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Ask hard questions for digital change

News, 16 November 2016

SINGAPORE: Brands looking to digitally transform their business must set firm goals and not be afraid to challenge inflexible mindsets, according to a senior Starhub executive.  

Rob Strother, Vice President of Digital Transformation at telecommunications company Starhub, addressed this issue at the Marketing Innovation Conference in Singapore, where he stated that people hold the key to real changes within any organisation – but winning over people to change is easier said than done.

"Some people you've got to take kicking and screaming to the future of what the company is about," he said. (For more, read Warc's exclusive report: The new 'clicks and mortar': 10 ways brands in Asia can drive digital transformation.)

One of the major things Starhub did was to terminate its contract with the agency that was handling all its social accounts and build an in-house team instead.

"We wanted to be able to control it," said Strother, citing the move as necessary and unavoidable – but one that has allowed the company to better control its online customer experience.

Marketers should also look to their digital native colleagues for insights. The young marketers at StarHub, said Strother, are constantly teaching him new things every single day.

"How do you get insights around what's happening in social, within digital? We have so many people employed who are that target audience, and we are able to talk to them," Strother said.

Like many businesses, the telco is being forced to adapt by forward-thinking local consumers. Singapore is one of the most connected countries in Asia, and customers expect service to match.

"It's being driven by digital customers, because their expectations are far greater these days. They expect more things to be personalised, more relevant. They expect things to be faster," said Strother.

"We have got to be able to change with that, which is tough considering that we are a traditional bricks-and-mortar organisation, trying to be 'clicks and mortar'.

Data sourced from Warc