Some answers to those frequently asked questions. If you have another question please contact me.
What types of organisations do you would with?
I have experience of working with start-ups, SME's, FTSE100 companies and charities across a number of industries. I work with organisations of all sizes. It's a particularly exciting time for forward looking SME's - with easy to implement and affordable technology that can be used with the right strategy, people and processes to help you get ahead of your competitors.
My business is performing well. Do we really need a digital strategy?
Yes! Few organisations can ignore the opportunity for growth that using digital channels effectively can offer - or the risks from competitors or new digitally savvy market entrants getting ahead. Successful companies often have the most to gain, as a well executed digital strategy can amplify that success. Conversely a half-hearted participation in digital channels can do more harm than good, potentially damaging your brand and using valuable resources without delivering the goods. A sound strategy based on well proven direct marketing techniques and principles will help you prioritise the right activities, chose the right technology, develop the right skill-sets and implement the right processes and culture. Your audiences are connected and expect their experience of your organisation to be connected, co-ordinated and aligned too. Getting that joined-up strategy right will multiply the positive results you achieve through digital channels.
What does a digital strategy look like?
It doesn't contain vague objectives like "to increase engagement", "improve conversion" or "communicate brand values". The focus of a strategy is on actions that will solve real world issues and meet the needs of a modern digital customer. It should start with a clear vision together with specific and measurable objectives. A strategy will contain practical plans to meet those objectives with clear overarching guiding principles within which the organisation can operate.
We already have a good website, are doing some SEO and participating in social media. Do we need a digital strategy and transformation programme?
Yes. A digital strategy and transformation initiative goes beyond your website, search marketing and social media. It focuses on having a clear vision of how your organisation will adapt to meet the dramatic changes in consumer buying behavior - joining up your sales and marketing, online user experience and customer service approach. A digital strategy will enable you to define, execute, measure, manage your company’s digital efforts, to meet the current and future expectations of its customers. The transformation plan focuses on how you can consistently execute your online efforts including web design and development, search, social media strategies and analytics.
Will we simply end up with a long document that nobody reads?
No. The objective is to create a clear and simple strategy that can be easily communicated and adopted across the organisation. This can be achieved in a number of ways - but a long, dull Word document is not one of them!
What are the benefits of digital strategy and transformation?
There are many benefits - both commercial and cultural but the focus is on achieving revenue and profit growth. A clear digital strategy, well implemented will lower customer acquisition costs, increase average spend, increase customer loyalty and create an army of advocates for your business. Understanding your customers' online journey, setting KPI's and using actionable analytics are the foundation, on which we can build efficient processes, develop skill-sets and select appropriate technology.
Yes. By mentoring and coaching I can guide you through the process and provide sound advice based on 15 years digital transformation experience.
When is a good time to work with you?
Any time. Organisations who have fallen behind need to catch-up as soon as they can and those who are keeping up need to take the opportunity to consolidate their position online and get ahead of their competitors. Many companies start working with me when they are planning a new website and wish to ensure the new design is planned within the context of an overall digital strategy.
You offer consultancy, coaching & mentoring. Which is right for us?
That depends on whether you have the desire, capability and capacity to run the project in-house. For organisation without that resource, I operate as a consultant working as an extension of your team - focusing on the strategy and transformation project exclusively. If you have the resource to run the project in house I can act as a coach helping your project leaders and senior management manage the project effectively. However we work together my experience, independent perspective and fresh eye will add value to your business.
Is digital transformation primarily about finding the right technology?
Yes and no. Yes in the sense that technology is important. But it's not the initial focus. Technology provides the tools but first you need to be clear on your objectives and strategy. When they are clear you need to consider technology solutions in conjunction with your people, processes and existing platforms. It's important to get technology that is scaleable and integrates well with other systems. It's important to identify the technology that is easy to use and features the functionality you need - but not pay for features that you won't use.
Why do we need a consultant, coach or mentor?
There are plenty of technology suppliers, agencies and even recruitment consultants keen to help to do digital better with their systems, campaigns or candidates. But to decide which platforms, people and promotional approach is right for you there needs to be clarity on your strategy. Of course the web is not just another piece of marketing collateral that can be easily outsourced. It is a business tool that can influence every aspect of the business. Only when you are clear on how to use the internet across your business can you get your internal teams and external suppliers briefed well and working together to maximise revenue and profit growth.
Do you have expertise in content marketing?
Yes. I believe that high quality content represents the most important marketing weapon that businesses can deploy to attract, convert and retain customers. Great content will help you become more visible in search engines and encourage more interest in your service through social media. Content reinforces an organisations’s credibility, authenticity and authority in what it does and how it does it. Telling your story effectively needs planning and investment. But it's a great investment and can usually be financed from savings from reducing some old school marketing activities.