Co-founder and producer at Salvi Media, William Salvi discusses software and the digital experience with CMO of G2 Crowd, Ryan Bonnici. William and Ryan discuss the use of software in the digital experience and how it influences a businesses ability to target consumers with buying recommendations.
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About G2 Crowd
Will: Tell us a little bit about yourself and your role as CMO of G2?
Ryan: G2 for folks that don't know us, we're basically revolutionizing the way businesses discover, buy and manage the software and the services that they use in their business. So we're really focused on helping businesses reach their potential and I think our viewpoint is that you can't really do that today without software and without services.
Value of Software
Ryan: The value that we're bringing to those visitors that are coming to our site, we're trying to help them find the best software for their business so that they can reach their potential. If I think about the value that we bring to them on the flipside is through the sellers, right?
Because if you're a buyer of software or services you can't reach the goal that you're trying to get to without software or without services at the end of the day. So we kind of sit in this really interesting space. We're this matchmaker between buyers and between sellers.
Ryan: There's ultimately always software that can help you do a better job than what you're doing. It comes down to I think businesses making the decision, "Do I want to scale up? Do I want to become more efficient? Do I want to grow faster?" Or sometimes it's just, "Do I want to save money?"
Because sometimes you might have a lot of employees doing something that software can do.
Ryan: So I think you can probably get by in some senses. We think a lot about data in that sense and I think we're headed down this path of always wanting to give the most trustworthy recommendations because all of our competitors don't do that.
They function in a bit more of your ad auction model where by whoever pays the most that day in the auction is at the top. They're the number one software for their category. Whereas our rankings don't change that much on a daily basis because its not pay-to-play for us.
Ryan: I do think that consumer's trust is definitely eroding and if you look at sort of everything that's been going down with Facebook and just the social media networks in general, Twitter and there's even Amazon has it's own things that people will kind of criticize.
I think that people are becoming more and more aware to the fact that a lot of businesses are monetizing the person and the person is becoming the product, right?
So if you think of us when we're using Instagram, we're essentially the product that Instagram sells to advertisers. It's like them getting access to us.
The Digital Experience
Will: What does the digital experience look like in five to ten years?
Ryan: I think like a lot of people - digital experiences are starting to replace sales reps in a lot of way at the point of purchase, maybe.
I think sales reps will always still be able to drive revenue for business because when they're doing outbound prospecting and they're-
Will: Creating relations.
Ryan: Yeah, I think that's a bit different but, when there's so much content out there today to what we've been talking about that people can do a lot of the research themselves when they want, at any time of day. They don't need a sales rep as much.
So I think if you are not kind of innovating your digital experience and your customer experience so that people can buy from you whenever they want, at 1AM, you're missing out on revenue.
Ryan: And so that's sort of something where I'm seeing more and more companies differentiate. It's that they're creating a really easy way to buy from them.
Mark: History tells me you can just change an algorithm and it could totally disrupt the industry.