How to Build a Competitive Digital Strategy in the Caribbean
“So, you have these digital touchpoints. What do you ultimately want to accomplish with them? What’s your digital strategy?”
This was a question ACM posed in a recent meeting within the local hospitality industry. The response was most uncertain. Beyond wanting to attract new customers to the establishment, there was no concrete strategy in place to drive that digital conversation. Sales are undoubtedly important for any business. However, using it as a sole measure of success ignores other branding elements of the business. You run the risk of miscommunicating who you are and the value you bring to your audience (or, worse yet, the wrong audience!).
Very simply, your overall business strategy is where you want to go. That’s based on who you are, your resources on hand, and your value proposition. Your digital strategy is an extension of this. There are still many within the Caribbean market that place those strategies into silos. What that tends to create is a disconnect and after-the-fact mindset between organizational functions with regards to digital. Digital is a very dynamic space, and it requires input from across a business to truly realize its potential.
Building a winning digital strategy does require some in-depth thought. It isn’t as uninvolved as producing a Facebook page and posting once per month. It’s also not a race to employ every platform currently available. Here are some key points to keep in mind when next you speak with your digital provider:
Who Am I?
Why does your business exist? What is your brand identity? Do you have SMART short and long-term goals? What message are you hoping to convey to your audience? Is your product/service differentiable or is your value based on low-cost? If you’re unable to answer these questions, then there will be a fundamental gap in translating your business’ value through your digital channels.
What Channels Should I Use?
Facebook, LinkedIn, your website or app – these are all additional marketing channels you can leverage in your digital strategy. But which ones are for you? It all depends on your audience and where they live online. For example, LinkedIn is credited as an ideal platform for B2B communication. It’s also a matter of their digital journey. Where does your audience make the first contact with you? Which channels are most important to them and will compliment their decision making? Understanding how your audience behaves online will ensure an adaptable strategy.
How Can Content Marketing Help?
Developing content across each touchpoint that gives your audience exactly what they need is the cornerstone of any digital strategy. Your audience is your best data source. Engage with them consistently and conversationally. Map your ideas and brainstorm the different ways that they can be produced to bring your audience value. It might take the form of a blog or whitepaper or video segments. Remember, not everything will work and not everything has to.
A digital strategy sets expectations and direction. Without both, you will either spread yourself too thin or understate the significance of specific touchpoints. Putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) will ensure that your business develops a competitive digital presence.
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