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Does your digital strategy work? Five signs indicating that everything is fine

Mark McDonald, Managing Director of Accenture, very cleverly observed that digital strategy demonstrates how business may benefit from the use of information and technology. Inability to use digital technology in modern world makes development of a company impossible.


Yet, implementation of a strategy alone is not enough – the strategy should be effective. How can you know that your strategy is really effective? I have prepared a small checklist that will help answer this question.


1. Your goal is not in the number of pages


Strategy is not about hundreds of pages of text with pictures and tables. It is about an approach that dramatically changes the working, cognitive process and KPIs of both the digital element and operation of the team implementing the newly conceived strategy. Because when you come up with the thought that a new strategy needs to be created, this means you are already on the path to change. If your new strategy does not change the current approach, then do not call this document a strategy. Maybe it's just a tactical plan of action.


2. You know the purpose of your strategy


A strategy may not be just a set of tools with a long implementation timeline. A strategy always leads to a clear goal with the indication of implementation period and costs. The main purpose of a strategy is always easy to explain in a conversation, and no presentation or projector is needed for that. Today, digital tools are highly developed, so they may be used to reach brand, communication, marketing, as well as business goals.


3. You measure the result


Strategy is your movement from point A to point B. Without clearly understanding point A (the current situation, competitors' operations with analogous products and substitutes, target audience) one cannot get to point B by implementing a new strategy. If you closely watch the metrics and core indicators, this enables you to timely analyze and promptly adjust your actions. Digital tools can be measured precisely, so make calculations for every solution.


4. Your team understands the strategy correctly


When creating a new strategy, don't be afraid to involve your team in this exciting process. When a team works on a project, then, in the course of its implementation, you need not find additional motivation for your colleagues. When creating a strategy together, each participant understands their contribution and responsibility for the final outcome. A uniform understanding of a strategy will help decrease confusion during its implementation. One should question hypotheses, find solutions and make arrangements "onshore".


5. Strategy takes into account not only clients


When describing their target audience, experts know about it almost everything – from the average monthly salary to buying habits. However, they seldom pay attention to those who are NOT clients. In terms of economy, it is much less expensive to attract consumers who are not your target clients than to retain the existing ones. Focusing on particular clients only, companies lose new opportunities for extending their consumer audience. Those who are NOT your clients are close at hand – you just need to sometimes look at other categories and offer a product or service as a substitute and not a competitor.