Digital transformation means merging digital technology into all areas of a company. The customer experience, company culture, and all processes shift to prioritize business through a digital technology lens.
Basic examples of digital transformation include switching from print mail campaigns to email campaigns, using AI-driven analytics on customer data, and self-service portals or automated chat support.
Digital transformation doesn’t happen overnight, although it does need to happen fast for organizations that want to keep up. Imagine the journey as a fundamental tidal wave of change that permeates every part of a business: technology, operations, and everything in between shifts to deliver better value to customers in our modern age.
Digital transformation also demands significant emphasis on culture and how people think about business. Some experimentation, forward-thinking, and most certainly, openness to failure are required.
There’s a lot to say about digital transformation and why it matters. Let’s cover what business leaders need to know most.
Digital Transformation Is Vital – And It Comes with Big Benefits
Digital transformation has revolutionized how companies think about, plan for, and engage with customers. While the process requires significant energy and investment (i.e. all things marketing, sales, and customer service will likely need lots of attention), the potential ROI is great. Common benefits include:
1. Working More Efficiently
We’ve all heard the saying: “Work smarter — not harder.”
Digital transformation is an embodiment of that. It increases productivity by reducing the money and time required to get things done.
Your business functions and customer engagement can become faster, yet more connected with digital transformation.
Digital technology can be used to automate processes and drive efficiency across all areas of your business, whether it’s reducing the time required to onboard new employees or to respond to customer support requests.
2. Bringing Customers Back for More
The entire customer experience can be enhanced through digital transformation.
You can automate the customer journey and offer multiple digital touch points — for example, a live agent chat, automated virtual assistants, data driven alerts, streamlined support request intake through web forms and email, social media accounts, and phone apps.
By investing in digital channels for customer service and engagement, you will not only reach more customers, but also drastically improve retention and loyalty.
3. Staying Competitive (and Ahead)
Digital transformation is the future. If you want to survive and thrive, it needs to be a priority.
Upgrading your processes shows customers you’re present and listening to their needs. It can also revive a business when things are looking worrisome.
And just to show you we’re not blowing smoke here, direct investments in digital transformation between 2020 and 2023 are projected to reach at least $7.1 trillion, according to IDC.
If you’ve wondered whether your competitors are working on digital transformation, there’s no doubt the answer is “yes” — so don’t get left behind!
Examples of Digital Transformation in Action
Any digital transformation begins with the concept of moving from analog to digital. Think: giving up paper for email. Then, moving from email to text messages, social media, live chat, and mobile apps. It’s upgrading processes to better support the customer experience — and doing it better than competitors.
Examples of digital transformation include:
- Offering an on-demand video subscription service
- Using analytics to get actionable insights into customer behavior
- Incorporating digital food ordering apps or trackers
- Offering customer support and gathering insights over Twitter or other social media apps
- Encouraging separate departments, such as marketing and sales, to collaborate and share information through a customer relationship management (CRM) platform
But digital transformation is more than just one action or change. It’s often several processes — and a “revolutionization” of how you do business — that create the true shift.
Now, lets look at a few examples of digital transformation at work in the real world – with brand names we all recognize.
Domino’s: The Pizza Tracker
Around 2008, this well-known pizza chain was struggling. Reviews were aplenty, and things weren’t looking good for Domino’s future.
But that’s when the pizza company launched their Pizza Tracker®, a response to research and data suggesting a need for better customer engagement and transparency in the ordering and delivery process. After submitting their pizza order online, customers could track the entire process from the kitchen receiving the order to the order being delivered at the customer’s door.
Dominos was the first company to start this pizza tracking process, which led to a mobile application in 2011 and Anyware in 2015, where customers could order from devices like Siri and Facebook Messenger.
This transformation was worth it for Dominos. Between 2010 and 2017, Domino’s stock price grew by over 2,000%, according to Quartz, outperforming giants like Apple, Facebook, Google, and Amazon.
Under Armour: Connection Through Fitness
The athletic apparel brand Under Armour made a series of investments in change to meet and upgrade customer needs, even during a global pandemic.
The sportswear company’s early investments included virtual selling platforms, digital asset management solutions, 3D features, digital showrooms, and more. And when COVID-19 hit us all, Under Armour responded with a digital learning and training platform for employees at all levels.
The company also integrated their products into the digital customer experience, providing an immersive platform like ArmourBox. Customers can receive a customized subscription of shoes and apparel based on details they provide about their shoe sizes, fitness goals, and training schedules.
In addition, Under Armour obtained extensive data from acquiring MyFitnessPal, MapMyFitness, and other fitness apps to identify important trends and consumer data while moving to an agile development approach.
By focusing strongly on customer needs and being proactive about adapting to changing culture, Under Armour’s digital transformation led to a 12% growth (to $604 million) in their direct-to-consumer business in Q3 of 2021, Footwear News (FN) reported.
Netflix: Affordable at-Home Entertainment
Many of us still remember the days of grabbing a DVD (or VHS!) and some movie candy from the now-closed Blockbuster. But the newest generation will soon grow up knowing nothing but endless online video streaming options right from home.
For that, we can thank the revolutionary thinking of Netflix.
The company moved from a DVD mailing service to the ultimate at-home digital movie and TV show experience. They identified where customer needs were going and transformed their business model to match it.
There’s no doubt this digital transformation changed everything. In Q3 of 2021, Netflix had about 214 million paid memberships worldwide, according to Insider Intelligence, and their market cap was $176.07 billion as of January 2021.
Netflix’s quality is on par with traditional film studios, too; they led the dominations at the 2022 Oscars.
Planning Your Digital Transformation Strategy
A company’s digital transformation strategy involves planning the what, how, and when of its initiative. That includes getting clear on business goals, customer demand, and industry trends that will impact business profit and processes. You’ll need to know these details in order to track key performance indicators (KPIs) that demonstrate progress.
Digital transformation matters now more than ever in our fast-changing world. If you need help transforming processes that are getting in the way of your company’s full potential, , such as implementing digital transformation steps,, consider partnering with us at Revelry. Learn more about what we do here.