We start our social media work for new clients with a discovery process. Similar to discovery processes used in Information Architecture, we use these sessions to learn about the client’s business, business goals, sales process, target customers, and so on.
Here’s a graphic I recently developed to help our clients understand why we are conducting the discovery process and what, ultimately, we will derive from it:
Business goals Business goals are the business objectives for which you’re using social media in the first place. One way or another, they impact the bottom-line. They should be immediately comprehensible to any Executive in your organization.
Social Media Goals Social Media goals are the objectives specific to your social media efforts. For example, if your business goal is to make more product sales, your social media goal might be more conversions on your website via social channels. Social media goals need to be specific and granular.
Social Actions The actions online that you want your social audience to take, in order to achieve your social media goals. For example, if your goal is word-of-mouth, you might want your social audience to share your content and to talk about you positively.
Social Audience The online audience you are trying to reach. Sometimes, this is your target customer. Sometimes, it’s not your target customer directly, but an audience that your target customer follows or otherwise interacts with. Example audience: online marketers for ecommerce companies who report directly to the marketing director (BDM).
Audience Locations The locations where this social audience can be found: specific social networks; specific groups, pages, or hashtag groupings within those networks; forums, chats, blogs, and other communities. In addition to understanding where the social audience is, you need to understand the persona of the audience in that community. For example, online marketers in one community may be trying to demonstrate expertise because potential clients are in that community. In another location, the same user may be trying to learn and will ask questions and seek help.
Audience Needs The goals or needs of each social audience in each location (context). What does your audience want or desire in this community? In one community, users may want to show their knowledge, in others they may want to obtain knowledge. In some environments, people may want to share heart-felt stories. In others, they may want to be entertained or look desirable to people of the opposite sex.
Social Offers The win-win scenarios you’ll create in each community. Social offers give the audience something it wants in a way that gets them to take the social action you want. For example, you might give the online marketers opportunities to show their knowledge by submitting posts for your blog about how they marketed their product effectively. They get exposure and to demonstrate their expertise. You get content for your blog, introduce them to your site, and increase the chance that they will share a link to your blog.