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Upcoming Research

What are the disruptive trends we’re looking at today?

What are we researching today? Our planned research agenda currently spans five core coverage areas: Digital Transformation, Social Business, Data Disruption, Content Strategy, and Leadership.

If you would like to make a contribution to our upcoming research or have a suggestion for new research topics, please submit your ideas on our Contact page or email Christine Tran, Research and Marketing Manager at Please note that the dates and titles for our upcoming reports are subject to change.

Last updated: March 2014

Q2 2015

Report Title: “Creating the Modern Social Selling System”

Authors: Charlene Li

Publish Date: April 15, 2015

Description: In the digital age, the way customers purchase things has changed, but selling has remained the same. Today’s salespeople face a number of external challenges, with lengthening sales cycles, slimmer margins, less reliable forecasts and a lack of organization support. This report presents a strategy for the modern sales unit to capitalize on the digital channels where customers are present, taking social selling far beyond simply prospecting on LinkedIn.


Report Title: “It’s not the Marketing Cloud, It’s the Experience Cloud”

Authors: Charlene Li, Omar Akhtar

Publish Date: April 21, 2015

Description: Today’s customer demands a single, unified experience across all points of interaction with a brand, but most of these interactions are being managed only by the marketing department. To truly create a winning customer experience, a digital strategy must go beyond marketing, deploying not just a suite of integrated marketing tools, but a customer experience strategy that extends across sales, service and even human resources.


Report Title: “The 2015 State of Social Business: The Growing Pains of Maturing Social Businesses”

Authors: Ed Terpening

Publish Date: April 28, 2015

Description: Social has clearly moved beyond the confines of marketing and communications and has established beachheads, especially in sales; customer service; and HR with employee engagement.This report will publish the results from Altimeter’s latest survey on social business, identifying the major trends, changes and obstacles companies are facing in their bid to turn social channels into revenue streams.


Report Title: “Digital Ethics & Customer Experience: A Framework for Creep Avoidance in a Sensor-filled World”

Authors: Jessica Groopman with Susan Etlinger

Publish Date: May 12, 2015

Description: This report will examine how brands can harness the Internet of Things, leveraging sensors to better engage with customers—but not creep them out in the process. This research will take a consumer perspective to inform how brands can effectively enhance their product/service experience, while doing so securely,strategically, and ethically.


Report Title: “A Framework for Ethical Data Use”

Authors: Susan Etlinger with Jessica Groopman

Publish Date: May 26, 2015

Description: As governments catch up to the rapid advances in technology, companies must prepare for inevitable legislation, and growing consumer concerns. This report publishes the results of a consumer survey on data privacy in the digital age, highlighting the most important ethical, legal and behavioral concerns consumers have as they trade their data for valuable technology. The report will also provide a framework for companies to help them achieve transparency and credibility when it comes to ethical data use.


Q1 2015

Using Social to Deepen Relationships and Increase Sales 

Author: Charlene Li

Evolving existing sales approaches and changing behavior is really the key to successful adoption and implementation of social selling within an organization. This report will look at: What are the essential elements of a social selling program? From staffing and training to technology platforms and measurement? How do you get started and how should you evolve the program over time? Is there a maturity roadmap to follow? How do organizations change because of social selling, if at all? How will social selling itself change in the future, eg. technology platforms, less outsourcing of sales, shift from transactions to relationships?

Customer Experience and the Internet of Things 
Jessica Groopman with Rebecca Lieb

The opportunity in customer-facing IoT lies in the interface and exchange of data (on the enterprise side,) with experience (on the consumer side.) Yet, determining when, how, and to what extent to apply connected services, products, and processes to the customer experience remains poorly understood by modern marketers and digital strategists., This report will focus on identifying how IoT can be used to optimize consumer-facing programs (e.g. Marketing, Sales, Customer Service, etc.) to enhance customer experience, drive interactions, and glean powerful business intelligence in the process. 

Measuring Content Marketing
Author: Susan Etlinger and Rebecca Lieb, with Jessica Groopman

How should content be measured and analyzed? Let us count the ways (or at least begin to). In this report, we'll assess what metrics can be applied to content beyond sales and leads, and support functions across the entire organization (e.g. product development, customer service, social selling, employee engagement, recruiting and hiring, etc.). This research will showcase examples of organizations which have used content metrics to support primary business objectives such as operational efficiency, brand health, revenue generation and beyond.