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How cloud computing is driven by mobile, media and marketing

Bernard Golden | Feb. 8, 2013
Defenders of enterprise computing are in for a rude awakening.

Public cloud computing environments, by contrast, are well-suited for the demands of mobile applications. High-load variability is easily handled by their very large infrastructures.

Cloud Computing and Media: Huge Traffic

It's something of a misnomer these days to talk about a media company, since every company is becoming a media company. Video is becoming the sine qua non of how companies communicate with important stakeholders. And it's huge. Every year Cisco Systems comes out with five-year projections of Internet traffic, and every year the company ups them. The reason? Video.

Every company is leveraging video in one of the following ways-and this list is certainly not exhaustive:

  • Marketing campaigns, particularly those with a clever or snarky twist, like the Will It Blend? series from Blend-Tec that has racked up 221 million views. Every company's fervent wish is that its marketing video will go viral and drive heightened consumer interest in its products.
  • Partner, user or employee training. There's no faster way to demonstrate how to use a product than with a video. Plus, video is much more engaging than written documentation.
  • Announcements. Video is a good way to make a company's announcements stand out from the blizzard of written press releases spewed onto the Internet every day.

Video is a huge consumer of bandwidth, and it's very sensitive to latency disruptions. The average company's internal network is insufficient to support the kind of traffic video requires, and the network capacity that is available is tuned to support legacy transactional application needs. When you marry mobile and video, it's obvious that legacy infrastructures are inadequate to support the requirements of these applications.

Cloud Computing and Marketing: Constant Change

Now that marketing and advertising have shifted decisively to the Internet, their nature is changing as well. Because ad delivery used to be so difficult, marketing and advertising campaigns remained static. Rolling out a new TV ad across the U.S. required getting new tapes to multiple TV stations and cable/satellite providers. The process-especially making sure everyone had the right version of the ad-was so time-consuming that changes were relatively infrequent.

Today, by contrast, online marketing and advertising campaigns are served up centrally. This reduces the change overhead by more than 90 percent.

But guess what? Reduced friction encourages more change. In turn, that requires changes to both infrastructure and application code. In other words, it means a radically reduced application lifecycle-and that runs smack into legacy infrastructure managed to reduce change, with management controls such as ITIL imposing manual processes to control infrequent change.

The expectations of the next generation of marketing and advertising is that campaigns can be rolled out quickly, modified rapidly and terminated immediately. If you read my last post on cloud computing budgets, you know this kind of application is projected to be a majority of IT spend in 2017.


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