Author: Jordan Julien Posted: September 18, 2011 1332 views

Brands have been focusing of integrated experiences and integrated marketing for the past decade or two; recently social media integration has pushed marketers to try new things, like transmedia storytelling.

Now, Bloom’s Taxonomy was first proposed in 1956 by a committee of smart people, chaired by Benjamin Bloom. The first domain that was described in first publication is the cognitive domain.

The following classification system first appeared in The Taxonomy of Educational Objectives: Handbook I: Cognitive Domain.  Here, I describe how the classification system can be applied to integrated experiences.

Remembering: Refers to remembering a specific brand

Understanding: Refers to understanding that a specific type of product/service/idea exists. (i.e. I never knew they made tablet computers.)

Application: Refers to conversion. Think applying for a credit card or bank account. This could also include subscribing, or purchasing.

Analysis: Refers to the cognitive processing of a specific message as it relates to other messages the user may be receiving.

Creation: Refers to the response from a user in reference to a specific message. A user can create an actual artifact, or simply create an opinion.

Evaluation: Refers to ongoing evaluation of individual experiences, which contribute to individual preference.

What does Bloom’s Taxonomy tell us about integrated experiences?

1.    Integrated experiences should only utilize channels that facilitate achieving one of the goals established above.
2.    Buying has nothing to do with sales.
3.    Integrated experiences and integrated systems are two different things

How does Bloom’s Taxonomy help us map an integrated experience?

Introducing the Deconstructed Bloom’s Wheel Ideation Map

(Full PDF Download Here)

This type of ideation map will help:

A.    Keep the team focused & on track
B.    Deliver stronger ideas, with a stronger rationale
C.    Produce more ideas
D.    Prioritize communication channels
E.    Create synergy between strategy and creative
And more.

Here’s how it works, but keep in mind that the PDF can be opened and edited to allow you to customize the maps use for your specific needs.

Bloom’s cognitive domain information is categorized and spread across the map.

STEP 1: Define & segment your users.

If you haven’t already done this, it’s an important first step. Define your target audience, ideally as personas, and map them against the categories established by Bloom’s Taxonomy.

STEP 2: Identify what you want your user to do.

This step is often forgotten in many marketing campaigns; instead, many marketers define a project from a business requirements standpoint. This can leave the end-product lacking focus.

Reference how each category is used and decide on realistic goals for each persona.

STEP 3: Ideate vertically & theme

Look at the map as vertical columns, and ideate. Take Bloom’s verbs & assessment types into consideration while focusing on each individual persona & goal.

I recommend using the KJ brainstorming methodto develop ideas for each column & persona, then pooling those ideas based on their similarities. These pools will represent your idea ‘themes’.

STEP 4: Ideate horizontally across 3 individual themes

During step 2, you may have several dozen themes. The task, at this point, will be to find (or develop) 3 themes that are common to each column or persona.

[Note: You don’t have to create 3. The number you chose will represent the concepts you’ll be fleshing out. Choose as many or as few as you want to present.]

STEP 5: Sketch

If you have a media strategy already done, you can use this to help inform which channels of communication will be used; if you don’t just start selecting some.

For each channel of communication (i.e. website, search, facebook, email, newspaper, tv, magazine, billboard, bus shelter, etc.) sketch out implementation concepts that align with the ‘idea platforms’ you’ll have developed in step 3.I recommend using the large paper approachproposed by David Sibbett over sketching out experiences/ ideas on your own.

STEP 6: Evaluate

Don’t evaluate immediately. Let each idea compilation marinate at least a day. Ideally, you’ll have a week to think, compare, enhance, and experiment.

The goal of this step is to identify which concept will be your recommendation, which channels you want to focus on, and how the concept will come to life on each channel.

Obviously, a similar process can be applied to content strategy; and a slightly enhanced process can be used to create a CRM strategy.

I’d love to answer any questions you might have, or respond to any comments you’d like to leave. I encourage you to leave comments, or tweet me @thejordanrules.

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About the author >

Jordan Julien

Digital & social strategy consultant & UX Architect -- Worked on: BMW, Coke, Telus, Dove, Canadian Tire, AT&T, Microsoft, Cineplex, VISA, Toyota, GE, P&G

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