Tech Bytes & Insights

Betting Big: Four Keys to Unlocking Growth During Restructuring

Posted by Kyle Heller on Thu, Sep 22, 2016

This post is the third in a
 seven-part series examining top trends that are reshaping the high-tech industry.

The tech industry, much like technology itself, is based on an equilibrium of constant change and innovation. While each year feels familiar, new technologies, competitors and evolving customer engagement requirements create an ever-changing set of challenges and opportunities for tech companies seeking sustainable and profitable sales growth. In response, tech companies continue to search for new routes to market and sources of growth through both organic and inorganic means. This has created a subtle but powerful restructuring of the tech industry over the last several years as companies bet on new sales strategies and modes of growth.   

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Topics: Kyle Heller, technology, ZS Associates, Growth, ZS, High Tech, m&a, restructuring, seismic shifts

Technology Innovation: Microsoft’s High-Tech Reinvention

Posted by Alex Southworth on Wed, Sep 14, 2016

Samuel Yeung co-wrote this blog post with Alex Southworth.

This post is the second in a seven-part series examining top trends that are reshaping the high-tech industry.

In the information age’s infancy, two Stanford graduate students created a simple directory to help users navigate the Wild West of the internet. They called it “Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web.” Within a decade, the duo’s pet project would become valued at more than $100 billion and would rebrand itself as Yahoo. Yahoo’s search engine, e-mail service and newsfeed covered almost all of the major services needed by the millions of new PC owners, and as a result, it was one of the hottest companies on the NASDAQ. Yet the next decade would see this icon of the industry be surpassed by younger startups, and in July 2016, it was bought out for just $4.8 billion.

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Topics: ZS Associates, ZS, High Tech, Alex Southworth, Samuel Yeung, technology innovation, trends, seismic shifts, Microsoft

Seismic Shifts: Five Trends Reshaping the Technology Industry

Posted by John DeSarbo on Wed, Sep 07, 2016

Noreen Nagji co-wrote this blog post with John DeSarbo.

This post is the first in a seven-part series examining top trends that are reshaping the high-tech industry.

Over the past two decades, technological innovations have forever changed how we create, share and consume information. We’ve transitioned from listening to cassettes and vinyl records at home to streaming music online everywhere. Gone are the days when students flipped through encyclopedias while writing research reports. Instead, kids today start every school project by first Googling their topics and reading Wikipedia. Parents no longer carefully pick and choose when to photograph family gatherings with analog film cameras. Preserving memories is as easy as pointing our smartphones and recording high-resolution videos that are instantly shared on social media. All of this has happened in a remarkably short period of time.

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Topics: John DeSarbo, ZS Associates, ZS, High Tech, seismic shifts, Noreen Nagji

Five Ways Tech Companies Go Wrong in Cross-Selling

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Wed, Aug 24, 2016

For most, March Madness is a distant memory. However, as an avid college basketball fan, I’m already looking forward to next season. Of course, that also could be influenced by my wanting another shot at bracket predictions after enduring total disappointment with my predictions this year. Maybe I’ll fare better during fantasy football this fall. 

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Topics: Ashish Vazirani, ZS Associates, ZS, march madness, High Tech, cross-selling

For Tech Companies, Analytics Success Comes Down to Time, Talent and Treasure

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Thu, Jul 14, 2016

You’d think that high-tech companies would be further along in their use of sales and marketing analytics than companies in other industries. After all, high-tech companies live and breathe technology and have an institutional understanding of data, but while they might be a bit further ahead than some industries, it’s not by much.

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Topics: Ashish Vazirani, ZS Associates, ZS, Analytics, High Tech

Four Reasons Why Your Analytics Efforts Aren't Making an Impact

Posted by Ekaterina Mamyshev on Fri, May 27, 2016

“I see dumb people, walking around like regular people. They don’t even know that they’re dumb, and they all work here.”

Have you ever felt this exasperation in the office? If so, you are not alone. As a ZS consultant often working to give research and analytics a seat at the table, I’ve heard this grievance from my clients many times—particularly from research and analytics leaders, some with Ph.Ds, who say that their insights are not being acted on. In the quote above, one of my clients, in particular, has taken a few liberties with a quote from the movie The Sixth Sense to capture his vexation.

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Topics: ZS Associates, ZS, Analytics, insights, Ekaterina Mamyshev

Is Your Business Ready for the AI Apocalypse?

Posted by Samuel Yeung on Mon, May 02, 2016

You’ve read it in the news. You’ve seen it on TV. Every other week, artificial intelligence (AI) triumphs over feeble human intellect. The latest and most publicized victim is Lee Sedol, the former world champion of the ancient Chinese board game Go, who was trounced in a best-of-three competition by Google’s AlphaGo AI. With a magnitude of more abstract variations and subtleties than chess, Go was supposed to be beyond the grasp of machines for the foreseeable future, which reassured us that we could all rest easy at night, safe in the knowledge that our robot overlords are still quite a ways from gaining sentience and plugging us into the Matrix. This calls for a more serious look at a future in which the little computer in our pockets not only has surpassed us at every board game ever invented, but also could potentially do most of our work for us.

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Topics: ZS Associates, ZS, artificial intelligence, computing, machines, Samuel Yeung, AI, apps

Why Customer Experience Matters to Your Bottom Line (Part Two)

Posted by Leon Wei on Fri, Apr 29, 2016

Customer expectations continue to rise, and the power that a single customer’s experience can have on others makes it more important than ever to understand the value of improving customer experience. In a previous post, we talked about how frustrating a poor customer experience can be and how we can measure the value of a good or bad customer experience. In this post, we’ll dive a bit deeper into how and why it’s worth your while to develop actionable Net Promoter Score (NPS) insights.

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Topics: Leon Wei, customer loyalty, customer experience, customer insights, ZS Associates, ZS, NPS, Measurement, CX, NPS financial impact study

Striking Gold Like a 49er: Five Steps for Realizing Your Potential

Posted by Kyle Heller on Wed, Apr 20, 2016

In 1849, hundreds of thousands of people saw an opportunity to strike it rich and rushed to California in search of gold. While these 49ers, as they were called, had the right idea, the methods that they used to find and capture their riches were crude—at least by today’s standards. I can almost hear the banjo playing in the background as I picture it: a bearded man in a wide-brimmed hat, kneeling over a stream, panning for gold for hours, working incredibly hard but not smart—and thus typically for little return.

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Topics: Kyle Heller, ZS Associates, ZS, High Tech, sales team, gold rush, san francisco 49ers

Lead the Charge in the Social Sales Revolution

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Mon, Apr 18, 2016

This is the final post in a series based on a ZS social selling survey of 125 sales leaders.

For those of you who have teenage kids, you may relate when I tell you that it drives me a bit nuts to hear them qualify their responses with “kind of” and “sort of.” When I ask them what they mean, I get a blank stare, and I then have to point out that “kind of” or “sort of” is neither here nor there—it’s noncommittal.

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Topics: Ashish Vazirani, social selling, Social Listening, social branding, selling journey, social organization, six building blocks, social collaboration, social KPIs

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