Very often the term digital strategies refers to digital services within the field of marketing. Whether marketing strategy is leveraged to build an online presence through a network of paid advertising, or if it is used to design a website that increases user engagement, marketing is only one application of digital strategy. Here are four overlooked strategies that deserve more recognition.
1. Hardware Strategy
When the city of Limerick, Ireland revealed its new digital strategy no one asked about ad clicks or impressions. Instead, the citizens of Limerick learned that their town would soon have 20 public wi-fi zones, digital displays, live cameras, smart CCTV and an innovation district. The town’s digital strategy is aimed at keeping citizens connected and facilitating commerce and innovation. And it all starts with hardware like routers, and devices, elements that are a necessary part of any digital service.
2. Platform Strategy
Digital services, when performed well, provide users with exceptional experiences. Those experiences start with the organization’s platform. A user interacts with a platform for a variety of reasons and every successful platform caters to the user’s preferences and expectations. A strategy that is focused on anticipating a user’s digital needs is mandatory in competitive industries like e-commerce.
An e-commerce platform with strong front-end digital services, such as easy-to-navigate product lists, fast loading images and real-time updates to shopping carts means little if the platform’s back-end doesn’t track supply chains and logistics. A platform strategy that assists consumers and the business owner is one important strategy that has nothing to do with marketing.
3. Ecosystem Strategy
Technology changes rapidly; what was once cutting edge will quickly turn dull. Businesses can’t afford too invest in the newest digital services if those services will become outdated. One solution to this problem is the development of an ecosystem strategy. In the ecosystem scenario, a business’ digital infrastructure provides users with an end-to-end experience. Instead of relying on separate software elements for different tasks, an ecosystem approach keeps each element of a business in sync with all the others. Upgrades are system-wide and communication between elements is never disrupted.
4. Data Strategy
Decision-making is a serious business. The right decision will save your organization a great deal of money while the wrong decision will be costly in terms of dollars and time wasted. Use analytics and other metrics to determine the best decisions for your business: whether it is a good time to expand, if you are not getting the most out of a vendor, if a supply chain has a weak link. Data allows you to make decisions based on quantitative analysis.
Any one of these four strategies can help a business keep their customers, and not merely market to them.