Eight weeks. Eight weeks is all it took to propel consumer and business digital adoption five years into the future. From first-time Zoom-users moving to leading their own online meetings to entire conferences held within the digisphere, COVID-19 precipitated a rapid adoption of digital technologies that all sectors – including ones like education, commerce, and healthcare – were previously quite reluctant to bring aboard.
In the business space, there’s been a lot of discussion about how this adoption has changed the work environment. Big bosses now trust that their employees working from home are actually working. The savings that come from holding less office real estate is such that certain companies will never go back to an office environment. It also means taking a harder look at the (often unequal) division of home labour and childcare, when working hours and online meetings are thrown into that particular mix.
But what does all of this new adoption mean outside of the digital walls of your office, from a B2B or B2C perspective?
On the one hand, new audience realities due to increased digital adoption need to be considered in messaging and marketing. What does a Mother’s Day campaign look like during and post-coronavirus? What does the weekend mean to workers whose work-life balance has eroded completely? A side effect of the pandemic and our collective weird behaviours has meant a lot of AI predictive technology is now on the fritz – so we need a sensitive human set of eyes more than ever to make sure our content hits its mark.
But, that doesn’t mean there isn’t a silver lining to our “new normal.” For one thing, the rapid adoption brought on by the pandemic has dissolved a lot of divides in technological fluency between demographics. If a grandmother can Google Hangout with her grandchildren, then she can access technology-based products and services that were previously barred to her. Audience sizes for these kinds of products have just had a marked increase.
Not just growing audiences for existing products, widespread digital adoption also increases the scope for new digital products. SAAS project management platforms like Basecamp have pivoted to be a work-from-home solution, and we’re sure to see more offerings in that space. Given the fear surrounding issues that working from home brings on like worker loneliness, a lack of team cohesion, and accurate and appropriate compensation and bonuses for remote staff also pose huge opportunities for software, consulting, and professional development or training companies.
For B2B and B2C companies that are quick enough, there’re plenty of opportunities in our new, digital-adopter context. You just have to know where to look.