How do you prepare for another Industrial Revolution? Or the AI revolution? If you believe it is happening or around the corner, you are likely taking Digital Transformation seriously. And, like any significant change, you are probably trying to figure out where to begin.
The first step is understanding the future state (as far as you can predict in your line of business) and then mapping it to your current state (as objectively as possible). This will give you a picture – but you’ll need to determine priorities, estimate LOE (Level of Effort), and determine what is working, not working completely, or just missing. After this lengthy exercise, you’ll then be faced with a common challenge when it comes to technology, Overchoice.
Overchoice (or Choice Overload) is the result of being faced with too many options. Some respond well, can weed through the noise, and find what they seek without hesitation. But, at the same time, others experience a kind of emotional paralysis that often leads to fear of making any decision. How do you possibly wade through thousands of options on seemingly similar options?
Don’t believe there are too many choices?
In 2011, Chief Martec released their list of Marketing technology landscape comprising 150 Marketing technology companies. Seven years later, by 2018, that list grew to over 7,000 options. And by May 2022, nearly 9,500 technologies filled the space (see below). And this is only a list of Marketing Technologies – which roughly comprise of 25% of total technology options2. So, once you know what you want to do, it’s virtually impossible to wade through these options to determine the right one. Looking for a DAM or Content Management system? Great, there are 680 of them. This list only grows as you add more lines of businesses, too. Looking at the totality of an Organization, the average enterprise uses over 1,200 Cloud Services, and the average knowledge worker interacts with over 35 Cloud Services a day1.
How do you limit these choices to make the right one?
Don’t go the RFP/RFI, don’t print out the above chart, and grab some darts. Those options will circle you further down into overchoice as you’ll be presented with features and nice-to-haves that aren’t part of your initial requirements but are nice and shiny. This will lead to losing focus on the original goals and a solution that will be sold and not necessarily bought.
Instead, if you can’t afford to hire a research firm or consulting group, do your own research and pick 3. Make sure that those three vendors know your prioritized requirements and know you. As Arianna Huffington mentioned – this is your time to decide what you value.
Once you select the three vendors, invite them to present against both (requirements and culture) and move on. Don’t look back. You may have to reroute at some point, and that is ok; the learnings from vendor selection and implementation are invaluable. You can learn far greater from acting on a decision than avoiding trying to make one.
References and Resources
12023 Cloud Migration Trends: Data Takes Flight by Big ID; Type: Article
2The average enterprise uses 1,295 cloud services by Chief Martec; Type: Article
2023 Martech Supergraphic by Chief Martec; Type: Diagram
An excellent article on Overchoice
Forbes on The 4th Industrial Revolution
More from Martech on their Supergraphic
Why do we have a harder time choosing when we have more options? by The Decision Lab; Type: Article
The Hidden Brain. 05/04/2020. The Choices Before Us; Type: Podcast
Why do we focus on one characteristic to compare when choosing between alternatives? by The Decision Lab; Type: Article
Originally Published January 7, 2019