The cloud is not just changing the IT industry, it's affecting a variety of fields, and marketing is no exception. It offers advantages in cost, dependable security and accessibility - regardless of device. As many businesses move to the cloud, industry experts are predicting that this is just the start and that in the years to come even more companies will utilize cloud operations, eschewing traditional server systems. Although originally the domain of smaller businesses, now even enterprise businesses are adopting cloud strategies.
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The wide array of the cloud's technological advantages is both a gift and a challenge for marketing. The gift occurs in the new opportunities for reaching customers - easily done through social media - yet the challenge is devising how to best connect with consumers who are able to control when and what kind of information reaches them.
What the cloud can achieve
It's easy to tailor cloud technology to a variety of different tasks, and its benefits make daily marketing operations more efficient:
- Cost benefits: We'll start with the biggest advantage: The cloud can save your business the cost of buying a room full of servers and spending on other infrastructure items. It will also spare your company the headache of fixing problems when a server goes down and everyone's unable to access the information they need. A cloud system requires that a company pay for only the services it uses, so you can tailor your company's resources to match its needs closely. This frees up budget to spend in other areas that help increase profitability. As your company expands and its requirements increase, the cloud can adapt and your budget won't take a major hit by having to pay for more hardware.
- Accessibility regardless of device: When people log onto a cloud network, they can do so from any location, from a laptop or mobile device. This allows a great deal of flexibility and lets companies instantly communicate updates and changes to employees.
- Integration of information: When a marketing team's information is completely stored in one location, it functions as a single, shareable treasure trove of data. When different campaigns are under way, the department can share any insights or updates to avoid anyone missing information, and making cloud databases available to all team members increases collaboration. The storage capabilities of a cloud database are such that it's easy to access any history on a particular client or campaign.
- A new playing field: Due to the cloud's benefits of greater efficiencies for both individuals and groups, small companies are able to compete with larger competitors previously too powerful to content with. By reducing IT costs, small businesses can get a leg up in the market and reach an expanded customer base.
Although traditional marketing will continue to have a place for many companies, cloud computing offers improved capabilities for established strategies. With the strides taking place, marketers who don't adapt the new powers will find themselves outpaced by those who are able to gather, analyze and learn more about their target market than in previous years. Cloud computing's ongoing evolution will continue to have a widespread influence and digital marketing is poised to benefit from them.
About Author: Emily Miller is a marketing professional and small business blogger who contributes regularly to Professional Intern. Her educational background is in English and Small Business Management, and she is especially fascinated by how technology can be used as solutions for startups and small companies.