‘carS’ Framework for Digital and Social Media Case Studies

carS featured Image TWKS

We are delighted to showcase a series of digital and social media case studies. These have been articulated from the best examples we could find to help address common business and organisational challenges. To help, we have developed a simple ‘one page’ framework called ‘carS’: an acronym for ‘challenge, action, results’ – and finally, but most importantly, ‘So what’. This framework breaks down the case studies into the most pertinent points so that you can understand and act upon them quickly for your organisation’s benefit.

Search and reapply from case studies

What is the best strategy or plan of action when faced with a challenge in your organisation? Well, of course, that depends on the situation, context, resources and desired results. However, understanding what other organisations in similar industries or circumstances have done can be helpful – be it to learn from or for inspiration. I remember at Procter & Gamble one of the main factors (‘what counts factors’) in assessing talent was ‘search and reapply’. But what does that mean? Back then it was seeing what worked across other brands or industries and then to apply that to the brand you were leading. More recently this has been termed ‘connect and develop’. However, you term it – it is merely learning from others and applying what works.

‘Good artists copy, great artists steal’ – Pablo Picasso

Some have said this use of case studies or ‘best-in-class’ is reminiscent of the Pablo Picasso quote: ‘Good artists copy, great artists steal.’ Indeed, Steve Jobs also mentioned this in the PBS television program ‘Triumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental Empires’. He said: “Ultimately it comes down to taste. It comes down to trying to expose yourself to the best things that humans have done and then try to bring those things in to what you’re doing. I mean Picasso had a saying he said ‘good artists copy great artists steal’. And we have always been shameless about stealing great ideas and I think part of what made the Macintosh great was that the people working on it were musicians and poets and artists and zoologists and historians who also happened to be the best computer scientists in the world.”

Experience and delivery for digital

The value of tangible experience in overcoming traditional business or organisational problems and applying ‘what has worked’ to digital and social media challenges is significant. By using a ‘digital and social media lens’ we show how even digital challenges can be addressed by traditional business thinking. And so, we aim to share our experience in interpreting these best-in-class case studies and elements from our own delivery.

Our ‘carS’ framework on a page

The framework we use is termed ‘carS’ – an acronym for challenge, action, results’ and ‘So what’. The capital S for ‘So what’ is to emphasise its importance and impact for decision-makers. We aim to have each ‘carS’ framework case study fit comfortably on one page. Case studies traditionally are too wordy and extend beyond a page – making it difficult to distil the pertinent points or the real impact. Again, this is a learning I took from Procter & Gamble to limit documents to one page following a simple format; though I recall my CEO at The RSA Insurance group was also keen on a ‘SoaP’ (Statement on a Page).

Look out for the first set of our ‘carS’ framework of digital and social media case studies in the next few days which we expect will have an impact on your organisation and thinking.

Update: The first is how the Australian Federal Police (AFP) drove awareness and engagement via YouTube advertising; whilst, at the same time, delivering something truly original and dealing with the sensitive subject of ‘missing persons’. The second is how Oreo cookies and 360i, its digital marketing agency, worked together using Twitter to take advantage of a ‘real-time’ opportunity during Superbowl 2013 to become the most talked about ‘advert’ even against the traditional TV spots.

Written By Dowshan Humzah

Dowshan Humzah has delivered profitable business growth via product development, brand innovation and digital channel expansion for blue-chip companies across Financial Services, Internet, Telecoms, Media and FMCG as well as business start-ups. He shows how organisations can benefit from applying a ‘digital and social media lens’ across their core organisational objectives and then answer the ‘so what’ question in order to generate customer and financial value from digital tools. You can find him on LinkedIn and Google+


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