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Digital Transformation – Nuisance or Necessity?

Published: February 24, 2021

Digital transformation has been an evolving part of our everyday lives for many decades. Covid-19 has become a catalyst of change for many businesses. Due to the restrictions imposed by the pandemic, new practices that would have gradually been adopted over many years, have been established and accepted much quicker. Businesses that were unable to adapt to the fast-paced changes ended up being left behind.

The way businesses connect with their customers, and vice versa, has also changed and will continue to evolve. The future landscape will combine the best elements from both worlds.

A Positive Evolution

In many ways, the changes were already in the air, the pandemic has simply fast-tracked them. Digital technology is, of course, nothing new, but it has now been deeply integrated into every aspect of business. From processes to customer experiences to workplace culture, digital technology has been embedded into every mode of communication, rather than being one of the alternatives.

Digital transformation brings a positive evolution for businesses because it means brands have more options than ever before when it comes to marketing strategies and getting their names, products, and messages in front of the right audiences.

A New Way of Working

We spent 2020 talking about working from home being part of “the new normal”. In 2021, the new normal is now plain-old normal. We are hoping that 2021 will become the year of improved normal, where we leave outdated practices behind and adopt new, better ways of working.

For example, the idea of “the office” as a physical space that people travelled to in the morning and left in the evening, disconnecting until the next day, is a thing of the past. Digital transformation has blurred the line between where work starts and stops. According to McKinsey, 80 percent of people questioned report that they enjoy working from home. Forty-one percent say that they are more productive than they had been before and 28 percent that they are as productive.

With platforms like Teams, Slack, Zoom, Discord and many many more, the idea of the office has become less fixed than ever. We’re always finding new ways of sharing information – just have a look at this innovative NFC pen that allows you to upload your website, business card, or the latest offering and share them with those who matter to your business. 

Refining how and where we work has led to a generally more philosophical state of mind. People are starting to take more care of what they buy and which brands they invest in — they want to connect with brands that embrace the same values as them. This has made the global shift to sustainable practices across industries, both upstream (for everything from workers to the environment) and downstream to consumers. 

Embracing Cultural Change

We are in the midst of a huge culture shift. The certainties of old have become more fluid, bringing both challenges and advantages to companies. Businesses have had to find ways of maintaining a coherent corporate culture and keep team morale high when everybody is physically separated. 

At the same time, the work culture has become more personal in certain ways. Our children and pets have become a visible part of everyday working life, blurring the boundaries even further.

Promotional merchandise provides the ability to make the transition easier. It has the power to create emotional connections, generate goodwill and increase loyalty.

Making A Tangible Connection

The last year has also highlighted the importance of the physical presence or rather its absence has forced us to realise the impact it carries. Digital transition has been a lifeline, but now more than ever, we appreciate a tangible connection with people, be it a hand-written letter or a thoughtful gift. Corporate merchandise can help your business to make this connection.

Back in what seems like another world, many of us would connect with potential business clients at exhibitions, meetings, and industry events. We would custom build eye-catching exhibition stands, and give away goody bags while networking through face-to-face chats, exchanging details, and then maybe connecting online.

In the absence of face-to-face events and the rise of digital events, there are many inventive ways of connecting with customers and future clients. With so many networking events and meetings currently being held virtually on platforms such as Zoom, forward-looking brands have been nurturing a tangible connection by sending out pre-event and post-event packs, and even packs designed to be used during an event, for example, a cocktail making kit for a “happy hour” or a ‘See You Soon’ kit ahead of your meeting.  

Many people may be experiencing ‘webinar fatigue’ and these special touches can help to bring an event to life and encourage attendees to participate. This can work for launches, annual events, celebrations – you are only limited by your imagination.

With so many people working from home at the moment, branded products can also help maintain workplace culture, boost morale and increase loyalty and productivity. Building these close connections with employees can make them feel valued and appreciated. A personalised welcome pack can help new staff feel like one of the team while a bespoke thank you pack can help reward and recognise staff for their contribution or achievements.

Promotional merchandise bridges the gap between people while they’re apart. 

Marketing Superhero

Branded products are a powerful addition to any marketing strategy. The British Promotional Merchandise Association (BPMA) has done plenty of research that shows just how powerful it can be:

  • 79% of consumers are more likely to do business with a brand after receiving a branded gift from them.
  • 83% of consumers who receive a branded gift can remember the brand’s name 12 months later. 

Branded promotional merchandise offers a tangible and lasting connection with people, as well as great ROI and low cost per impression (CPI). It can build brand loyalty three times more effectively than web, print, mail, or TV advertising can on their own.

New Beginnings

Spring is in the air, and we now have a series of dates in place for when, fingers crossed, we can embrace pre-pandemic levels of closeness again. Help your stakeholders embrace this sense of renewal and hope by sending them a personalised branded gift that carries a message of hope, purpose and support. Get in touch with us now to discuss your requirements. We’ll be happy to help you find the best way of connecting with clients, potential customers, or your employees.

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