I started asking my 'Strategy' question again after recognizing the anxiety that is felt with the accelerated pace of online (web, social media, mobile ....) changes and the pressure felt by organizations wishing to stay current and capture the best “business value” from the digital medium. We refer to this concern as ”digital” anxiety.
My ‘best guess’ is that digital anxiety is created from the overabundance of information and options available on the internet. Think about it…whether it’s from a perception that the competition is doing something, the media world telling us about the latest digital contribution to a success (or failure) story, advertising about the latest and greatest new digital services, or just the people around us consuming digital media (texting, cell call, chat, facebook me!) a businesses place in the digital world can seem unsettling.
And to top it off, the digital world is getting more intricate. Not necessarily in terms of good business thinking but in terms of the digital networks, platform options, news and the complexity and amount of information available. Did you know that if all the information on the internet were to be written down, it would take 57,000 years to get through it all - reading non-stop 24 hours a day, seven days a week? (source - Harvard’s Berkham Institute)
With a good strategy in place you can maximize how your activities will provide measured results. Prior to starting an initiative you can discuss, plan and strategize around the outcomes you wish to influence. You can potentially eliminate some risks. You can communicate and “level set” expectations. You can alleviate digital anxiety. And most importantly your strategy can lead to improved profits, supporting learning and positively impacting corporate culture.
A business needs a platform to grow on. People like to understand what their efforts are contributing to. Conversely, heading down the wrong digital path can be costly: non-working programs, time expended, motivation lost, etc..Such roadblocks within a corporation can hinder the ability to capture value from digital initiatives. It might even possibly create a negative brand impression by not fulfilling on visitor expectations and brand engagement.
Here’s a quick test to see if your current or future digital initiatives are strategic and if they are going to bring you clear and measurable value. Answer 'yes' to the following statements:
1. I can tell you the specific purpose of my company's digital initiatives in two sentences or less.
2. I can show measurements confirming that our actions are meeting the goals we established.
3. I can assess new business opportunities against our digital plans.
Answering yes ensures that you have most likely establish a solid roadmap for your success. A no should get you started on defining or refining your strategy, casting aside your ‘digital anxiety’ and enjoying the digital drive!
Joe Wozny, author of The Digital Dollar: Sustainable Strategies for Online Success, is a digital and online media thought leader, strategist, author, blogger and international presenter on strategies to improve the reach and success of Internet, social and digital media initiatives. Through Concentric, he helps leaders leverage their businesses using smart, well planned digital strategies. For more information on Joe as an author, please visit joewozny.com , and follow him on Facebook and Twitter
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