Reading Time: 3 minutes

Defining Digital Strategy

If you’ve thought, said, or written any of the following…

  • “Where do I start with this whole online thing?”
  • “I don’t have the time to learn about all this new technology.”
  • “Should I even bother? I just want to run my business and focus on what I like doing.”

…you might need help defining your digital strategy.

In this post we will start by defining digital strategy, and why you need one. Before we dive right in, we need to tell you about this thing called digital frustration – I promise you experience it everyday.

Digital Frustration – it’s a real problem.

Business owners are overwhelmed with options and often don’t have the technology background needed to make the right decisions. In other words, digital frustration is the feeling of being overwhelmed and frustrated with the technology and digital tools your company is using or thinking of investing in.

How did digital frustration come about?

The Apple App store launched in July of 2008 and drove growth and innovation in the mobile app space. Specifically, entrepreneurs realized that companies could use apps to help them become more productive. Take a look at your phone,  are there any apps that help you with your work? This rise in app development also lead to an increased focus on general software development. Everything from task management solutions, to full HR Systems that track an employees entire career.

In addition to this, the roles and responsibilities of owners and executives have changed over the past 10 years. In particular, looking after everything from technology to process management, in addition to their existing responsibilities.

Digital frustration is real and it’s a problem. Good news, there is a solution – developing a digital strategy.

Defining Digital Strategy, what is it?

A digital strategy is a form of strategic management and a response to a digital question. What this means, is that tech (or ‘digital’) decisions should be baked into your existing business strategy. Therefore, a good digital strategy can answer the following questions:

  • What software do we use to track and understand our internal operations?
  • What customer facing software do we use, and are we collecting data that will help us better serve them?
  • Do we have the right people in place to use our technology and digital tools in the best way possible?
  • Which platforms are we using to reach our customers and how are we tracking if our strategy is successful?
  • What process do we have in place to identify when to invest in new technology?

It’s important to note that digital marketing is a sub-set of digital strategy.

Digital Strategy vs Digital Marketing

Implementing a digital strategy is the process of your entire company becoming digital. This includes using up to date hardware, software, and skill sets to create a technology driven business that gives you real-time feedback. Digital marketing is how you develop your brand through your website, social channels and email marketing. These are the areas that show your brand to customers and allow you to learn about your customers.

The only way to stay competitive and create a sustainable business model is through the development of a strong digital strategy that places your customers and employees at the center.

More on this in our next blog Digital Strategy and Digital Marketing Decoded.

Importance of investing in Digital Strategy

Above all else, there are two main benefits to having a strong digital strategy:

  • gaining real-time feedback throughout your organization, and
  • the ability to use that feedback to adapt in real time.

Using the right blend of technology, processes and people allows you to create a digital ecosystem that provides the right data to make better decisions. More on digital ecosystems in our blog on Overcoming Digital Frustration – The Ecosystem Approach.

Many organizations are creating entire departments dedicated to “technology innovation”, even though the reason they aren’t seeing results is because tech-know-how needs to be ingrained in the job description of those in senior level positions. Therefore, every decision is a technology decision.

When you’re a small or medium sized business, this responsibility falls on your shoulders.  In other words, you have two options: learn it all yourself, or hire a digital strategy firm to help you make the right decisions.


Do digital the right way

Do you need help in defining your digital strategy? Get in touch with us here to learn how we can help you navigate the world of the internet (and a bunch of other things too).

Sidepart – we don’t do hair, we do digital.

Dana Doswell

Author Dana Doswell

More posts by Dana Doswell