Article by Swiss House of Brands

Written by Chantal Baer - Brand & business strategist

Swiss House of Brands & the digital transformation


This article aims to synthesize the global approach of the digital transformation within an SME company by clarifying the 3 major pillars of change:

1. New growth levers

2. Communication & sales vectors

3. Digital technologies

If digital transformation is not just about adding e-channel to your business, understanding the 3 pillars of change gives a global vision of the road ahead...

... to make your change happen to transformational growth

1. New growth levers

What has changed - what is new

Business development goes through the environment to be built for the "consumers (B2C as well as B2B) in a market to industry polarity. Either the adequacy of your markets / segments to your offer (and not the opposite which has prevailed until now). Starting from the brand's point of view, it leaves room to rethink your whole business in terms of market opportunities and business model.


How do you do it?

The brand

In this perspective the brand is the key resource of the company and your whole business is built around a story to tell - your storytelling .

It is no longer a question of selling a product or a service but of positioning yourself around a set of values by raising the ambition to a more humanistic level which is : what do you do or produce for humanity ?

The data

The construction of Data for a company requires a single database of all the information of the company independently of the different departments and by establishing common relevance to your market (i.e. the customers and not the company). Depending on the priority information establish a taxonomy that can give you the relevant information in a few clicks. The data represents the capital of your company and this exercise of pooling allows everyone in the company to stay aware of the common goal and avoid hunting even if some information remains confidential.

In conclusion

At a strategic level, digitalization is the ability to interact in real time with your markets.

Centralizing the business around the brand and the Data allows the deployment of all the digital growth levers in a transversal ecosystem where suppliers, producers and customers are an integral part of the company's value chain.

2. Communication / sales vectors

What has changed - what is new

The development of a digital communication is not to have an online brochure called website, it is to develop a global and transversal marketing tool for the company and its global ecosystem.

It's not just about telling your story, it's about facilitating your visitors' experience and getting them to find the answer they came for.

Your website is also an active prospecting tool that allows almost any strategy thanks to SEO techniques that do not necessarily pay.

Social networks are an effective complement if they are not just used to increase infobesity. There is no obligation of frequency but rather an obligation of relevance.

The online shop is not reserved for B2C only and depending on your activity, it is not necessary to put all your products online - the online purchase can also be reserved for certain products / services.


How do you do it?

Establish an omni channel sales and communication strategy - how do you want to be perceived? Where do you want to be in 6 months, 6 years, what solutions do you provide? Which customers do you want to acquire?

In conclusion

Visibility in the online world depends on the relevance of the communications/information you publish, the customer experience you offer, the know-how you share and the SEO techniques you implement. The digital universe is your catchment area, you have a few seconds to retain your visitor.

Investing in communication without a good brand positioning and business strategy is working for your competitors.

3. Digital technologies including AI

What has changed - what is new

The purpose here is not to make a list of the various technologies needed for different businesses (VPA, ML immersive technologies, 3D printing, etc.) but rather to identify the agile digital developments whose objectives are to facilitate the organization of the company, reduce complexity and improve productivity.


How do you do it?

WebApp or App

Mobile applications that are rooted in improving the customer experience have as a consequence direct implications on the organization and productivity of the company.

They increase productivity and improve information flows. Increased efficiency, responsiveness and speed.

For example, an application that allows a construction company to communicate to its customers the progress of the work online according to a system of phasing of the work and at the same time organizes internally the monitoring of the site, the organization of teams for the next stage and the billing according to the phases completed. This example of a WebApp has been entirely developed on the basis of modular innovations in an accessible time and price.

Modular innovation

The traditional heavy, consequent and expensive IT development has become too often inadequate for a SME. Modular innovation is about bringing together existing application elements to build the exact application that suits you. This is in any case the 1er path to follow.

Artificial Intelligence (or AI)

Beyond a certain amount of IT investment, it is better to turn to an IA.

The latest generation of AI is Swiss, it is cognitive and speaks natural language.

A version exists for SMEs, at SME price, it requires no internal IT team and can be installed in any existing IT environment.


In conclusion

Digital transformation is not just about moving from state A to state B, but about integrating innovation/permanent change, which is driven by your market, into your overall organisation. For your digital transformation to result in transformational growth, it is essential to establish a business strategy with the brand as a key resource.

Mastering digital transformation involves integrating change at three levels:

   - business strategy and new growth levers

  - communication / sales strategy

  - integration of new technologies better performance

Article written by Chantal Baer, Brand & Business Strategist at Swiss House of Brands