Survey shows brand strength uniformly low in a sea of undistinguished contenders
Boston January 15, 2004 The Yankee Group today released results of a new survey that show enterprise resource planning (ERP) vendors have a weak hold on their customers' hearts, minds and wallets despite significant investments in marketing and branding.
Yankee said the new ERP BrandMonitor, jointly developed with Market2Customer, a member of Monitor Group LLP, tests the power of the ERP corporate image among business decision-makers.
"The results were quite surprising: No ERP company stands out as a brand of choice," said Jon Derome, program manager for the Yankee Group's Business Applications & Commerce advisory service.
He elaborated that the share of respondents inclined to recommend a particular supplier was starkly lower than scores for similarly complex business products. "It's typical in a healthy business category to see about 50 percent of decision-makers recommending a market-leading brand," Derome said. "The highest recommended rating in the ERP category was 32 percent."
The survey also illustrated a disconnect between buyer requirements and vendor performance.
"Vendors promote speeds, feeds and technology prowess, but, according to our respondents, these traits are not meaningful or relevant to the basic challenges ERP customers face today," says Derome. "Decision-makers tell us that they want service, flexibility and practicality. Unfortunately, none of the major brands differentiates itself along these lines, leaving the door wide open for any one of the category providers to address these unmet needs."
Derome added: "The good news is there's a significant opportunity for any ERP provider to step up, distinguish itself and sell more products to its current customers. This demonstrates how listening to what the customer wants is paramount."