“You can do whatever you want.”

What could you do with your digital property if you discarded all those strict brand guidelines, publishing templates, back end requirements – never mind those pesky budgets? How easy could you make it for your customers to accomplish a task? What’s that big problem you could finally solve?

Here’s a suggestion: go through that hypothetical exercise. It may sound daunting – but I can assure you, it’s not. And the payoff could be game changing.

We’ve received more of these types of requests from our clients in the past year than we ever have. Why? Nearly every tried-and-true business model was thrown out because of the pandemic. Innovation became key to survival. And along with all that innovation, customer expectations changed too. And brands that figured out how to quickly pivot reaped the rewards.

Encouraging vaccination rates and consumer optimism may have you thinking things will soon be back to “normal” but beware, your customers’ expectations are still being shaped by innovations, simplicity, and better customer response from those brands that learned how to pivot. In short, your customers don’t actually want your brand to return to “normal.” They like the convenience of curbside pickup. They like being able to depend on connecting virtually when in-person is not possible. They like how a few simple taps on their phone makes things appear on their doorstep. More importantly, they like being able to self-service whenever and wherever they want.

“But budgets and guidelines still have to be followed,” you may be saying. Yes, of course, but not in brainstorming and not in hypothetical exercises – which is what I’m suggesting you do. And to be clear, this isn’t about a refresh – it’s about problem solving. What’s your one biggest wish for your digital property? What if you could rebuild the entire thing (or a portion of it) with solving that one problem as a focus?

Still sound intimidating? I’ll write the creative brief for you:

BACKGROUND: The team has identified [PROBLEM] as a pain point.

DELIVERABLE: Reimagine our digital properties with a focus on making [PROBLEM] better.

SPECS: There are no specs. You can do whatever you want. No need to follow brand or publishing guidelines. No need to use standard conventions. Don’t think about what’s feasible today. Ideas can be sketched and don’t need to fit into templates. Focus on how the experiences could make [PROBLEM] better – no need to create a full buildout.

DEADLINE: Three weeks from today.

That’s it.

Out of this, you’ll likely get a big idea you really like and can start to build a roadmap for how to get there. But more importantly, you’ll also probably see a few smaller ideas that you can implement much sooner.

And I’d be remiss if I didn’t say that the folks that are best suited for a task like this sit outside your brand. Like an outside agency built for innovative thinking and problem solving – Shiny, for example.

Give us a call. In a few short weeks, you may just get the innovative ideas you need to propel your business into the “new normal.”