The winner is…..
Yes, you may have guessed it already; it is Google. Google Apps have already become the preferred choice over Microsoft for small businesses and is in a heated race to win over companies with over 1,000 employees (Eyal, 2014). Such significant erosion of market share led Microsoft to give away the Office Suite on mobile for free (Wingfield, 2014).
Microsoft is also taking it a step further by focusing on strategies to make Office “a habit” according to Qi Lu, the man in charge of Office Suite products (Eyal, 2014). This strategy is explained in a book titled Hooked: How to build habit-forming products by Nir Eyal. The “hook model” has distinct four phases – trigger, action, reward and investment (Eyal, 2014).
The trigger phase has a cue involved that drives an individual to the use of the product, and the action phase is where the user repeats the behavior in anticipation of a reward (Eyal, 2014). For example, a colleague or classmate emails a file attachment that requires Office to open and the action is to simply open the file (Eyal, 2014). The reward phase is when the individual has an itch of curiosity to see what is in the file, and the investment phase is where one puts something into the product such as an Office update in anticipation of future benefit (Eyal, 2014). Office still has one billion users worldwide, and therefore, it should not be so hard to make it a habit for the existing users.
The challenge in my opinion lies in staving off Google Docs and Apps from taking away even more market share on account of being a free and real-time collaborative tool. Is giving away Office on mobile for free really the answer to stem the tide of Google? The YouTube Parodies here, though they may be somewhat accurate, won’t do the trick.
Thank you for reading.
Eyal, N. (2014). How customers get hooked on products. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved 12/02 from https://hbr.org/2014/11/how-customers-get-hooked-on-products
Wingfield, N. (2014). Microsoft, changing tack, makes office suite free on mobile. Retrieved 12/02 from http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/07/technology/microsoft-to-give-away-mobile-version-of-office-software.html