First came PaaS then came Saas. But if we told you there is an additional SaaS in town? Service as a Service. That’s right! You might already be investing in software to enhance your business model and create new service revenue streams but do you know if you’re fully optimizing the use of that software? Are you aware that your teams may lack knowledge or aptitude for understanding the nuances of that software? This is where Service as a Service enters:
Filling the Gap
There’s a big gap between companies integrating technology to streamline business processes, spark collaboration, and fuel growth both internally and externally and the internal capabilities to execute these tools. For example, there are a variety of CRM tools, inbound marketing tools, link tracking tools, social listening tools, internal communication tools and the list goes on and on. The problem? Most these tools are all integrative and we end up on this never ending hamster wheel constantly trying to figure out which combination will help us be more productive and increase overall margins. The bigger problem? Most internal teams aren’t adept for understanding a vast majority of complicated tech tools and end up ‘throwing them away’ so they can ‘get back to work’.
This is where Service as a Service comes in. Let’s say your business is trying to increase productivity by integrating a CRM tool with an internal project management tool. (ie. Hubspot + Slack or Greenrope + Wrike). The challenges are you’re relying on your team to:
- Be able to quickly adjust to new internal company policy, and changes of current habitual communication processes
- Relying on individual aptitude for understanding the array of features provided by these tools and to optimize them.
Service as a Service helps companies
- Construct a plan of success to meet the company’s goals
- Implement the tools that will actually help them achieve their business goals
- Train employees how to use these tools effectively
- Be ‘on-call’ when there is a problem, and to consult on the nuances of the tech
The key to filling the gap is the expertise of an outsider to understand the ‘nitty gritty’, and recognize when the company isn’t optimizing tools, and will help them get the most value out of the tools they are using.
Automation isn’t always the Answer
Automation is seen in email marketing, social media, prospect nurturing and much more. However automation isn’t always the answer. Before you automate, it’s crucial to understand the in’s and out’s of the manual process. For example, do you remember the Coca-Cola automated tweet campaign during the Superbowl that went horribly awry? Here’s what happened: in an attempt to engage with negative tweeters during the superbowl by automatically retweeting and turning it into #MakeitHappy, Gawker recognized the automation and exploited it.
The lesson to be learned: automation isn’t always the answer. So how does this fit in with the Service as a Service scenario? Simple. Most social media teams aren’t technology experts and most technology experts don’t understand the behavior taken place on social media. Having a middle man that can offer insight into both worlds, could save a company from a campaign that could backfire by understanding all the loopholes and nuances of ‘where it could go wrong’.
Ultimately, if you’re going to spend time investing in technology, make sure to invest in optimizing the process and the people with the expertise as well.