There is not an organization today that does not require the use of a multitude of technology products in their daily businesses. And for today’s businesses, there are a plethora of products and solutions available, competing for attention and budget dollars. Educated purchasing is essential to be sure that your technological resources best fit your needs and integrate with one another in an efficient and cost effective way.
From hardware to software, websites, mobile applications, email, VoIP, texting and social media, companies are growing increasingly reliant on technology as a resource that helps support their business needs. Determining the technology products that you need is often as perplexing as deciding with whom to partner to provide technology services.
How do you best navigate through all of these options and the information overload that’s presented to you?
1. Differentiate Products From Solutions.
A “technology product” is something that you purchase “off the shelf” to fit into your workflow. A “technology solution” is something you customize to connect to your workflow. To clarify, Quick Books would be a “product.” An interactive text and mobile messaging solution that engages prospects, drives them to a lead data capture form that is hosted on your website, and responds to their requests in the moment — while fitting into your workflow — is a “technology solution.”
2. Forget the Field of Dreams.
After determining your business needs, you need to develop a marketing strategy to promote the technology to ensure optimal utilization. Let’s face it, the best resources and solutions are meaningless if no one knows they exist. In order to develop this marketing strategy, you need to think beyond the product or solution and understand how it is going to seamlessly integrate with your internal workflow and how it will be accessed by and benefit the user — orienting the target audience for easy implementation and use.
3. Everyone is Not the Same.
Understanding human to technical behavior is a key part to this strategy. In my organization we have a trademark terminology, BehavioralRx™. BehavioralRx is a methodology that uses proven psychological techniques and leverages people’s innate behavioral and emotional attributes (such as trust, credibility, reciprocity) to motivate in-the-moment actions, integrating with a person’s daily life at home, work, and play. Considering this is pivotal to ensure maximum adaptation.
The keys? Don’t run out and purchase or contract for the latest shiny technology without thinking through current resources, needs and best practices for integration, monitoring and process improvement first. Then couple that with a consideration of the ability to implement products and solutions (easily!) within or in compliment to current workflow, as well as a thorough plan for socialization to new resources. That’s smart shopping!