Although you swore never to make any new year's resolutions again, we bet you were summing up numerous resolutions you would give a try once again when counting down from 10 to 0 to enter 2024. Whether it was eating healthy, not stressing about the small stuff, or going to the gym every day, we know they are hard to keep track of once daily life takes over again.
But we have some good news for you!
So let go of your unrealistic life-changing - made when you were drunk - resolutions, and let’s set up some real ones to help you and your business grow.
1. … we will be real
When we think of resolutions, we go all the way. From the start of the new year, I will NEVER eat meat, I’ll go to the gym EVERY day, and I’ll NEVER sweat the small stuff again, … You hear it, “every day”, “never again”, unrealistic, right? So let’s be real with our resolutions, both personal and professional. Start small; start with the basics.
We all live in trends; yesterday, it was cool to be an influencer with perfect pictures; today, a “crappy” video on TikTok makes you go viral. The same goes for digital products. We always think of adding new features, making it hip and trendy, adding ‘the bling’. But what if we thought about the basics of our product? What if we thought about what’s worth the investment, certainly given the economic circumstances? What if we really thought about what our user's value and created the product they need? That’s what’s real; a good, user-friendly, valuable digital product that is future-proof and adjustable but has all the right foundations to sustain.
2. …we will make more time for our friends
That’s a great one to add to your personal resolutions. You can translate this personal resolution to business by considering your target audience as your best friends. These are the people you need to have a bond with, or at least, the ones you really need to connect with and understand. Because creating a product you see value in, is great. But you know what’s even greater? Building a product that your (potential) users want! Because what is your product worth if it’s not used?
So before you start building your dream product, think about your audiences. What are their needs? Are your assumptions about that target audience correct, or are they made up? Being customer intimate is cool, and achieving it is even cooler. So make more time for your target audience, sit around the table with your users, and talk about their goals, needs, and perception of your product and services. Learn from their experience and adjust your product where necessary.
3. … we want to create a clear vision
… for our digital product. Let's be honest; every decision, big or small, is a challenge without a clear vision. Every decision opens up the conversation about the end goal and your plans for the future. You're set up for failure if you don't have a vision. So, if you want your digital product to be successful to be future-proof, you need to take time to create a vision for it. A vision broadly supported inside your organization and among your target audience.
But don't be mistaken; creating this vision ain't child's play. It would help if you found the right words, goals, and stakeholders to sit around the table to decide on this vision. Because it isn't just a simple sentence you're creating; it's your digital product's strategy, your business's potential growth, and the solid ground to build on.
Need some help to get started? Our strategists are happy to assist you in defining your vision for the future during an intensive digital product strategy workshop.
4. … our product teams need to be aligned
In the previous resolution, we discussed creating a vision for your business and your digital product. But if your internal stakeholders do not support your vision, you don't have the right vision, or you forgot to involve the right people. So before you decide on your vision because 'it sounds nice', think about how it will land with your internal stakeholders. And that is probably the hardest part, rallying your troops behind that long-term goal you’ll strive to achieve one day. Because let’s face it, anyone you’ll try to convince without including them in your process will be skeptical of the change you’re suggesting.
So a good resolution might be to involve your stakeholders from the start or even before the start. Try to find what lives under the radar and what sensitivities appear within your company, bring the right people, people with a good network, around the table and let them help you spread the message of your new vision.
You could throw everyone in a workshop meeting and try to create alignment. But consider doing one-on-one interviews with your stakeholders beforehand, this might show individual agendas and goals that will help you prepare the workshop objectives. Other than that, an internal marketing campaign, a thorough communication plan, and a great visual might help you along the way.
5. … we’ll focus on improving process efficiency
We’re all confronted with challenging times. Just like we have to be careful with our electricity usage at home, we also have to think about the efficiency of our internal processes. Times change, people change, and work environments change, but sometimes we keep holding on to specific processes because “we always did it this way”.
Let’s make 2024 the year where we take a critical look at our processes and see how we can make them more efficient and pleasant. And maybe some of the answers lie in digitalization. Because if we digitize certain parts of a process, it can lead to a significant amount of time and effort, and therefore money, saved in the end.
So start with analyzing what part of a process takes the most time or effort. And think about how you can minimize this by introducing a digital product. Be realistic about what you want to implement; you don’t have to go all out on technology and implement the bling gadgets. Go for the changes that truly add value and reduce costs in the long term. Check some of the projects we built that added value to internal processes.
6. … we want to make our digital plans truly actionable
Success starts with making reasonable plans. Of course, your plans may be challenging and take you out of your comfort zone, but they have to be feasible in the end. So, instead of making irrational resolutions for yourself and your business, try to make actionable ones. Divide a big target into small, achievable steps. Celebrate successes to encourage your team and employees to strive toward that next one. Small actions will help you achieve big changes in the end.
It might sound a bit contradictory, but we believe that the key to success is actually to fail as quickly as possible. Weird, right? No worries, we’ll explain. Let’s assume you start with setting up your plan, drawing up your roadmap, then start building your product, and next, you launch it into the market. You’ll only know if your product will be successful after the launch. That’s pretty late in the process; both your time and money have been invested in a product that might or might not attract.
So, try to fail as quickly as possible, a.k.a; try to detect the flaws in your potential product as soon as possible so you can adjust and adapt where necessary. By testing wireframes and prototypes with your end users, even before the actual blueprint of your product is completely defined, you’ll be able to find small mistakes or errors and change them accordingly to the desires of your target audience.
7. … we’ll define our 2024 stepping stones to digital success
Starting the new year with a plan? That’s already one step closer to actually realizing it! But a plan is only feasible when you divide the big picture into smaller stepping stones. As we said, actionable plans are the go-to to make a bigger change happen. This counts for small challenges along the way, but it’s equally important for realizing your year plan or roadmap.
So once you are done with creating the big plan for 2024, start dividing your strategy into stepping stones to accomplish the digital success you’re planning to come true. We would like to suggest that delivering immediate value to your user might be beneficial at the start of your plan. Your early adopters will be your advocates and attract new and larger audiences.
How to get started? Setting up a detailed digital roadmap might do the trick. Need some help? We will happily guide you through it in our digital roadmap workshop.
8. … we will make smart technology choices
A lot of the things we said before, like being real and improving efficiency, can only be achieved through choosing the right technology for your soon-to-be-created digital solution. You definitely need to pin down what you need your product to help you with. You need the right technology for every challenge that comes your way.
But as we said, keep it real. Select the right stack that fits your needs and is aligned with your current technology stack, without creating an overshoot. Don’t go for the shiny new solutions; strip it down to the bare essentials and pick the solutions that match your goals. Only by doing so, you will see the true value of your digital product and services and detect what’s missing to make your product even more efficient.
Besides that, choosing a technology that suffices on all levels, like security, privacy, … must not be underestimated.
9. … we want to keep our digital products running smoothly and learn at every digital turn
Do you already have a digital product? Great! Do you think it will do the work for itself? Not so great. We often see that once a digital product is launched, the focus goes to what’s next. It’s good to think about your next steps, but don’t make the mistake of thinking your digital product will keep itself up to speed.
For one, you must ensure your product stays compatible with the latest iOS and Android updates. That doesn’t happen magically but needs to be taken care of by a team of experienced developers.
Secondly, you want your product to evolve with your target audience. It would help if you analyzed how they use your product, detected missing features, and learned from their experiences to make your product even better and future-proof.
So, don’t stop at the start. Make it a marathon, not a sprint. Analyze, monitor, and adjust. A roadmap is not set in stone; it needs to be adaptable along the way.
10. … we want to maximize the impact of our digital efforts
So, you have done the work; you mapped your audience’s needs, set up a clear vision for your digital product, created a strong, actionable plan, and built a cool digital product. Now it’s time to launch your product into the market.
Because after you put in all the effort, you don’t want your product to go to waste. You want it to be used intensively to get reviews and insights from your users so you can make it even better. You can't expect your digital product will start living its own life once you've put it in the app store. You'll need the right go-to-market strategy, translated into a good communication plan to attract your target audience on different channels and guide them to your product. You eventually want to make sure it delivers; you want the return on investment to pay off.
That’s what you can realize with the right go-to-market strategy. That one cool campaign that makes your user go overboard for your product. And to set up the right metrics to make it so good that they get hooked on your product.
11. … we want to pick the right partner that thinks along, builds, cares & inspires
Surprise, surprise! You’re already at the right place. Our digital product strategists are happy to help you make your New Year’s resolutions come true. Not by working some kind of magic, but by guiding you step by step through the process, helping you highlight your priorities, and asking the right questions.
There’s no one-size-fits-all solution; that’s why we strongly believe in collaboration between you, as the expert of your business, and us, armed with the right methodologies and a lot of experience. Together we’ll help you realize the most fitting solution for your business.
Make it a great digital 2024, in which you can hold on to your freshly designed resolutions!