Rivers Of Information – How A Little Bit Of Clever Research Can Put You Ahead Of The Game.
The concept of Rivers of Information is simply to create a process to organise and digest some of the information available on the internet that can most benefit you or your business.
There are vast quantities of information published through the internet every day. The good thing is that much of it is of real significant value to your organisation. Information such as industry changes, product news, economic or marketing changes and competitor activity are all sources of free data that can seriously help your business if you know where to look and more importantly, what to do with it.
Without some structure on this, it becomes an insurmountable task to keep up with the quantity of information being presented. Building personal and organisational Rivers of Information allows you to take advantage of the information without having to use an excessive amount of time.
Channelling these so called Rivers of information to the right people and growing your organisational IQ is paramount and if you can do this, then results are sure to follow. Here’s a step by step guide on how to do this successfully.
Step 1 – Identify Information Sources
Spend some time identifying up to date, web based information sources that are applicable to your industry/business. These can be found in all sorts of places including newsfeeds, blogs, Twitter feeds, web pages and newsletters. Resources such as Youtube, Scribd and slideshare are a great wealth of information
Step 2 – Filter the information
Find and learn to use helpful tools that aim to filter out the useful information from the not so useful. Google Reader is always a good start, or alternatively how about using Netvibes or Tweetdeck to consolidate information. Your goal here is to have a system in place that quickly allows you to scan the various rivers of information and find the important nuggets of data that pertain to you and your company.
Step 3 – Regular review of the information
Once you’ve collated all your information you then need to make a decision as to what is going to be read now and what is going to be saved for when you have more time. In addition it could be an idea to save it in sections pertaining to specific personnel within your organisation. For example, if there is a lot of info coming through about industry specific products, then you may want to channel this down to your product design team, or alternatively if a competitor is heavily marketing in a unique way, you might want to think about passing this information to your marketing department.
Step 4 – Organise and Retain
Setting up a storage system is important because it allows you to access all the relative information quickly and efficiently as and when you have more time. There are online tools such as ‘Twine’ and Evernote’ which can help with this. Alternatively, if you are a little more old school, then a simple word document may be the answer.
As a business who is looking to stay ahead of the game it’s important once you’ve set up your programme to check it at least once daily. Over time you should also “fine tune” the process – in particular dropping information sources that are proving to be below par, and adding more valuable ones that you discover. Once you get behind, it becomes very difficult to catch back up again and you never know when you may have missed a vital piece of information.
Obtaining and building Rivers of Information isn’t hard to do and doesn’t have to cost you a penny, just a little time and a little know how. Having your finger on the pulse of your industry is likely to be the key for you and your team and doing this is sure to yield great results.
For further details about Rivers of Information or any other online marketing needs, contact WSI today.