What if you were a small boutique hotel in a popular tourist destination, and a company contacted you offering to provide you with contact details of people who were talking about visiting the destination soon? And for a small additional fee, to mail them some interesting promotional material about your property?
This is just one of the many examples of what I started calling Contextual Insights, that IT is able to provide, which is set to change its role from being a cost efficiency enabler to becoming a key growth driver according to the recently released Accenture Technology Vision 2012 document.
The document comprises six well presented trends:
• Context-based services
• Converging data architectures
• Industrialized data services
• Social-driven IT
• PaaS-enabled agility
• Orchestrated analytical security
As a data and pattern-matching junkie, I was thrilled to see the #1 slot given to Context-based Services, which is all about creating highly retrievable stores of information about individual customers, and then using them along with the increasingly available real-world context information available about them – location, QR-Codes, preferences, et al, to provide input to them. Active inputs as opposed to passive recommendations, so to say.
Here’s what the document has to say about the ongoing impact of social platforms:
But social isn’t finished with changing the ways we communicate. One of the most prominent examples: Facebook recently launched the newest version of Open Graph—the framework that enables content developers to build apps that allow users to share whatever they are doing without overwhelming their friends. As founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg explained at the company’s F8 developers’ conference, Facebook felt constrained by the Like button because it is perceived as an implicit endorsement of content.
IMHO, items 2,3 & 5 are the necessary elements that have to come into play to deal with 1 & 4, and the last is going to be imperative to deal with the necessary by-product of the changes outlined here – the enormous implications on privacy and security.
At 50-pages, the Accenture Technology Vision 2012 is not a casual read, but you cannot afford not to read at least sections 1,4 & 6. Unless you’re Bill, or Larry, or Steve, or Mark, or… in which case you may prefer the Summary Report.