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6 tips to stay up to date with digital trends and technologies

To maintain a competitive edge in the digital world we are increasingly immersed in, as a small and family business owner you should be thinking about how you can further leverage current and emerging technology.

Because that’s what your competitors are doing.

Innovative solutions, tools and strategies can help you differentiate your products or services from your competitors, make you more efficient and save on costs, as well as help you reach new customers more effectively or keep your usual customers coming back.

You’re already a digital adopter - you switched from fax to email, have wi-fi, use EFTPOS, own a smartphone, track all barcodes, probably run a couple of social media platforms and you might have moved all your business records to the cloud.

Respondents to a 2022 survey said you would like to improve your digital literacy but are constrained by time and resources; and most businesses are not pursuing digital solutions due to low digital literacy and perceptions around cost.

There’s no silver bullet here. Investing time and effort – and money – will help you move forward and get that return on investment.

  1. Digital trends are your friend: Stay informed about digital trends and technologies by dedicating time to self-education. Follow industry blogs, subscribe to newsletters, and participate in webinars or courses to stay updated on the latest developments in your sector or industry.
  2. Conferences, events, and seminars and more: Participate in relevant industry conferences, seminars, and workshops that focus on digital trends and technologies. These events provide opportunities to network with experts, learn from industry leaders, and gain insights into emerging technologies that perhaps your competitors are already using.
  3. Keep your peers close and your competitors closer: Join online forums and social media groups related to your industry to build your network, online and offline. Engaging with your peers, learning from competitors and experts in these communities can help you stay informed about the latest digital trends, exchange ideas, and learn from others' experiences.
  4. Get experimental with tech: Be willing to try new digital tools, platforms, or technologies. Stay open to testing different strategies, implementing new digital solutions, and evaluating their effectiveness for your business. This mindset will help you adapt to evolving trends and identify opportunities for growth.
  5. Don’t be afraid to ask the experts: Consider consulting with digital marketing experts, technology consultants, or industry specialists who can provide guidance tailored to your specific business needs. These professionals can help you understand which digital trends and technologies are most relevant to your industry and how to leverage them to your advantage.
  6. Participate in CUSP: The South Australian Government has partnered with the Australian Cyber Collaboration Centre to deliver the Cyber Uplift Step Program which provides accessible and affordable cyber security education and support for small businesses. This is a great way to boost your cyber capability and learn how to secure your precious data.

Not every trend may be suitable or beneficial for your business or to target your customers. Focus on those that align with your business needs, goals, target market, and resources available to ensure a successful integration of digital trends and technologies into your operations.

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