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Don't Let Digital Dumb You Down

Updated: Mar 8

I think we would all agree that we can be doing digital a lot better. With so many incredible digital tools these days, we should be smarter, sharper and slicker than ever before in connecting and serving our customer needs.

Don’t do dumb digital! We can all be doing digital better.

The lazy, pretending-to-do-things, let-the-software-run-it-badly, flick off a bunch of emails, and pages of meaningless irrelevant data reports etc...we have all seen it and experienced it.

How can we do digital better? Think through the fundamentals first. Lead with your company and brand objectives.

Led by your one page strategy, stick to selective choices, clear messages, and ensure your useful selection of technology is well integrated to support your well integrated go-to-market offer and key messages.

But why are we not all smashing it with these new digital tools? There is a lot of time, money and people resources going into it - a good question!

Some people say all these digital tools have made it easier and made us faster - but why does it sometimes feel harder and working out which tool or data set to use, makes us slower!

Automation is awesome when it's designed and tested properly - but it's also clunky as hell when it doesn't all flow right. Bad automations actually slow you down and get in the way and irritate the customer experience.

With the ever-increasing array of software, apps, integrated systems, data clouds, free (?!) Google tools etc we should be smashing it! But we keep adding layers upon layers of new tools that are not there to ultimately serve the customers better. Sure, some new methods, software, and apps etc need to be trialled to test their usefulness, but you do see a lot of unnecessary layers of 'tech-stack' switched on just for fun.

Business leaders need to be all over it - don't back away and leave it to the 'new digital person'. You need to question, then question again, the usefulness and the alignment with the company objectives and serving customer needs. We all need to be continually learning with an open mind set to absorb the next big thing.

In the future the word 'digital' will likely be dropped from everything and we can get back to just 'marketing' again as the new tools become the norm. Just like 'e-commerce' will become 'commerce' as the normal way of doing business.

Everyone's management and marketing skills and everyone's digital literacy needs to be on a continuous learning cycle - whatever your career stage.

Here's a few examples of over-cooking the real digital need and under-cooking the true value add:

#1 Using new ChatGPT or other AI tools to draft words for your website / posts / emails.

Sure, it's a great idea to draft some initial rough content automatically, but it's as generic as hell (for now) and your competitors will likely be using the same sort of words. Yes, we call text 'copywriting' but we don't mean literally copy! Haha. And if you put these auto-generated words straight on to your website Google will punish you for generic-lazy-unthoughtful content. Always start with the well thought out and well-defined brand key messages that define and influence perceptions.

Your brand key messages are unique - like chapters of a book with your logo on the front cover - so always lead any words (copy) as unique as your brand.
Don't let the digital tool take you off in the wrong direction!
A bit like when you using navigation software when you are driving and it sends you down all those back streets, but you could have just parked and crossed the road.

#2 Using an Auto Email Subscriber then sending an Automated Email.

Capturing non-customer emails is still very important and the most personal way of connecting to turn new leads into new customers - unless you are meeting face-to-face or talking obviously. Yes, have a lead capture form, but be careful sending automatic emails unless they are well personalised and relevant to that specific potential customer.

Emails done well - relevant and personal - are still very powerful in supporting existing customers and generating new customers.

#3 Automated Data Reports emailed each week or each month.

Sounds great! You don't need to run the report manually, you don't need to save/export the report into a PDF, plus you don't need to manually email it out internally.

Again, put the thinking time in upfront to make your data report automation real and relevant. Have a 1 page summary of the key data at the top. Make sure you have all your variances in there ($'s and %, vs last month vs year-to-date vs budget etc).

And ideally, better still, jump in and closely review the main relevant insights and put just a few comments in the comment box to guide your readers.

Review and think through the main take-away data insights by adding a short comment summary at the top of any automated data reports.

CONCLUSION - Let's do digital better!

So, all the new technology is here to help us be smarter and faster - not slow us down and make us dumber with less thinking.

When digital is done well - it all hums seamlessly - and supports your team internally and services your customer needs smoothly, both offline and online, feeling as one.

Stick to your company and brand objectives at all times to guide your digital decisions.

Use proven management and marketing principles to ensure your digital decisions are solid.


Be in touch if you need help or extra support to 'Be Better' for your company, brand, team, individual.

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