Three processes that are changing the Digital Landscape
Every minute, about 30 million messages are exchanged over WhatsApp. If you have not started preparing your business for Digital, today might be the best day to do so. There are different ways to look at this, and how to prepare is dependent on your definition of what the digital landscape is. In this article, we define “Digital” as a networked technology that supports your human capital, communications, and client relationships.
The difficult task of finding, managing, and growing staff is often still left up to a department that has the letters “H” and “R” stuck on the door. However, Digital is connecting all the humans in your office, regardless of what kind of resource you consider them to be. That connectivity could be happening through LinkedIn, Facebook, Brighter Monday, or even WhatsApp. And that connectivity is breeding new interactions, ideas, and innovation among the people in your workspace.
The Hackett Group finds that companies whose talent management processes are driven by Digital reduce their costs by at least 25% as of 2018. To understand what that could mean for your business, think of how talent development works in steps – for instance, search, onboard, train, manage, and grow – and then think of the tools that may assist at least one of these steps to be completely driven by an online tool. With over 4 billion people using the Internet today, it’s likely that your next great hire will be found online, and might even prefer to work remotely.
According to BCG, 3 out of 4 businesses make B2B trades online, without the influence of a sales person. This is in stark contrast to the tradition of buyers and sellers meeting each other in person. Digital is making it easier to reach individual people directly. With this rapidly improving reach, companies are learning more about specific audiences and tailoring their products and services for them.
Ad Age reported this year that more than half of the revenue earned by US-based advertising agencies was attributed to Digital, indicating significant shifts in marketing and communication budgets. Above The Line (ATL) marketing is still going to be important to brand awareness, but your Below The Line (BTL) messaging will make your Digital ads look relevant to the people seeing them.
Shop counters and office spaces are great places for an experience, but will not always remain so. New Digital spaces are on the rise, from chatbots to LinkedIn business pages, and customers are increasingly considering those as a place where they can experience your service. Salesforce reports that over 80% of customers say that they rate the experience of a business just as high as the product or service.
We need to leave the supplier-centric mindset in its past glory and embrace the customer-centric future. We all need to think more like our customers, starting with our tastes, preferences, and contexts. We all enjoy our ability to choose, and will always prefer being served by people that take time to listen to us, ask the right questions, and provide the right answers.
We are also likely to keep buying from a service provider that takes care of us after the sale, even if they make a simple personalized courtesy call to see we things are doing.
Digital is changing the way your teams work, the way your customers hear about you, and how your after-sales care is delivered. This is a change that is increasingly difficult to resist as more people come online and more new businesses opt to save on cost and deliver goods and services online.
To begin preparing for your change, there is no better time than today. Visit your HR, Sales and Customer Service departments. Try to understand how they are already using Digital technology for fun or work, and what holds future promise. Take time to test different approaches, and always keep the customer in mind. You may find that one of your unread messages on WhatsApp is the start of a whole new customer base.
Al-Amin Kheraj owns and operates Lateral Labs, a digital media consulting agency that focuses on Digital strategy, design, and operations at scale.