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Designing a content model using co-creation (Content Strategy Meetup Belgium, 18 September 2013)
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Designing a content model using co-creation (Content Strategy Meetup Belgium, 18 September 2013)

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In a recent CS project for the Council of the European Union, we had to design a content model for the main content types of the Council web site. During a co-creation workshop, we involved the core ...

In a recent CS project for the Council of the European Union, we had to design a content model for the main content types of the Council web site. During a co-creation workshop, we involved the core team in the design of this content model, to make it a joint effort. Content models however come in different forms and shapes, and designing them can seem daunting at first. By choosing one format/syntax and doing a little warming up exercise with a simple example, the workshop participants were able to come up with a good draft version of the model.

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  • I’m Koen Peters, I have been working at Namahn for about 13 years now; for those who don’t know, it's a company of about 25 people, we do human-centred design of digital products and services.My talk is abouttwothings: content modellingand co-creation
  • We use this DesignStudio a lot to hold co-creation workshops.The basic idea behindco-creation: as a design company, you involve a client directly in the design process by having him co-create the solution.(Other terms are used with a similar meaning but not exactly the same, like co-design or participatory design)
  • These last few years, we have included co-creation into our core methodology! We try to involve the client throughout the design process, from start till finish! Not just one or two workshops early in the process “get input from the client" or formulate a vision.
  • Why co-creation throughout the process? A few reasons:1. Get buy-in, get your solution accepted by and sold to a client.2. This is a quote from Tim Brown of IDEO (the secret of your success? Make others successful): "If you’re trying to solve complex problems—which we’re often asked to do—you need multiple minds working together to arrive at the best solutions." 3. You can give the client the impression that he has come up with the solution himself. So, not just co-design but also co-ownershipOf course, this means that as a designer you have to be able to let go...4. Momentum: a co-creation session creates momentum, it gives an extra drive, when they are not used to working together. It brings different departments closer together5. It allows you to go lighter on deliverables: everyone is involved and understands the solutions that is created together (and the reasoning behind it), so you don't need detailed reporting (this allows you to work in a more agile way).We have been developing a number of techniques – let me show a few.
  • An IA-relatedtechnique is coresandpathsCentral idea of this technique is simple: when you are creating a site, don’t start by designing the navigation on the home page! On the contrary, you start from the core, the reason why users come to your site. E.g. on YouTube it’s a video You determine how users will get to the core (inward paths), and what they want to do next, call to actions, and where they want to go next (onward paths).A cores & paths exercise happens in two steps: first you define the content (core, inward and onward paths) with the help of a template. Second, you use this content to sketch out a draft design of the page
  • This is a variant of storytelling: you brainstorm about a future service by developing scenarios, but you use visual three-dimensional props to kind of ‘act out’ these scenarios.Basically, you ask the workshops participants to visualise a service in 3 dimensions, using lego, playmobil, postits, dough etc.
  • So, let’s look now at the second element, the content model
  • Grocery store: sell ingredients of healthy recipesEpicurious: increase page views (banner ads) by attracting recipe huntersand have visitors subscribe to related media properties
  • http://alistapart.com/article/content-modelling-a-master-skillhttp://alistapart.com/article/strategic-content-management
  • So, let’s combine the twonowLet me show you a specific case in which I used content modelling in a co-creation workshop
  • LOUCASand I did a content strategy project for the Council
  • Findings of the audit in a project – mainproblem on the web sites:Lack of structured content, and a Lack of relations/connections between the main content typesFinding a meeting: via Ecofin policy area? Via the Calendar of meetings?(Press > Council meetings (substitutefor a full blow event page); andyoucan search the documentlibrary)But: no connections! A content model as a foundation is missing! So in one of the content strategy workshops, we wantedthemto draft a first version of the content model for the Council web site.
  • Workshop participantscame up withslightly different contentmodels; interestingdiscussionabout the differences.But most of all, theyallknewwhat a content model was, andtheyallunderstood the syntax. Theywere ready todiveinto the real thing
  • Next steps: complete the content model, putit in a digital format (I used Visio) – start sketching the pages.So as a conclusion, don’tbeafraidto do a content modellingexercise in a workshop with a client. With the right approach itwillresult in a great first draft
  • Want tofind out more about co-creation: I’llbegiving a talk on this subject next week at the euroIAsummit in Edinburgh, sowish me luck

Designing a content model using co-creation (Content Strategy Meetup Belgium, 18 September 2013) Presentation Transcript

  • 1. design that works for people Designing a content model using co-creation Koen Peters – @2pk_koen Content Strategy Meetup Belgium, 18 September 2013  05/02/2013
  • 2. Human-centred design of digital products and services
  • 3. Co-creation 3 Participatory design Co-design Cooperation Collaboration
  • 4. 4
  • 5. Why co-creation?  Get buy-in, get your solution accepted by and sold to a client  ―If you‘re trying to solve complex problems—which we‘re often asked to do—you need multiple minds working together to arrive at the best solutions.‖ (Tim Brown)  Give a client the feeling he is making (and owning) the solution co-ownership  Create momentum  Go light on deliverables 5
  • 6. Content model
  • 7. Content model A visual representation of the types of content and their inter- relationships 9 http://alistapart.com/article/content-modelling-a-master-skill
  • 8. Same subject, but different purposes... 10 Content everywhere, Sara Wachter-Boettcher
  • 9. Content model formats  High-level (common content types & relations)  More details (with some of the content elements)  Or detailed spreadsheet (inform the design of the pages and help configure the CMS) 11 http://alistapart.com/article/strategic-content-management
  • 10. Complex example  Arizona office of Tourism 12 Content everywhere, Sara Wachter-Boettcher
  • 11. Why do you need a content model?  On larger sites, you need a mix of...  Taxonomy Linear (steps, wizard) (tree structure)  Facets Content model (network) (filters) 13
  • 12. Content is structured and related 14
  • 13. Combining content model and co-creation
  • 14. The context  Project for the General Secretariat of the Council  Content strategy for their online channels (web sites, social media...)  Extensive audit of the current channels  Co-creation workshops to develop a content strategy 16
  • 15. Council website: find a Council meeting (e.g. ECOFIN) 17 ? ? Content model is missing!
  • 16. 1. Explain the syntax  Model  Example 18 Content type 1 (many) Content type 2 (one) related to ‗Council decision‘ ‗Council meeting‘ ‘taken at’
  • 17. 2. Let’s try it first...  Draw the content model for a music web site: use the following content types: Song Album Artist Chart 19
  • 18. 20
  • 19. 3. Actual content modelling session  ―Draw a content model for the Council web site‖; use the content types you identified earlier, but start from:  Group 1: ‗Council meeting‘  Group 2: ‗Configuration‘ 21 Council meeting
  • 20. 22
  • 21. 4. Next step  Complete the content model, and use that as a basis for your page design 23
  • 22. Questions? Koen Peters @2pk_koen
  • 23. Content Modelling Exercise
  • 24. Context • Web site with album reviews e.g. Pitchfork
  • 25. Making a content model 1. List at least 6 aspects of the album you want to show on the page (2’) 2. How are these items related (8’) 3. Present (5’) • Album • Artist • Song • ….