Archive for September, 2011
No one quite does it like Erik Qualman. His video’s offer an insight is to what makes the Networked Economy so interesting (YouTube video). In a nutshell, the opportunity to reduce costs and increase sales sits at the hands of all organisations. As with all competitive environments, the winners will be those that dare to win. Those that do their homework. Those that do the detailed planning and those that have the courage to follow their convictions. Those that do the ‘hard yards’.
The fuel of the Networked Economy is currently currency, no change there then. Its success or failure will be limited to our [Human] desire to break down barriers in order to find new solutions to problems. History tells us that will happen, as it always has done. Will the Networked Economy assist us to reduce pollution by enabling ‘facetime’ without physical travel – it already does. Will the Networked Economy lead to increased sales for organisations that put in the effort – it already does. Will the Networked Economy reduce costs by enabling communication on the broadest scale (by asking customers or clients what they want, then simply giving it to them in exchange for currency) – it already does.
If the Neworked Economy already affords all of the fundamental things to improve our lives, why isn’t everyone doing it?
My guess is timing. The Baby-boomers are running commerce currently, that will change. The Gen X and Millennials are the Captains of the future and they have been bought up using the hardware we are in the main familiar with today. In the not too distant future, the Millennials will take over and the Networked Economy will move effortlessly into place, for no other reason than, Man finds better ways of doing things instinctively and the Networked Economy offers greater advantages on numerous social and commercial levels.
The real interesting question then is the migration period. For those that have read other Blogs on this site, you’ll be familiar with what’s coming next … So, we’re down to the How and When questions.
Rather than jump to a knee-jerk response, or an arbitrary swipe at a timeframe, let’s start to work through this; the more brain-power we generate, the more likely we are to create an accurate picture and the shorter the journey will be.
There is much talk of Social Media and rightfully so. To my best knowledge, no other start up in the history of business has created so much interest as Google + (20M devotees in three weeks! (http://ow.ly/5NGET). Facebook has the largest CRM database in the world (750M, http://ow.ly/5NGMs), the full monetization has yet to unfold, but it will. LinkedIn has been a more gentile rise, 100 million users in 96 months. Nonetheless, its commercial focus provides it with the huge revenue potential. Twitter has changed more than the way in which we gossip, it has negated once powerful laws, making Super-injunctions worth less than the paper they are written on. If you haven’t got it by now, the underlying message is, the networked economy is the future, it’s just the shape of it that remains slightly unclear at present. McKinsey, that most trusted and astute of consultancies, commented in its recent article, ‘The Rise of the Networked Enterprise, December, 2010 (http://ow.ly/5NEYB)
‘In fact, our data show that fully networked enterprises are not only more likely to be market leaders or to be gaining market share but also use management practices that lead to margins higher than those of companies using the Web in more limited ways.’
So, the BIG question is no longer What? The Networked Economy is here. The questions now are How? And When?
For me the ‘How’ will be mobile. The ‘When’ will be driven by technology, connectivity speed and device costs. The interesting thing for me, is at what point does social media become the Networked Economy? Will this bring about the demarcation between social media and the use of digital tools for commerce, or is there no demarcation between social and commercial in the Networked Economy?