As the reach of the Internet of Things (IoT) expands, gaining applications in many new domains—such as healthcare, retail, manufacturing, and banking—businesses worldwide are becoming concerned about their digital future and looking for ways to incorporate IoT-based solutions and deliver more efficient operations.
Already, 94% of the businesses who have invested in IoT have registered a positive return on their investment. In the future, the number of IoT devices is expected to reach the 50-billion mark. Enterprises project that their investment in IoT will garner profits of $19 trillion (USD).
The Future of Customer-Focused IoT Businesses
With so much investment pouring into the IoT landscape, many entrepreneurs wonder what this might mean for the future of their business.
No doubt, IoT can serve as a catalyst for the digital transformation of current generation businesses. More specifically, IoT can help enterprises to develop new business and revenue models that focus on the needs of customers.
IoT devices facilitate the capture of real-time user data and send that data to businesses. With so much data at hand, businesses can create new products and alter their existing product offerings to improve service and user experience. The transformation of digital offerings through IoT-based solutions can foster business excellence.
“There are no role models for digital transformation. In order to prepare for a connected future, companies have to simultaneously reinvent themselves while staying true to their DNA and collective experience.”—Stefan Ferber, CEO, Bosch Software Innovations
Transforming Organizational Culture
Today, digital transformations are impacting the structure of almost every business organization. The delivery of IoT solutions is playing a key role in making many organizations ready for our digitally connected world.
IoT can have huge implications for the workforce and influence the totality of business operations, changing processes and the way businesses function. As consumers grow more and more aware of the importance of being digitally connected, investment in IoT is becoming integral to organizations’ ability to
keep pace with competitors
equip their workforces with the digital tools they need
optimize their product offerings by analyzing the user data IoT devices have collected
IoT can empower organizations to react to customers’ desires in real time. Instead of launching products once, then waiting for customers’ approval, organizations can continually reinvent their product offerings to make them more relevant to customers. Thus, companies can create better product offerings and enhance customer delight. By tracking product usage and gathering customer feedback, companies can make their products more valuable to customers and more lucrative for the business.
IoT-driven businesses can become nurturing ecosystems that handle both customer service and user interactions, delivering better customer relationships and greater profitability.
How IoT Is Reshaping Industry Models
IoT is assisting organizations in building intelligent, connected technology products that deliver new functionalities, improved reliability, and superior product usage and enlarge industrial capacity. These IoT products are reshaping the foundations of various industries and business models, offering opportunities to capture new value.
With the assistance of smarter, connected IoT products, new industry models are swiftly evolving, as businesses face unprecedented competition from rivals. For example, Tesla, Uber, and Ola are technology enterprises rather than taxi or travel industries or vehicle manufacturers. Amazon, Google, and DHL are testing automated drones to transform the entire logistics industry at many levels.
Industry restrictions are quickly being redefined, and some are being phased out. Consider John Deere, which is teaming up with AGCO to create advanced agriculture, farming, and irrigation equipment. To streamline their agriculture business performance, they are discovering better soil and nutrient sources; capturing essential information about the weather and different categories of agricultural crops; and costing yields and commodity futures.
These advanced IoT products are supplanting diverse ecosystems and contending in various marketplaces with new industry models.
Enabling an IoT-based Digital Transformation for Your Business
Adopting IoT is not just about the technology, but about your business’s people and products. It involves the development of specific use cases and applications that can pave way for a complete digital transformation of your business. You can identify and implement these use cases by charting a well thought-out strategy for the future that considers several factors, which I’ll discuss next.
Be User Centric
One of the strengths of IoT products is their focus on user experience rather than the technology itself. According to IoT experts, in a decade or so, IoT will have become so widespread that it covers the entire Earth. When it’s so easy to adopt this technology, why focus your energies on just the technology itself? Instead, a business should leverage the ability of IoT to help them understand the current and future needs of consumers. Adopting a user-centric approach can help you to innovate a business model that adds more value to your product offerings and monetize its benefits.
With IoT, the business focus shifts to relationships—with customers, partners, and suppliers—and nurturing their success instead of revolving around products.
Embed Digital Strategy in Your Organization
Defining a unified vision for this change can help smooth your transition. By keeping every member of your workforce on the same page, you can deliver business success. Top management must outline a digital strategy relating to the adoption of IoT, including both the objective and the steps to achieve it. Active communication and implementation of the strategy can aid the business’s digital transformation.
Start Small, but Move Fast
Just as with the launch of any new product, it’s better to perfect your IoT-based business model first, before implementing a full-scale transition. By adopting an agile approach, a business can test its IoT-based solutions with small groups and capture feedback across the organization—perhaps by implementing industry-specific prototypes. Once your business has conducted a successful test and gathered sufficient feedback, you can rapidly transition to an IoT-based business process.
Deliver Superior Customer Experiences
Customers today appreciate the straightforwardness of 24/7 ease of access. IoT-enabled, big-data analysis helps businesses to devise better strategies and deliver superior consumer experiences across multiple touchpoints. With a complete understanding of customer needs, any business can personalize their promotional efforts and position products and services for every customer. Service is multifaceted, and real-time data empowers businesses to modernize workflows and swiftly react to critical concerns. Businesses can progress as they foresee customers’ desires and introduce smarter ways of interrelating with customers, enhancing customer-engagement levels.
Drive Competitive Advantage
Smart, connected products promise an entirely new set of business possibilities that can help organizations achieve competitive advantage. You can generate enormous leaps in productivity through IoT products that allow coworkers to collaborate and communicate seamlessly within and across organizations. You can gain an enhanced understanding of your products in live operation, as well as valuable insights. For instance, engine manufacturers today use sensors that monitor the performance of their engines on a real-time basis and steer predictive maintenance.
Increase Your Agility
As IoT helps transform legacy systems, organizations can overcome slow, sluggish business processes. Organizations can become more agile and adapt to market trends and customer expectations with greater speed. IoT can free up human resources and resolve technology concerns, allowing the organization to focus on executing core business strategies and modernizing its systems.
Amplify Efficiencies and Minimize Costs
One of IoT’s greatest benefits lies in its ability to diminish costs and increase productivity by automating processes. The integration of sensors into systems, data-driven insights, and artificial intelligence, drive better business opportunities for improving operations, streamlining inventory management, aiding stakeholder management, and enabling security and safety.
In undertaking a complete digital transformation, having the right IoT development partner is essential. Not only can this improve your prospects of business success, it can also help you integrate existing processes, architectures, and technologies into a new IoT-based framework. By keeping the potential implications of IoT in mind, your business can succeed in a world of connected consumers. The business benefits of timely IoT implementations are boundless and include immense cost savings, competitive gains, superior operational efficiencies, and improved stakeholder engagement.
With nine years of experience in marketing, Ashim has developed and achieved marketing strategies that align with company objectives. His work involves evaluating customer research and competitor data and implementing marketing plans. Read More