November 21, 2017 by in Digital Disruption Comments (17)

Do you understand what a digital strategy looks like?

Far too many business owners & senior executives are lost when it comes to discussing their organisation’s digital strategy – basically, because they simply do not understand the digital environment..

At the recently held “Huawei Connect” conference in Shanghai, Nigel Fenwick, a Vice President and principle analyst of Forrester Consulting, released his company’s study on Digital Strategy awareness titled, “Business and Technology Leadership in a Post Digital Era”.

Forrester surveyed over 200 IT and business managers across selected markets in North America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region and found less than five percent of business leaders were confident they understood their organisation’s digital strategy.

Of even more concern was the fact that less than ten percent of business IT leaders claimed they understood their organisation’s digital strategies.

A big contributor to this situation could be the pace of change in the technology sector, as managers struggle to put digital innovations into the context of the business. However, one of the outcomes of this lack of understanding is how companies are ‘Bolting on’ digital strategies to their existing business models – rather than thinking about how their industries, products and markets are being transformed.

This “Piecemeal” approach often results in the organisation’s digital marketing efforts being far less effective than they could be – in fact, many times, companies find that one aspect of their digital marketing works against others (especially in more traditional marketing efforts) as conflicting messages are communicated.

Whilst the small and selective data set in Forrester’s report means that the results aren’t that authoritative, it does highlight that more needs to be done to bring digital marketing strategies into the mainstream of an organisation’s overall marketing effort – in order that economies of scale & focused communications can be brought to bear.

That isn’t going to happen whilst business owners & senior corporate leaders keep their head in the sand on all things digital – often handing responsibility for decision making in the space to those with digital expertise (usually far younger team members), who often make sound digital decisions but are, nonetheless, flawed decisions as they fail to take into account the wider needs of both the organisation & its customer base.

There’s no longer any excuse for senior decision makers to shrug off digital as just a passing fad. It’s been around for twenty years now &, whilst it is an ever changing landscape (as new technologies, software & apps are developed), it has earned its “Stripes” & needs to be taken very seriously.

Any organisation that sees the ongoing “Digital revolution” as a threat has a leadership team that is ignorant to the digital space – it isn’t a threat, it’s an opportunity – but you need to understand it in order to develop digital strategies that position the organisation to take advantage of those opportunities.

Dennis is a “Digital Nomad” with an MBA in Marketing Management & has been involved in the online environment for over 15 years. He helps local businesses develop sustainable online marketing programs by applying a strategic focus to laser target what a business needs to be doing & when. He can be contacted at www.communicationcommando.com

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