Cloud Computing And Social Media Seen As Major Opportunities By Telecommunication, Technology And Media Companies

December 10, 2009. Many technology companies still worry about competitiveness, pricing, margins but have a positive outlook and expect the need for Market Intelligence* to increase over 2010/2011. Cloud computing and social media will be the new buzzwords within the Market Intelligence space.

Conducted by M-Brain (formerly Global Intelligence Alliance), the 2009 Global Market Intelligence survey consolidated the responses of 124 senior Market Intelligence executives at some of the world’s largest global or regional Technology, Media & Telecommunications organizations, and provided some interesting insights. (The total number of responses globally reached 724.)

Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies are savvy users of market intelligence systems
Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies show a high level of market intelligence sophistication compared to other industry verticals. The function is typically well integrated and enables efficient and timely decision making by executives. The economic downturn elevated the role of market intelligence as technology executives look for accurate and fast information in times of uncertainty and limited resources.

Existence of systematic market intelligence operations

Chart 4_1

N=724 Market Intelligence executives

Source: M-Brain (formerly Global Intelligence Alliance), Global Market Intelligence survey 2009

Three quarters of respondents state that they have systematic market intelligence operations in place. This is the highest percentage across all industry verticals, with chemicals (74%) and pharmaceuticals & healthcare (71%) following behind, and significantly higher than the cross-industry share of 63%.

Integration of the market intelligence function among Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies is further supported by the fact that only 4% of respondents report market intelligence is not utilized at all in key decisions. Furthermore, over 80% believe that decision-making happens in an efficient manner in their companies. The fast paced environment of the IT and media world means companies have to be on the ball and be able to access accurate, timely information to aid decision-making. Thus Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies are often the first to spearhead sophisticated market intelligence solutions.

Market intelligence staff size is usually up to five people for organizations with less than 5,000 employees, and gradually increases up to 50+ staff for really large firms with more than 10,000 employees.

The market intelligence function has become more business critical in the downturn
Many companies have leveraged their market intelligence function to provide more clarity during uncertain periods. Big decisions on future direction or investments have been scrutinized a lot more during 2009, and hence the demand by management teams to have high impact market intelligence at their fingertips has grown.

Approximately half of the respondents state that the importance of the market intelligence function inside their organizations has increased significantly during the downturn.

At the same time, about half of organizations indicate that they will increase future market intelligence investments over the next two years. While this number is not as high as for other industries such as Pharmaceuticals and Healthcare or Logistics and Transportation, it is worth highlighting that the level of market intelligence sophistication is already very high within Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies.

Annual Market Intelligence budgets range from below EUR 100,000 (for smaller firms with revenue of less than EUR 100 million) to EUR 1million or more (for large companies with revenue of more than EUR 10 billion).

Cloud computing and social media seen as big opportunities for Market Intelligence
Intelligence professionals at Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies have a good understanding of where the future trends in market intelligence lie.

Next to common topics such as convergence, outsourcing, efficiency improvements or innovation, there are quite a few new buzzwords in the industry.

Cloud computing and the potential impact on business, IT infrastructure as well as market intelligence systems is among them. Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies are also very interested in how to best leverage social media for marketing purposes as well as how to assess online consumer behavior faster and more accurately.

Another big topic is how to identify and capitalize on individual pockets of growth, which are much harder to find now as compared to the heydays of the IT boom in the late 90s.

Emerging markets are typically seen as the best places to divert more resources as there is higher growth potential, supported by the fact that the market intelligence sector is often not very well developed in emerging regions.

Impact of the economic downturn is not fully digested yet
Many Technology, Media & Telecommunications companies still feel there are plenty of threats concerning their industry as well as market intelligence setup and infrastructure.

Many still feel the impact on business with many customer orders/decisions being delayed or cancelled, and companies still being careful about upgrading their IT infrastructure, resulting in lengthier sales and replacement cycles.

Tenders are more hotly contested and deal budgets are often smaller, putting additional pressure on margins.

Nevertheless, the general outlook remains positive. More than two thirds of respondents highlight there will be an increasing need for market intelligence when the economy picks up again.

* Market Intelligence or MI is the discipline where organizations systematically gather, process and analyze information from their operating environment to facilitate decision-making

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