‘Corporate sector must lead digital transformation’

GOVERNMENT has called on the corporate sector to lead the digital transformation drive so that it remains relevant and adapt to the ever-changing digital environment.

BY MTHANDAZO NYONI

Officially opening the Marketers Association Zimbabwe convention in Bulawayo yesterday, Information minister Monica Mutsvangwa said the corporate sector should move with time lest it becomes irrelevant.

“This marketers convention comes at a time when there is global digital transformation. As you are aware, government is working on transforming the country into a digital and knowledge-driven society in line with vision 2030,” she said.

“Recently, as government, we announced the migration to the holding of e-enabled paperless Cabinet meetings, as well as the introduction of the executive electronic dashboard to monitor the implementation of priority government programmes in real time,” Mutsvangwa said.
She said these two innovations were part of the broader e-government programme which seeks to transform Zimbabwe by 2030.

“As such, we implore you the corporate sector to lead in the digital transformation so that you remain relevant and adapt to the ever-changing digital environment,” she said.

Mutsvangwa said in modern marketing strategies, marketers have to engage in professional and responsible communication as they expand their horizons.

“The business trends, globally, are changing and changing very fast. This therefore calls on you the marketers and communication professionals to be at the forefront of presenting your brands,” she said.

“Gone are the days when long-term strategies are needed, but effective tactics that are swift and responsive to the changing environment. I say this (because of) the digitalisation of the business world and processes. The coming in of the social media space has completely revolutionised the way we communicate with our customers.”

In fact, it had become the other way round with customers now speaking to “us and we have to tailor make our products and or services to the dictates of the customers”, she said.

“Even us as government, we take communication seriously as we need to keep abreast with technologies. Gone are the days when we would have to wait for the main news bulletin to make announcements, but we are also forced by you the general citizenry to act swiftly and timely otherwise the news would have gone out via social media unnoticed,” she said.

She appealed to marketing professionals to support government officials with further insights into the trends and platforms so that they keep abreast with the new developments. “Change is real, it is, therefore, paramount for every constituent to be at its toes in order to be relevant,” Mutsvangwa said.

“Uncouth marketing strategies will never last long as they fast disappear in people’s memories. As government, we encourage responsible communication from you as you have a very broad influence, not only on people’s choices, but even the world’s view.”

She said social media is a very powerful medium which can either destroy or build brands as well as the nation.

She urged marketers to engage in professional marketing that does not contain inflammatory language, hate speech or encourages violence in the country.

“As we ride on current affairs in our social media marketing, let’s also be wary of insensitive messages,” she said.

She also implored marketers to position and market the country brand on the global scale, promote local goods and brands as well as promote exports.

The convention, ending today, is running under the banner Engaging Strategic Marketing in a Dynamic Environment — Expanding Horizons

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