New Marketing Hype – Product Bundling
Recent strategies of many marketers include now combinations of many products into one, as one package. That means placing subscriptions, gifts, coupons, services, gadgets and much more for one price. This is actually wrapping of different products as one product toward customers. I think that pretty soon they’ll create targeted bundled products for John Smith and it will include gallons of gasoline, dentist coupon for several tooth, excursion to nearby state, 10 kWh of electricity monthly, if you sign for their product… just kidding. But it is getting in many industries like this.
Hate me / love me, bundle me / un-bundle me.
You may guess how do such marketing creations affect Information Systems (IS)… They can be compared to IS earthquakes.
Story and conversation between marketing and IT goes like this in company… Make first unstructured products for the market, then tie them with the existing products and for specific niche. Then count bundles with elementary products. Finally, give me all the details that we can think of for our data analysts to make new and advanced products. This is typical bundling and un-bundling process from marketing side. Well, this is more then tricky to install in old information systems, especially if they do not have multidimensional solutions for all kind of product modelling.
It is not impossible to make such complex and versatile unstrucured marketing products. IS usually can support them. Problem begins with variations of same products like:
- down-sells, and
- gross adds.
This is the place were IS are usually not prepared from the beginning and this is where collapse of reporting system begins. More bundled products = more internal errors in Information Systems. Fun continous when IS implementation capabilities are slower then generation of new unstructured bundled – complex products. Peak of the party is proclamation from the Board that new bundled products are of company strategic interest… meaning, information instability will continue and will lead to implosion of reporting system.
Whatever was built for reporting improvement purpose like Data Warehouse, specific Business Intelligence solutions and etc., will be endangered and will fail in its prime task, to deliver basic information for decision making.
If management insists on new strategic products, all that can be done is to leave Information Systems and find job in other area or company… Somebody is going to be blamed for collapse of reporting system and this are not going to be those who caused it.