The benefits of a digital Business Strategy
A common misconception is that strategic planning for a brand, communications or marketing plan is only for large companies. But the reality is that most businesses can greatly benefit from a digital business strategy.
Whether it’s assessing where your brand is located on the maturity curve, repositioning your organization, deciding how digital will affect all areas of the business, buying a competitor, increasing your capital or aiming for higher growth, you need the right strategies, structure, plans and controls in place to optimize the return on your investment.
What does ‘strategic planning’ entail?
Strategic planning involves looking at where you want your company to be in the next 3 to 5 years and determining what you need to do to get there. By setting goals and developing big-picture strategies to guide your day-to-day digital brand, communications and marketing operations, you’re no longer flying blind. A mid to long-term plan simply increases your chances of success.
Some benefits of strategic planning include:
Strategic planning should be a priority as it reduces risk, particularly in periods of economic uncertainty. Assess your current situation, resources, strengths and weaknesses, competitors and the business environment. You will be better equipped to make decisions and therefore to minimize risk.
Strategic planning also helps to shake things up a little. It’s a way to rekindle the visionary drive that got you started in the first place. Strategic planning reignites that passion for what you’re doing. If you have a real plan with goals, it’s very rewarding to achieve each milestone. That sense of satisfaction builds the momentum that you need to push even further.
You are able to reduce the risk of doing business, based on better decisions, and achieve your company’s potential.
Enhanced brand, communications & marketing goals
Envision and define your brand, communications or marketing goals over the next 3 to 5 years. Social media and the digital onslaught has dramatically changed the way that brands are experienced by consumers. A strategic digital business plan will help you understand what the impact is/has been and enable you to plan your brand, communication and marketing goals accordingly.
Stay ahead of the competition
Part of the process of strategic planning includes assessing your current business environment, as well as strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of both your company and your competitors. Your competition are probably studying you online as you read this! There are so many free digital tools at your disposal which have been developed specifically for you to create a dashboard to assess your competition on a daily basis. Digital is a NOW business. Gone are the days where you could take weeks and perhaps even months to assess your competitive landscape.
Enhanced work production
Where employees are engaged and aligned in a single, simple strategy, enhanced work production is a natural by-product. In addition, clear communication, assigned timelines and designated responsibilities ensure that any identified problems are addressed swiftly and with greater turn-around times. A ‘team work’ mentality with clear goals, strategies and tactics not only affects work production, but ‘dream production’, and will help you to turn your plan into a reality.
How to successfully implement strategic planning:
Involve your employees
Involve employees in the strategic planning exercise, particularly in smaller companies. When employees contribute and feel as if they are making a difference, they take ownership of the plan and help you to reach your goals. Never forget that human-capital is often the most valuable asset of your business. If an employee feels appreciated, this builds enthusiasm in your company and gets everybody on the same page. Teamwork is a crucial aspect when it comes to implementing the strategies and plans that you have developed.
Get outside advice
A crucial part of successful strategic planning is to ensure you seek an external, objective point of view. Most small businesses don’t have the resources and expertise in-house to guide them through the strategic planning process. Infinipod can give you a fresh perspective on your business, help you envision the future you want and define your long-term goals. An objective expert can also ensure you follow a rigorous plan with clear timelines and assigned responsibilities. Bottom line, it’s about getting you thinking differently about your company and bringing you closer to achieving your digital dreams.