The Enterprise Social Network market is anything but quiet


Last week, an article on CMSwire explained that the Enterprise Social Network (ESN) market is dead - much thanks to giants like Microsoft and Facebook.

At Incentive, we don't agree with the premise that this market space, ESN, has been quiet - quite the contrary - and that what's being done by Microsoft and Facebook will kill any opportunity for other companies to play in this space.

A quick look at the ESN market - only in and around the Silicon Beach area - shows that the market is far from having been quiet like crickets.

True, the industry might go through an evolution and one could argue that there will continue to be some consolidation and evolution of products available, but at no point will there ever be a one-trick pony, whether they be cloud or on-premise (as the author suggests) - for various reasons.

A fact that the article never addresses is that not all companies will want to share their innermost secrets with open cloud networking services like Facebook or Yammer. We've only seen the tip of the iceberg when it comes to how organizations, governments and companies are spying on each other.

And far from all companies in our world have even begun looking at social collaboration software; a lot of companies will want to invest money to gain control of their own social collaboration - to guarantee ownership of their own data, either in an on-premise solution or in a private cloud. To them, open cloud networking services are simply not enough.

The need for on-premise and private cloud solutions will not go away. Too many businesses, organizations and government groups require a high level of privacy to protect sensitive data - something that Yammer and Facebook today cannot provide.