SMAC is a new acronym being used in business to describe the stack of foundational technologies which are becoming increasingly important in business. It stands for Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud. The idea behind SMAC is that companies need to adopt these products and services not individually but in an integrated way which will allow them to deliver agile and effective customer service.
An example of a business which is effectively utilising the SMAC stack would be a media streaming service such as Netflix:
- Netflix allows clients to stream media across a number of devices, including mobile ones.
- They utilise advanced analytics to recommend films and TV programs tailored specifically to the preferences of the individual client.
- Their content is streamed from the cloud, not stored on the user’s device, allowing the user to access it from any device or location.
- It then enables users to share thoughts and opinions on what they have been watching with their online social networks.
This shows that, in order for SMAC to be effective, all the components must work together as an ecosystem. They cannot act as discrete entities in a business but must be integrated to provide a holistic experience. Mobile capabilities and social media interactions can drive richer data collection which can be stored an analysed in the cloud, delivering results in real time. This can be used to engage with clients through social channels in more meaningful ways, giving the client a more personalised experience.
Social network based interaction has redefined how people engage with digital services, and each other, and companies need to take notice. An example of how social networks can be utilised within enterprise business is the ‘Oracle Social Network’. Based on platforms like Facebook the service gives companies the ability to build their own internal social networks. These can facilitate communication between employees, who are already used to participating on similar external social platforms, creating a more open information sharing environment, without compromising sensitive company data.
An example of how this could be incorporated into the SMAC sack is seen in the health industry. This is a space where doctors, nurses, researchers, drug developers, academics, regulators, pharmacists, and any other stakeholders, need the ability to communicate and share knowledge. By participating in a private social network all the stakeholders can share data into the cloud, where analytics can be used to derive powerful insights from it. This data can then be accessed from all over the world via mobile connected devices.
Mobile technology allows employees and consumers to experience constant access and availability from wherever they are. Companies need to invest in creating mobile experiences and applications that are easy to navigate and use. Making websites or data that is tailored specifically to mobile devices can greatly improve productivity and communication.
Mobility is also an increasingly important channel for businesses to communicate with clients. Apps, personalised deals, location tracking and mobile commerce are all leveraged off the power of the consumer’s personal mobile device.
As workers become increasingly mobile, the demand for cloud services will grow as well. Cloud and mobile are not mutually dependent, but they do benefit one another in terms of encouraging productivity and collaboration. Cloud allows for access to, and the collation of a vast amount of data which is increasingly scalable and always available, from any device.
The data collected in the cloud can then be leveraged through analytics to provide powerful company insights. Data for analytics can be collected across a variety of channels, from social sites to transactions or filed tickets and can give a company insight into customer trends, internal company processes, risk exposure and more.
If utilised effectively a SMAC stack should offer a seamless experience to clients and employees alike. By combining SMAC elements, companies can create a marketing utility that enhances employee productivity and builds a seamless consumer experience.