Fiona Sussan, PhD., University of Phoenix, School of Advanced Studies, Center for Global Business Research and Information Technology
The Digital Economy and the New Way to do Business
The digital economy has changed the way we live and work. We are in a shared economy and a gig economy. With digitization, we telecommute and work in virtual groups, we have train and bus schedules push to our phones, we have virtual surgeries, and we will soon be ordering from WholeFoods online via Amazon. Unstaffed retail stores already exist.
With digitalization (i.e., leveraging digitization), new businesses models were born daily (e.g., Facebook, Bitcoin), digital businesses are displacing brick-and-mortar stores (e.g., Amazon vs. Macys), smart cities with one-stop healthcare services for retirees (e.g., 500 smart cities are being built in China as we speak), and more.
More importantly, in business, what we think we understand about consumers is no longer true. In the omnichannel environment, there exists a ‘reversal of asymmetry of information’ – in other words customers know more than salespersons! And there are artificial intelligence (AI) (e.g., shopbots) that provide customers with all that information. With social media-based word-of-mouth, finally ‘customer is king’ has arrived. Customers are now called users. Users want to participate and co-create with firms. Users want to ‘experience’.
In a gig economy, everyone is their own boss. The concept of 9 to 5 employment ceases to exist. Workers/users want to work whenever they like – if they want to take off 3 months to go to India – it is normal. These users are into ‘anti-consumption’, share a couch, and social value. The best businesses in the digital economy are matchmakers.
About the Speaker: For the past fifteen years, Professor Sussan’s research in online consumer behavior has won awards from Association for Consumer Research (ACR), American Marketing Association (AMA), Emerald, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and others, with all of her work emphasizing the changes Internet brought forth to consumer behavior, marketing strategies, and even Intellectual Capital reporting. Her latest award in 2015 from AMA American Collegiate Retailing Association investigates online multi channel consumer behavior and informs the adaptation sales profession needs to do. Her award winning research focuses on digitalization and its impact on consumer behavior, marketing communications, selling technique, and entrepreneurship. Her research has been published in Journal of Business Research, International Marketing Review, Journal of Intellectual Capital, Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Journal of Consumer Marketing, Corporate Communications, Asian Journal of the Asian Pacific Economy, Journal of Payments Strategy and Systems, International Journal of Business and Globalization, SAM Advanced Management Journal, International Journal of Applied Management Science, Journal of Military and Information Science, the Japan Journal of Administrative Science, among others. Professor Sussan serves on editorial boards of various journals. In 2015, she was a keynote speaker on economic policy and entrepreneurial ecosystems for the ASEAN-Korean Forum in Seoul, Korea. In 2015 – 2016, Professor Sussan co-authored the first global digitization Index (Telefonica Index of Digital Life) with a Global Fortune 100 company investigating digitalization and its impact on daily lives in more than 30 countries. During the same time, Professor Sussan was a Senior Fellow at School of Policy, Government, and International Affairs, George Mason University. Prior to her academic career, Professor Sussan worked in international finance industry as an international bond trader in Tokyo, Hong Kong, London, and New York. She has been featured in the Japan Times. Originally a native from Hong Kong, Professor Sussan is fluent in Cantonese, Putonghua, Japanese, and English.
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