In recent decades the world has drastically changed from a so-called offline world into a digital world. While availability in the past was determined by your presence at your organisation, many companies now require their employees to be on stand-by even long after they have left their desk. With mobile and internet technology it is today, in the age of digitization, nearly impossible to be unavailable.
The internet and social media developments have additionally created possibilities for many consumers to be able to get in direct and constant touch with their brands in order to give constructive or critical feedback. It seems that the bigger the brand the more available a brand manager needs to be in order to react to those changes. “The brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room” – as Amazon founder Jeff Bezos described the constant availability of brands in today’s online world. So a brand manager needs to influence that room talk as much as possible.
Digitization doing right is a challenge
Organisations create a digital strategy in order to be able to create and react to constant feedback and mentions to the brand from all over the world. Especially traditional organisations struggle to create such a strategy as they mostly fail to see how much the digital world is dominating the offline business already. They think that creating a Skype Group or Slack organisation is enough for everyone being available and create and lead meaningful discussions. But most of the time this only leads to a complex way of people interacting much more with each other.
In an offline world, the hierarchy in an organisation helped to create the communication channels to filter what was important and what was just informational. Through digital channels information is nowadays not only available and visible all the time but seems to be constantly flowing among all members. Leaders that have not grown up with this modern technology are reporting to be overwhelmed by all the information and call it an information overflow. In the past they had analogue channels, such as their boss or journalists in newspapers telling them, what is or isn’t important. Today they need to filter it themselves.
More important than simply using digital tools for the sake of it is to understand why it should be used – internally and externally. Facebook Pages for example look like a great way of getting in touch with their consumer base. But if they have nothing to say or their target consumer base is not constantly on Facebook, does it even make sense to be on Facebook?