Digital strategy is the process of identifying, articulating and executing on digital opportunities that will increase your organization’s competitive advantage.
Modern age is a time with no attention span and most amount of connectivity; where the day starts and end with a mobile phone and everything; including money, is digital. Customers pick up their smart phone for any “i-want-to-go” or “i-want-to-know” micro-moments and companies need to be there, be relevant and be quick to influence the customer during those moments. In such an era, it is critical for companies to create a unique value proposition that incorporates digital technologies in a way that is difficult for competitors to replicate
Your company may be working on a mobile, social, or cloud strategy in isolation. But your fast paced customers are looking for a unified approach across digital and physical platforms where different technologies merge to provide an experience that is natural. Often times, companies are “incremental” when investing in digital resulting in mostly automating or extending existing customer engagement processes. While these investments can have precisely calculated and produce measurable returns, they dont create opportunities to transform the business.
A business should be holistic in its digital strategy taking into considering customer, product, operations, business processes and profits. A start-up can win by bringing digital transformation into a mature industry. But large organizations who have market leadership positions can prevent entry from such competitors by staying in the forefront of digital transformation. Companies like Apple, Uber, Amazon and PayPal have disrupted mature industries with digital transformation while keeping the “human experience” in the forefront. Kaiser, a health integrator based in California uses a customer digital strategy where they use technology to deliver seamless and low-cost access to providers.
A Digital Strategy is essentially the subset of your business strategy where the first step is to define the “why”. A question that could be difficult to answer for many organizations: “why does my organization exist”. Setting objectives and goals in this context will set a clear digital vision for the business. Given the criticality of a well defined strategy, companies often chose a cross functional executive team to build the companies digital strategy
The emergent nature of digital forces means that harnessing them is a journey, not a destination— a rare opportunity for companies to transform themselves into a new era of competition and growth
The author would like to thank Mark McDonald, Accenture and Martin Hirt, Mckinsey whose work in the field of digital strategy.