My old friend Danny Flamberg (@Flamster) published a terrific piece about engagement last week, which can be viewed here.
Insightful as always, Danny’s thesis is simple. He suggests that “tactics” and “channels” can only enter the discussion AFTER we’ve made an effort to understand how our audience feels in response to what we might give them.
He advises us to focus on five factors:
Creature Cycles – predictable audience behavior
Standing – positioning in the minds of our audience
Posture – approach to delivery
Timing – when we deliver
User Experience Design – the way our delivery is experienced
For Danny, the endgame is genuine human connection.
This message resonates with me. Conventions tell us where to place a navigation bar or how to best create hover states for buttons. However, these practices don’t automatically deliver success. Quality engagement requires rigor—an effort to understand an audience and tailor the experience to them.
We continue to integrate the audience definition into our own engagements with well-defined creative briefs, the development of personas, etc. The process only works, however, when all stakeholders are aligned on who the audience is and what we expect them to do.