Digital Success in 6 Steps
How can the alignment between brands and start-ups boost digital capabilities of businesses in the New World? Osnat Golan, V.P. Communications, Digital and Sustainability, shares insights and tips from the annual LEWEB conference.
About a month ago, representatives of companies, brands and startups gathered in Paris for the annual LEWEB conference. This conference, which has focused on creating a conversation on digital innovation for the past 14 years, decided to take a step further in connecting startups to manufacturers and brands this year.
While in the past, start-up entrepreneurs raised capital primarily through investment funds, the sharing economy of today enables every citizen to become an investor and owner. Large companies have identified the opportunity to make these technology entrepreneurs their main source of business innovation. They have come to realize long ago that consumers expect more from brands and that in order to create a competitive edge it is no longer enough to buy technology- there needs to be a digital transformation in the organization. Here is how to do it step by step:
1. Creating an eco-system of open innovation
Finding a leader who will be responsible for building new organizational competencies. Developing a new language, harnessing the leadership team to adopt the concept, recruiting talents and building a bridge between startups and their brand, adopting new tools and primarily a culture of experimentation, accelerating processes, setting up multi-disciplinary teams (marketing with information systems, logistics or product development), designing new technological and organizational infrastructures and realizing that the digital discipline works in circles rather than through hierarchy.
2. Almost everything has become communities-based
Web inventor, Sir Tim Berbers Lee, proposed to build freely-available platforms on which people could raise ideas. Build platforms that bring people together and you will extend your reach to distant places.
3. The future lies in the ability of brands to form a personal experience
Brands undergo change. The goal: to create value and a personal experience. Technology facilitates new touch points with consumers. Infrastructures as well as availability of data and its analytics enable manufacturers to better understand their consumers. All of a sudden there is a possibility to get a closer look into which emotion a brand sparks among consumers, their consumption habits, and expectations from the brand. For the first time it is possible to fine-tune a product and service up to the supply chain, and ultimately create a preference.
4. Technology in the right context
Consumers want maximum information with minimum hassle. The next challenge facing brands will be to place applications in a usable place. In the future, whoever places applications on a product as a valuable utility connected to an action performed by consumers, will gain high usability and involvement levels.
5. Valuable visual content
People think through images. Video footage and infographic are effective within the right context. The creation of such moves must be meaningful to web surfers-consumers. These moves connect people and create viral outputs, turning the brand from a content-manufacturer to a content-curator of consumers.
6. The next thing
Fred Wilson, founder of the investment fund Union Square Ventures, marks the field of health and wellness with wearable technology, as a major factor that will affect our lives in the coming years. How will it work? Our body will be flooded with sensors, so that we may monitor its activity online, the effects of nutrition or sports on us, the sleep quality of our children and even their physical strength. The availability of new data will enable us to manage our quality of life more correctly. Medicine will be able to make a giant leap in improving the effectiveness of both treatment and prevention.
So for those of you who are running ahead in terms of digital thinking, whether you are start-up entrepreneurs, brand owners who see themselves responsible for the quality of people's lives, or investors – your business opportunity is clear and the profit and value produced through proper work is yours and your consumers' alike.