Final Project Description: a Digital Media plan for the launch of OrangeCone

Information is power. Accurate, real-time information with applied big-data tools can drive significant change in response times, fund and personnel allocations, and stakeholder satisfaction.

All of that is great to know. However, what’s not great is that there is a huge gap in this capability at the governments that affect our day-to-day lives the most – the State and Local Governments.

This causes a communications gap in between voting cycles, protests, combing through websites for the appropriate point of contact, and the old-fashioned letters to our Congressman and Mayor that my grandfather used to send…repeatedly. There is a lack of the ability to easily communicate your public-sector needs to the public-sector officials that need this information the most.

I’ve developed a tool to fill this communications gap with a useful, intuitive solution via a web- and mobile-application in a product I call OrangeCone. In the next six months, I will go continue development of a prototype mobile application and web application, test this prototype, redesign it to a Beta-level product and soft-launch it in a small market.

This Beta-level soft launch will likely be in a relatively small municipality in order to identify usage patterns, behaviors, and likely issues with the application. A difficulty with my application is that I seek to serve a two-sided market – both citizens and State and Local government officials - and therefore a well-thought-through launch plan is essential.

The POST Method:

At the heart of The Groundswell, there’s a structure that will be particularly useful for my Digital Strategy, as well as for my prototyping efforts. The POST Structure, with its focus on People, Objectives, Strategy, and Technology will ensure that my product is developed for those that will use it, and deliver data to those in need of it in a manner with which they can best use it. A description of the structure follows:

(P) People: My product OrangeCone will be designed for two users, or maybe three, depending on how you look at it.

The primary users are the citizens of a locality inputting the information regarding a problem – so, I’d define this user as a “Citizen”. The other primary user is the city or utility worker who would be on the fulfillment end of the issue – the person routed to this newly identified issue with the task to actually fulfill the issue.

An intermediary role may also be utilized, which is my potential third user. This intermediary role is the information “quarterback” at the city level, and this position may reside within the Mayor’s office, or potentially within a call center, or within a city department’s personnel routing center.

These three roles listed above are the roles at the core of the application – issue reporting drives data to OrangeCone, issue routing to and use at the correct city worker will allow an issue to be fulfilled. This core fulfillment process will drive continued use and increased app usage.

Beyond this, more users may follow: nonprofits that would like to monitor particular issues in particular  geographic areas, media that would like to monitor all issues and trending issues are only two other potential customers.

(O) Objectives: My objective right now is fairly general: source information from concerned citizens and deliver it to State and Local governments for issue fulfillment.

I will charge State and Local governments a subscription fee for usage of my service. I expect that State and Local government workers will have my application on their devices, and I expect that all concerned citizens will have this application on their mobile devices. I also expect that there may be a way to incorporate utilizing a text-messaging format for this as well, but that optionality is far down the line.

I intend to run promotions of several months in length in order to entice State and Local governments to sign up for utilizing this product.

Pricing for this product will likely vary by user. I predict utilizing price points that vary based upon the size of the state or local government, or whether the subscriber is a nonprofit or commercial entity.

(S) Strategy: This section will determine how the relationship of my product OrangeCone to citizens and subscribers will be different as a result of my Digital Strategy.

 (T) Technology: In my current understanding of this framework, I will select appropriate Social Media technologies based upon the People, Objectives, and Strategy findings.