Why being digital means being more human

Why being digital means being more human

Ulrika Mann

Ulrika Mann,

It’s time to get curious about the motivations behind actual customer behavior. Beyond digitizing products, services and processes, the winners of the next digital economy will have to combine their tech expertise with a deeper understanding of human behavior. 

Successful businesses will in the future have to build teams and organizations that embrace bothbehavioral and technology acumen. But what does human behavioral insights really mean to a business? Automakers, for example, should think about why people drive, beyond getting from point A to point B, and then design for those experiences. Educational companies should study why people want or need to learn, how they access information and what support structures work best for them. Fitness businesses should ponder the role exercise plays for contemporary consumers and how they can offer something uniquely valuable in that context.

It’s about understanding, embracing and communicating the difference that digital can make in consumers’ lives. But how do you develop the skills that allow you to get more in-depth insights about existing and potential customers?

Reach out to social scientists
To truly understand people, you must tap into the world of the humanities and social sciences. Businesses must learn how customers really live by spending extended periods of time with them and using the tools of sociology, anthropology and philosophy to observe and understand their interactions.

Time-consuming? It’s a well-invested effort, because with the insights captured through behavioral analytics, you can establish a clearer, more customer-centric approach. In short, to become more digital, businesses must first become more human.

A customer-centric approach
The key lies in “being” vs. merely “doing” digital. “Doing” digital means launching a series of discrete initiatives – an app to engage customers or an optimized process to cut costs – without thinking about how these initiatives will fit together, significantly change the business or jointly add value for customers.

“Being” digital, on the other hand, means thinking digital first and taking a company-wide approach to transformation. It means having a common language for digital across the organization and a shared understanding of the goal of transformation. It also means driving digital transformation through a single, cross-functional task force.

At the event Human-Driven Innovation in Tech, in Stockholm 4th of September or via livestream, you can learn more about how in-depth human insights can help you develop digital innovations that can thrive in the marketplace.