Digital Transformation is a well-known buzzword nowadays. It almost seems like marketers are hiding behind it to cover up what has become a big problem in companies of any size: the lack of a strategic approach in digital – or simply common sense.

This may sound harsh. But I do believe our industry needs a wakeup call. While applications use and combine insights from many sources to enhance your experience (here’s another buzzword: Big Data), corporate users forget to focus on the big picture. Instead, they waste hours and hours to streamline copy without content, to justify their jobs, or to focus on a tiny puzzle piece which is irrelevant in context. Enough criticism – you hopefully know by now what my point of view is. Let’s move on to some basic advice to ship your company’s online presence through the rough waters of digital transformation.

Nothing is as constant as change.

No matter how hard you try, the earth will keep turning. Instead of hiding behind “the good old times” nostalgia, embrace the benefits of new technologies and try to get to know them before you judge. My first car came without window lifter or power steering. And I don’t miss it a bit! So do something people have been doing for more than centuries: READ. Read about the platforms you are interested in exploring. Read about what experts feel is good for your industry. And then take your first baby steps towards innovation. You won’t regret it.

Always start with the big picture.

You cannot win a game of soccer when you only focus on the ball. You need to know where your field and goal is, what you need to defend, and who is in your team and can help. So start with a strategy BEFORE you open a social media account. Find out what you would like to improve or change. Check if this is the right channel to match your goals (Facebook alone does not sell your product!) and please don’t do it alone. Ask people from all fields of your company. They represent potential customers and will point you in the right direction.

Take one step at a time.

Rome wasn’t built in day, right? When you go digital, prioritize according to the manpower you have and make a realistic milestone plan. If you can’t handle the fundament (=strategy), don’t even think of how to build the roof.

Ask the right people.

It’s easy to get stuck in inter-departmental discussions. Time is money so don’t waste it. Depending on the expertise your team has, it might make sense to involve a consultant who knows the business. Rather spend a designated budget on a professional and save hours and hours of inhouse trouble.

Use common sense.

Digital marketing offers many opportunities to promote your company. The choice can be overwhelming. Even if your kids are avid Snapchat users, it does not mean you should advertise on “their” platform and corrupt their feed with irrelevant information (it all depends on your product or service). Get to know the platforms and ask yourself the question: “If the users of this platform were in a room with me, would I step up and try to sell them my product? If yes, how would I speak with them?” In the end, it’s all about common sense. And it’s your task to use it wisely.


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