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How Much is the Digital Divide Costing your Business?

Apr 08, 2015 by Content Marketing Sydney / in Our Services

What is the Digital Divide? 

The Digital Divide is level of access to technology within a group of people, be it in a country, region, state or town, so in other words: the percentage of the population who have access to digital technology.

While the Digital Divide is slowly closing as we progress through the 21st century, it seems that businesses try to speed up the process by implementing technologies to connect the business, staff and clients. However at times this really complicates things and can be quite costly to the business. Worse is they may not even know about the costs and the damage it's doing to a business or a brand. 

The more technology is readily available to businesses, the more businesses start to poorly implement the digital processes and system.

It's the old way of thinking:"Hey everyone has a business card, what about me?!"

Today, it's: "Hey every business has a website, what about us?" or,"Hey every business is on social media, why aren't we?"

This has become a business culture of lets be there because everyone else is online, this could be costing you far more than you could ever imagine! This is no different to hey everyone is jumping off a bridge we should do the same. This attitude or behaviour is what causes Digital Divide. At Digital Spot we always encourage our clients to be online however have a plan, have a strategy, deliver value, deliver content that positions you as the leader in the market. Work with your digital and design team on a digital marketing and a content strategy. 

How is Digital Divide affecting my business?

As more and more businesses are getting online every day, they need a username, password, email address, admin account, customisation, branding, copy writing, videos, blogs keywords research, analytics etc...Unfortunately there seems to be a common trend in businesses where different people set up multiple accounts for the same service/s.

There is a lot of noise and confusion in businesses when it comes to anything Digital or Online, purely because of lack of experience, planning, process, procedures and vision. The Digital Divide is a problem when multiple services are managed or accessed by multiple employees both past and present.

One of our clients mentioned to us that no one had access to all their online services since his IT guy left. Guess what? Your IT guy is not your Digital Strategist or Content Marketer. Social Media is not the responsibility of your IT Guy and neither is the website. Just because he/she knows how to use a computer, it doesn't mean they can provide the best advice on how to manage digital marketing. 

Its not uncommon for us to come across this. To be exact, in the last couple of weeks we've had 5 new clients who have come to us while all their services and systems were in a bit of a mess.

Most businesses, especially start ups, tend to go for the cheapest option or the free option. Free is very expensive to a business when an email system is down for a day or two, especially when you are spending thousands on Adwords and other marketing campaigns.

What's the cost to the business?

Costs can vary depending on the products and services, and some costs such as reputation and damage to a brand.

Here is a scenario to help you understand the costs of Digital Divide in your business.

Online outage of either email or website for 3 days in a year
If the average number of online enquiry/leads per day was 5 leads
Consider if the average value per client per annum was a $1000

The cost to the business is 3 x 5 x 1000 = $15000 from possible new leads, not including time lost in productivity per staff.

Would your business be able to operate without emails for that long? 

What's the solution?

Although we cannot stop systems from failing, we can certainly help minimise the costs and recovery time of a system by having the right systems and processes in place.

To help with this:

  • Appoint a key person in the business to manage all digital accounts
  • Get them to work with one supplier if possible and have an account manager
  • Have more than two people with access to all the details in case someone is sick or on leave
  • Have a policy whereby the signup for online services cannot be authorised without two people
  • Keep two technical people who are family with your system and infrastructure on speed dial
  • Have backup systems
  • Know exactly who is responsible for management of which system
  • Make sure the Digital Asset managers have some basic technical understanding and are able to troubleshoot if there is a problem
  • Have a handover document that is always up to date, in case someone new needs to help with any of your systems

We often come across many businesses who are suffering form Digital Divide in their businesses, so we hope these tips are useful for you in bridging the Digital Divide gap.

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