Competing in XaaS Space Today

CPaaS, UCaaS, CCC, SaaS, CRM – all crowded markets with new providers joining the (already crowded) ranks every quarter.

How to compete?

One way is to go the way of the platform. You become an ecosystem like Salesforce or Vonage or RingCentral.

Another way is by feature. Develop a feature no one else has. In my experience, most executives don’t know what the competitors have/do, so your new awesome feature may in fact be passe or normalized – or have no market demand or fit.

You also have to deliver on that feature. Take the Salesforce hook that most UCaaS providers have (advertise). What is it exactly? Most it is just click to call. Integrations between customer apps are great but how they are executed is where the benefit sits. So it isn’t just that the buyer can check the box for SF integration, but what will the user be seeing/doing with that. THAT is the advantage.

Very few decide that service delivery and ease of use are going to be the ladder steps to success. Amazon has these in spades – and far exceeds anyone in retail in ease of use. In the conferencing space, Zoom has ease of use and some of the best video quality (delivery).

CX or UX – customer or user experience is by far the best way to compete – as Zappos, Amazon, Zoom, Pipedrive, Hubspot have demonstrated.

Recently two new video conferencing services hit the market – Jitsi and Team.Video . So Jitsi is the open source version of what 8×8 is using. Team.Video is trying to add better collaboration to the video meeting. I don’t know how either will take off in a market where Zoom gets all the air.

In the video space, YouTube is for reach and Vimeo is for control and quality. There are so many platforms to stream live – Facebook, YouTube, Snap, Instagram and others. It is a preference thing coupled with a where is the audience I am trying to meet thing. That last part is important. Who is your target? Where are they? What do they need? How can I solve for that? How can I make it easier? Where is the friction that I remove (a la Uber/Lyft)?

Personally, I don’t see people asking & answering these questions in order to position themselves for success in the crowded marketplace.

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