Digital HyperExpansion: The Third Wave of Digital

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Digital transformation is over. Welcome to the new wave of digital: Digital HyperExpansion

The First Digital Wave began in 2007, when the introduction of the iPhone changed the way companies engaged with their customers. Soon, we witnessed the advent of omnichannel experiences for the customer and the creation of interfaces between physical and digital to bolster revenue growth.

The Second Digital Wave began in 2013 with businesses prioritizing “digital transformation of the enterprise,” with the build out of a reusable digital platform, culminating in digital revenue.

Today, we are in the midst of the Third Digital Wave we call Digital HyperExpansion. Digital HyperExpansion has pushed enterprises to the tipping point and has forever changed how they perceive digital technology and innovation.

What is Digital HyperExpansion?

Digital HyperExpansion (DHX) is the third wave of growth of digital technologies in the enterprise. The third and final wave is the culmination of Digital Transformation efforts and results in the enterprise becoming a digital platform that enables portfolio and lifecycle management of all campaigns, brands, products, business units, and infrastructures.

Photon’s toolkit for DHX includes an open framework for enterprise adoption and a set of engagement tools and methodologies to bring customers into the leadership position in the third wave.

Global Companies Realize Digital HyperExpansion in the Third Digital Wave

With the Digital HyperExpansion FrameworkTM, we make the business strategy inseparable from digital lifecycle management. Our clients—across Retail and eCommerce, Banking and FinServ, Healthcare and Pharma, and CPG—have successfully reached the target state of Digital HyperExpansion using our services. They have innovated new offerings at speed and scale, and created new competitive advantages in the disrupted business world. We discuss some instances below.

Samsung Rebuilds Their eCommerce Platform to Bring Next-gen Features

Digital HyperExpansion accelerated the digital shift and significantly impacted how consumers shop and engage with brands. Samsung wanted to build a differentiated eCommerce platform to adapt to these disruptions and better engage with customers through data-driven, personalized digital interactions.

Photon helped Samsung reconstruct their platform into a microservices-based, scalable eCommerce platform. This successful project delivered unique, new services that made the shopping journey on Samsung.com more personalized and seamless for consumers.

Over the last four years, Samsung partnered with Photon for platform development and innovation, purchase funnel optimization, and customer journey improvements. Photon has been Samsung’s go-to digital agency for technical expertise around DevOps, Android/iOS development, and Node.js-based microservices architecture.

“As Samsung.com continues to evolve, our partnership with Photon helps us stay on top of the ever-changing eCommerce and digital landscape. Photon is an extended arm of our development team,” said Kal Raman, Chief Digital Officer, Samsung America.

Walgreens Builds an Innovative Digital Healthcare Platform

Igor Gershfang Walgreens Boots Alliance PhotonWorld

Walgreens embraced Digital HyperExpansion by launching Walgreens Find Care™, a digital healthcare platform that is transforming methods of service delivery in the evolving healthcare and pharma industry. The platform helps people access healthcare services—both in-person and online—including prescriptions, wellness visits, lab testing, and chronic care management.

Walgreens Find Care™ offers an integrated healthcare and pharmacy experience to empower people to get care when and how they need it, from local and national providers they trust. It aims to drive a cultural and behavioral shift in the ways consumers engage with healthcare service providers to fundamentally change the provider-payer relationship and enable the sharing of the decision-making process equally. 

“As a company focused on providing omnichannel solutions that address barriers to healthcare, we have designed Walgreens Find Care™ to be the digital ‘front door’ to an integrated healthcare and pharmacy experience,” said Giovanni Monti, SVP of Healthcare Services, Walgreens Boots Alliance.

As a partner in the Walgreens Find Care™ project, Photon contributed across the aspects of technical discovery, product development, and creative UX/UI design, among others. Photon has been Walgreens’ innovation partner for a decade and won the Walgreens Boots Alliance Technology Partner of the Year award at the Alphega Pharmacy European Convention held in March 2019 at Monte Carlo.

Igor Gershfang, VP, Head of Digital Products and Development, Walgreens Boots Alliance said “I thank our partners at Photon for helping us create our customer platform capabilities and launch great customer offerings.”

Coca-Cola HBC Transforms Their B2B Ordering Platform into a Customer-centric eShop

Digital HyperExpansion compelled Coca-Cola HBC to take a proactive approach to digital to deliver B2B solutions at speed and scale. Their ultimate goal was to transform a functional ordering platform into a holistic customer portal for business owners who wish to order regularly on the fly.

A new platform design and system architecture were created to separate the customer-facing layer from the backend system and thereby gain the agility to employ new functionalities. Photon contributed to the project by leading the design approach and applying best practices to build seamless, best-in-class user experiences while accommodating business needs.

“Photon has been our partner in this important platform relaunch. Their knowledge and methodology have really impressed us,” said Mourad Ajarti, Group CIO at Coca-Cola HBC.

“We appreciate the added value that Photon has brought by creating scope for future upgrades without any impact on the rest of the platform. This will help us gain a lot of advantages from a technical standpoint,” he added.

Ocean Spray Drives a Tech-led Transformation

Ocean Spray had a mega-viral social media moment in October 2020. Nathan Apodaca, an Idaho resident, posted a TikTok video of him drinking a jug of Ocean Spray Cran-Raspberry juice while longboarding and lip-synching to the song “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac. The viral trend that followed helped Ocean Spray generate billions of impressions on their social media, and their Cran-Raspberry juice was sold out in locations all around the country.

The benefits realized from the viral social media trend helped Ocean Spray realize the importance of improving demand generation across digital channels to maximize digital revenue. It is essential to build capabilities and the technical know-how to engage with customers in real-time with a focus on value in the Digital HyperExpansion era.

Ocean Spray implemented a comprehensive digital transformation strategy, integrating a functional marketing technology stack and moving almost 60% of their on-premise workloads to the cloud. They have also set up the digital foundation and rolled out processes for robust data management.

Photon has been Ocean Spray’s digital partner for over two years. Jamie Head, Chief Digital and Technology Officer, Ocean Spray Cranberries said, “Photon has been a great partner – they are part of an ecosystem of digital players who are transforming the landscape. We need to keep learning from others to enhance the industry and move technology forward for all of us.”

Kohler Accelerates Their Digital Journey

Due to COVID-19, Kohler saw a sharp increase in consumer interest for products that support a clean and healthy home, such as bidet seats, touchless faucets, and intelligent toilets. The pandemic also became an accelerator for eCommerce, with their direct and third-party channels experiencing sustained growth. Kohler was already on track with their priorities and investments around digital, but the pandemic further sped up their initiatives.

In the Digital HyperExpansion era, Kohler is reimagining the way they engage with customers. They are working towards optimizing the customer journey and providing a world-class brand experience across various channels and touchpoints. Kohler is building a customer data hub to consolidate and merge customer interactions and touchpoints, enable them to personalize web experiences, identify cross-sell opportunities, and more. Another major priority for Kohler is building capabilities around advanced analytics and data science.

Photon has been Kohler’s trusted partner, supporting several of their key digital initiatives. “Photon has provided good advisory and thought leadership on technology selection and architecture as well as product and platform strategy. I expect Photon will become one of the core partners in our partner ecosystem,” said Jon Chong, VP of Digital Capabilities, Kohler.

Why Photon Is Leading the Charge in the Third Wave of Digital

Photon is the trusted digital transformation partner for 40 of the Fortune 100 companies, providing management consulting, digital design agency, and digital engineering services. We deliver digital experiences and digital revenue, but with a goal to enable our customers to be the leaders in the upcoming wave of digital revenue hypergrowth.

The third wave, Digital HyperExpansion, represents a momentous time for digital. It has become a prerequisite to have a data-driven digital platform at the core of your enterprise—so you can execute portfolio and lifecycle management across strategy, creative, and development—and to drive disruptive digital innovations and continually meet new demands driven by the market or the radical shifts in consumer behaviors.

Download an overview of Digital HyperExpansion.

“The post-digital era came sooner than anyone expected. The time is now to go beyond the past playbooks of transformation and focus on digital lifecycle management of critical business processes.”

Mukund Balasubramanian

CTO, Co-Founder at PHOTON

Mukund Balasubramanian
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