To start, let us clear up exactly what we mean by digital? Digital refers to anything produced online, using computer technology.
Integrating digital technology into your business model is an effective way to accelerate business growth. Digital outputs and platforms are no longer solely for those in the tech sector to use. The opportunities and advantages presented by digital use can be utilised by all areas of your business, whatever industry you are in. Digital transformation is attainable and viable now for your businesses, you just need to get to grips with knowing how to improve your current processes and factor in some engaging digital activity, to create new benefits for your business model.
At Digital Somerset, we aim to empower people and businesses to collaborate in digital innovation, maximise opportunities, and future-proof yourself against potential disruptive technologies. To assist you with all you need to know about how digital can scale-up your business, read on for our top tips.
Adopting digital technology into your business will rely on a clear and focussed strategy, strong leadership, and a shift in your company’s culture and mind-set. You need to drill down to the core of your business, to thoroughly begin integrating digital technology into the heart of your business practices to encourage transformation, helping to accelerate growth. The advantages you will see in your business can reach far beyond your expectations.
Digital transformation is becoming more of a requirement for businesses every day, ensure you are not left behind by making some simple modifications to your existing business processes and customer experiences to meet the changing digital needs of your consumers.
We all know that social media is more prevalent today than ever before. Social media usage in the UK is rapidly growing and it has become vital to have a strong digital presence. If you have not already, and if it is relevant to your business, we would advise setting up social media platforms in the areas that your business wants to be seen in. To do this, undertake a customer segmentation first. This will outline to you exactly who your customers are, and who your target audience should be. Following this step, you will need to do some research into which platforms your target market engage with. You need to be where your customers are!
For example, if you are a B2B company, LinkedIn is a key platform for you, or if you are a small business owner with beautiful products, we would recommend visually led social media, such as Instagram and Pinterest. Furthermore, your content should reflect your brand, it should be appealing and attractive to your target audience, and, ultimately, lead to sales. Social media is not just as easy as snapping a quick picture. It is important to have a strategy behind your posts.
E-commerce is buying or selling products online. Introducing e-commerce options to purchase your products or services, or even shopping through your social media pages in shoppable posts, helps increase the potential reach of your business, expanding your audience globally.
The use of live videos has spiked during the global pandemic. With many businesses and customers only able to engage via digital platforms, live videos have seen an unbelievable increase in listeners and attendees. What better way to sit down and talk to your customers than to do just that! Make the most of creating deeper connections by hosting relevant and interesting events on your social media channels. Producing live videos is incredibly easy to do, you all you need is high-quality camera (your mobile phone is often good enough quality), a microphone, and a social media platform of your choosing (we particularly like Facebook Live but it depends on your business).
On many platforms, the algorithm boosts live videos, so you have a high chance of achieving impressive viewing statistics. If you would prefer to pre-record a video, rather than performing live, creating video content such as unboxing videos, behind the scenes of your business or explainer videos is a great way to jazz up a social media post and make it easy for the consumer – wherever they may be in the world - to get to know your brand.
Designing and creating compelling content relevant to your business will be sure to boost your digital game. A blog is one of the best ways to showcase your specialist knowledge and expertise in a plethora of topics relevant to your industry. Our key tips for drafting a blog is to keep it authentic and have a conversation with your reader, just like we are right now with you. Blogs are an impactful way of driving interest to your website (if that is where you are hosting your blog).
Make sure your blog is easy to find and read, as well as having design appeal – you do not want it looking like a boring piece of text, so be sure to include attractive images (either your own or outsource royalty-free images) to incorporate the wow-factor.
Your website is the most important tool in your digital toolkit. It is more than your shop window now, it is often the first, and last, place a customer will engage with you. Your website should of the relevant information your customer needs to make a purchase or enquiry to your products or services.
We advise you to include a meet the team, about us, key product/service information, a blog or news channel (as long as you will keep it updated!), case studies, newsletter sign up, contact information, and links to your social media channels. Search engine optimisation is hugely important to ensure you rank highly for your products or services on Google, providing organic click-throughs and website visits, ultimately generating sales.
Marketing automation is another super useful digital tool to use to bring your email marketing to a whole new level. You can easily purchase software, such as Hubspot, to get your digital marketing up to scratch. A digital newsletter should provide a variety of advice, news, and products to your customers.
Ensure you have multiple clear ways to subscribe, and if you use a marketing automation tool, you can set rules to categorise your subscribers by interests, demographic, industries, and more. This way, you can issue e-shots purposefully with tailored content to engage your subscribers to start, or continue, on the purchasing journey.
Growing your digital presence requires some dedicated time, persistence, and effort, but we promise it will be worth it. Our favourite mantra to grow your digital presence is ‘engage to get engagement’, spending dedicated time to build an online following by interacting with your target audience. The beauty of digital content means your brand can be seen by all corners of the world and is not limited to a geographical location, unlike a physical shop is. Your digital presence is an undeniable part of your brand’s identity and getting digital right can help extend your market significantly. Hopefully, our steps above have given you some food for thought into the many ways you can begin growing your business through digital.
Our team at Digital Somerset are always on hand to support, connect and showcase the digital sector in the county. Our community-driven group of individuals and businesses are passionate about ensuring the region becomes a hub for digital innovation and collaboration. If you are interested in any of our upcoming events or would like to get in touch with our team, please contact us on: firstname.lastname@example.org