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As the summer months quickly approach, usually that means a couple things…warm weather and the blockbuster summer movie season. It is only a few weeks into summer solstice, and we have already seen several sequels being advertised to enter into the box office. Movie sequels have proven to be popular for many years, and I admit that some of my favorite movies happen to be sequels. This summer promises the sequels to many all-time favorites such as:
- 21 Jump Street
- Planet of the Apes
- Sin City
- The Expendables
And I already have my eye on a few sequels due to release around the holiday season—Horrible Bosses, Hot Tub Time Machine and Dumb and Dumber.
How to Create a Solid Sequel
This trend got me thinking as to why there are so many sequels. First of all, they make a lot of money for the studios, and secondly (and most importantly), it gives the public what they want—which is essentially more of something they really enjoyed the first time around. The original movies do a great job of setting a solid base with creating a good storyline and introducing the public to the characters. Throughout the original, you become familiar with the characters and at the end, if done well, you are left wanting to see more. This concept is no different than your favorite television show, which is why you watch week-after-week.
One of my favorite sequels of all time is The Dark Knight. The director, Christopher Nolan, did a great job creating a storyline with the first installment: Batman Begins. Along with the storyline, he introduced compelling characters and, at the end of the movie, left the audience wanting more. And even more intelligently, Nolan left it open for another installment, which became The Dark Knight.
The very first time I can remember experiencing this with a movie was with the original Back to the Future movie. I loved that movie! Every time I got to the end where Doc said, “Where we are going, we don’t need roads,” and the car took off in the air followed by the text “to be continued“, I couldn’t wait for the follow up to see what adventures Doc, Marty and the rest of the crew would experience next.
Sequels and Software
So how do movie sequels correlate to software? Well-performing software often will offer a base solution to start out with that can help many companies become more efficient. May it be helping to:
- take away the manual process of dealing with fax, or
- sending out postal mail and invoices to your customers, or
- handling sales orders or approving incoming invoices.
More often than not, once a company has implemented a particular software solution, they will often go back to the vendor for additional ways to improve. Why is that? Well, similar to movie sequels, customers are familiar with the vendor and have gotten to know the company and the staff. Conclusively, they have seen the value in the solution they are using and would like to expand that technology into additional outlets—to better help their company grow and become more efficient.
So whether you are a new software user or have been using a particular software for many years, take a look at your internal processes and see if there is an additional way your vendor can help you. Find a way your company can get “Back to the Future” and excel with your existing vendors.