As I’ve posted many times before, a digital presence is a key operational asset for ALL businesses these days. It is often the first point of contact, if not the major point of contact for existing and potential customers. Even for businesses who have a more traditional setup, there is still a high likelihood that your actual and potential customers will do some form of due diligence on you to check out your credentials at some stage. So a digital presence is essential whatever form it takes - responsive website, social media, app etc.
When you have such strategically important assets, it is vital that these are managed properly to ensure you gain maximum benefit and potential from your digital activities. Hence you need someone to be the central fulcrum for all your digital operations - principally in terms of managing and organising those assets and resources - enforcing continuity and coherence.
In times past, this role used to be known as a ’Webmaster’ or ’Web Manager’; with digital now having a far broader remit, the title has evolved to become ’Digital Manager’ - occasionally Digital Strategy Manager, Digital Brand Manager or Digital Product Manager. The key point being that you have a single staff member who is chiefly in control of those activities.
A Digital Manager is quite distinct from a Digital Marketing Manager, and their role is more of an operational one with a particular emphasis on project management. The most successful Affino sites benefit from having a singular executive manager who can make quick decisions, rapidly scale up digital operations and quickly seize any passing opportunity. The Digital medium is very fast moving, and requires lightning reflexes to successfully navigate.
Far too few companies have proper digital departments or divisions yet - not even a tiny team of just 2-3 individuals. Yet assigning a single person to oversee the digital side of a businesses’s operations is well within most companies’ reach. When such a resource is missing, matters quickly descend into chaos and disrepair. A quick glance at any digital resource should amply validate the presence of a proper Digital Manager - simply by the quality of the materials presented and their currency - i.e. how up-to-date and relevant they are.
Many organisations believe they can get by simply by outsourcing or assigning partial or part-time staff to cover the various functions of a Digital Manager. In doing this they quickly lose sight of a coherent strategic approach, and totally loose the ability to quickly react to market forces / fluctuations. The digital presence then becomes fragmented and stagnated and the opportunity cost / loss is enormous.
A decent Digital Manager really is an essential resource, that will bring significant benefits with them. Efficiency and Effectiveness should see significant gains, alongside growing customer satisfaction and retention. There is a frequent correlation between lack of Digital Manager and poor customer satisfaction / low customer retention.
A Digital Manager should be instrumental in shaping the digital presence - in terms of overseeing services conveyed / enacted / delivered digitally, controlling users’ access to those services and maintaining the currency and relevance of all key digital assets and materials. In the modern paradigm a single resource though cannot fulfil every single function that is required to run a successful digital presence - they cannot be responsible for the origination of all materials and assets - you will still need editorial staff / writers, designers / photo-editors, video-editors, digital marketing staff et al. - many of these can be coordinated via outside resources.
Some companies think they can make do with just one person to cover all the day-to-day tasks, but a Digital Manager is really the overseer - they are responsible for maintaining the proper working function of the digital assets, not the day-to-day content population, campaign assignments, messaging etc. For the role to work, the Digital Manger must be fully empowered to make executive decisions, they must also have relevant supplementary resources to carry out the day-to-day activities. If you ask too much of your Digital Manager, your overall digital experience will suffer, as there is no way that one man or woman can alone do everything that needs to be done. The important point is that there should be a central focus and conduit - where one person can forge the direction and properly positively influence the digital experience ...