Apparently giant king crabs up to one meter in diameter have invaded the Antarctic abyss, wiping out wildlife such as sea urchins, sea cucumbers & starfish, and threatening the ecosystem that has been evolving for millions of years.

And yes it’s all due to global warming!

Well I won’t get into a global warming debate however these killer crabs, eating all in sight, remind me of digital businesses looking to carve out market share. Most are growing social engagement like wildfire and want to be the next ‘Facebook’ yet are just marching on blindly without any real plan.

Interestingly I was speaking to a colleague of mine this week from a prominent M&A (Mergers and Acquisitions) corporate law firm. And I posed the question of whether he gets involved in the digital market. I’ve never heard him respond so quickly. “Wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole,” was his reply.

“Too risky, overvalued, and seen as a bad market”

Hmm, that’s a little harsh. That’s the industry I work in! However my take-out was that from time to time we need to poke our neck outside our comfort zone to realise what we’re doing.

I don’t mean that digital businesses are bad. That would be a little crazy given that I’m a digital planner. However I do see plenty of businesses approaching digital activity in a bad way.

Whether it be a bit of social to tick off the CEO’s list, or a ‘targeted’ email program that unfortunately contains only a one-size-fits-all email newsletter, many businesses have simply forgotten the fundamentals.

How would you answer these 3 questions:

* have you got a business plan? Most companies I see do, although 30% of retailers recently surveyed by AMP Capital say that they had nothing written down!

* have you got a marketing plan that helps deliver on the business plan? I see lots of marketing plans and over 50% don’t seem to show how they will specifically deliver on the company’s overarching business objectives.

* have you got a digital plan and how does it integrate into your marketing plan? To use may daughter’s words (or letters it seems these days) – OMG! Most businesses I come across have not defined the roles of each digital channel they are in, let alone defined the digital measures to deliver on theĀ  marketing and overarching business plan.

So what should you do now?

Challenge the norm with digital solutions however make sure that you’ve created a solid & sensible platform to springboard from.

People I work with often hear me saying: “you don’t build a house without an architects drawing.”

Well you shouldn’t do digital without a plan or what I call, a ‘Digital BluePrint’.

Does your digital activity need renovating?