These days every company's software stack is like a machine with hundreds of parts all hacked together. Each cloud application is just one of those parts, and customers need it to work with every one of the other applications that they already use. So, when new companies enter the market, they usually integrate their app with the other platforms that are most popular with their target customers, making those platforms even more cooperative and thus more successful.
This is the Network Economy.
In the network economy, success is exponential. As an app gains more users, it becomes more useful to other potential customers, driving growth. However, companies in the Network Economy can only continue as long as they are able to outperform competitors, sustain new adopters, and retain existing customers. Companies that excel in these areas all have one thing in common, they use The 4 Superheroes of the Network Economy.
Superhero 1: Magnetic
Networked companies are able to detect, organize, and expose very small units of value. They are able to create a competitive advantage by efficiently dealing with billions of small transactions and capturing value created outside of their application. This is about locating and understanding the even the smallest units of value in an organization. This might be data, business logic, or some other business capability. Magnetic companies capture and distribute these small units of value internally and externally.
Superhero 2: Infinite
Networked companies create highly scalable software and services to achieve high revenue growth with a near-zero impact on costs. These companies are highly aware of their strengths and domain limits and often integrate with APIs of other platforms to quickly scale functionality in areas outside of their expertise. Their competitive advantage is speed of scale and profitability. They are able to take full advantage of the network effect since they are able to scale as fast as their user base grows.
Superhero 3: Real-Time
Networked companies use real-time feedback loops to instantly optimize market fit and improve their product's value. Their competitive advantage is first mover time-to-market. Real-time network effects are about reacting to change, and always delivering the greatest value as competition and customer demands fluctuate.
Superhero 4: Intimate
As the SaaS industry saturates, companies are tasked with providing the ideal experience for each one of their customers. Networked companies continuously apply customer knowledge to fine-tune and optimize the individual experience delivered to each of their users. Their competitive advantage is customer engagement and loyalty. Perhaps the most important of the super heroes, intimate organizations excel at adapting and personalizing their service for different personas, or even individuals.
How can you take advantage of the 4 Superheroes?
Taking your first steps in the Network Economy is all about three things: flexibility, longevity, and integration.
To learn more about how your organization can succeed in the Network Economy, check out our on-demand webinar: "How to Build Platforms, not Products" below. Additionally, if you'd like to get in touch with an API Specialist from Cloud Elements, feel free to contact us anytime.