Business writers and columnist from publications such as Forbes concur that most of the trends impacting the business world have been technology driven and that 2018 won’t be any different. Technological innovation drives business success in 2018.
Likely spurred by the rise in the price of Bitcoin – the first example of a blockchain technology – excitement has grown exponentially around this digitized, decentralized, public ledger of cryptocurrency transactions.
The prediction is that blockchain will be embraced by big players in 2018. Large consulting firms like Accenture and Deloitte are building out entire blockchain practice areas, while IBM has recently forged a blockchain Nestlé, Walmart, Costco and others.
Among the business trends for 2018 are automation and AI. In the IT field, it is expected that AI will be increasingly used to perform repetitive tasks and process large amounts of data where human interaction is not needed.
AI has already become the norm for many practical consumer experiences, but we will be seeing a more highly-customized content delivery, automated to a consumer’s specific persona and lifestyle.
The Internet of Things (IoT)
An IHS survey estimates there are over 25m connected “things” or devices worldwide, so loT is already around us and apparently replicating.
IoT is expected to gather momentum as businesses look for innovative ways to offer connected devices that are useful to the consumer, but also allow the business to gather data. It is predicted that the use of “things” will grow to 125bn by 2030.
Much attention has been given to the use of drones for delivery services. In the UK, the Civil Aviation Authority allowed Amazon to test its Prime Air delivery service in 2016, which saw a customer’s order delivered in 13 minutes from click to door.
With e-commerce booming and expected to continue this trajectory, drone delivery option may go mainstream, and set new customer delivery expectations.
Marketers used to promote the features and benefits of offerings. But increasingly, top performing companies focus on the problems they solve, and the anticipated results they deliver.
Companies like E Group and Catapult New Business have seen impressive growth by focusing on the challenges they help their clients overcome instead of on the products and services they offer. Expect to see companies shift their marketing messages to the problems they solve instead of their features.