Here’s What you Need to Go Digital!

by November 23, 2015 0 comments

It’s no longer an option for any business to go digital today, and the proof of that lies in the changing lifestyle around us. All normal, everyday activities are being done from a smartphone or online these days—booking movie or travel tickets, socializing, shopping, booking hotels, paying bills, listening to the radio, or what have you. Why, even the local kirana store has gone online, to let you order fruits, vegetables, and daily groceries and have them delivered at your doorstep!

When ordinary consumers are using so many online services, it clearly implies that there’s a growing base of tech savvy people out there. What is also implies is that there are lots of companies out there who’re creating and offering these services online. So if you’re not already going digital, then someone else definitely is, and it’s happening at an exponential pace.

If you are already going digital or have plans to, then you need to do it the right way, to avoid burning a big hole in your pocket and not getting any returns.

Here are a few essential rules of going digital that every business should follow:

One Size Doesn’t Fit All to Take Your Business Online
Digital is a vast domain comprising of so many tools and techniques to take your business online. A careful selection of what you want to do online is therefore very important. A key thing to remember here is that one size doesn’t fit all, so stop following the herd mentality. It’s not necessary that if something worked for an e-commerce company will work for an automobile components manufacturer.

How you want to use digital technologies depends upon the nature of your business and a strong action plan. Do you want to use them to market your services, reach out to existing customers, or explore new ones? Chances are that you’d like to do all of the above, but it’s better to identify the low hanging fruits and do them first.
In the digital world, it’s better to take smaller steps, stabilize operation, and then take the next step. It’s also important that you define these steps clearly in advance so you’re not left floundering in the dark on what to do after the first step!

Identify the Right Digital Medium for your Business
Once you’ve decided what you want to do online, identify how you want to do it? It could be as simple as setting up a website, build a mobile app, setup an e-commerce platform, or use social media. These are the front-runners of the digital world today, and your choice depends upon your company size, cost of doing the activity, and the available manpower to do the job.

For instance, if you’re a small company with a handful of employees, then you’d probably want to first setup a website to tell the world about your presence. It might also be a good idea to gather similar companies like your own and create an online social media group. If you’re already a part of an industry association, then you should urge them to create their own group on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google, etc. Such social media groups can help share important communications, raise concerns, conduct polls to get agreements on critical issues, etc. In other words, whatever you do in an association meeting can be enhanced by doing it first in a social media group.

Here’s the Manpower You’ll Need

Getting the right manpower resources is crucial to the success of any digital strategy. When you’re reaching out to customers over digital channels, you need people who understand these channels, and can leverage them effectively.

Here are a few types of manpower you can look at either hiring or outsourcing:

Social media specialist: As the entire world seems to be on social media, you can’t afford to ignore this important channel. Moreover, to really make your presence felt on this channel, you need someone who understands the nuances of social media, is active on it, and can truly deliver the right message across on what your company is all about. Hiring a part-time novice may not work here, as you want to present your organization to others on social media, and it has to be communicated well.

Content marketing specialist: Yes, the digital world is all about communication. You may have great products and services, but if you can’t explain how great they are to others in the digital world, then don’t expect your digital strategy to succeed. That’s why you need someone to do your content marketing. You need to garner support of experts who’re active on social media, and can interact, drive conversations, etc.

Manpower for an e-commerce site: If you want to sell your products online, then the digital world already has many freely available tools to help you setup your own e-commerce website. What you obviously need is a person who can set this up for you as per your requirements. But setting it up is a very small part of doing e-commerce. Running it after that is where the challenge comes.

Merchandize photos, discount schemes, payment options, promotions to attract consumers are just a few things you need to worry about.

You require tech savvy people, marketing managers, photographers, and designers, just to name a few. Overall, just as a shop owner has to ensure that customers get the right experience when they enter it, you have to do the same with an e-comemrce site. So keep a focus on the quality of online experience that your customers get, else they will never return, and you’ll never know!

Developers: If you’re setting up a website, then you need a web developer, if you’re creating a mobile app, then you need mobile developers. Whether you outsource or hire, you need to have developers who can turn your digital dream into a reality.

Online Storage to Share Info Anytime, Anywhere
Websites, e-commerce sites, and social media aren’t the only things required in a digital strategy. You also need online storage, so that you can share data with your employees, partners, and customers seamlessly. This is where cloud based storage tools become important. Freely available tools like Dropbox, Google Drive, MS OneDrive, etc make it very easy for you to share anything with anyone, and from anywhere.

Mobile Apps–Build New or Deploy Existing?
Mobile apps are a key peg in every digital strategy. There are two sides to mobility–one is to have your own mobile strategy, wherein you create your own apps. Second is to identify existing apps that your users can be given to be more productive. Even WhatsApp for instance, can be used to create groups of a few users. It can therefore be used to communicate with everyone on a project, share photos, videos, and do chats.

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