Chapter 3 of Groundswell (Li & Bernoff, 2011), describes the technographic profile, “to allow people in business to examine and then create strategies based on the groundswell tendencies of any group or people, anywhere.” (pg. 41). This chapter was interesting to me as I have never heard of this concept before, and wasn’t aware of the methodology behind grouping together types of online consumers. Below is the social technographic ladder (figure 1), which describes the groups of people involved in groundswell. The further up the ladder these groups are, the more involved in groundswell these people are.
Figure 1: Technographic Ladder
On the scale of the ladder, our clients in the hospitality industry could be at any point on the ladder. We could have spectators that want to just view our websites and social media sites to stay up to date with what we are doing. We could also have critics that come to our restaurant, try the food, and then go blog about it or review the restaurant/dish on a site such as TripAdvisor. We could also have the conversationalists that post on our Facebook page, or simply share our posts and pictures to create conversations of their own.
Our target audience will change depending on our type of business and what industry we are in. As for the restaurant industry, this can also change depending on what type of restaurant you are. For example a high end expensive steak house will target the 35-50 age range as they are more sophisticated and have a higher income to afford the prices. A family style restaurant like Boston Pizza, will target younger families ranging from 20-30 in age. The first thing we need to establish is which category of restaurant we fall into, and can then determine our target market age range. From this age range we can determine which is our biggest category on the technographic ladder, and ensure we are putting a little more time and effort into this category as it will be our biggest contributor to our groundswell. “The real power in the Social Technographics Profile is this: with it we can understand how social technologies are being adopted by any group of people. If that group happens to be your customers, you can use their Social Technographics Profile to build an appropriate social strategy.” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 46). From this we build a customized strategy to fit our needs.
As a restaurants target market age range and gender are not always specific, here is an example of where Canadians fall on the social technographic ladder (with age and gender not specified). As you can see in figure 2, spectators and joiners are the two highest categories, with collectors and creators having only a 1% difference at the bottom. This means our focus should be on spectators and joiners. By determining what these peoples interests are, we can ensure we are posting the right things and engage these users on our social media sites.
Figure 2. Technographic Profile in Canada.
Concluding this blog, I would like to express that I currently would be on the scale as a creator and conversationalist, as I am creating my own blog, as well engaging in conversations across all my social media sites including Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Before taking this class I would of categorized myself in the joiners and spectators group, as I wasn’t creating my own blog. I was however still engaging in conversations, but not as frequent as I am now. This also shows how easily it is to switch between categories depending on what you are currently doing with your life. Eventually this could end up changing again. Who knows what the future will bring in the world of my social media engagement!
Li, C., Bernoff, J. (2011). Groundswell: Winning in a world transformed by social technologies. USA: Forrester Research
Forrester Research Inc. (n.d). Social Technographics. [Diagram]. Retrieved from https://www.google.ca/search?q=technographic+ladder&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&sqi=2&ved=0ahUKEwi_m5CJ65_UAhUE04MKHT7TBGQQ_AUIBigB&biw=1240&bih=712#imgrc=LpYnQNLiaPOyxM:
Patrick474’s Blog. (n.d). Can social technographics profile.. Retrieved from https://www.google.ca/search?q=technographic+ladder&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&sqi=2&ved=0ahUKEwi_m5CJ65_UAhUE04MKHT7TBGQQ_AUIBigB&biw=1240&bih=712#tbm=isch&q=technographic+profile+of+online+adults&imgrc=M04wxe4rKV_F_M: