At its core, business is all about change. No business can succeed without introducing meaningful changes to their consumers’ lives, and any given environment for doing business is bound to undergo changes over time.
The Arab world is no different, with changes coming rapidly in the wake of increasing digitization and the growth of online culture. Digital businesses are taking the region by storm, and disrupting industries across the board.
To put these changes into perspective and give you an idea of how your business can adapt to the dynamic landscape, we’ve written this article on the ongoing impact of digital companies.
1. Digital Companies are Fueling the Trend of Socially Aware Business
When consumer preferences shift, the most successful businesses are those that pay close attention and adjust accordingly. Today, a growing number of people find themselves opting for companies with a track record for eco-friendliness, good labor practices, and corporate social responsibility (CSR).
Research suggests that the link between CSR and financial success isn’t necessarily external (that is, a result of wider patronage), but intrinsic: openness with stakeholders can keep a business stable.
Of course, this isn’t to discount the massive appeal of social-mindedness to today’s consumers. Socially-minded businesses can expect to mine a significant amount of value in terms of both sales and brand equity.
If you’re wondering why digital companies factor into this dynamic, it’s because they simply must be keyed into today’s trends in order to function. Languages, fads, and popularity can be formed and lost on the internet at a moment’s notice, so attuning to new demands (in our case, social responsibility) is paramount.
A good example of this dynamic in action would be Lush Cosmetics’ marine conservation campaign run in tandem with the UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. Lush is a leading international ethical cosmetics brand that, while not strictly a digital company, communicates effortlessly in digital spaces –you can find them on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and even on LinkedIn.
These kinds of campaigns pay dividends thanks to shifts in consumer culture, and they’re precisely the kind of material that a digital company would seek to produce.
2. Digital Companies are Driving Businesses to Focus on Data
There was a time when data was an optional factor in doing business. It used to be that all you needed to excel at entrepreneurship was tenacity, a sharp instinct for business, and a talent for pattern-spotting.
Thanks to the influence of digital companies, those days are long gone.
Since data gathering is built into the very fabric of today’s websites, social media platforms, and web-based services, firms that make a living off them have worked analytics their core offerings. The best digital companies now refine their services over time using the information your business automatically generates.
This kind of analytical discipline is working its way into industries of all shapes and sizes. Arab Luxury World is one of many industry-wide events that have recently shone a spotlight on digital transformation, with data held closely at the center of discussions.
A focus on analytics is bound to be good for any industry that takes on the habit, and research suggests that an investment in business analytics returns $13.01 for every dollar spent. The market for luxury products in the UAE is only one of many set to make the radical shift towards more precise targeting, more diligent metric tracking, and ultimately, more revenue.
3. Digital Companies are Forcing Businesses to Contend with Disruption
Business is competition. Even before you could compare popularity by the number of a brand’s Facebook fans, companies have had to square off against countless rivals for their customers’ attention, cash, and loyalty. Now that the world’s people and products are globally linked, the competition only grows fiercer.
Disruption is what you’d call a phenomenon that interrupts the established order of things –and we’ve seen plenty of this happen in the business world over the past few years. Uber disrupted transportation, Netflix disrupted television and cinema, and Amazon disrupted pretty much all of commerce.
Businesses across the Arab world are being disrupted as we speak, though possibly not in the ways you might think. Far from the drastic surges of change that come to mind when we read about disruption, what’s really happening is a slow but certain creep as new companies (or established ones with a greater willingness to adapt) shift towards more efficient modes of business, one step at a time.
Not many appreciate the fact that disruption can happen in minute and impactful ways, but those that do are in a better position to free up their trapped potential and gain a significant competitive advantage over businesses that are slower on the uptake.
Digital companies are leading the charge here, as businesses that thrive on technology are exposed to more incentives to study, adjust, and improve. Their success at handling rapid developments translates into agility in other aspects of business, and this all poses a threat to any competitors who are less responsive to the signs of disruption.
Businesses in the Arab world are pressured to face the changing landscape head-on, else be overtaken by firms that are better equipped to go with the flow.
4. Digital Companies are Boosting Growth across the Arab World
We end this article on a positive note, because for all the particulars of our changing world, the general trend is clear: economies across the MENA region are getting better, and we have digitization to thank.
The benefits of having a society go digital are well-documented, as greater interconnectedness results in more efficient business, as well as wider options for suppliers and consumers alike. McKinsey’s analysis affirms these findings, and even suggests that digitization correlates with higher GDP.
While companies that specialize in digital products and services are responsible for introducing the changes, the MENA region’s consumers are just as instrumental in the shift in the status quo for welcoming new technology with open arms.
Digital agencies and other firms with a foot firmly planted online have reshaped the nature and impact of business in the Arab world. Their influence has led to a rise in social awareness, data-emphasis, disruption, and economic growth –and the trend shows little sign of slowing down.
Regardless of what industry you belong to, minding the reach and effect of digitization will give you a clear advantage over professionals who ignore it outright. As such, your next step would be to visit sites like the Marketing Agency Network, where you can find the world’s top digital companies, ready for a partnership.
When the world shifts, smart businesses lean into the changes.