The dreaded buzzword.
We’ve all heard them. We all hate them. We’ve all used them one too many times.
Despite the fact that they quickly turn into cliches, buzzwords provide valuable insight into industry trends. Many people forego the insight aspect of buzzwords and sprinkle them throughout their conversations or website content to make themselves sound intelligent. Real intelligence comes from a healthy understanding of the key concepts behind the words. That’s all buzzwords are – the key concepts of the moment.
A buzzword in 2012, Crowdfunding will continue to buzz around for 2013. Crowdfunding evens the investment playing field. Now, investing in startups isn’t just for the wealthy. With websites like Kickstarter, individuals can help bring to life the businesses and products that they are passionate about. Often, investments can be as little as $10. Crowdfunding also adds a social media component, as the concept encourages people to promote the businesses they support via social channels.
Video has been around for a long time. Everyone has watched viral videos of adorable cats and dogs. In 2013, small business and even large corporations will be taking control of the viral video and using it to increase customer engagement. Not only will these videos be made by the businesses, customers will also create and share their own videos. These consumer created videos can include product or service testimonials, as well as innovative instructional videos.
You may or may not have encountered this phrase in 2012, but you will definitely hear it in 2013. Cloud computing, frequently referred to as “the cloud,” is the next big thing – even though it’s been around for quite some time. Cloud computing means that you can access your applications online rather than downloading them onto your desktop. To put it in simpler terms, you access Facebook online. You don’t download special software onto your desktop to use the application. With cloud computing, you can access important business software from any location, using any device. Because the software is managed by the provider, you never need to install updates. Everything is rolled out to all users simultaneously. You won’t have to worry about team members having different versions of the same software. Cloud computing makes your essential business software more accessible and easier to use.
The concept of social business is gaining traction thanks to the social media revolution. It focuses on knowledge sharing and expands beyond the realm of marketing. Social business focuses on engagement over communication. It’s the cultivation of brand loyalty over direct sales pitches. A social business integrates the data received from social listening with its current business strategies. There is also a shift from management to leadership. Employees are encouraged to collaborate and there is less focus on staff hierarchy. A social business listens and evolves on every level.
Buzzwords have practical applications.
Simply throwing around buzzwords won’t propel your business forward. You need to understand the meaning behind the words and the impact they have on your industry. Take the time to see how or if these concepts apply to your small business. If they do, try incorporating them into your strategy for the coming year. If you think the concepts are a bit out of your realm of expertise, that’s okay. We can help.