It's been my experience -- as a counselor, practitioner and client -- the daily list of "to dos" often get in the way of work that is important to be successful... tomorrow.
We're busy, behind in emails, and bogged down if not stuck in meetings all day. I get it and can be guilty myself. It's hard to prioritize when everything is a priority and teams are small. And, I understand how after achieving a certain amount of success or momentum, it's easy to double down on what worked in the past.
The only problem?
Like anything -- be it the food we eat, exercise we do, words we speak, goals we set -- what we do today shapes tomorrow. "Reactivity" has never been a successful strategy in business (or life). At best, it produces a leveling off. And, in today's fast-paced digital and social marketplace, actually can lead to your brand being seen as behind the times and/or ineffective.
Mobile technology is not bound to any particular industry. In fact, it is creating new business models (and competitors) in every industry.
Think about it. The "Amazon Effect" -- delivery and pricing are leading to big brands, stores (and malls) to down size or close altogether. In the mix: Sears, Macy's, JCPenny, JCrew, Kmart, BCBG, Gymboree, American Apparel... the list goes on.
This isn't a trend. Mobile technology is changing the business landscape.
You can argue these are consumer retail brands. You can argue it's a brick and mortar issue. But it's neither. And don't forget, many of us traditionally point to these very brands when saying they have the big budgets to do what works in terms of innovating or marketing.
So what's happening?
For one, mobile = all about relationships with and serving consumers. It's about the way they are now looking at information, making decisions, and what they deem valuable. It is less about having a mobile friendly website and posting content. It is more about how an organization aligns its best assets to its constituents in ways that matter and add value to them. (Period.)
Look at Warby Parker (eye ware). They are a digital company who, because of its success, is now moving into brick and mortar real estate. So shopping in stores isn't going extinct. They grew from an idea into a multi-million dollar business despite experts scoffing at their vision. It's a result of their formula of offering quality, an experience in how they interact with customers, and giving back.
And there's the Lyft and Uber. They've empowered a second career for many. Only requirement - owning a car and a valid license. This is hurting traditional cab companies, and now Uber is expanding into food and delivery services. So why didn't the traditional companies think of this first?
It's probably the reason most of us don't see what's right in front of us... we are operating in ways that reflect the past. Lyft and Uber, on the other hand, have the advantage that they are thinking consumer-first as the way to run their company, apply the technology, and grow their business.
Associations, as well as traditional BtoC and BtoB businesses, alike are impacted by this change in consumer decision-making.
Maybe ironic, but this change within the marketplace has less to do with the technology itself, but rather about the "people" on the other end of business: customers/members/constituents (including employees).
That being the case, mobile IS the changing the way consumers research and make decisions; how they want to be treated; and what they find valuable. They care about being heard, engaged as part of a brand's DNA (even part of the R&D process), and want less advertising. In its place: a two-way communications where transactions are replaced by an ongoing relationship. (This is especially if Millennials or GenZ are on your ideal customer list.)
Think about how that impacts:
Mobile-friendly websites, advertising and regularly content posts are only a piece of the whole equation in approaching the digital marketplace successfully.
The good news: the answers and opportunities lie within each organization. And, those who can re-envision their future and do so in a way that moves away from the traditional ways of thinking, operating, marketing and leading, will stand to make the most gains in the next two to five years.
One way I work with clients to discover the potential: Expand the traditional SWOT analysis to look beyond your peer organizations. Look outside your industry and from your customers' POV. You'll be surprised what is right in front of you.
This is the Gokotta Group's blog.
It is the place for us to make note of changing times, new ways of thinking, and provide examples of how greater impact is being created. It's also a spot we can focus on people. And, occasionally, showcase the type of projects the Gokotta team supports (see "Case Studies" below).