Before we begin to explain our tips on how to adopt growth-enhancing measures and adapt your leadership, you need to know how to identify “quick wins” obtained thanks to specific business opportunities and not confuse them with sustained growth over time thanks to following an established method within the organization.
The following tips are designed to modulate your leadership style and create an environment that promotes growth within the company.
5 Tips to promote sustainable growth of digital channels within your organization
1. Embrace the chaos
Revenue planning, annual forecast approval, cost estimation… Traditional businesses focus on order and regularity in management, operations and financial results.
This desire for order and regularity is aimed at the efficient allocation of resources with the intention of having predictable fluctuations in revenues and expenses so that shareholders are happy.
However, companies whose main objective is to achieve relevant growth must sacrifice efficiency for speed, which means that the traditional focus on order and regularity must be replaced.
Chaos, uncertainty, trial, error and iteration must reign in this new method of running your business.
Professors from reputable business schools that teach time-tested management methods would pull their hair out reading this.
This is why there is such a significant gap between university studies and the reality of instability and uncertainty that today’s professionals face in the workplace.
We want to emphasize, however, that simply carrying out a disorganized business management is not going to guarantee success. We use the term “passively succumbing to chaos” which means that managers assume that uncertainty exists and therefore adapt their leadership and management style to accommodate it.
Yes, numerous management mistakes will be made, the answers will not come on their own nor are we recommending dropping anchor and wandering aimlessly. However, instead of getting frustrated at a mistake, stop seeing the failed tests as failures and focus on the successes you achieve.
Understand why the tests you perform fail and keep them as a learning experience, to avoid following the wrong path in the future. Knowledge is the synonym of power.
Company directors and managers must make decisions based on their estimation of probabilities without being certain that the market will respond favorably. Testing these hypotheses and most importantly correcting them based on the results obtained is the key to the process.
Embrace and apply empathy and intuition along with your data analysis.
Empathy is key to significant growth. It doesn’t matter if you know how to use your product. What matters is whether your customers do. Real customer testimonials and qualitative customer feedback are just as important as quantitative metrics.
Finding ways to quantify and measure qualitative feedback as a team helps keep a steady pulse of growth. In short, we like to summarize growth in the following formula:
Growth = Predict + Test + Optimize + Iterate.
Growth is an endless cycle of the scientific method of: predict >> test >> optimize >> and iterate. Acquisition, Activation, Retention, Referral, Revenue. So-called Growth Hacking is not based on performing random experiments. There has to be a deliberate and systematic approach.
2. “Right now” is your premise
Being reactive and fast to the emergence of new needs is highly rewarded by the market. Without going any further, one of our clients, a reputable law firm in Barcelona, after adapting its management model to a flexible and agile leadership began to benefit from regulatory changes by adapting its services at the same time as the applicable regulations.
Specifically, recently in Spain there have been a number of judgments in favor of individuals to recover taxes unduly collected by the tax authorities. The case we are going to talk about is about the recovery of the IRPF paid in excess when collecting the maternity pension.
On the same day that the ruling came out, through optimal data management, all the mothers and fathers in the databases who were affected by the new ruling were identified.
Then a communication was done via email the same day to the identified customer segment, the ad was published in RRSS, segmenting the audience to reach the women who had been mothers in the last four years. An informative landing page was launched on the website, along with an entry in the news post.
The subsequent days were coordinated with calls from the sales department, which resulted in a 7% increase in the conversion rate for the current month.
The merit of the growth obtained resided in the ability to adapt a product or service and communicate it to an affected segment of users in a very short time to respond to the market need. This ability to adapt to change is highly relevant in blogs and ebooks about Growth Hacking. Our recommendation is “Growth Hacker Marketing” by Ryan Holiday.
The reflection we should make is that all the actions that happened the same day, could not have been carried out by reviewing from top to bottom the conditions of the services that were going to be offered, or following a system of approval of communications and campaigns at different levels.
To our credit, the organization was adapted to have the capacity to act in an agile manner, which translated into higher turnover that particular month. Since then, thanks to organizational changes, the company adapted to stay ahead of the competition and, thus, ensure sustainable growth in the long term.
3. Fast and acceptable is better than perfect. “Good enough is the new perfection”.
Speed is more important than having a “well-run” organization. The speed at which we must adapt the product or service and communications means that the product or service is not at its most optimal stage. This is why, as a result of this new leadership style, the concept of Minimum Viable Product, MVP, was born (concept obtained from “The Lean Start Up” by Eric Ries).
This prototype has to be used to obtain feedback from the market and modulate it as customers interact with it, listen to what they have to say about it and adapt it.
In the context of change and uncertainty in which companies are competing today, it is a waste of resources to be developing a product or service to have it at its best, because when the launching takes place, competitors will have already conquered the territory and the market will already have an outstanding leader in the sector.
Consider the example of our client, the definition of the services to be provided were not stipulated since it was the first time we were under that casuistry. So after a half-hour meeting with all parties involved, we came to the conclusion that the communications would be fixed at a single price that would cover the claims up to a certain judicial instance.
Was the price the most appropriate? With time and knowing that a later the government would facilitate the steps to all individuals to claim the tax, the set price was NOT the most appropriate, however, we were the first to set a price, which customers were going to be able to bear because the amount of tax they were going to recover was well above.
The market appreciated a response to a situation of urgency and necessity and despite the fact that we were charging a high price to the clients for the services that would be provided, the vast majority of clients accepted this extra cost.
4. Shared objectives and the participation of multidisciplinary teams are key to sustainable growth.
Shared mission, objectives and alignment at all levels of organizations is fundamental to a sustainable growth strategy. The most common challenges for companies are internal: the implementation of all these recommendations will have no effect if there is no responsive leadership and team.
There are many factors that prevent established companies in mature industries from adopting growth-enhancing methodologies, the biggest of which comes from internal management.
To prevent internal factors from getting in the way of growth, many multinationals choose to create isolated departments, spin offs or appoint a person in charge of leading organizational changes with carte blanche from management.
In addition, growth requires cross-functional teams working together in product, marketing, engineering, data, sales and operations. Everyone in the company must be thinking about how they work with other functions to have a greater impact on the mission.
5. Technology-enabled personalization, automation and customization of advertising are the new norm.
- Automation of processes such as the use of marketing triggers applied to customer segments through the proper use of CRMs such as Salesforce
- AI (artificial intelligence) and machine learning to accelerate the ability to test and optimize content to match the right lead segment in order to create personalized communications.
- The CONTEXT is king. The right brand and product positioning can unlock exponential growth and contribute to long-term growth sustainability by being agile and responding quickly to market demands.
These adaptations you need to make within your organization require data technology and digital marketing specialists. If you do not currently have the capacity to attract the necessary talent through direct incorporations, you can start by outsourcing the service. In any case, our final recommendation is that you start as soon as possible.