Structuring Content, Restructuring Organizations - CS Forum 2012


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Whether you’re talking about APIs, responsive sites, or content repositories, you’re going to need structured content. But if you want structure to really work, you have to change more than your CMS. You have to change your organization.

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  • Loved the presentation. Ohh how I can relate to all of the Student Loan websites, 'confusing as hell' hits the nail on the head!
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  • Great presentation. Also like the content that does more phrase, and have introduced the term content productivity. Regarding the patterns. I have been introducing some in the Actor Atlas:
    Beyond rethinking content practices within organizations, we need to rethink institutions (IPR, copyright) as well. My viewpoint: a structural shift is only about to start.
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  • At the end of any web development, the content is the most important factor for web users to stay to the website.
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  • What can I say...Great content! This presentation is very interesting, thank you Sara.
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  • Excelente presentación, me gusto mucho, felicidades.
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Structuring Content, Restructuring Organizations - CS Forum 2012

  1. 1. STRUCTURING CONTENT, RESTRUCTURING ORGANIZATIONS content strategy forum 2012 Sara @sara_ann_marie
  2. 2. ‘‘Every client, in my experience, has acontent problem. Mark Boulton, Web Directions South
  3. 3. responsive design mobile-firstcross-channel experiencesread-it-later apps api-drivendesign lazy-loading adaptiveexperiences linked-datamashups web-enabled tvsfuture-friendly thinkingmulti-screen strategiesflexible grids mobile-onlyusers web-connected cars
  4. 4. responsive design mobile-first THERE’Scross-channel experiencesread-it-later apps api-driven NO MOREdesign lazy-loading adaptiveexperiences linked-data HIDINGmashups web-enabled tvsfuture-friendly thinking FROM IT.multi-screen strategiesflexible grids mobile-onlyusers web-connected cars
  5. 5. ‘‘In traditional media, canvas dimensions are aknown constraint... With digital, however, thecanvas is an unknown.Instead, we need to build on what we doknow: content. Chris Armstrong, “The Infinite Grid”
  6. 6. Everyone agrees: We’ve got to knowour content. For reals.
  7. 7. and yet:WE’VE STILLGOT SO FARTO GO.
  8. 8. Inaccessible.
  9. 9. Broken.
  10. 10. Missing.
  11. 11. Even launching a newhomepage is hard.
  12. 12. ‘‘The team built tools,guidelines, and processes to help localizeeverything from responsive images toresponsive content into approximately100 different markets... They adaptedtheir CMS to allow Content Strategists toprogram content on the site. Nishant Kothary, “The Story of the New”
  13. 13. This is why mobile is so hard.
  14. 14. the web’s moving forward,BUT OURCONTENT’SSTILL STUCK.
  15. 15. “just stick it up on the website”
  16. 16. We create content like this.
  17. 17. We create content like this. CONTENTGOES HERE.
  18. 18. So we can do
  19. 19. So we can do this. CONTENT GOES
  20. 20. But we end up with this.
  21. 21. But we end up with this. CONTENT GOES HERE.
  22. 22. it’ll only get worseBy Eva-Lotta Lamm
  23. 23. We don’t need more content. We needcontent that does more.
  24. 24. COPE: Create Once, Publish Everywhere WebsitesNPR’s Mobile SitesCentral Storage API AppsCMS Third Parties
  25. 25. content like
  26. 26. Of course, content doesn’t justmagically flow.
  27. 27. It takes infrastructure.
  28. 28. which takes care and craftBy Eva-Lotta Lamm
  29. 29. And a CMS to match
  30. 30. interconnected,not just hierarchical
  31. 31. Of course, structured data isn’t new.From Web Database Applications with PHP & MySQLby Hugh E. Williams and David Lane (O’Reilly, 2003)
  32. 32. The results just weren’t always great.What?Huh? Noidea!
  33. 33. this didn’tBy Eva-Lotta Lamm fix it
  34. 34. structure isn’t arbitrary
  35. 35. It’s about taking our content knowledge...
  36. 36. and finding
  37. 37. not just “pages”
  38. 38. Patterns help establish content types.
  39. 39. Event ListingsShowsBlog PostsArticlesProfilesBiosHelp ModulesPress ReleasesDirectoriesRecipesShowsProduct ListingsNews BriefsResearch Papers...etc. etc. etc.
  40. 40. Content types create a content system.
  41. 41. systems give us optionsBy Eva-Lotta Lamm
  42. 42. We can’t manually managehow each bit of content looks.
  43. 43. But every bit of structure gives usthe option to make a rule.
  44. 44. it tells our content what to do
  45. 45. If [content type] is in [situation], then[do this with] the [content elements].
  46. 46. If [a recipe] is in [the app], then [include]the [ratings before the ingredients].
  47. 47. structure helps content move
  48. 48. Now, for the hard part.
  49. 49. our content’s stuckBECAUSEWE ARESTUCK.
  50. 50. it’s people, not just tech
  52. 52. 1. mass-productionmentalityLIFE magazine archives
  53. 53. THE PROBLEMPeople keep creating contentthe same way they alwayshave: big WYSIWYG blobs.
  54. 54. WYSIWYG orWYSIWTF?
  55. 55. THE REAL PROBLEMContent-producing roles aren’ttied to business strategy, goals,or vision—so those working inthem see no reason to change.
  56. 56. that’s not my job! i just keep the production line
  57. 57. A BETTER WAYContent strategy bridges thegap between executive visionand daily execution, defininghow content will serve strategyover time.
  58. 58. 2. compartmentalizedteams
  59. 59. THE PROBLEMContent-producing departmentsdon’t communicate, or are evenhostile to one another.
  60. 60. protect the fiefdom!
  61. 61. Government is notorious for this.
  62. 62. This is duplicative and inefficient. Notto mention confusing as hell.
  63. 63. THE REAL PROBLEMDepartments that are alwaysfocused on themselves are notthinking about their customers.
  64. 64. the underpants
  65. 65. ‘‘Customers dont know—and dont care toknow—how government is organized. So whymake them go from agency [website] toagency [website] to get the full picture ofwhat govt has to offer on any subject? Participant, National Dialogue on Improving Government Websites
  66. 66. A BETTER WAYTranscend silos with cross-department teams focused ontackling a single issue. Empowerthem to spread new ideas.
  67. 67. 3. obsession
  68. 68. THE PROBLEMStakeholders don’t get digital—they want everything fixed inplace, like print, before approval.
  69. 69. user control terrifies them
  70. 70. THE REAL PROBLEMThe organization isn’t built forchange—and suddenly, thingsare changing fast. Rather thanadapt, it’s trying to stop the shift.
  71. 71. things will keep moving
  72. 72. A BETTER WAYIt’s not just dealing with mobile.It’s becoming an organizationthat’s adept at change.
  74. 74. we’re an excited bunchLIFE magazine archives
  75. 75. It’s time we share that passion with thewhole organization.
  77. 77. 1 Make mobile an entry point, not the end point.
  78. 78. ‘‘Use mobile as a wedge to create a betterexperience for ALL users. Karen McGrane
  79. 79. Also true for changing organizations.
  80. 80. use mobile to break down
  81. 81. 2 Don’t sell solutions. Invest more deeply.
  82. 82. we don’t save the day
  83. 83. You can’t just fix it.
  84. 84. You’ve got to be in it together.
  85. 85. it’s hard, messy
  86. 86. 3 Do less. Facilitate more.
  87. 87. After the CMS is updated...
  88. 88. Or the API is launched...
  89. 89. The content will still need help.
  90. 90. teach ‘em to fish...
  91. 91. Find the people your work affects,and incorporate them from the start.
  92. 92. And finally, there’s you.
  93. 93. we can’t seethe future
  94. 94. but we can play a role in itBy Eva-Lotta Lamm
  95. 95. THANK YOU, CAPE TOWN! // @sara_ann_marie Content Everywhere is coming in November! images used via CC-Attribution license unless otherwise noted.Illustrations used with the permission of Eva-Lotta Lamm.