It also means embracing cloud-based computing. Ensuring privacy and security on cloud-based transactions is where regulations like eIDAS in Europe or the GDPR come in, as lawmakers scramble to keep up with how technology is changing the way we do business. Transactions like those for banking, insurance and healthcare have a huge amount of personal data that needs to be secured and protected, another area where technology like e-signatures plays a huge role, both in the upfront identification and authentication of the signers, but in the downstream processing, encryption and storage of data.


Ankit SethAnkit Seth

@ved_sutra

Ankit is a co-founder of VedSutra, an online platform with any and all information about Hinduism.

In the past couple of years a lot of marketing efforts were put into promoting mobile apps.

These seemed perfect. All you need to do is to ensure that your app gets installed and post that you can freely send out notifications to your consumers. However, most big brands are seeing very high uninstall rates for their mobile apps. At the same time google is enhancing mobile browsers to do more and more app like things. In next couple of years we might see a shift back to basics with brands turning their focus on mobile websites instead of apps. My tip for marketing managers would be to re-focus on their SEO efforts. With mobile websites dominating the market search engine result page rankings will re-gain paramount importance in marketing.


Jess TiffanyJess Tiffany

@tiffanyintl

Jess Tiffany is the President of Marketing and Networking University.

“The #1 digital transformation trend that I see is…”

The empowering of sales people and customer service representatives with technologies that allow easy access as well almost instantaneous connection with customer to resolve situations or to shorten the sales cycle. Allowing the use of tablet computers on the sales floor allows the sales man to have almost every resource they need at the ready. They can have demonstration videos, stats and an order form right there as he or she is talking and then can close the sale on the spot.

Then on the other end, customer service teams can have Twitter, Facebook and Instagram available for any complaints to be answered and dealt with as fast as they come in. These teams then can calm any irate customers without 20 million twitter followers finding out the error the company made for this customer. These same tools taken a step further can use automation tools to schedule posts, tweets and pins strategically placed to get maximum traction and shares. These and many more digital transformations are in the works but in my opinion the empowerment of the sale team and customer service representatives is the #1 transformation going on currently on the global business stage.


Renat ZubairovRenat Zubairov

@zubairov

Renat Zubairov is a CEO and co-founder of elastic.io, provider of a hybrid integration platform as a service. Renat is an experienced hacker, product owner and agile evangelist. He worked with some of world’s best companies like Nokia, Nokia-Siemens Networks, TCS and DHL, mainly in the areas of Application Integration, Data Integration and Business Process Management.

“In our opinion, the biggest trend in digital transformation is…”

IoT adoption. There are more and more devices that collect raw data: smart watches like FitBit, smart home devices like Alexa, car sensors, factory floor controls and sensors, medical monitoring systems, and so on. All this data, when processed and integrated into existing IT estate, delivers valuable insights with regard to at least two important issues: devices usage and devices performance. The former will help companies better optimize their products for a wider adoption and exploitation, while the latter allows companies to perform better maintenance and service of the things. In addition to that, IoT opens new opportunities and allows for new business models for companies that have previously produced only physical goods. For example, in healthcare industry, even such a simple device as blood pressure meter, when equipped with smart sensors, can be used to collect and analyse data about changes in patients’ condition to ensure e.g. regular medicine intake or enable timely medical help.

When setting on the IoT course, though, companies need to be aware of several things. First, a clear strategy is key. CEOs and CIOs (as well as other involved parties) need to define first what they need IoT and data delivered by IoT for: to offer new services and products (or maybe optimise existing products) for their customers, or optimise internal processes, improve devices maintenance, etc. In addition to that, they need to define the key strategic value of IoT for their company. Sometimes the direction reveals itself organically, for example, if they already use sensor-equipped machines on the factory floor, but this is by far not always the case. By the way, this might seem obvious, but we’ve already experienced that companies ask us how they can use our technology for IoT projects without having at least more or less well-formed idea what those projects will be about in the first place.

Secondly, they have to be aware of the fact that raw data in itself won’t be of much use to them. Therefore, they need to take care of the technology that would help feed the raw data into applications and systems that can processes this data. Just like they need to define applications and systems that will be able to turn this raw data into actual information. Especially CIOs and CTOs need to find the right integration technology, because legacy integration platforms and ESBs are rarely suitable for IoT integration with existing IT infrastructure, for one, because they fail to ensure high performance and scalability with low latency. This basically means that internal IT has to make themselves familiar with modern technology like cloud, APIs, IoT platforms, integration platforms as a service, and microservices, to name just a few.


Jason BrewerJason Brewer

@jaybrew

Jason is co-founder and CEO of Brolik, a digital marketing agency based in Philadelphia. Brolik supports regional and national clients with business strategy and marketing consulting to drive growth. Jason’s focus is on business development, growth strategy and recruiting talent for Brolik.

“A trend we are seeing is the revival of…”

The web portal. Specifically, we’re seeing many privately held B2B companies investing in custom portals/intranets to better interact with their customers and manage the sales process while providing a central hub for integrating their third party tech services (ERP, CRM, Ecommerce). These companies seemingly want to own the product more than ever and want to build it specifically for their business to create more IP and value in their companies vs. finding an out-of-the-box solution. We’ve seen C-level executives increase customer retention and renewal business through their investment.


Haley GongHaley Gong

@Haley_Gong

Haley Gong discovered her passion for digital marketing and online communication when she studied at the Johns Hopkins University in U.S. Now, Haley together with her team at Webpower Asia in Shanghai, strive to provide marketing automation solution to international companies wishing to reach and engage their audiences in China.

“The most remarkable digital transformation trend is…”

Data mining. This is like a relationship. The customer is the girl everyone is chasing after, including you and your competitors. A smart strategy is to know as much as possible about this girl, so as to offer her exactly what she wants. Data mining makes it possible. Say you are an online fashion retailer, by tracking and analyzing the customer’s previous online behavior, you are able to find out that: she loves blue heels; her size is 37; her favorite brand is XYZ; she normally shops online or read promotion letter at 8 pm; and she always pays with her Mastercard.

With all this information, you are able to personalize your message: ‘Hey! Check out the new blue collection from XYZ. They are so popular that we are running out of size 37 in stock. Buy now and enjoy 5% off if you pay with Mastercard.’ This customer will wow at this message and immediately feel the bond. Repeat it for several times, and this girl will fall in love with you, instead of you competitors.


Christopher MartinChristopher Martin

@CJ_24K

Chris is a digital marketing specialist for FlexMR. He develops bespoke strategies that are used to improve brand awareness, lead generation, competitive intelligence & raise the profile of market research insight as a B2B resource.

“The top 2016 trend in digital transformation is…”

The consolidation of customer experience measurement and enablement. To take advantage of this, CIOs need to invest in EFM and insight management infrastructure that allows for the distribution of customer feedback, satisfaction and opinion throughout the organisation. This open access to data provides departments with the real-time information they need to be more responsive to consumer needs as they develop.

While this infrastructure is invisible to customers, the net effect is a more integrated experience with relevant and targeted communications. Customer service teams are able to understand the brand interactions and experience each individual has had prior to contact. Meanwhile marketers are able to offer personalised offers and product development teams can aggregate feedback to iteratively improve offerings. Creating an open data platform has it’s challenges – namely cost and employee onboarding – but the result is a truly digital, responsive organisation.


Asier SarasuaAsier Sarasua

@assarasua

Asier Sarasua is the Chief Marketing Officer at MainTool a French wearables company. Sarasua is a wearables expert and has been active in the Spanish technology ecosystem for years. He has led successful marketing campaigns at both startups and established companies, including Repsol and Karmacracy. Sarasua co-founded his first company, Kibber, an innovation consulting firm, together with other young professionals when he was 18.

“Consumer behavior has changed drastically over the past couple of years…”

Today, consumers consume more digital content instead of consuming content from traditional channels. Processing Big Data efficiently and understanding the meaning of it will be key in the digitalization of companies in the next few years.

Due to this digital transformation, Big Data has started to take on a bigger role and has seen an exponential increase in the past few years. This demand for big data will only increase, as the Internet of Things has started to be key in the development of business and in the everyday lives of consumers. Many consumers are now using smart home gadgets, wearables and smartwatches.

The combination of these different sources of data will play a key role in the digital transformation of companies. They need to understand this in their processes in order to create more accurate buyer persona profiles and understand their clients’ social networks. To do this, it is going to be essential to analyze data through machine learning in order to find patterns and create successful models.

In fact, companies will become more and more dependent on this data because it will be a way to gain a competitive advantage over their competitors. However, over time, Big Data will become a necessity rather than an advantage. Digital transformation will depend on the amount of data collected and the correct analysis of the data. If companies utilize and take advantage of Big Data, they will be able to create new products by analyzing consumer behavior. The companies that don’t take the appropriate efforts towards digitalization will become obsolete.

 

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