Thursday, July 24, 2014

Simply Digital

Read a blog post today by Vikas Mehta titled "Uncomplicating Digital". When a Senior and if I may dare say - "Old Hand" of the advertising Industry writes a post on this topic and is able to really 'uncomplicate' the digital medium from the advertising perspective, I could not resist commenting on the same.  And that inspired me to write this post.

So what is it about Digital that one has to Un-complicate??? Having worked in Digital for about 17 years now (yes I know - in Digital Terms I am a Very Old hand) I personally think its pretty simple actually. It's when we start thinking of it in terms of the traditional media - Print, TV etc is when we find this complicated .
So let's list down 3 things about Digital Media that we should always keep in mind:

1) Digital is not one thing - Its many - Internet, Mobile, Apps, Social Media, E mail, Messengers, etc etc
2) Unlike other media it is constantly changing and evolving
3) It's not a Push Medium like traditional media, It's Interactive.

While there are many more points to add to the above, these 3 in my perspective, are the most important and have to be kept in mind while using Digital Media, irrespective of what or how one plans to do.

So when you think Digital think who, where, when, how, and why and then think again. Think Marketing + Advertising + Communication + CRM +++ and see what applies to who when, how and why. Start small, analyze, adapt, change, expand and then do it all over again. Ah!! Complicated you say? Well really, No. It's a lot of Commonsense and data analytic's actually. Another huge advantage of this medium is that you can track and collect data and analyze it to see what's working, when where and how and then use that information to change, adapt, target and do better.

Since the medium and audience is always changing that means you need to do this all the time. A website once made is not finished. A website is never done. Similarly an ad campaign once made and implemented can be improved upon and bettered upon. E Mail and how the audience responds to the same can be tracked and improved upon to get the desired results and more. A social media presence is not about being there but interacting and engaging. Since the interactions are live the staid pre-written templatized  responses to CRM queries do not work here. An ad, notification or SMS has to customised based on device, place and location. Etc etc....

Lots to do? Yes? Continuous? yes? Complicated ? No. If you know who your target audience is, what your product or service is and what you want to achieve then getting about implementing your strategy is a matter of using the right technology, planning , tracking, tweaking and seeing it as it happens Live.

And last but not the least - be a part of it. Who is using Facebook and what is happening there? Does email Marketing still work? Why Instagram and Pinterest are gaining in popularity? Is LinkedIn good for B2B businesses? Why use Google+ if you are doing FaceBook? How YouTube can help you spread a message ? Do QR codes really work? Do we need an app? Can we do SMS messaging but not spam? To know answers to these questions you need to part of the populace using digital media. Then it's simple because you see what people are doing there and how they use the medium and for what.

Well that's enough for today I guess. More on this later. Meanwhile please do write in your comments, suggestions, and questions and next time maybe we can go more specific or generic next time.

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