One recurrent feedback I receive on DICoDE during workshops or discussions is how to place Social Media, especially in DICoDE Business Models. The answer I gave until now is that DICoDE tackles distribution and consumption of digital content, but not yet creation/production or communication.
Following Havas Media’s recent Paid, Owned, Earned Media study, I realized that these concepts, as well as touch points, are mostly related to communication. In a DICoDE perspective, it is the flow that brings digital information to the Discovery level. Social Media, being part of the Earned Media category, follows this rule.
Considering Social Networks as platforms of one-to-one relationship between brands (delivering digital information/content) and users, they also have a key role inside DICoDE Business Models. Especially on Interactivity level, paid with Engagement and on Relationship level, paid with Data.
Of course, the increasingly blurry line between communication, marketing, sales and CRM means that POE Media and brand touch points enable not only Discovery, but also Interactivity, Engagement and Transaction on both online and offline dimensions. In order to avoid being stuck in a messy mix of all these, I advice to follow this rule learned from Alex: each level transcends and includes the previous one. Which means that even if paid media (i.e. Google Adwords) brings you to the Transaction level of an e-shop, you will, as a user, go through a Discovery, an Interactivity and a Relationship steps. Very quickly. And each of these steps will be enabled by user’s trust.
[Update July 6th 2011]: I continued this analysis in this new blog post, connecting POE to DICoDE Strategies