Digital innovation: what it is, advantages and 7 tips for doing it

Digital innovation is now part of our lives. We live in an era where, with the advent and the taking root of new technologies and the online in society, everything precedes at the speed of light. Changes and transformations are more frequent and occur almost daily. Involving both the personal sphere and, above all, the working and corporate spheres.

If it is true that the fear of being excluded from what is now happening can be strong in our sphere, in the workplace being excluded is not only scary but can prove counterproductive. A professional or a company that doesn’t keep up to date doesn’t innovate, stays on the sidelines, and has a short life.

Knowing how to innovate your company or business is essential. Because the competition is fierce. And the term “ruthless” in this case is precisely the one that, willy-nilly, best describes the situation. One solution could be to enroll in a business innovation and digitization course and immediately start digitizing your company.

In this article, I will try to explain how such a vast, important, and extremely topical topic as digital innovation can be declined by focusing on fundamental elements for the improvement and digital innovation of your company.

In particular, thanks to this study, you will be able to discover:

  • What does digital innovation mean;
  • The advantages of digitizing the company;
  • How to implement the company’s digital innovation;
  • Two examples of digital innovation.

What is digital innovation?

Digital innovation consists in the use of new technologies thanks to which to create innovative products and services or to adopt new working methods capable of:

  • solve existing problems;
  • optimize processes;
  • improve the user experience

For some years now, more and more frequently, we have been witnessing innovative processes that modify the existing landscape and, every time this happens, the duration of the change cycle gets shorter and the percentage of companies adapting to the new rises exponentially.

Try to think about how long it took in the past for new technology to take hold and how today, thanks to information technology and the online world, this happens much faster. Taking the phenomenon of social networks as an example, reflect on how Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, just to name a few, have, in just a few years, transformed (and made simpler) how companies and professionals present themselves and communicate on the market.

This is just one of the many examples that could be given regarding how digital innovation can help businesses and professionals. Such a process of change, which began in the 1960s with the advent of digital technology and then gradually with the early Internet, has undergone a strong acceleration as we enter the new millennium. Already in 1990, the World Wide Web had become accessible to everyone.

Then, in the early 2000s, the large-scale diffusion of personal computers and shortly after smartphones made the process a mass phenomenon. But it is perhaps in these last two years, marked by limitations and impediments of force majeure, that innovative processes in the digital field have imposed themselves with greater force.

Companies and organizations, but also small businesses and professionals have had to ingenuity and find solutions to guarantee continuity in production and the supply of services. They were able to do it thanks to the tools and opportunities given to digital and online. It is precisely digital innovation that has prevented them from succumbing.

And now, having tried and understood the potential of digital, they have understood that they can no longer do without it.

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How to do digital innovation in 7 steps

Transforming a company for the better with digital innovation is possible and, as mentioned, now essential. But implementing change requires open-mindedness, preparation, and awareness of where you are and where you want to go.

what does digital innovation mean

Above all, this last point should not be underestimated, because it represents the guiding star that can guide you in any moment of difficulty. In addition to the belief that only when technological innovation integrates with people’s work, accompanying and improving it, can we speak of successful innovation.

Here are some simple tips on how to innovate digitally and make your company more competitive.

1. Use social media

Learn about and leverage social media to grow your business or business. Find out how they work and decide which ones to invest in, depending on the products/services you offer and your target audience. Today people are more easily reachable on Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Youtube, and other social networks rather than through newspapers and television.

Take advantage of the possibilities given by social media to monitor data in detail and, consequently, your investments and analyze what works and what doesn’t. You will thus be able to decide to modify, change, abandon one path, and take another on the same or another platform.

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2. Find your space on Google

Today, the first thing a person does when he needs information or to buy a product/service is to search “on Google” (but this also applies to other search engines). Thanks to the smartphone and voice search, it is no longer even necessary to type on the keyboard. Just activate the microphone and ask any questions.

the advantages digitizing the company

To be found you must therefore take care of all aspects related to the optimization of your resources, information, and content so that search engines show you among the most relevant results, significantly increasing the chances of being “chosen”. There’s a lot of competition but SEO helps.

3. Do content marketing

Content marketing is directly linked to the need to optimize our resources to be found by potential customers. Invest in creating and sharing interesting and relevant content. Even better if they are aimed at a specific niche or a selected audience, interested in the information and data you have to offer.

By doing so, you will generate a virtuous circle in which the service, the advantage, and the benefit that you guarantee to those who read you will be rewarded with an interest in your products or services. Let people know you’re there and what you’re good at.

4. Use email marketing

Email continues to be one of the most used and efficient tools in terms of cost/effectiveness. Through email and targeted newsletters, you can connect to your target audience by segmenting the content and tone of your content according to the type of person you want to communicate something to.

Furthermore, thanks to email automation and ad hoc tools, you can build timed campaigns and customize the sending according to user activity on the Web.

5. Leverage data

Through new online technologies, everything you do is quickly measurable. Data and information relating to your activities on social networks, on the Web, and via e-mail can be quickly checked and analyzed to understand if the investment made is going in the right direction and if it is necessary to make changes or change the strategy decisively.

Thanks to the data, you can make decisions in real-time and make the most of your investment.

6. Play as a team

Make sure that those involved in following the digital innovation of your company or business (internally or externally) are well-focused on the goal you intend to achieve and compare themselves with the people who work within. Engagement and feedback will drive change and increase the likelihood of success.

7. Develop a culture of adaptability

Playing as a team also means conveying to your collaborators the concept that change is a constant in the technological field. Everyone within the company must be aware that technological innovation does not stop. And that it is necessary to adapt to it, understand it, and use it to improve processes and results. Promoting a culture of adaptability means being ready.

The benefits of digital innovation

Today we exploit technology to our advantage to satisfy any type of need. A company must know and use the tools that all people use and be where people are and have their interests. And, by now, digital innovation must not only concern the most technologically advanced companies. The latter is certainly trying to move forward by adopting innovative technologies and increasingly complex processes.

how to implement the companys digital

But also traditional companies, regardless of their core business and the products or services they offer. They must be aware that they are in a market where the influence of digital is getting stronger. Therefore they have to move to bring innovation within them.

Over the years, the concern that the change would mean losing customers and market share or being difficult to manage has eased. The companies have therefore reached the awareness that, despite the difficulties and problems that corporate reorganization can entail, a transformation with a view to the future must be conceived and implemented.

For a company, digital innovation means:

  • have a competitive advantage over competitors;
  • have technology solutions that increase revenue and return on investment ;
  • enjoy greater efficiency following the simplification of business processes;
  • lay solid foundations to ensure continuity and the future.

Now let’s see some examples of how to bring innovation to a company.

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2 Examples of digital innovation

Digital innovation in companies in recent years has involved almost every sector and has made it possible to redefine the strategies of numerous companies, large and small. Companies that have been able to seize the new opportunities offered by the digital evolution of the market, improving productivity and efficiency.

digital technologies drives business

Let’s see together some examples of virtuous companies in the field of digital innovation.

Lego

After risking bankruptcy in 2004, the Danish company was reborn using digital innovations to improve and enhance its core business.

Having rethought its organization by improving the sharing of data internally and externally (suppliers), the company then worked to simplify and make the user interface on its portals and applications more pleasant. This led to greater interaction, making it possible to collect quality data, which the teams were able to analyze to draw useful insights to make changes and achieve improvements.

Furthermore, Lego was one of the first companies to use crowdsourcing to improve the production of their creations. Through the “Lego Ideas” campaign it was possible to collect projects proposed by enthusiasts. The best ideas were then implemented. This work system has allowed Lego to:

  • make users interact with their technologies, getting them used to using them;
  • discover the preferences of its customers and market trends;
  • Share the process of creating its games, with positive effects in terms of loyalty.

Ikea

The Swedish company is an extraordinary example of how to exploit the potential of digital to innovate. And how a future-oriented management team can generate innovation.

While remaining true to its DNA, Ikea has managed to improve every area of its organizational structure thanks to a good digitization strategy. Material procurement processes, warehouses, logistics centers, e-commerce, in-store experience, and delivery services have been optimized.

In particular, the changes concerned:

  • the simplification of the IT architecture;
  • the contact points with customers (web, social, etc.) as well as how physical and virtual can be integrated and optimized;
  • corporate culture, more oriented towards digital.

Thanks to these technological innovations, today it is possible:

  • create projects online and go to stores where, thanks to augmented reality and virtual reality, it is possible to view objects and furnishings as they would be in the customer’s home;
  • leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning models to manage the supply chain, adapting it to market trends and demand for goods;
  • use external suppliers through whom customers can request additional services such as assistance in the delivery and assembly of furniture.

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Conclusions and free strategic advice

As you have seen by reading this in-depth analysis, there are many reasons to innovate and innovate. In a constantly evolving panorama, in which competition is becoming ever wider and more fierce, those who want to stand out and emerge, to try and have more opportunities to grow and improve, cannot stand still but must be in constant motion.

New ideas, new processes, new tools, or even just small but continuous improvements, guided by curiosity and passion can make a difference.

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