According to the study conducted by Wakefield Research and based on a poll of 500 owners of U.S. businesses with less than 100 employees, only 28 percent of small-business owners completely understand the concept of cloud computing. This is a hugely missed opportunity, as we previously reported that the SMB cloud is now mainstream, or in this case, could go mainstream.
Other findings are that 2 percent of respondents said they are not using cloud computing at all and 35 percent said they were using it only for data storage.
Small-business owners also noted using the cloud for document management (21 percent) as well as business applications like CRM and accounting and human resources (17 percent).
51 percent of small-business owners said that they prioritize technology tool-related capital investments, such as new software, mobile apps and cloud computing services, this certainly means a huge opportunity.Cloud Computing IntelligentHQ
The seven reasons why organizations should sell to small businesses, to make it even more compelling:
- The market is massive
- It’s rewarding
- Small businesses may be “sexier” than enterprises
- The path can be easier
- Product opportunities are endless
- You can serve a greater purpose
Cloud computing vendors need to offer brand utilities
I would say this is thé oppportunity for cloud computing vendors to offer brand utilities, help –potential- customers understand the true value and capabilities of cloud computing, only then small businesses are able to make a sound decision and actually invest in an effective cloud computing solution.
One great example of utilitarian marketing and CRM is the Social CRM Mindmap by Salesforce.
Salesforce.com UK has created a compelling Social CRM mindmap which shows people what Social CRM is and what it can do for people and organizations. This is an example of educational- and utilitarian marketing where the mindmap helps people understand the concept of social CRM (educational) and also helps Salesforce selling it’s own products better (utilitarian).
The three types of cloud services
The Guardian elaborates on the three types of cloud services which (small) businesses can benefit from:
• The first level of cloud services is called Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). It works by providing virtual hardware, such as computers, raw processors, storage software platforms and so on. Instead of being physically based in an office, employees can access their data via the internet.
• The second level, known as Platform as a Service (PaaS), provides all the resources necessary for small business owners to create their own software and programmes. Usually this will include an operating system, programming environment, database, and web server. This can save you the cost of storing and investing in the hardware and software which would otherwise be necessary.
• The third level available is Software as a Service (SaaS), which provides small businesses with software and programmes which are available and ready to use. They can run them remotely, without having to go through lengthy installation processes and worry about how their hardware will cope with the application.
Because I was investing the small business sector as well and the potential opportunities for my own business proposition we found accumulating figures of a somewhere around a 90 to 100 million SMEs globally! How about that being a massive fishing pound.
Start educating your target audience!
Gianluigi Cuccureddu is co-founder of Damarque, helping you to improve your commercial performance through better engagement with your employees, customers and strategic business partners.
We offer high-impact training, coaching and consulting services for professionals, teams and organizations to help improve people ánd organizational performance and innovation capability in an efficient and sustainable way.