Digital Transformation is an Essential Marketing Tool For Businesses
Businesses have looked at digital transformation as a way to streamline their marketing efforts. In reality, however, digital transformation is in and of itself a marketing effort. Compressed timelines, demands for innovation, and an embrace of open technology have made the transformation of business’ operations into digital processes an essential survival activity.
Resilient companies have access to the latest tools, digital infrastructure, and the right culture to embrace digital transformation as a key component of their marketing. How businesses perceive pressures to evolve is what separates the businesses that will thrive through market adaptations from those who become victims of that same evolution.
Every company is a tech company
In the modern economy, succeeding in business means providing a top-notch customer experience. Simply put, there’s no way to do that in 2020 and beyond with a digital presence in marketing channels.
Every interaction with customers represents multiple points of data. The most successful companies have the tools to process that data intelligently and quickly. An example of one of those tools is Google’s hybrid-cloud platform, Anthos.
Anthos ensures that no matter what platform an interaction takes place on, the collection and processing of data is seamless. Whether a customer responds to an email distributed by a Google Cloud Platform system, a mobile application notification on Microsoft Azure, or an SMS message on Amazon’s Cloud, all the data collected from those communications can mesh together into a single pane of glass for personnel to use efficiently.
That digital infrastructure guides further communications in the same smart ways, enabling the high degrees of personalization that modern customers demand. Scripts running on GCP curate data points to produce targeted messages. Without that optimization, customers are likely to search for competitors that can deliver.
That’s where culture plays a critical role in companies. A wholesale commitment to trusting the data and letting the processes do the “grunt work” while personnel focus on adding the necessary “human touch” creates an immersive experience that customers demand. In fact, it’s often the digital tools that act as the marketer, while personnel plays more of a facilitator role.
Guiding conversations through digital transformation
Two decades ago, a web-based content-management system was a stand-alone application run by IT professionals. In 2020, such systems are obsolete because IT professionals are not marketers and marketers are not IT professionals. Digital transformation enables the creation of a system that allows people with both skills sets access to business’ systems simultaneously without interruption of the other activities.
DevOps teams know how to navigate the landscape of creating platforms that offer customized and remote access to firms’ personnel. Working with business leaders, they can put the best tools that allow organizations to steer customer interactions at those businesses’ grasps.
Kubernetes is a stellar example of those tools. Using systems like the Google Kubernetes Engine, it’s possible to replace outdated data silos with interconnected webs of containers. Each container can empower virtual machines to perform an array of tasks crucial to giving marketers the information they need to succeed.
Yet, syncing all those clusters is necessary for Kubernetes-aligned processes to perform at their best. That’s where Istio, an open-source service mesh layer for Kubernetes, comes in. Istio acts as a kind of “traffic cop” for all the exchanges of commands and data between clusters, making sure that such transmission is not only orderly but happens at the speed of the cloud.
While the right culture gives purpose to Kubernetes, the wrong culture can waste their potential. If there is no commitment to using digital tools and the infrastructure that DevOps provides from the top down, then the power of digital transformation becomes a mere flicker of its potential. Digital transformation can steer businesses in the right direction, but business leaders have to let it take control of the rudder.
Digital transformation is a must-have, not a nice-to-have
As the number of potential points of interaction and methods of communication with customers continues to grow, so does the need for open-source solutions to integrate connections between those activities. For example, if a business’ marketing tools are only built upon the data stored within their own systems, that business is missing out on all the potential points of contact that exist within other tools.
Obsolete marketing tools rely on customers to adapt their inquiries to the methods businesses use. Digital tools meet customers where they are, even seek them out, in efficient and smart ways. This is again where applications built on the cloud are of greatest benefit.
By opening up data and opening up application data interfaces, GCP can enable personalization and eliminate wasted interactions. A wealth of information can flow freely at the speed businesses need to avoid missing out on important opportunities to create moments that customers will remember.
All businesses have a need to partner with firms that can create that infrastructure and customize it to their exact specifications. While GCP is adaptable and powerful, the expertise to harness that power is pivotal to optimizing it for specific tasks. That’s where culture plays an important role.
A business must commit to aligning itself with partners who can supply that expertise and trust the outcomes those partners deliver. One company that did so has seen a tremendous growth in its sales by letting digital transformation revolutionize its marketing systems.
Rising profits with digital transformation
King Arthur Flour is the oldest distributor of flour in the United States. Its operations and processes are anything but old, however, thanks to the digital transformation it embraced.
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, retail sales plummeted for the company. Using analytics built on cloud platforms, however, the company was able to gather that the demand for its product was actually at a high level.
Doubling down on its commitment to digital tools, King Arthur was able to capitalize on that demand while it was still relevant. As a result, its sales increased by 200%, and traffic to its online sales channels spiked by 260%.
The question for businesses in the current economy and beyond isn’t how much of my marketing spend should I commit to digital transformation. The real question is, can my business afford not to embrace digital transformation?