POST is the foundation for tapping into your customer’s potential. It is the framework that has to be assembled before developing social media strategies, for example. I touched on it in this article, Franklin Templeton Investments utilizes the proper technology to convey their strategy and objectives to people, not just their customers. There are five primary objectives that companies successfully pursue in the groundswell (listening, talking, energizing, supporting, and embracing) (groundswell, 2011), and Franklin Templeton accomplishes one of those objectives. They energize their customers by empowering them with financial knowledge. Through their blog posts and videos, their customers’ word of mouth is empowered because they have a deeper understanding of what Franklin Templeton does, and they have more knowledge about the financial world in general. This objective can be achieved because they follow the POST method.
This image succinctly summarizes the POST process. It is worth mentioning how it states that objectives must be SMART, because effective objectives lead to an effective strategy. It is important.
People is the first step in the POST method. This step can be completed by answering the question “what are your customers ready for?” As I discussed in one of my previous blogs, Social Technographics Profiles “[…]allow people in business to examine and then create strategies based on the groundswell tendencies of any group of people, anywhere”, so by creating these strategies, companies are able to answer that question.
Objectives are the goals of the organization. Five of the most powerful objectives that companies pursue in the groundswell were identified in the first paragraph, and they can make or break the strategy of the firm. I believe that this step is the foundation of the strategy step, because the strategy is the execution of your objectives.
Strategy: This is the step where you decide how you want to shape your relationships with your customers. It allows you to plan for the desired changes, and it also allows you to measure the changes once the strategy is in place. This step is tied very closely with the previous step, because your objectives include how tap into the groundswell.
Technology is the final step of POST. It is the medium in which you tap into the groundswell. For Franklin Templeton, it was Youtube, Facebook, and their website. They decided that this was the technology that their customers were ready for, and they used that technology to carry out their groundswell strategy. Franklin Templeton had to be careful when picking which mediums to use because not every target market will react the same to those mediums. They determined that their target is a mix of joiners and spectators. Joiners are “[…] people who have a profile on different social networking sites and visit them with some regularity (Antwerp, 2010)”, and spectators are “[…] people who read online information, list to podcasts, and watch videos but do not participate” (Antwerp, 2010). Because their target market are joiners, they are able to utilize multiple social media outlets, and because they can also be spectators, they can be successful with blog postings, videos, and general posts.
Antwerp, G. V. (2010, August 3). Creators, Critics, Collectors, Joiners, Spectators, and Inactives. Retrieved from George Van Antwerp: https://georgevanantwerp.com/2010/08/03/creators-critics-collectors-joiners-spectators-and-inactives/
groundswell. (2011). In C. Li, & J. Bernoff, groundswell (pp. 67-69). Boston: Harvard Business Review.
Spector, D. (2013, June 19). Creating a marketing communications plan. Retrieved from Slideshare: https://www.slideshare.net/specvic/creating-a-marketing-communications-plan