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These thoughts have evolved.

I’m currently enthralled with the concept of creating a Communication Architecture that is both sturdy enough to stand up against any type of organizational setup and flexible enough to handle any type of messaging.  These thoughts are simply ideas and concepts at this point.  I have shared them with a few people live and received good feedback/tweaks, but never posted them online for greater scrutiny.

There have been many communication models throughout time.  One of the most popular being The Shannon-Weaver Mathematical Model, 1949

But these type of models don’t give any process management ideas, workflow integration, or specialization opportunities.  I’m trying to build something that others can then take the blueprint and build their own custom version on top of the Communication Architecture foundation.

5 core factors to consider in Communication Architecture

Target Market: a detailed profile of the intended recipient of a message.  the more intimate knowledge of the target, the more engagement opportunities.  this person or these people Decode, Interpret, and Encode Responses to your signals.

Resources: there are two types of resources: Internal and External.  Internal includes things such as your brand identity, business facts, the knowledge in your head and that of others in your organization.  External includes things such as industry white papers, blogs, thought leaders, and even competitors.

Content: content is created using the resources available to you.  it is the creation of a story/message to share with others.  examples include photos, videos, presentations, surveys, audio, links, notes, and written articles.

Tools: these are typically owned by the organization and used to optimize and implement content.  modern tools include wordpress, mailchimp, vimeo, polldaddy, rss, and photoshop

Channels: this is the location in which you choose to publish/share your communication.  Also known as a medium, it includes custom communities/forums, websites, email, facebook, twitter, linkedin, yelp, youtube, landing pages, and ads.

When assembled as a Venn diagram you begin to see how these factors work together.

Communication Architecture

The overlaps symbolize critical activities in the cycle of communication

Creation is the act of taking resources and turning them into content.  Example: a property listing into an open house announcement.

Optimization is the act of enhancing the content by using a tool.  Example: cropping the property photos and editing the text.

Implementation is the act of publishing from a tool into a channel.  Example: mailing the postcard or posting to facebook.

Engagement is the act of a target market interacting within a channel.  Example: some likes your facebook status or reads the postcard.

Analysis is the act of interpreting the results from the target market feedback and determining if they can be used as future resources.  Example: click rate on the facebook message or response rate of the postcard.

Job Description from Communication Architecture

An individual or organization may have strengths in one area or another, but a complete understanding of the whole architecture will help improve communication both internally and externally.  The overlapping acts could also be interpreted as jobs within an organization.

Creation = Author/Photographer

Optimization = Editor

Implementation = Publisher

Engagement = Community Manager

Analysis = Data Analyst

But what is DIVE?

You shouldn’t communicate at all if you don’t have at least one of the DIVE.  The more, the better.

Data:  plain facts.

Information:  organized data given context.

Value:  what is the information worth given cost to acquire.

Experience:  the quality of enjoyment derived from receiving the value

When building a brand value and experience are critical to long-term success.  Almost anyone can share data.  Most can turn data into information.  The smart find ways to deliver information with value.  Those with raving fans create an amazing experience combined with the value.

– so there, I did it.  I put my initial thoughts down for the world to critique.  Have a go.

# special thanks to Mike Pennington for his thoughts and energy helping me get to this point.  and a nod to Gahlord Dewald for pushing me to publish this online.  I look forward to building more around this concept.

These thoughts have evolved.