Toronto content strategy group_content and the customer experience
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Toronto content strategy group_content and the customer experience

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  • What? She won't like the digital scale and fitness tracker that I just bought for her birthday? Wow, thanks for saving my bacon.

    Seriously, this is a great presentation. You said things that every content developer needs to hear, and the examples were spot on. Thank you!
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  • I’ve recently acquired a keyboard, so I’m on the hunt for sheet music that I can download.
  • So, here they’ve lost me not only on their free selections, but they’ve also lost me as a potential paying customer.
  • When developing content/websites, organizations naturally tend to be organization-centric. They have something they want to tell you. But, they often forget that when you look at the content, you form a perception about them.Your perceptions are based on whether your experience isUsefulUsableEnjoyableOrNot usefulFrustratingDissatisfying
  • Let’s start by thinking about who your customers are, really.
  • This example shows organization-centric thinking at its worst! “Let’s just get some content up there and not think about the people who are forming perceptions about it.”
  • Defining personas and creating the site and its content around well-defined personas could be the most important factor in driving site performance. Talk to real customers to develop your personas. Don’t talk to your employees about who they think the customers might be. Personas, to be useful, need to be real.What is a persona?A description of your audience. You will likely have more than one persona.A persona helps to bring your audience to lifeA persona is the foundation of a great user experience; personas help you to write to your audience, not to yourself or your company.A persona has:A nameA pictureSpecific demographicsGoals…
  • Tactics for talking to customersHold focus groupsDirect observation (show me how you …)Interviews (casual, conversational)Work shadowing (especially for internal sites)Talk to people in your company who talk to your customersCustomer supportSales
  • You are NOT your customers. And, you don’t represent them. You might use the product, the app, the service, whatever, outside working hours - but you're not the customer.
  • Two similar vacuum cleaners onCanadian Tire’s site!
  • I want to compare them, so I can see which one might be more appropriate for my use.Customers need consistent information to help them make buying decisions. What we’re seeing here is useless, and doesn’t allow customers to make informed comparisons.
  • Here are some products from a website that sells all kinds of home supply and beauty products online. I’m trying to compare eye creams. The ones I’m looking at are similar (they appear in the same category on the website) and they have similar prices, but I still can’t tell which one to purchase, because each product is described differently.
  • A lot of content is designed quite nicely these days. On the surface, it looks pretty good, until you try to find and interpret the content. Good looking websites and content are not always well-performing websites. Just because they may look good doesn’t mean they provide the content your customers are looking for. This page is quite lovely, I think, and the picture changes to reflect the season. But, is this information enough for a first page? Let’s see what happens when I try a search.
  • A lot of content is designed quite nicely these days. On the surface, it looks pretty good, until you try to find and interpret the content. I like graphically appealing information. But, at what cost? Good looking websites and content are not always well-performing websites. Just because they may look good doesn’t mean they provide the content your customers are looking for. This page is quite lovely, I think, and the picture changes to reflect the season. But, is this information enough for a first page? Let’s see what happens when I try a search.
  • But, you have to know what their path is going to be, and plan for it.
  • Error messages are content, too. Customers typically encounter error messages along their path, but the content often doesn’t provide them with enough information to proceed!
  • I’m planning to take the TTC (Toronto transit) to a friend’s place, and it’s an unfamiliar route for me. So, I turn to the website for help.
  • And when you ask for people to give you feedback, allow them to do so!!
  • The customer is at the core of everything you do when it comes to content. Customers come to your content, in whatever form, with needs, wants, and expectations. They approach it from different perspectives, they apply different contexts. They expect and need consistency. They need content that makes sense, that is designed and written for them, that meets their needs. They want their experience with your content to be transparent.

Transcript

  • 1. Parallax Communications Content first. Connecting Content to the Customer Experience Pamela Kostur Parallax Communications pkostur@parallax.ca Toronto Content Strategy Meetup Group Feb. 20, 2014
  • 2. Content strategy is the new black
  • 3. But you’d never know it. Just take a look through some of your customer-facing content, or browse through the internet. Content first.
  • 4. Free, but what to choose? I won’t be Bach for more!
  • 5. How do customers perceive their interactions with your company? Customer experience is about their perception, not company intent. Content first.
  • 6. You need to know Who are your customers, really? What are they trying to do? How do they use your content? Where do they use your content? What content do they need? How much content do they need? Content first.
  • 7. Shopping for gifts at Best Buy can be quite an eye-opener!
  • 8. Do you think Best Buy talked to any female customers when compiling this gift guide?
  • 9. Why honey, thank you for the digital scale and fitness tracker. Just what I wanted!
  • 10. Way cooler toys, but… Who decided what’s appropriate for whom?
  • 11. Personas are a critical component of every content strategy. Make them matter. Content first.
  • 12. When’s the last time your company talked to a customer, or watched them use your product, or your website, or any of your content for that matter? Content first.
  • 13. You are not your customer Your employees are not your customers Your organization is not your customer Content first.
  • 14. Consistency is also a critical component of a content strategy. Consistency serves as a guide to customers. Content first.
  • 15. Inconsistent ways of describing product features make it impossible for me to compare.
  • 16. Focus is on who it’s for, what it does, and what it contains
  • 17. Focus is on benefits and directions for use
  • 18. Focus is on product description
  • 19. Content has to be more than just pretty. Content first.
  • 20. Content strategy requires that you anticipate what customers are doing, and guiding them through their task. Content first.
  • 21. Connecting content to customers means providing them with useful information along their path. Content first.
  • 22. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do with this information!
  • 23. May exist? A little more guidance here would be useful!
  • 24. Seems simple. Who is your content for? What are they trying to do? How does your content help them? Is it consistent? Is it useful? Is it driven by need, and not design? Content first.
  • 25. Content Consistency And remember, the customer is not you Customer Needs, wants, expectations Context
  • 26. This presentation is really a plea to… Make content the new black (Meaningful, customer-centric)
  • 27. Pamela Kostur pkostur@parallax.ca @Pamela_Kostur 647.889.1459 parallax.ca Content first.