Skip to content
Home » Keys To A Successful Digital Pivot

Keys To A Successful Digital Pivot

    People forget that YouTube was once an online dating website. Today it is a highly successful video sharing platform. Now that’s a successful pivot!

    “Pivoting” has become a buzz word in 2020 but success is less about “pivoting” from one business to another and more about changing how you sell your product to consumers.

    For example, when governments banned drinking and dining in pubs, their short-term pivot to take-away was an interim necessity to survive. When the restrictions were lifted, they powered up their venues and returned to a winning business model.

    On the other hand, companies that pivoted into making hand sanitisers had a glorious month but then the market was flooded. That’s not a lasting advantage. It’s faddish and unsustainable.

    Digital Pivots For Lasting Advantage

    Pivoting from ‘bricks and mortar’ to a strong focus on digital sales and delivery is a true pivot. It’s a change that is sustainable because society is becoming increasingly digitised, not the reverse.

    Prime Minister Scott Morrison saw it clearly at a macro level, commenting: “Many businesses moved online quickly when the pandemic hit, undergoing a decade of change in months, finding new customers or new ways of doing things.”

    We are seeing a new sense of urgency from organisations as they benchmark themselves against competitors and realise they need to be doing more to compete successfully in an online world.

    How To Implement A Digital Pivot

    A digital pivot allows you to maintain your core business but change elements of marketing and delivery to be more in tune with today’s society.

    1. Dig into your own data (objective measure). Do you need to change? What are the facts telling you?
    2. Listen to your clients and customers (subjective measure). How do they want you to change?
    3. Develop a digital pivot strategy and communicate it. Ignite a sense of urgency in your team. Adopt the mindset that South Australia may experience a second wave like Victoria. Now imagine that your operation is shut down and curfews are enforced, as happened in Melbourne. This should give you the sense of urgency and focus to know what to do next.
    4. Leadership is required. The CEO, principal or owner needs to be involved to ensure success and show how important the move is.
    5. Get help. You can’t be an expert in everything. Typically, you might need advice from an experienced change manager, help from a digital partner or free assistance from your industry association.
    6. Trial it if you can.
    7. Realise in advance that it is a juggling act. “Stay the course” if the data is looking promising but stop quickly and adjust your focus when you realise something is failing.


    In person’s journey from initial idea to final purchase, the research and payment all take place online. The product still needs to be physically delivered in most cases, whether it’s a home printer, a school education or groceries. But the sales process is all in the cloud.

    That’s where you need to be. That’s where you need to excel.

    Finally, learn from the winners and losers. Read about the organisations that have pivoted successfully and why, and also analyse the failures for important lessons.

    Submit a Ticket