Thursday, October 27, 2005

A truly sincere form of flattery

It always pays to keep up with what the opposition is up to, and so I tuned in to a webinar two days ago run by Hyperion on their MDM solution, which they acquired from Razza. This competes with KALIDO MDM, and although no doubt both vendors would argue about the relative merits of their products, these two technologies are perhaps the most deployed general purpose MDM tools today. The interest/hype about general purpose MDM is intense but the number of production instances at real customers is relatively small as this is a very new and rapidly developing market. It is a market long on Powerpoint and short on deployed product. The session was led by Jane Griffen of Deloittes, an expert in MDM and who speaks regularly about it. However when it came to a case study about using MDM in practice, I was amazed to see a Kalido customer case study slide pop up (though, this being a Hyperion event, Kalido's name was curiously omitted). This creates a new level of tech marketing illusion, with endless potential. Tell people about your product, but show them customer case studies from someone else. This is a great way of plugging holes in your own customer list, and perhaps also deal with any pesky product limitations your own tool has. After all, if there is some area of weakness in your own product, just pick a competitor stronger in that area and discuss one of their customer implementations, implying that it is one of your own.

This has set a precedent in truly original hi-tech marketing. Perhaps one could skip building a product at all, and just present about other people's customers entirely? It would certainly cut down on R&D costs. Congratulations to Hyperion on inventing an entirely new technique in marketing.

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