This post was originally published on FirstFuel’s website. FirstFuel is now Uplight.
You’ve just purchased digital engagement software and may be wondering – what makes a successful implementation? There are four key technical areas that, when executed well, can lead to a successful implementation – that is, the software is up and running and your organization and customers are actively using the platform. These four areas include:
- Program Management: It should go without saying, but a successful deployment always starts off with excellent program management. A good program manager is able to bring both business and technical teams together to address technical challenges and business issues, keep the deployment on track and work collaboratively to mitigate any deployment risks. Often, it’s this senior program manager that addresses the challenges head-on and will seek perspectives from both the business and technical groups within the organization to solve them.
- Data Configuration: Deployment and the utility of a digital engagement solution rests solely on the back of data. Beyond addressing general program management, bringing the various sources of data from your organization together into a digital engagement platform will be one of the most critical tasks. To be successful, it’s important to allocate technical resources responsible for working across your organization’s IT and business teams. And, it’s critical to evaluate an inventory of data sources, both internal and external to your organization. A completed technical engagement document or equivalent platform data specification provides the basis for many technical decisions throughout implementation.
- Content Management: Imagine walking into your favorite store, except that week after week the products on the shelves haven’t changed – for years, no new styles have been introduced and the hottest gadget on the shelves is a record player. In order to keep customers coming back to your engagement platform it’s important to design a content strategy that is both engaging and fresh.
- Marketing & Promotion: Launching a digital engagement platform without investing in marketing and promotion is like building a car and not filling it with gas – yet, this is often the most neglected area in software implementations. Implementation teams typically focus on the technical aspects of the project related to the software deployment, and fail to scope the resource and attention needed to drive traffic to the platform. To deliver a successful platform, the software must be accessible for both customers and internal teams. Thoughtful and prominent web-site linking is an effective way to drive traffic – in fact, by simply enabling single sign-on (SSO) and using clear sitelinks, it is possible to boost traffic by 30-40%. Additionally, developing a comprehensive marketing program including landing pages, SEO, videos, and direct communications delivers a demonstrated uplift in web traffic. A “build it and they will come attitude” will not work, and without investments in strong marketing and promotion, any software platform is likely to produce lackluster results.
An implementation strategy that includes a strong plan for project management, data configuration, content management, and marketing and promotion is key to a successful digital engagement platform deployment. Without these critical elements, your platform deployment is unlikely to deliver and improved customer experience or meet key performance indicators such as customer engagement and satisfaction.