Expert Q&A: Sam Ford, director of customer insights, Peppercom Strategic Communications

This week, Sam Ford talks about PerpperDigital's new Digital Aptitude Test, who should be taking it, and how to have an effective digital strategy.

PRWeek: Why was the Digital Aptitude Test developed?

Sam Ford: The Digital Aptitude Test focuses on specific Web 2.0 issues that can be repaired to improve a company's digital aptitude. Our goal is to gather the internal perception of where the company is at online, where it's headed, and then empower communication professionals to take the results to senior leadership in a language they understand, demonstrating the value of digital and what needs more attention.

In addition to our study, PepperDigital has written op-eds and hosted panel sessions about the internal knowledge and perception gaps within companies related to their digital initiatives. That work drove us to develop this tool for locating and closing these horizontal and vertical inconsistencies in order to engage directly with clients to fix these problems.

PRWeek: Who should be taking the test?

Ford: Our site features a mini-quiz that every business executive should take; the five-minute quiz gives a detailed top-line analysis on how a company can improve its “digital aptitude.” Companies looking to optimize their digital initiatives and those who need to target specific drawbacks to improve their online presence are best served by the full test and analysis.

PRWeek: What is the key to having an effective digital strategy?

Ford: The best way to have a well-planned presence online is to be sure everyone within the company who touches digital initiatives is on the same page. We strongly recommend focusing on strategic outcomes rather than quantity of output.  PepperDigital's approach enables companies to optimize their Web strategy through the Digital Aptitude Test and then focus on the initiatives which the company is best at and which best serve the communication goals of the company and its various audiences. The key is to think of each constituency the corporate site is trying to reach, why they're coming to your site,  and then working to make sure you meet those goals. 

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