The cloud computing industry is not new, yet it is always in a state of flux owing to the range of offerings such as public versus private versus hybrid, and IaaS/PaaS/SaaS/NaaS/ FaaS. The industry is set to grow fast, about 17.3 percent in 2019 to a total of $206.2 billion, up from $175.8 billion in 2018 (Gartner). More growth will come from more services and more competition.
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To stay ahead of the growing competition, it is important to identify the right triggers in existing and potential cloud users. This is where technographics help.
If you are a cloud service provider, knowing the architecture, infrastructure and services of your competitors is a critical input, because the cloud is all about integrating a host of components, rather than the traditional monolith-database server approach.
While using technograhic data in the cloud domain, here’s what providers can effectively monitor to get that competitive edge.
- Understand the core i.e. the data centre: The physical infrastructure used for data storage i.e. the location, the security measures, backup mechanisms, architecture and networking are elements you can continuously monitor to know your competitors better.
- Data governance and security: Studying the various data classification schemes and local data governance laws such as storage and access SLAs of competitors can be an important pointer to check their ability to protect data which is in transit through encryption and access protocols built into the data system.
- The network architecture and connectivity: A cloud request often goes through numerous components, for example,from a browser or a mobile device to a CDN to a load balancer to the application. Keeping a track of competitor’s robustness and responsiveness of this technology array, can help teams keep their product innovative.
- Orchestration and integration tools: Looking at the extent of integrations-support that competitors offer with other allied services can help reach out to a wider audience which is looking at incorporating a hybrid model, for example.
Besides these, Technographics can be especially useful to marketing and sales teams in this domain.
There are several factors that drive companies to the cloud; centralized data, better disaster recovery and flexibility are some of the common ones. In fact, at the beginning of this year (2018), the industries forecasted to spend most on public cloud services included professional services ($18.1 bn) and banking ($16.7 bn) besides several others.
While there are various sources of data to give details like the above so Marketing and Sales teams can use it to optimise their targeting strategies, Technographics can further help them by:
Identifying who is using which (cloud) technology: Say for instance you are a cloud (open source) technology provider. Technographics / Installed Tech Data can give insights into who is using this technology, a breakdown of current usage trends while "Next Technology Purchase Detection" using Technographics can give insights on who is likely to start using a particular cloud technology next. This information can help you tap into potential markets faster than your competitors and it can also help align marketing messaging to ensure better ROI too.
Added advantage to Field Sales teams: With technographics, Field Sales teams can find out which companies in their territory are using a particular technology. If we continue referring to the example above, Technographics could help Field Sales team identify who is using open source technology within their region, for instance. This information can help them reduce their overall prospecting time as well as close deals faster.
Marketing Ops and Marketing Strategy: When technographics helps teams know more about current trending technologies and their usage within a particular domain, it can have an impact on overall operations and strategies. If a team knew which specific technology is trending in which region, businesses will be able to dovetail their plans to capitalize on this information, identify triggers as above and tap the market for their ultimate gain.
Prioritizing leads on basis of propensity to migrate: If cloud providers can identify niche triggers in leads, like, the chance of them migrating to another platform, it will help prioritise leads and reduce overall marketing and sales time. Technographics can give these insights based on current cloud usage patterns within an organisation for instance.
Competitive Advantage: Several companies use technographics to identify the installed tech data at their competitor’s client’s premise. This data can breakdown the profile of these users and help competing companies strategize campaigns to poach or win over those clients over based on their technology use, technology comfort and technology buying behaviors.
Knowing the technographics of your competitors will help you stay ahead of the technology curve, because you will be able to invest in the right infrastructure, resources and marketing efforts to beat your competition.
In the cloud domain, multiple teams including but not limited to Product Management, Demand Analytics, Data Science and Operations can benefit from Technographics. The idea is to use the data set to pull specific insights and keep a track on every aspect of competing cloud providers.