Spiceworks Surpasses One Million Users, Celebrates Largest IT Community
Yesterday, Spiceworks announced that its user base now exceeds one million IT professionals across nearly 200 countries. The company’s rapid growth has dispelled a number of industry myths and represents a prime example of how I’ve been suggesting the tech industry is being redefined.
Here’s a quick list of some of the myths busted by Spiceworks’ success,
- Ad-based, free services don’t work in the business-to-business (B2B) market,
- IT professionals are not willing to use ad-based, freemium services to satisfy their day-to-day management needs, and
- IT professionals are too concerned about the security issues associated with social networking to join an online community like Facebook.
Welcome, to Spiceworks — an ad-based, freemium service aimed at IT professionals which not only gives them access to a solid set of management tools, but also gives them the benefit of sharing information and insight with their peers through a Facebook-like online community.
Spiceworks hasn’t only built a strong customer base of IT users for its own management solutions, it has also created a marketplace for a widening array of hardware, software and service vendors seeking to sell to this powerful segment.
And, now that the company has built a critical mass of customers, it is harvesting the data generated by this community to not only document its significance but also deliver new forms of value to its users, such as benchmark statistics and industry best practices. This is an idea which I’ve been advocating for a while as you can read in my past column in Ecommerce Times.
As a result, Spiceworks is not only sitting on top of a growing population of customers, but also creating a club which its members feel proud to be a part of and are encouraging to grow. This is the ideal of building a community of net-promoters which has made Facebook such a success.
Spiceworks is applying these same principles to the IT industry and forcing traditional players to re-think their go-to-market strategies.