This column is a bit of a mashup, as I wanted to use this space to discuss at least a couple of interesting recent developments. The first is big data and social media in politics; the second is the rise of what’s known as DevOps and what it means to your business.
While social media has become a big factor in political donations in the last decade or so, it’s worth pointing out a holistic approach to campaign donations includes the phone.
Telephone marketing is a very effective way in fact of reaching customers, which is why it became a victim of its own success, with an eventual government Do Not Call List. This list doesn't apply to political campaigns and moreover, the phone can be even more effective for politicians as a result of less competition from companies giving you free vacations if you listen to a timeshare presentation.
Recently, InfoCision (News - Alert) Management Corp., one of the highest-quality marketing outsourcers/partners I am aware of, started calling for campaign contributions for Dr. Ben Carson – a straight-talking surgeon turned presidential candidate thanks to a loyal Tea Party/conservative base that just adores him.
One last point. I have visited the company and its call center before and have overheard these sorts of phone calls for numerous candidates, some of whom drop out before even officially running. The phone is an effective gauge of voter interest in a politician. By making a certain number of phone calls and tallying the response, candidates can extrapolate how much money they can generate if they keep calling.
Moreover, big data and a massive database are key components to ensuring you know who to target. Often the most successful campaigns also have apps that allow voters to participate and potentially even use the app to contact their peers to get them involved. It’s all about holistic marketing. In retail we call it omnichannel.
OK, now I’d like to switch gears to discuss a different but related topic – how applications are changing the world of business.
As you probably have noticed, traditional industries are being disrupted big time by software companies like Uber and Airbnb. Amazon, too, is essentially a software company, and APIs are becoming a major revenue driver for companies sharing information or adding value of some kind.
With the move toward more software, the potential to be disrupted – even if you are a disrupter – becomes greater each day. MySpace should have become Facebook; AltaVista should have become Google; Yahoo should have been Google as well; IBM (News - Alert) shouldn’t be losing cloud business to Amazon; and Microsoft (News - Alert) saw the smartphone trend very early, yet, somehow, lost the battle to Apple, thanks to superior software.
In a recent meeting with Aruna Ravichandran, vice president, DevOps product marketing, and Andi Mann (News - Alert), vice president of strategy, at CA Technologies, both agreed that applications are changing the world of business and, moreover, their company wants to help your organization provide continuous delivery.
The company’s goal is to help customers bring apps to market more quickly, while providing availability, performance and security. Its environment assists in API security – an area of weakness for a number of vendors recently.
Moreover, by providing API control, a company can use them as a way to generate additional revenue. For example, they could allow a certain number of queries per hour for free, and then charge. Another option would be to allow reads for free and charge for database writes.
“IT has spent too much time as the department of no,” said Mann. “Now we want to enable businesses to run fast.”
He explained that brakes are actually what allow a car to go fast because they let you slow down. With proper API management, he continued, companies can have hackathons and better connect with partners and contractors outside the organization.
Via the company’s Service Virtualization solution, developers can emulate even unavailable systems, allowing things like back-end calls to credit card processing systems. The system can even emulate those environments that are difficult to emulate due to licensing requirements. CA (News - Alert) works with more than 100 development platforms and allows custom integrations to be simply built as well.
“It’s a cultural transformation,” explained Ravichandran. “It’s a people process powered by technology as an enabler to make DevOps real.”
She continued by saying that we are in an application economy where companies need to drive business, gain new customers, and enter new markets and demographics. CA’s agile software development system allows companies to have parallel development and application delivery – allowing product bugs to be located and eradicated earlier in the lifecycle of applications.
Edited by Dominick Sorrentino