Globally, 2020 AND 2021 were the most challenging years ever faced by businesses since the great depression. We saw digital operations take center stage and become a requirement to doing business on an ongoing basis. As a result, planning for 2022, like last year, is still all about the digital business plan.
The pandemic pushed business managers and owners across all industry sectors to reconsider their plans, budgets and, more importantly, their overall digital strategy. The correlation between consumers and streamers increased dramatically.
Digital platforms represent the most valuable companies in the world. Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft and many others have built their fortunes by facilitating disruptive innovation and/or by offering a broad array of digital goods and services. For businesses, the new year planning process could not be clearer…
To compete as a new platform and/or leverage an existing digital platform for competitive advantage while creating value to consumers.
A ‘Digital’ Business Plan
For new or existing businesses, digital platforms present enormous opportunities but also pose serious risks. Competing on what have become multi-sided markets, your digital plan needs to address several imperative actions:
- Identify the factors that must be included for your or any platform to be successful
- Fully understand the social and ethical responsibilities of creating or leveraging a digitally-driven business
- Address the access issue. What to allow users to see and use and how to prevent misuse or abuse of the platform
- Understand and enforce data privacy issues and responsibilities
- Explore and decide on how you will respond to competing platforms
- Really get to understand how to use other platforms so as to more successfully market your business
- Offer tech support for your customer and/or make sure the platform you’re using offers tech support for you
- Make sure that you have full security measures implemented to protect your business and personal accounts
- Be flexible and prepared for change, because it will come — have several “if, then” scenarios outlined
- Above all, make sure the User Experience is optimum — which includes customer service
You will have to dive deep into developing your 2022 plan to draw out the most from your digital platforms. Be patient. Moreover, if the premise of your business is solid, and you know your target market, the momentum should come.
The Pandemic Effect
The pandemic changed the way we shop and when we shop. In addition, buyers tend to purchase from the brands and businesses that offer discounts, free and/or fast delivery. Moreover, the types of purchases have shifted as well. With more time spent at home, exercise equipment, housewares, home improvement, sporting goods, toys and other educational and stay-at-home related products and services are spiking.
So far, there is still a lot of uncertainty out there. Whether you're business is affected by government mandates will become a factor.
The reaction to the pandemic caused almost every business worldwide to build and/or pivot their business around a digital platform or to, at least, enhance their digital operations. This move was crucial to accommodate shifting consumer purchasing requirements and forced consumption due to lockdown situations. For this new year, business planning must center around the consumer, putting their needs first. Then subsequently, build-out the business’s digital platform to better serve customers.