In order to make a decision we process information from a variety of sources. Not a terribly earth shattering idea in that statement. But can we create a framework that helps navigate a world where consumers process a wide variety of information feeds (and I'm being general as opposed to focusing on RSS and the like) in a decidedly non-linear fashion.
Given that information is processed to come to a decision, opinion, or a better understanding then the question becomes what kinds of information do we leverage in each situation? Are there situations where different types of information play a more important role? If we can categorize information and map it to personal objectives then we have a better chance of developing successful marketing programs.
As a thought starter, there might be four types of information that shape a decision.
- Promotional: product, price and place. The focus is on incentive.
- Emotional: brand. The focus is on aspirations.
- Informational: rational and comparative. The focus is on reference and supporting evidence.
- Communal: shared, user generated, social. The focus is on recommendations.
- Intent: buy, seek, share, discover, discuss
- Need: latent, chronic or acute as driven by timing and intensity of problem resolution
- Experience: collective perception from use or exposure.
As marketers, how do we ensure the experience is consistent across content types? How do we orchestrate the process and exude some influence?