Scoping scope

Feedback and review yesterday on my “To start, or not to start’ project outline, hacked into the nagging feeling I had that the document’s ambition exceeds my ability, both in time and realistic levels of focus available, to achieve all of the stated experiments and outcomes.

A good thing though, ensuring I take on only one Masters-level piece of work as opposed to the three, at least, that could be worked on in the document as it stands. With less breadth now, I am ensuring I go deeper into a stated area, thereby endeavouring to achieve a level of mastery worthy of accreditation and of the degree.

I am often at fault and guilty of allowing my passions to drive my ambitions, and our facilitators’ pragmatic view looking back at me, is already ensuring I reign this creative trait in, and think more and think harder about what I aim to achieve.

Therein, I concede, a degree of laziness borne of inexperience at this level of study, with a little too much available time currently, contributed to the overly-inflated nature of the proposal — it’s a relief to be pointed towards an area within the writeup that will be honed in on and develop deeply.

Thinking in terms of platform

My project advisor, sharply asked what will I be doing AFTER the MA finishes, inferring to me that this is not simply an exercise in completing a project but in creating a platform for future professional growth.

This enables me to consider the transferable learnings to be gained, and the broader accessibility to the work for a varied crosscut of professionals.

Thankfully, the solution lies within the problem, and stripping away the tenuous verbiage and hifalutin tonality, I am super-happy to state what I will be doing and for whom.


Online startups.

“The world doesn’t need more content, it needs more relevant content.”

Problem

Simply, there is not enough dad-focused (branded) content online.


Client:

QuickDaddy — a place (online) to inspire new dads in figuring out fathering.

Project statement:

How can digital tools be used to uncover unmet audience needs (for new market entrants),

so that QuickDaddy becomes something truly useful and empathetic to new dads?


There are three tenets at place in the project statement:

  1. Digital tools — the utilities that will enable my investigation and experiments;
  2. Uncovering — from the research, getting to both a qualitative and quantitative understanding and insight;
  3. Unmet needs — seeing the real gaps that can be addressed so that young dads feel more empowered and connected.
“Great content needs pathological empathy.” — Ann Handley

Hypothesis

There are sufficiently capable digital tools and simple techniques available online and on the desktop to uncover a potential audience’s needs, so that new market entrants can be attuned earlier on and relevant by being user-valuable.

Topic areas

The job of every company is to make something that people need/want/love.

The user-centred imperative (originally designed for ‘brand’)

Understanding and insights

  • Read prior academic research and frameworks, and thought leadership ;
  • Desk research into the dads’ niche online;
  • Startup founders’ interviews to understand methods — TheHub.sg;
  • One-to-one parents interviews (moms and dads) to get closer to unique views on fatherhood — some ‘jobs-to-done’ questioning;
  • Ethnography: listening into parents’ support coaching (which I attend);
  • Join existing conversations online, build a voice of contribution in communities, ‘ride the hashtags’ on social — build QuickDaddy’s voice online;
  • Facebook Audience Insights, Twitter Audience Insights;
  • Online survey/s to complement interviews: Google Consumer Surveys;
  • Email survey: Survey Monkey;
  • Facebook Groups ‘in-feed’ ‘Ask a Question’ tool;
  • Social listening — SocialMention.com, Topsy.com, Twitter.com;
  • Social ‘outreach’ — personal network; talk into moms’/parents’ groups online;
  • Amazon Reviews ‘mining’ for user-generated copy and insights.

Test experiments

Value is created by fulfilling deep desires and solving deep problems. This is what gets people moving, what gets them to pull out a credit card, to tell all their friends, to come back day after day to consume your content.

  • Facebook ‘Dark Posts’ native feed ads to engage through to landing page;
  • Landing page with value proposition informed by insights (with Instapage.com), and call-to-action testing to stir engagement, contribution and volunteering of information — ie conversion;
  • Facebook Group setup; Facebook Page setup;
  • Analyse above, repeat;
  • Other, pending needs outcomes from research.

Desired takeout and outcomes

A body of recorded process and tools used with learnings that can be transferred across industries and/or audiences in terms of finding out what matters most to a desired audience — so that product/service development is relevant and empathetic.


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