How not to sign up for an incomplete digital technology – a 5 point checklist for enterprise marketers

When I was young, I enjoyed riding my bicycle for hours. When I grew-up, I observed a mechanic repair my bicycle one day. Thereafter, everyday I would spend some time fixing things on¬†the bike myself. Well many times, the repairs were not needed ūüôā As I grew up a little more, I found that I enjoyed fixing the bike more than I did riding it. Let me blame the additional knowledge and curiosity I had developed¬†subconsciously in the technical aspects of the bike for that.

Sometimes, technologies in digital are not fully fit or technically complete to be part of the enterprise digital stream. While businesses expect real performance and results to flow-in (like yesterday) there are a whole bunch of folks extremely busy with something digital.

But what is this something? What do the incomplete technologies do subconsciously to the folks in digital? Yes, they make all of us super-busy.

By the very nature of their exotic-ness, they capture our imagination and then our curiosity. We start growing an interest and then the knowledge in their incompleteness. Some people even call it their babies. Incomplete digital technologies demand that we know them inside out. To a passionate human mind, a challenge is a challenge. He/ she works on it with utmost honesty and hard work. We might even pick up the battle of making it work for us. It’s just someone’s incomplete job.

We advocate a pseudo growth in trying to¬†get this stuff work for us. And the day comes when someone totally external to the whole digital system realizes that it’s all¬†happening at the cost of real business. And the pyramid collapses.

The more I deal with¬†digital for enterprises, the more I feel that having to know less about technology is much better for these businesses ‚Äď which starts with selecting matured digital technologies that have shown performance and do not need fixing. They are positioned as business tools and are not over demanding just by being ‚Äėdigital‚Äô.

Digital is a wave and everyone wants to be riding it. Once you hop onboard, there is no looking back. Otherwise the wave takes you deep inside itself. It is so commonplace that business folks are pulling their sleeves up and putting their engineering heads together to solve a problem brought on by an incomplete digital technology. We are all very passionate about getting stuff work for us and show results.

digital.jpgHere’s a typical manager-subordinate¬†conversation.

Question: Where is our premium bandwidth going?
Answer: ‚ÄúOh, we are all busy enabling ourselves for digital.‚ÄĚ
Another Question: ‚ÄúSo, How far are we from seeing some results?‚ÄĚ

Consider a situation: You¬†are super-hungry. You¬†go to a restaurant. You¬†are served a plate¬†of perfectly cooked steak and mashed potatoes ‚Äď is that too much to expect? You¬†generally get it across restaurants. You¬†would neither settle for anything undercooked nor try to make whatever’s served¬†work for you.

We need to ask some brutal questions before buying a technology in digital.

  1. What business use cases can be executed with this digital technology? (or) How will you bring incremental business or cost savings?
  2. Can I see some reference executions in terms of business performance on the metrics you just claimed?
  3. We must go live and see results with this technology within 15 days tops, are you ready? After all its digital not IT, 3-part business 1-part technology.
  4. Is it a complete and matured product in the scheme of digital use cases that my business would benefit from or would you want me to keep shopping boxes and integrations along its lifecycle?
  5. Tell me how you are better than your competition? Give me a specific use case that differentiates you?

It’s time we¬†focussed on real goals and challenges at hand instead of¬†buying digital products/services and then try to¬†make them work for us.

Our new motto should probably be ‘Long live digital’ only until you bring me business.


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