The pandemic validated the cloud’s value proposition, giving way to a myriad of opportunities for SaaS marketers

Long Range Forecast Calls for Clouds: the Staying Power of Digital Transformation

The pandemic validated the cloud’s value proposition, giving way to a myriad of opportunities for SaaS marketers

Digital transformation has been a hot buzzword for just about as long as I’ve been working in tech. But, no one could have predicted that COVID would prompt years worth of digital transformation in mere months. 

By the end of March 2020, a large swath of the world’s offices, classrooms and doctors offices were fully remote, relying on a myriad of real-time productivity, communication tools and networks to make the immediate shift from on-premise or hybrid models to fully cloud-based operations. 

Not to mention how entire industries – like retail, fitness and food service – had to invent completely new business models to stay afloat, some propping up front- and back-end cloud-based marketing and commerce functions for the very first time. 

As a result, so-called “work-from-home-stocks” dramatically outperformed expectations, and many analysts don’t see this growth slowing down in 2021. Why? Simply put, digital transformation has staying power. A few examples: 

  • Over half of remote workers say they would like to continue working from home post-COVID. Therefore, corporations are expected to maintain a combination of flex, hybrid or fully remote workplaces after the pandemic. Moreover, these remote workers will likely continue relying on the conveniences they’ve come to love – like at-home workouts, on-demand entertainment and same-day deliveries. 
  • Similarly, the higher education sector is expected to be turned upside down. In Scott Galloway’s new book Post Corona, he illustrates how universities realized the profitability of online lecture halls during 2020. Take Cal State, which announced at the outset of COVID that it would be online only. By the end of 2020, Cal State graduated 40,000 more students than the entire Ivy League combined. We can expect more virtual programs and low-cost courses to be offered at-scale in years to come.

These trends demonstrate insane opportunity for cloud companies across industry. There’s simply not one industry or market that didn’t increase the adoption of cloud-based applications. Not one. As Sid Nag, research vice president at Gartner, put it,“The pandemic validated cloud’s value proposition.”

So, as we are starting to see some things transition back to what was before COVID – like in-person events getting scheduled for the second half of the year – now is the time for cloud marketers to capitalize on the staying power of digital transformation. Here are a couple thought starters:

  • Communicating business impact and ROI is key to ensuring the cloud remains mission-critical post-pandemic. Use-case-specific content, like case studies and customer-driven announcements, can demonstrate tangible benefits like how your solutions helped a business survive in 2020.
  • SaaS press announcements can get lost in the speeds and feeds of it all. Specifically, product and platform launches often lack substance in terms of how new or existing customers should approach implementing new solutions. By prioritizing education-focused content, cloud companies can elevate their messaging above product marketing speak, and offer an educational journey that helps customers learn as they grow with your platform. 
  • Bullets 1 and 2 can both be leveraged for highly tailored customer nurture streams to speak directly to your buyers with meaningful and helpful information and content.

With Gartner projecting cloud spending to make up 14.2% of the total global enterprise IT market in 2024, the forecast for cloud growth and customer scale is clear. 

For more ideas on how Cloud and SaaS marketing teams can seize upon a more digitally connected consumer base, download ARPR’s new whitepaper, entitled Coming Out of COVID: How to market for newfound marketplace opportunities. We specifically explore the Cloud sector, as well as FinTech, Cybersecurity and HealthIT industries.

Read it today.

Melissa Baratta
Melissa heads up Alloy's sector practice groups. With a passion for using storytelling to build connections and inspire action, she develops creative campaigns that drive results.
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