"To thine own self be true"
"We needed a digital media strategy. It's okay but we feel there should be more"
"I know we have to do social media. But what should I do?"
"Just get me online"
"If we just show higher up the rankings everything will be okay"
We face these sort of queries and comments on a daily basis that range from eager, to pushy, even frantic and occasionally frustrating. End users reach out to us with their tales of steps, missteps and far too often of late spurts of digital initiatives left meandering as corporate attention shifted back to managing traditional pressures around profitability and revenues and digital media is left with a middle child complex between the top and bottom line enterprise foci.
I always push back with the same gentle question. What do you stand for? I often get confused looks.... Or long winded answers.... Or plain wrong answers.
Let's get something straight right now: Digital media is not the means to an end. It is a critical part of an answer. But it is an answer to the question of who you are, what you stand for and where do you wish to be in the next three to five years. If you do not know what are your values as a company, how do you wish to be perceived by your customers and where is your growth going to come from a digital media strategy may actually make things worse by confusing your audience and awkwardly disseminating your message.
On the average company leaders spend 2% of their times on strategy figuring this out. A management study found that companies whose leaders spent up to 8% of their time on strategy significantly out performed their peers. There is a powerful message here. Companies that take time out to figure who they are, what they stand for, where they are going and how they will get there are the sort of companies for which digital media can prove to be a valuable ally. It can unify the branding attributes across all web properties. It can get the messaging where it is needed and reiterate it optimally. It can identify the contacts that are susceptible to your messaging and it can convert them into customers that are delighted by you and become your biggest advocates.
If you can explain your company's mission, values, what it means to its customers, where it wants to be in the future in thirty seconds you are the prime candidate for a digital future.
So next time you pick up that phone to call in a digital media company to help you out know your own self to get the most out of digital media.