Keeping Up with the Times: The Business of Adapting to Technology
In less than a decade, technological advancements have developed faster than any time in human history. Its impact on businesses is undeniable, revolutionizing the digital landscape as we know it—from smartphones to the rise of social media and more recently, the development of Chat GPT. Companies—across multiple industries—have utilized these upgrades to improve their workforce, build brand recognition, and increase their bottom line. Communications, data collection and analytics, and digital marketing and promotion are some of the areas technology transformed businesses.
Technology forced businesses to pivot and delve into adapting working from home options, and highlighted service offerings such as social media management, content creation, and even burgeoning careers as TikTok specialists/managers. The advantages of these technological advancements include globalization, better online visibility, increased efficiency, improved collaboration and access, and greater customer engagement.
Globalization: Information technology enabled businesses to attain greater reach. Emails, texts, instant messaging, and websites made global communication quicker and more effective than ever. Social media platforms—from Facebook, and Instagram to LinkedIn and TikTok, leveled the playing field, giving businesses of all sizes opportunities to leverage a wider audience and engage with customers in real-time. Even small businesses can gain a bigger audience following an arsenal of social media platforms at their disposal.
Better online visibility: Today’s technology has made it imperative for businesses to develop an online presence. Content creation, keeping things updated and relevant, is now part of the job description. Investing in a professional website and optimizing engagement through social media, are now marketing strategies that need to be utilized. Those who can turn to an in-house marketing team to take care of all these details and tasks while others hire communications agencies or firms to help elevate their online presence. Online visibility and brand elevation has become the name of the game. Recently, companies hired TikTok specialists and managers to boost their engagement and online brand relevance.
Increased efficiency: Technology has also contributed to increased efficiency in the business realm—automating tasks, streamlining operations, and reducing manual processes through software and office apps. This enables business owners to funnel time and resources to develop other areas of their businesses. Recently, more and more businesses are utilizing ChatGPT, an AI chatbot developed by OpenAI, to create templates as well as ideas for content.
Improved collaboration and access: At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, many businesses had to pivot quickly to allow employees to work from home. Thankfully, the technology to help companies communicate internally and externally was already available. Communication networks such as Microsoft teams, Zoom, and Google workspace, enabled businesses to share data within their various departments and throughout the organization. Businesses relied on these advanced collaboration tools to finish tasks and complete projects usually done in person. Not only that, combined with mobile technology, employees could work anywhere using laptops, and any other smart devices—yes, including their phones.
Greater customer engagement: The digital world never sleeps. There’s always someone watching or browsing content on their phone. Apps and social media have made it possible for businesses to engage with their customers and clients in meaningful ways. They can provide customized experiences, offer discounts and promotions, and communicate in real time. Engagement on all platforms allows businesses to build and maintain stronger relationships with their customers and increase brand loyalty.
Though these advancements in technology have changed—and continue to—-the business landscape, people may argue that there are many disadvantages in the acceleration of technological advances. Some site expenses, dependency on technology, and even a decrease in productivity as disadvantages. However, if you look back 30 years ago, when email started becoming available to the public, and when businesses utilized faxes, and snail mail. Marketing strategies involved door-to-door sales, flyers, ads for tv, radio, and print, word of mouth, and an extensive amount of money (and trees) were used on mailers.
Without all the modern-day technology and advances, it would take months and even years for businesses to establish their brand and to reach even a quarter of the audience they have today. Before all these social platforms, social networks such as Friendster, MySpace, hi5, AOL were used for keeping in touch with friends, spreading the word about parties, or simply just chatting and meeting new people. Who would’ve thought that social media and the current incarnation of these platforms would have such an impact on society in general?
KEEPING UP WITH TECHNOLOGY
In a highly digitized world, it is imperative for businesses to change and adapt with the times to stay relevant and to continue to broaden their audience engagement. Messaging and content go together with social media platforms to utilize both reach and engagement. Mastering current technologies to work smarter and not harder has become a mantra for many businesses. But recognizing the speed with which trends and technological advancements develop, business owners need to stay informed constantly and keep an open mind on what comes next. Ultimately, the technology is created to help grow and build your businesses but the decision to follow and utilize said technology falls on the business and the brand themselves.