Cloud computing and education
The adoption of cloud computing continues to surge. While its relevancy is no longer in question, the need now is for an understanding of its characteristics and benefits. Companies have started to assume the educator role in the category, clarifying the differences among the spectrum of offerings on the market and what are public, private and a hybrid cloud. While growing the category means growing a piece of it, unless tech brands are able to bring clarity to their complex offerings, it will be hard for them to capitalize on their investments.
In mobility, a single brand can’t arguably deliver a complete end-to-end experience. That’s why we’re likely to see increased brand partnerships in the category. Together, brands will play together to deliver against an ever-increasing set of consumer expectations. While a partnership approach is more likely to yield success for both parties, it also is true that consumers may have difficult discerning which brand delivers what portion of the experience. As a result, if a product fails to meet expectations, the brand with the greatest equity and loyalty base is likely to carry most — if not all — the risks.
Balance and authenticity
Technology brands have been going through a transformation in their struggle to differentiate. Many are attempting to tap into the emotional space, claiming that they are responsible for life changing experiences. Results so far have been mixed. In some cases, the pendulum may have swung too far. The key to long-term success will be to examine the relationship between functional and emotional attributes and communicate this with balance and authenticity.
Mergers & Acquisitions
Growth in the category continues to be spurred by mergers and acquisitions. More than ever, the emphasis is on aligning internal cultures and clarifying what the brand stands internally. A survey Interbrand conducted in 2010 across a variety of sectors showed that while 82 percent of companies regularly measure internal brand engagement, 21 percent of them actually link it to customer satisfaction. In the technology sector, internal activation is key to loyalty growth.