Digital Transformation – adapt your brand to digital trends
Today is the best time to start planning your company’s digital transformation. You may not notice it, but the world is adopting more technologies. For example, the worldwide adoption of cryptocurrency is spreading further every day. As a result, we see more banking systems powered by blockchain around the world.
More people work from home nowadays, and more children attend online classes. We rely on smartphone apps more than ever as they bring us everything we want and need at our doorstep. More and more businesses are waking up to this trend, so they’re taking on the adoption of digital technologies. When will your brand take the first step?
We’ll help you get started by elaborating more about digital transformation. We will talk about what it means and how you can implement it for your business. We will also show you a few companies and their successful digital transformation initiatives. More importantly, we will show how your company can go digital too!
What does it mean to “go digital”?
The term digital transformation seems simple, doesn’t it? Just use digital technology to improve your business, right?. Of course, there’s more to this than most people think!
The concept covers more than just how your business runs. It affects the culture, marketing, customer service, and even sales. This means bigger changes for companies.
Your digital transformation strategy will include business models. You will have to change how your company runs and strives for its business goals.
Just how deep should your new business strategy be? It should have three parts: digitization, digitalization, and digital transformation. Let’s take a closer look at each one:
- Digitization – This means replacing your analog tools with digital ones. For example, you may get rid of your filing cabinets to store documents in an electronic database instead.
- Digitalization – You should also use digital data so your work becomes simpler. Let’s take international money transfers as an example. Back then, it took days because so many people had to check and approve your transaction. Nowadays, it takes fewer steps with cryptos like Stellar Lumens (XLM) and Ripple (XRP).
- Digital transformation – After you have new tools, it’s time to take a step back and review how your company runs. As we said, you will have to make a new business plan to fit the new trends. This step is sometimes called DX or DT.
Why do you need digital transformation?
You might be wondering why you’d need such major changes, especially if your company doesn’t seem to have any problems. That might not last long, though.
DX is happening throughout various industries, so your brand can’t avoid it. You must adapt or watch your competitors leave you in the dust! The data shows it too.
According to Garner, machine learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are becoming more common. Over the last four years, 37% of companies have adopted AI in some way.
For example, services like Netflix use AI to recommend the best shows to their clients. Meanwhile, more businesses are using AI marketing nowadays.
Aside from the stats, there are other reasons why your company needs a digital transformation. Read the following for more details:
- Customers expect it – Nowadays, people use digital tools and services for almost everything. For example, they can order a wide range of products from Amazon and get them all the same day. If you can’t provide a similar customer experience, then you might lose your clients quickly.
- Competitive edge – Digital transformation can improve business processes to increase productivity. For example, having contact centers can provide access to numerous digital channels. This lets you serve more customers who use different devices and tools. What’s more, the call centers allow you to manage a huge number of customers!
- Fewer spending – The old ways are much more expensive to use nowadays. For example, a small business owner may use several apps instead of hiring staff. These can monitor supply chains, distribute payroll, and do other things that need workers.
- More opportunities – Once you have a digital business, it could access new markets or expand the existing one. For example, businesses had to use Zoom and similar tools for online meetings. If employees can go to other countries again, they could quickly discuss new opportunities they found there.
Read More: Will Your Country Adopt Bitcoin Soon?
Types of digital transformation for businesses
You can change your company in three ways. Let’s see the problems with the first two, so we can highlight the best method. First, you can focus on using more tech.
If your brand doesn’t have a website, you may build one. You may even launch an app just for your services. That’s it for digital transformation, right?
This tech-first approach only sees how the tools will help the company. It ignores how it will serve customers. Let’s say you did make a new website for your brand.
Sadly, you didn’t consider how it would look on other people’s devices. As a result, your potential customers can’t read your website, so they leave. Your tech turns them off instead!
Now, let’s look at the business-first approach. You ignore the gadgets and focus on customers. As we said, there are so many reasons why you need to improve your tech!
The best way to digital transformation is called the cross-functional approach. You consider both the tools and the people who will use them. Let’s use the website example again.
If you use responsive web design, your site will adjust to any viewer’s screen. This lets them see your website the right way. What’s more, this helps you rank higher on search engines!
Steps to digital transformation
By now, you probably see that this will not be easy. Yet, you can still do it by following a few steps. We will explain each of the following briefly:
- Check your current status – You will have to see if you can pull off the changes needed. This will require lots of money and skill, so make sure you have them. If you don’t have the funds yet, perhaps you could borrow money for your business by taking out a loan or selling shares.
- See how DX can help – Next, you should check if a digital transformation can truly help your business. Match them with your company’s long-term goals. Will new tools help make more money or improve your products and services? For example, do you need cloud computing, or will a local server be enough?
- Create a strategy – You will need your business partners and employees for this. Once you’ve decided to push through with this, it’s time to make a strategy. See how your brand can reach its goals using this new plan.
- Consider the risks – Talk about how your new plan may fail. This may feel bad, but it’s part of trying something new. What’s more, this lets you improve the plan if needed.
- Choose the best tools – Getting new business tech will often require a lot of money. That’s why you should pick the ones that will suit your business. Only purchase them once you’re sure.
- Help your team learn – You will need the right people that can use your new tech. Help your employees by giving them ways to get the needed skills. Give them time, and be willing to wait for them to get the needed training. If you still need more people, tell your current employees first before hiring new ones.
- Test your strategy – After planning, it’s time to try your new plan. If you have shareholders, you should talk to them about it first. Set a meeting so you can take the time to explain your plan properly. They are also owners of your company, so they have a say in how it will operate.
- Check the results – Make sure you’re tracking how your strategy is doing. See what’s going right or wrong about it, so you can apply the needed changes next time.
- Prepare for change – You should also talk to the people in your company about the changes you’re making. Explain why the brand needs to change, and explain the reasons behind it. This makes sure they say yes to how you’ll be handling the company in the long run.
Businesses that have undergone digital transformation
You might think a DX strategy isn’t common nowadays. Yet, the biggest brands have been applying this method. Let’s look at some of them below:
- IKEA – The Swedish furniture brand launched an Augmented Reality feature in its app. This lets customers pick new fixtures and impose them on a 3D replica of their room. They could see how it would look in their room before they made a purchase.
- Disney – Due to the coronavirus, people couldn’t go to the theaters to watch Disney films. In response, the company launched the Disney+ streaming platform. It’s like Netflix or Youtube TV, but for Disney series and movies. This allowed them to continue serving their customers even while most of them stayed at home.
- Starbucks – The major coffee brand offered Wi-Fi in its cafes and loyalty cards to its customers. Such a simple move improved customer experience!
How blockchain boosts digital transformation
We talked about how modern tech can do things faster than people could. There’s no better example of that right now than blockchain! It’s what powers bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Bitcoin (BTC) runs on a decentralized network called the blockchain. There’s no big server held by a large firm or government. Instead, it’s enabled by people volunteering to run the network.
They confirm BTC transactions using their computers. In return, they earn more bitcoin. This lets the system run by itself without relying on just one central hub.
It’s made up of nodes that run independently from each other. The others aren’t affected if one of them breaks, so the entire network keeps running.
This is why some cryptos offer services that benefit from this system. For example, Filecoin (FIL) lets people store their documents in a blockchain.
Another crypto called Ethereum (ETH) allows smart contracts. These are agreements that execute once certain conditions are met. It can do this without the help of a third party.
The feature makes crypto lending possible. It’s when you borrow money with your cryptos as collateral. Smart contracts make it easier and faster.
Payment services like Square use blockchain nowadays. It’s helping the company make more money and raise its stock price.
Your effective digital transformation won’t happen overnight. This will require a lot of trial and error to get right. Yet, it’s a worthwhile risk considering the current trends.
Sadly, your staff may not have the skills you need for the changes. Training and hiring will probably take time. Still, this doesn’t mean you should let the new era of business pass by.
LeadAdvisors has the right people you need to jumpstart your digital transformation. From web design to social media marketing, it can lead your company to more customers and sales!