Strategically Planning for Success
When your website users land, are they touching down on a runway, or crash-landing? If your website is built on aesthetics alone -- it’s likely the latter.
Strategy provides a flight path for successful business outcomes. It gives every communication from every channel a source of direction and consistency. Building a successful strategy is the hard part; it requires getting into the nitty gritty of the brand, its current pain points, customer journeys, and objectives. Luckily, if done correctly, it drives serious growth for business.
Driving ROI Through Strategy and Digital Transformation
Having a high-level strategy as a guide helps establish the specific role the website should play in the larger multichannel brand strategy. Often, website redesigns get bogged down by small, expensive improvements that do little benefit to the customer, or by extension, the business. Meanwhile, the site’s technology and automation begin to show their age, which eventually impacts your lead gen funnel and starts to negatively impact your bottom line. On the other hand, a comprehensive and strategic digital redesign is an investment that unifies a brand across all channels and touch points. While it presents an upfront cost, it ultimately provides a much higher ROI compared to a bits-and-pieces approach to website updates.
According to Think with Google,
"Businesses need to invest in digital transformation. That means adopting a holistic, data-driven approach to product, channel, and demand strategy, and leveraging automation to act on consumer signals in real time and at scale. The combination of speed, insights, and scale that automation provides can help companies identify and satisfy consumer needs in a dynamic market, while also contributing to short-term growth and long-term resiliency."
How we Build Digital Strategies: The Path to Discovery
At Blennd, we take a holistic approach to our client's digital brand strategies that are rooted in data, research and developing a brand vision that resonates with users across all touchpoints. Our strategy work begins with collaborative discovery sessions, where we learn our client’s story — diving into their strengths, goals and pain points. This valuable information guides our approach throughout the lifecycle of the project — from branding through user experience, website design and marketing. Our discovery sessions uncover complicated problems, which must be met with well-thought-out solutions.
The Current State / Future State Approach: Identifying Business Goals
During our onboarding and discovery process, we take what we call a “current state / future state” approach. This takes a holistic look at the current state of business and digital footprint, noting specific opportunities for growth and improvement. It also looks at the optimal future state, and the positive business outcomes resulting from specific changes that will help achieve business goals – focusing on better user experiences, resources, content and design. This exercise defines goals and expectations around results and ROI so we have a clear and shared mission for success.
Moody Insurance: Transforming the Insurance Industry
Moody Insurance is a Blennd client that underwent a complete strategy overhaul. Their website had a lot of good information, but the design had little structure and the pages were slow to load and not converting visitors due to an outdated interface and unoptimized content. Looking at their current website’s data, the site speed alone caused a high bounce rate, while their confusing sitemap led to quick abandonment. After discovering the client’s business objectives and performing thorough market research, we developed a comprehensive digital strategy that focused on improving the site experience and converting site visitors into leads.
Strategy Foundations: The Data Deep-Dive
Gartner research found that 74% of marketing leaders ranked market and customer insight as their most prized capability. When working with clients, we take a deep look at the data and market research using tools such as Google Analytics to uncover consumer insights, trends and opportunities. We are left with objective insights and clear areas for growth that inform our holistic website and digital strategy.
While executives typically have a deep understanding of the business itself, it can be near-impossible for them to take a full step back from running the business to formulate new, game-changing strategies and uncover opportunities on a website they have been using for years. In fact, research has shown their strong opinions about how users interact with their site typically do not play out in the data. However, that doesn’t mean the process can be handed off to anyone with a fresh perspective.
According to McKinnsey and Company,
“Despite their best intentions, business leaders often get bogged down by human biases and social dynamics that get in the way of clear strategy and strong execution. Just about anyone proposing a strategy comes in with a confident “hockey stick” projection. But how do you distinguish the true breakthrough plans from the fakes and then carry through the tough choices needed to make good on those promises?”
Using Strategic Insights to Attract and Convert Users
Blennd lets our discovery, insights, and proven expertise lead our strategy-building process. With cutting-edge UX, design, development and marketing knowledge, we build a comprehensive plan for businesses, designed to drive measurable outcomes. In doing so, every client’s strategy is completely unique. Taking a look at the target audience, crafting personas, and assessing customer interactions with channels informs our customer journey mapping. Tapping into those insights allows us to engage with customers throughout their lifecycle and uncover additional opportunities to convert site visitors and drive new business. When building a website, we allow the customer journey to frame the user experience on the site, creating goals, objectives and clear calls to action based on their needs.
Avoid an Identity Crisis: Creating Consistency through Brand Strategy
A cohesive brand strategy goes beyond a website redesign; it should inform every single interaction through every channel. It’s the edge that sets your company apart from competitors and defines your business’ role in the marketplace. Having a clear understanding of a brand’s values, identity, audience and mission paves a path for consistent communication and growth. When we develop a brand strategy, it becomes a touchstone for nearly everything we create for a client. For each webpage, headline, graphic and touchpoint, it guides the layout and voice, ultimately setting us up for success in conveying a strong unified message.
SUMO is a Blennd client that manufactures custom bearings solutions. Their brand needed an update that reflected their new focus on sustainability, procurement friendliness and low-cost innovative processes. For their website and ongoing digital marketing, we started with a comprehensive brand strategy guide, which included creating brand pillars, objectives, vision, headline frameworks, content guidelines and more. This not only provided a path for us to be successful with the website design and content, but it also gave SUMO a blueprint for everything they do in the future.
Meet Customer Needs with Meaningful Action
A clear, consistent message cannot be delivered on a website that is not strategically designed to meet the needs of target customers. Having a rock-solid holistic strategy is what allows your business to meaningfully engage consumers online. Tapping into their goals, pain points and considerations gives you a clear understanding of how you can properly represent your business and services in a clear, concise and engaging way. It’s more than pushing a product toward them – it’s developing an online relationship that is meaningful and differentiates you from the others.
This is easier said than done in an extremely muddled marketplace – but finding that strong message and value proposition -- with the help of insights and technology -- is the key to satisfying consumer demand. Making information and action as seamless as possible is the best way to build better experiences online and drive better outcomes for your business. Learn why whirlpool saw $3.7 million profit growth by improving their website.
Learn, Adapt, and Pivot
The needs of consumers are constantly evolving, and your business’ agility and willingness to adapt is the key to maintaining a competitive edge. While your strategy should be ever evolving based on current insights and trends, starting with the right foundation will set you up for future success.
At Blennd, we develop strategies that meet customer expectations, improve communications and boost ROI. Our cutting edge, strategically designed websites are built to drive measurable outcomes for businesses.