The power of information
Digital success depends on meaningful data
Shopping offline versus shopping online
How to mimic the magic of the physical experience on e-commerce
Buying a book in a bookstore is still a ritual for many people — touching and smelling books, exploring the sea of inviting pages, illustrations, fonts, photos and even different bindings; the mere action of keeping a book in one's hands awake a series of pleasant feelings. If you would ask a book lover what is it all about, the answer would be very simples: it is all about the book.
Yes, it is all about the book. The physical product. Buying a book online can also be ritual — and it is for many other people. But here, the research journey starts by locating for the information about the subject or author or area of interest. After finding basic information on Google or Yandex or Bing, the book lover can navigate to a blog or a website containing enough information about his subject of interest. He or she can end the trip without any purchase, but the exploration can increase the interest and guide the reader in new directions, prompt him or her to discover more and more. Usually, the journey ends at Amazon (or any other online bookstore) with additional search for information about a book or author as well as reviews from experts and other readers and ranking by number of stars. All that helps the buyer to decide on which book to purchase. It is all about the information and not about the physical product. And that's regardless of the desired product being a book, a washing machine or a trip to a sea resort.
In the first case, user experience is connected to the physical product "book" and, in the second, it is all about the information. And that is the main part of digital economy: the value of information. Sure, you need a physical product, but it is about information and meaningful information brought to consumers. Faster consumers find information easily and information is better organized and packaged if it is considered of higher value by consumers. If the processes around the data are simple and easy, its value increases. If communication is collaborative, open and transparent, there's also a raise in value.
Open and transparent governance through communication and data sharing principles bring great benefits too. For example by only publishing comparable data on individual clinical outcomes of the heart surgeries in UK hospitals survival rates are improved significantly. There are 1,000 fewer deaths in English heart surgery units each year. Mortality rates in UK are half that of Germany and one fifth compared to Portugal statistics. This is the power of information.
Several cities around the world are implementing online problem reporting systems that enable citizens to post online messages or photos of the perceived problem in urban areas. All actions and problem fixing activities conducted by officials in response to the reported issues are posted online and can be followed until final resolution of the problem. New York is one of the cities with good results based on such open and transparent problem reporting and tracking system.
And there are many more examples to illustrate the power of information. In the digital economy, power and value of information are critical assets.
Branislav VujovicPresident New Frontier Group
Strive to become better
Branislav Vujovic is founder and also president of New Frontier Group and has overall responsibility for the New Frontier Group, with special focus on Innovation, M&A strategy, group strategy and investor relationship.