Why is it so hard to commit to a digital media strategy?

Jeff Elder
2 min readOct 21, 2019

A decade ago, many companies plunged into digital media without a strategy. Figuring they needed to get in the game, they entrusted their brands to junior employees, agencies, or interns. Those brand stewards have churned often since then, leaving a schizophrenic narrative many executives do not recognize as the stories of their companies.

Every few quarters they start over by hiring a new marketing director with a great resume and fresh ideas. But territoriality sandbags this new talent, who reins in ambitions — or leaves. Many brands’ owned media devolves into unconvincing cheerleading. These posts don’t perform without paid promotion, and unhealthy dependence on paid promotion deepens.

Picking a direction and sticking with it requires consistency and confidence. Media has changed so much — who can blame executives for looking over their shoulders and wondering if they’re doing it right.

Doing it right — regardless of the platform — means being real about who you are, what you want, and what you have to say.

That’s not a shiny new strategy. It should be as natural as a conversation An old friend. But it requires money, work, a seat at the table, and honesty.

Isn’t that’s better than churn, wasted budget, and poor results?

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Jeff Elder

Former WSJ reporter and syndicated columnist now writing crypto and cybersecurity. The Paris Review praised my Johnny Cash post.