Monday Sep 28, 2015

Cloud is fueling the next wave of digital disruptive growth

Cloud has evolved from a mere cost-saving tool and has slowly started to spread within many companies as the core accelerator for digital transformation. Three reasons why Cloud is fueling the next wave of digital disruptive growth.


Previously to the cloud advent, when a business had an application or process they wanted to implement, it would take weeks or months to get the infrastructure in place before development could even begin. Companies focused on speed to delivery or innovation love Cloud, as it provides a real advantage over the competition. Cloud is about rapid provisioning of services, platforms, and infrastructure to provide the agility required to launch new Digital services.

The cloud has changed the fundamental nature of computing and how business gets done and it will continue to do so through 2020. In fact, IDC predicts that by 2020 clouds will stop being referred to as "public" and "private" and ultimately they will stop being called clouds altogether. It is simply the new way business is done and IT is provisioned.


Digital pioneers will create interconnected systems. The next era of digital business will blur the barriers between physical and digital, and between businesses creating new digital ecosystems:

· Clouds of Interconnected networks of objects from the edge to data center to move from selling smart products to selling services

· New digital ecosystems and industry cloud platforms sharing data through secure APIs open to partners from the same industry, other industries and developers to create new value for the customers


· Unprecedented data growth from digital systems integrating objects from the physical world and smart devices with enterprise management must be served with scalable DaaS and PaaS services on public or private cloud architectures.

· Rich Smart and cognitive algorithms benefit from third parties Cloud-databases and SaaS marketing services to extract meaning and activate data


Digital innovation requires a change of mindset that focuses on the customer and embraces failures as a way to progress. It implies adopting lean development cycles to launch, test and evaluate and improve fast new digital propositions. But creating interconnected, and hyperscalable digital services at pace can't be afforded by plugging together ad-hoc solutions every time. In a word Digital Business requires Integrated Cloud Platforms providing:

· Public Cloud Infrastructure Services when required

· Cloud Computing Development platforms that simplify exposing Data to Third Parties through secure APIs for Web and Mobile devices

· IoT Devices Gateways capturing massive data from a myriad of smart devices and protocols and orchestrating bidirectional business actions

· SaaS applications that are mobile and social ready

· Best in class Data management and analysis services that hyperscale

· Hybrid Cloud Management Tools to facilitate Hybrid IT governance from a single console

Sunday Jan 04, 2015

We are all Digital Startups: Three Predictions describing how Digital Teams will Work during 2015

With the advent of the New Year it is difficult to determine which technological innovations will create the higher impact: Drones, BitCoins, 3D scan and printing, Connected Cars, Connected Vending, Skin Wearables, Deep Web, Programmatic, Digital Signage or the re-emerging of Artificial Intelligence are some on the Top. Digital Teams in charge of Corporate Innovation are watching it all, but are also exploring, learning and applying new development approaches with high impact on the way they work. I want to turn my eyes to the ideas that will have a larger impact on the working style of those teams during 2015.

Lean Principles

Lean is a movement transforming how new products are built and launched. As Tim O´Really has stated “The Lean Startup isn't just about how to create a more successful entrepreneurial's about what we can learn from those businesses to improve virtually everything we do…It's ultimately an answer to the question 'How can we learn more quickly what works, and discard what doesn't ”.

Despite the NYT Best Seller The Lean Startup was written in 2011 by Eric Ries with a focus on startups and entrepreneurship, the movement hasn´t stop growing and invading new territories. This year the digital departments of a significant numbers of big corporations will adopt Lean as part of their Digital DNA. Lean is not only about startups, Lean is about how to innovate as a startup.

Toyota, the leading lean company in the world described Lean in 1990 and has inspired Ries´s book. Several other big companies worldwide are applying the same principles. As Tim O´Really summarized at Strata Europe 2014 Conf: Lean Startup Principles apply to every Real Word Service. Also as Ries explains, Corporate Innovation is not about buying a few startups, nor about hiring a few entrepreneurs to rethink the company with their new eyes and working style, but about changing the company context so creativity can emerge from the company employees.

During 2015, a big majority of Digital Teams launching new digital services will apply Minimum Viable Product approaches and iterate through several and fast development cycles. Eric Ries defines MVP as “That version of a new product which allows a team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort.MVP is the product with highest return versus investment and is typically deployed to a minimum set of customers known as early adopters. It is all about faster and cheaper failing and involving the customer into the product design cycle.

Design Thinking & Human Centered Design

Designing for the People and by the People is an idea close to Lean. The Design Thinking process first formulated by Tom Kelly from Ideo has the Iteration flow in common with Lean Methodologies, but there is a particularity in the approach that is not part of Lean but clearly complements it. Behind the “Designing for One Person” idea is the assumption that to achieve a deep understanding of the customer you need to think about a particular person. Trying to design for everyone will end up in designing for no-one.

Digital Teams, in charge of Corporate Innovation, will bridge Lean Cycles to Human Centered Design applying Design Thinking tools as Empathy Maps, Personas, Storyboarding and others for designing the value proposition of the new digital services.

Building on Platforms

Digital is about Openness: Most of the emerging digital services capturing customer attention are built on Platforms. As a recent example, the Taxi Sharing Uber, paradigm of the Collaborative Economy, builds on Bing Maps, Mapbox, BrainTree Payment Solutions and Twilio VOIP APIs [Source: O´Really [1]).

Had you figured out that the Taxi Industry or Productivity Application makers would partner with Media during 2014? We’ll explore How Uber and Spotify and Evernote and The Wall Street Journal plan to partner during 2015. APIs support the new partnerships we see every day

Monday Oct 14, 2013

Stop Thinking of your eShop as the Online Equivalent of a Physical Store and Convert your Store into a Digital Boutique

With the occasion of an Oracle WebCenter event around The Connected Customer last week in Madrid, I have had the chance to listen and to discuss with different companies including big retailers from supermarkets to luxury brands. During the day, several questions and concerns came to my attention, so here you have some thoughts inspired by the meeting and by my own recent readings on the subject and in particular by Brian Solis´s book The End of Business as Usual.

How can I demonstrate how much my e-Shop is influencing sales? How can I demonstrate the ROI of my online investments and my social media marketing?

Connecting Experiences is a great message but often, online purchases are still too small to justify the required investment for a successful strategy including eCommerce sites; mobile apps; marketing sites; online communities creation; and additional online engagement projects. As an example, the consumers of luxury products are attracted by Web Experiences around those products demanding very compelling Web Sites with rich video and with advanced interactivity, but they prefer to try and buy those products in the physical shops making it difficult to demonstrate the true ROI of eCommerce initiatives. Here are some tips to justify and to maximize the investment.

Likeness is a predictor of future purchases

The agency Vision Critical has published recently a study From linking to buying devoted social media marketing. A key finding on it is that “the research showed 4 in 10 social media users have indeed gone out and purchased an item in-store or online after sharing and favouring it on Twitter Facebook or Pinterest.

Ask any consumer what it is they expect from a brand or retailer online”, says Brian Solis, “…and they’ll tell you that in addition to discounts, promotions, special offers and exclusive information, they want the ability to buy within their network. Sharing in purchase experiences, interacting with products through connected apps, and influencing decisions through social and mobile networks is quickly becoming the next big thing”. A single advice is then to track the number of likes that a potential customers does on a product whether those likes are done on your brand Web Sites or in your social media campaigns.

New experiences around your product will make your customer identify himself

Brian Solis also continues “ idea that had applied mostly to commodities and luxury items applies to everyone. That idea? The experience you build around your product is often more important than the physical product itself “. One of the strategies you can apply is Gamification as you can read in this article on How 9 Retailers Successfully Leveraged Game Mechanics. Gamification will not only make your site more engaging but the same time –and similarly to the creation of communities around your product - gamification will help you make your user identify himself and will facilitate the study of his behaviours for ROI demonstration. I am mentioning this technique just as an example of the different customer engagement online methods having in common the “Sharing” component.

Be creative with the use of Coupons, coupons are a very straightforward mechanism to prove the link between the online and the offline including the mobile. Showing the coupon at the point of sale will help you to make a bridge between mobile, web, and physical. Do not reduce its use to offer discounts. Coupons can be used to provide any extra service and can be beneficial for any kind of brand: you can use to invite your customer to a fashion show; or to offer to your loyal customer a dinner with his favourite celebrity. Everything is possible!

Use Social Login in your web site and reward your customer if he/she accepts to provide his social credentials and/or to share content and activities with his/her social graph. Additionally, design a strategy to link your visitor’s social identity with the identity he uses to interact with your brand. That will help you track what he likes; predict what he will purchase; and prove the influence of his eyeballs on his final purchases.

Anticipate your Customer needs using a Transitional Marketing Approach

The new model of Transitional Marketing as described by Brian Solis depends on accessibility and anticipation. “Accessibility is the foundational concern addressed by mobile sites, tablet apps, optimized campaign microsites, etc., but the key to successful transitional marketing is anticipation. Anticipating that a consumer is on her tablet device when your commercial airs. Anticipating that the needs of consumers before 8:00am and after 5:00pm are more time sensitive and experiential in nature. Anticipating that entries in a consumer’s calendar could benefit from an additive offer. Accessibility requires an understanding of connectivity and content. Anticipation requires an understanding of character and context. “

Anticipation today means Big Data

As described in this article by The Guardian Big data marketing dream or dilemma:  “ Big Data in this context is the mass of transactional and behavioural data that each of us creates as we use the internet, travel with location-aware mobile devices, make purchases with payment cards and loyalty cards online, and communicate our activities, goals and preferences through social media” and “…according to a recent survey carried out by German market research institute GfK 86% of marketers consider that big data will change the function of marketing, and a further 62% say that it has already fundamentally changed”.  Also realize that you need to get more data to understand your customer mood and context using different devices as Nielsen states on their Australian Connected Consumer Report -2013.

Accessibility today means Responsive Design

As Nielsen has shown, 29% of mobile consumers use their phone for shopping-related activities and more than 50% visit deal sites on a daily basis. Responsive Design and mobile web technologies are the most efficient to reduce mobile development costs in many business cases providing an experience that is developed once and adapts to the user device and browser size. Sometimes mobile native apps are also required, but Responsive Sites should always be part of the experience to respond to the multichannel journey of your always connected customer.

Connect your Shop with your Online Presence

Finally, be consistent and connect your physical shops with your eShop and marketing sites and let your customers interact with their peers and with you also when he/she is at your shop to make him/her enjoy the experience. I leave you with the link to the video to Burberry´s Shop we used to illustrate some of those concepts during the WebCenter Connected Customer Event.  Enjoy the Experience!!

Showrooming at Shop.

Recommended Links:

Here is what makes social customers go from liking to buying on social networks

¿Es el marketing en tiempo real una plaga que destruye la relacion entre marca y consumidor?

The End of Business as Usual

Transitional marketing and the connected Interface

Meet Generation C the connected customer

How 9 Retailers Successfully Leveraged Game Mechanics

Gamification finds new retail fans

Big data marketing dream or dilemma

Big data is a Big Opportunity for Retail

Understanding the role of tablet devices Nielsen connected consumer report device usage

Australian Connected Consumers Fyer March 2013

Wednesday Jun 12, 2013

The App-Patient and the New Healthcare Processes

With the emergence of mobile Internet access, self-care has been revolutionized with a massive number of mobile-health apps becoming quickly popular. The other side of this revolution is its impact on medical care process. Now the trigger of a medical act is not the result of a limited number of doctor-patient encounters, but any event that may be transmitted by a mobile device and requires a medical action.[Read More]

Monday Feb 18, 2013

Notes from a debate on mobility

Can you foresee a time when you won't need a browser to do the things you do online? This is the smart question that starts with the article of Scott M. Fulton about The Web vs. the Cloud.

In a recent debate sponsored by Oracle in Madrid, Pepe Cerezo - digital business strategy expert- highlighted that Internet has now become an Internet of Services, what is called the Business of Data: the combination of M2M technologies with mobile will provide new services that we can´t predict now, and we may see soon firms as Nike selling shirts with sensors that will help us to monitor our sport activity based on data analysis.

The actual explosion of mobile technologies and the widespread of mobile connectivity is enabling companies to leapfrog some stages and launch digital mobile business without passing through the Web. One of the reasons of the mobile revolution is that mobile is sticky: with an increasing number of internauts permanently connected, in the media sector it has found that the average duration of the visit from the mobile readers is longer than the browser readers.

But what technology companies are embracing to keep with the momentum? The apps vs web is as a false dichotomy, the decision on whether to offer an app to download, or to serve services through a mobile browser, largely depends on the desired functionality, and on the particular state of the customer life cycle.

It is not a black and white question, a native app is sometimes better than a native app, but mobile web technology is winning the race for both apps and Web experience –as it was pointed by Enrique Martín –Middleware Presales Manager of Oracle Iberia- Gartner predicts that by 2015 80% of all mobile applications developed will be hybrid or mobile web oriented.

Friday Sep 21, 2012

Gamify your Web

The marketing expectations around Gamification techniques have a lot to do with Neuromarketing theories. There are a lot of expectations on internal enterprise Gamification. In the public Web some sectors are taking the lead on following the trend.[Read More]

Wednesday Sep 12, 2012

BigData and Customer Experience: Happy Together

The two big buzzes of the year may lay closer than it appears. Both concepts intersect at various points[Read More]

Tuesday Jul 24, 2012

Maturity Models and Frameworks for Customer Experience

The idea of moving from a chaotic level to an optimized self-learning stage inspired by the CMM/SEI model for software development assessment and process improvement is behind many maturity models for business and the new discipline of Customer Experience Management is not an exception.[Read More]

Wednesday Jul 04, 2012

Simple tips to design a Customer Journey

The first step in a Customer Experience project is to describe customer interactions creating a customer journey map.[Read More]

Thursday Jun 28, 2012

It is CX a new concept?

The Marketing Industry and the Web Industry are talking about CX since some time. However it is only very recently that the concept has reached some common meaning accepted by the analysts’ and the IT community[Read More]

Wednesday Jun 27, 2012

About This Blog

A new paradigm has emerged to analyze user expectations and to deliver business value to the customer: it is called Customer Experience (CX). This blog is about the why and the how of the new CX magic.


The views expressed on this blog are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Oracle


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