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How to Think Like a Futurist #IoE

Preparing for tomorrow’s panel at Fast Company’s Innovation Uncensored event in New York has been an interesting process. That’s because I’ve been asked to describe how I predict the future rather than what the future will look like. This topic caused me to focus my attention inward, rather than looking outward as I usually do.

Accurately predicting the future can be challenging. As Niels Bohr, a Danish physicist who received the 1922 Nobel Prize in Physics for his contributions to understanding atomic structure and quantum mechanics, once said, “Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future.”

While predicting the future isn’t an exact science, it can be accomplished with surprising accuracy. Here’s how I do it. Read More »

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Realizing the Benefits of Internet of Everything for Customer Experience: Part 1 #IoE

We’re entering the age of the Internet of Everything (IoE), which is about connecting the Internet to the physical world (people, process, data, and things). We’re early in the process, with approximately 10 billion devices already connected. By 2020, Cisco projects that this number will reach 50 billion “things.” One of the key areas of impact identified in the Cisco Internet of Everything Economy report, “Embracing the Internet of Everything To Capture Your Share of $14.4 Trillion,” is customer experience. The report estimates that IoE-driven customer experience advances — based on increasing customer lifetime value and growing market share by adding more customers — will drive $3.7 trillion of the estimated $14.4 trillion of IoE Value at Stake globally over the next decade.
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IoE is enabling organizations to engage with their customers in whole new ways and to create new business models. IoE is all about making new connections possible: interactions among people, and between people and devices. It’s also about the ability of devices to communicate with each other, with applications, and with digital services, and then empowering those technologies to take action based on these communications.

When more of the world is connected, expect the delivery of your customer experience to shift beyond the boundaries of your current web and mobile sites, and past the walls of your offices and stores. New technologies connected to the Internet — including things like Google Glasses, IP-enabled lightbulbs, new gesture technologies, and sensors — will form the foundation of IoE. However, it is the data stream produced by all of these new connections that will have the greatest impact on your relationship with your customers.

With IoE, you will be better able to build customer loyalty and delight — creating emotional brand connections, personalizing the experience, and targeting offerings based on the data generated by IoE. Just think about what the IoE-powered future might look like across your customer journey.

  • Transform the process of building awareness and encouraging purchases,by bringing together data from various sources, including sensors that pick up signals to help anticipate customer needs. Target these customers in real time based on history, location, and activity.
    • Apps move from performing cross-brand product comparisons to enabling customers to determine where to find items based on criteria they set, including best price, product ratings, and the most convenient retail location to shop (automatically taking traffic and wait times into consideration).
    • Connected vending machines, digital signage, and other surfaces will recognize customers and deliver customized content at the point of need.
    • Items will be ordered on — and delivered to — a customer’s mobile phone, wherever it is located.
  • Post-sale, connect with the personal side of customers’ lives to help them achieve their goals. This will enable you to add post-sale value to create new revenue streams and drive new insights for innovation. Look for ways to be proactive, anticipate and prevent issues before they happen, or make suggestions that will improve a customer’s life.
    • Mobile devices or sensors react to the environment and are set to receive personalized messages placed by you or your customers’ social circles.
    • Sensors on clothing monitor customers’ health, enabling them to analyze and collect information about themselves, optimize their personal behaviors, and alert caregivers when there is an issue.
    • Connected cars move beyond monitoring an automobile’s performance to collecting data about customers’ driving habits, providing instant insurance quotes, and communicating with things along a route

These capabilities can be offered as services, and the great thing is they can be updated and improved over time. Companies like Nike are already way ahead with products like Nike Fuel. Nike has secured a role in my life around my fitness goals, and given all the history it has collected about me, I am not likely to switch to a competitor anytime soon.

If you want to be in a position to tap in to the potential of IoE, it’s time to get thinking about the role your brand will play in this new world. One of the first steps in designing your customer experience is good information about the needs and trends of your customers. Cisco is helping through primary research such as the Connected Customer Experience Report for Health Care, with more industries to come.  Please also follow us on the new Cisco Customer Experience Facebook page and Twitter for updated information.

In Part 2 of this blog series, I’ll provide specific details on how to get started in realizing the benefits of IoE for improving customer experience. In the meantime, I’d love your thoughts on how IoE will redefine customer experience as we know it.

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#IoE: Present and Future

Dave Evans  Joseph Bradley  This blog was co-authored by Dave Evans and Joseph Bradley, Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG).

To receive the most value from the Internet of Everything (IoE), business leaders should begin transforming their organizations based on key learnings from use cases that show how IoE works in the real world. Cisco IBSG’s Economics practice recently developed 50 private-sector use cases to determine the Value at Stake in the new IoE Economy. It determined that $14.4 trillion of value (net profit) will be created or will migrate among companies and industries based on their ability to harness IoE.

This blog will provide both near-term and more futuristic examples of IoE in healthcare and marketing/advertising to help you better understand the possibilities of IoE in different time frames. We provide both a futuristic view (Dave) and a near-term perspective (Joseph). Read More »

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Data in Motion: An Opportunity for Healthcare Providers

The Big Data revolution continues to make inroads into the healthcare space, where it’s helping reduce hospital readmissions, improve point-of-care decisions and advance research, among other benefits. Take a look at this sampling of topics on offer at the 2013 Annual HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) Conference & Exhibition in New Orleans, La. last month: “Using Data Analytics to Improve Patient Care and Safety,” “Data Warehousing for Healthcare,” “Extracting Value from Healthcare Big Data with Predictive Analytics,” “Leveraging Data as an Asset.”

Clearly, Big Data is making its mark in the healthcare world, as it is in just about every other aspect of our world—a reality that’s compellingly illustrated in the recent Cisco-sponsored project, The Human Face of Big Data (HFOBD). Consisting of a book and an iPad app, the project is designed to illustrate how data transforms the way we perceive ourselves and our world.

The project’s premise? That real-time visualization of data streaming in from billions of sensors, RFID tags and GPS-enabled cameras and smart phones is beginning to allow us, as individuals and collectively as a society, to sense, measure and understand aspects of our existence in ways never before possible through data in motion or at rest. This is a big deal. In fact, many data experts believe this global ebb and flow of data—a planetary nervous system, if you will—will soon have a greater impact on our lives than the Internet.

Back in the world of healthcare, consider this example from HFOBD of how one doctor used the power of data to gain insight into hospital and emergency room visits. Troubled by the soaring costs of healthcare in America, Dr. Jeffrey Brenner of Camden, NJ, used the records of 600,000 hospital visits to build a map linking hospital claims to patients’ addresses. Analyzing the data, he made a startling discovery—that just 1 percent of patients accounted for 30 percent of hospital bills due to repeated emergency room visits.

 

©Michael Bryant 2012 / from The Human Face of Big Data

 

To help address the issue, Brenner founded the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers, which can dispatch caseworkers to care for the patients with the most problems. Once caseworkers began making proactive home visits and encouraging high-risk patients to stay on their medications, the target group’s hospital bills fell dramatically. In one instance, a single patient who had run up over US$700,000 in hospital bills in 12 months didn’t need another visit after the coalition’s intervention[1].

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My Observations from HIMSS 2013 #IoE

A doctor in California diagnosing a patient in Africa. An Ohio woman on vacation accessing her medical records from an emergency room in London. A patient’s vital signs being monitored remotely from a hospital on the other side of town. These are all scenarios that just years ago seemed impossible… but could be made possible by Cisco.

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In life, I’m consistently amazed by the astonishing change and progress that can occur in the short span of just one year. In technology, it moves even more quickly. Walking into the 2013 HIMSS conference in New Orleans, it was obvious to me that pace of change in healthcare is accelerating dramatically. The sheer size of the event and the number of companies that attended this year’s conference, each demonstrating innovative products, technologies, or methodologies to connect healthcare providers and patients was astonishing. Read More »

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