Digital Innovation: The Challenges of a Game-Changer
Keywords:digital transformation, innovation, digital marketing, entrepreneurship, SMEs
A few years ago, marketing managers considered the Internet as another advertising channel and used it as a magazine advertisement, equipped with sound and motion. They placed banner ads and pop-ups to display advertisements on websites, but once again consumers identified them as distractions and found ways to ignore or avoid them. Nowadays, digital technology offers numerous ways for brands to engage with their customers and present new exciting challenges. It would not be an exaggeration to say that the marketing world is changing every day. But as the digital world is evolving, so is the balance shifting between consumers and marketing experts who try to adjust to this new era of consumer engagement. The purpose of the present paper is to address the question of how digital innovation is changing the marketing field. In a post-pandemic environment, terms like social media, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data, Cloud Computing, Blockchain, and cryptocurrencies, Augmented Reality marketing, and Virtual reality marketing are not just buzzwords but crucial aspects of digital marketing. Nonetheless, their integration into a business strategy is followed by the challenges accompanying them. The ever-changing nature and complexity of digital technology and other issues like privacy regulations and funding can be intimidating, especially for SMEs. In the field of entrepreneurship, their use can be viewed as a creative and innovative response to the evolving environment and an ability to recognize and exploit economic opportunities as many companies include the use of digital technology as the original idea. The theoretical framework of the aforementioned digital technologies and their use as marketing tools are analysed. This is followed by an insight into the digital transformation of Greek SMEs, the adoption of such technologies from start-up companies, and the opportunities they provide for the development of entrepreneurship.