Our forced reliance on video to connect personally and professionally during the COVID-19 pandemic has touched almost every industry: from music, fitness, and education to retail and healthcare. Terms like “Zoom party” and “telemedicine” have become colloquialisms.
Geoffrey Moore, the best-selling author of “Chasing the Chasm” and a respected marketing consultant and innovations expert, joined us to discuss how the increased video usage we’re experiencing right now is only the tip of the iceberg.
The following are excerpts from our conversation with Moore, in his words. They have been lightly edited for content and clarity.
Video is a very powerful medium. When so many of us went to work from home, we had to come up with something. And Zoom, I think, is probably the preeminent brand that came out of this. Google Hangouts and Microsoft Teams and WebEx from Cisco are also all on the rise. They’re all getting into this game one way or another. So these are all examples of a big company saying, “OK, we need to reengineer quickly.”
I actually think we're the ones that have to evolve. But think about it from a salesperson’s perspective. For example, I was having a great conversation with Larry Shurtz, who runs North American sales for Salesforce. He said for the first time in his life, he was not on airplanes the last week of the quarter. Salesforce closed the quarter from home. Nobody from Salesforce called on anyone in person — and they completed the entire process. Before you would have said that’s not possible and it's not a good idea. And it turns out, we did it.
So I do think we're the ones who need to rethink our situation. And it's going to be an interesting question because you're not going to want to say, “Well, we'll never visit again.” Obviously, we're going to want to, but the question is, “What should be a Zoom meeting? What should be a personal meeting?” That's going to be a new set of protocols we're going to learn as we go along. I think in general, you need to honor your customers and honor the occasion. So I think coming back we'll probably cheat a little bit more on the extra meeting, as opposed to one fewer meeting.
Video will reengineer every process in every sector of the economy. For starters, look at what's happening with your school kids. It's not great, but it's better than nothing. So how can we reengineer education? How can we reengineer healthcare? Telemedicine. It's obvious that telemedicine can be much more powerful than we thought it could be. We've always said so. But you look at any sector of the economy. We talked about sales calls. What about service calls? What about financial advising? I remember 10 years ago when it was mobile and now it's going to be video. So, if video was first, how would you rethink your tools? How would you rethink your processes, your products, your service?
This is part two in a three-part series featuring Moore’s insights on how companies can thrive amid the COVID-19 crisis. Find part one here: Your Company’s Vision and Values Shouldn’t Change in a Crisis. And look for the third article in the series to publish on the Salesforce Blog later this week. For more content, tools, and tips to help your business thrive in the current climate, visit Work.com.