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Evolution of a Knowledge Broker
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Evolution of a Knowledge Broker

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Technical content is a commodity. Technical Writers must think of themselves as Knowledge Brokers and communicate the value they provide which includes increased revenue and improved customer …

Technical content is a commodity. Technical Writers must think of themselves as Knowledge Brokers and communicate the value they provide which includes increased revenue and improved customer retention. This presentation will show you the right mindset to build business cases that get your company to invest in Technical Communication/Publications as a revenue generator.
Presented by Bernard Aschwanden and Christopher Ward.

Published in: Education
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  • 1. Christopher Ward Director of Sales WebWorks Bernard Aschwanden President Publishing Smarter
  • 2. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 2 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Not all slides or topics are equal weight  Use what you can, discard the rest  Slides are a reference, so we may go quickly  Questions? Ask as they come up!  If you are taking notes, note the slide number (if online for a webinar track the time stamp)  We’d love to claim that errors/typos are intentional… they isn’t, weren’t ever, and ain’t, but we’ll fix them as we can… B
  • 3. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 3 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  President of Publishing Smarter  Content strategist, publishing technologies expert, and author  Certified Technical Trainer ◦ DITA ◦ Content management ◦ Topic-based writing  Society for Technical Communications ◦ Director ◦ STC Associate Fellow  Director of Sales WebWorks  4 years of military service in Army Intelligence ◦ Taught to separate procedure from strategy and to look at both differently  3 years with Dell Computers ◦ Applied analysis experience to business world BC
  • 4. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 4 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Discover savings: lower cost, improve quality, more productive  Understand your documentation needs  Improve how you create, manage, and distribute content  Analyze and convert legacy docs  Review workflow and identify best practices B
  • 5. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 5 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  A company dedicated to helping the Technical Communication community  Increase efficiency and collaboration with advanced software solutions  Deliver content anywhere via outputs compatible in any environment  Show the full value of documentation through increased client loyalty and product value C
  • 6. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 6 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  In the interest of brevity some blanket statements are made to keep things simple  Not everything we say is 100% the truth—we’ll stay close though ◦ Remember one of us is a sales guy ◦ The other is a consultant!  Could get in trouble from purists ◦ In some cases they are just wrong ◦ Of course, some points are valid  PRESENTED LIVE!!! B
  • 7. Setting expectations for what is about to follow B
  • 8. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 8 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Content creators have an opportunity to position content as the most pivotal asset to a company’s continued success  Users want instant access to information  Evolve into Knowledge Brokers (KB) and align your development process with your company’s business strategy  In this presentation we: ◦ Discuss the role KB content plays in business strategy ◦ Explore the correct workflow that is needed to generate revenue through documentation ◦ Look at methods used to deliver content across multiple devices and the method that is most effective and why C
  • 9. Content Creation becomes the most pivotal asset for a company’s continued success.
  • 10. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 10 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  According to Clay Spinuzzi* ◦ Knowledge is now, and will be the basic economic resource ◦ Value is created via productivity and innovation ◦ Leading social groups will be knowledge workers who know how to allocate knowledge to productive use *Spinuzzi is a professor at University of Texas at Austin and an authority on rhetoric, technology, research, and where we’re headed next. http://spinuzzi.blogspot.com/search?q=knowledge+workers C
  • 11. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 11 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  The problem:  The solution: “The economic challenge of the post-capitalist society will therefore be the productivity of knowledge work and the knowledge worker.” “Technical Communicators will change their mindset and evolve methods to broker knowledge as the most pivotal asset for a company’s success.” CB
  • 12. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 12 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  What do I need to understand? ◦ ROI can be shown through spreadsheets and metrics, but you have to know the concept of revenue first (Revenue is created when a business sells a solution that answers an individual need) ◦ Part of a revenue mindset is to look and discover value, so ask:  How valuable is the information you work with?  Does your information extend beyond process?  How do you incorporate a business strategy into a work flow?  How do you execute this? ◦ It’s challenging. You have to move out of your comfort zone to make it happen. The rewards can be great! ◦ It’s an evolution. Technical Writers become Knowledge Brokers C
  • 13. Updating the way you think about what you (hopefully) love to do C
  • 14. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 14 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  This page intentionally left blank ◦ No. It’s not. Get over it.  Clients love our content ◦ No, people love fiction. They (mainly) read it because they have to.  It’s my content ◦ No. It’s a company asset. B
  • 15. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 15 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  On demand, targeted  The right format is...  Making it better might mean breaking stuff  The biggest successes have perceived failures ◦ Reggie Jackson (Mr October) had 2597 strikeouts. In 29 seasons. And 563 home runs. C
  • 16. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 16 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com Change your mindset: I am a Knowledge Broker Sell product or service through documentation Align procedures with business strategies Write to create a loyal customer Measure results: Show me the money! C
  • 17. You are a Knowledge Broker C
  • 18. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 18 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Effects revenue  Not just productivity, also… ◦ Lost sales ◦ Unrealized opportunities ◦ New business B
  • 19. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 19 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Content factors that positively impact a company’s profitability ◦ Integrity of the content ◦ Accessibility of the content ◦ Findability of the content ◦ Usability of the content  Poor data quality negatively impacts the bottom line by an avg of $8.2 million/yr in: ◦ Operational inefficiencies ◦ Lost sales ◦ Unrealized new opportunities (The Gartner Group)  12% of companies use customer intelligence to drive key business functions and corporate strategy  88% are putting up with waste, inefficiency, and lost opportunity that dirty data creates  Companies that commit to data quality use their knowledge of customers and prospects to maximize top- line and bottom-line results (Forrester research) C
  • 20. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 20 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com B
  • 21. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 21 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Your browser is not one of our officially supported varieties and therefore the flow through certain areas of our site may not be as robust as otherwise. To fully utilize all of our great features, we recommend switching to one of the following: ◦ Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher (download now) ◦ Mozilla Firefox 3.0 or higher (download now)  If you prefer not switching to one of our recommended browsers at this time, you are still more than welcome to visit our website, although you may not get to utilize all of our features to their fullest extent,  If you have any questions, please call our Sales Super Centre at 1-800-538-5696. B
  • 22. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 22 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Your browser is not one of our officially supported varieties and therefore the flow through certain areas of our site may not be as robust as otherwise. To fully utilize all of our great features, we recommend switching to one of the following: ◦ Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher (download now) ◦ Mozilla Firefox 3.0 or higher (download now)  If you prefer not switching to one of our recommended browsers at this time, you are still more than welcome to visit our website, although you may not get to utilize all of our features to their fullest extent,  If you have any questions, please call our Sales Super Centre at 1-800-538- 5696.  Our site does not officially support your browser. Feel free to explore with it, but you may not be able to use all our features.  You may want to update your browser. Consider using one of the following: ◦ Microsoft Internet Explorer (download now) ◦ Mozilla Firefox (download now)  If you have questions or encounter problems, please call our Sales Super Centre at 1-800-538-5696.  From 114 words to 67 ~40% reduction!  Message is clean, easy to understand  Translation costs decrease  Message removes the feeling of blame B
  • 23. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 23 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com B
  • 24. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 24 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com B
  • 25. Understand how documentation and other output affects the Consumer Decision-Making process C
  • 26. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 26 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  This standard process involves: 1. Problem Recognition 2. Information Search 3. Evaluation and Selection of Alternatives 4. Purchase Decision 5. Post-Purchase Evaluation C
  • 27. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 27 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  78% Researching their own solutions for their needs  11% Use Tech Docs for their research ◦ Get more product exposure during the research process ◦ Documentation can be written to include theory or purpose as well as procedural information B
  • 28. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 28 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  As potential buyers are evaluating all their options, proper documentation lists benefits  Also shows how the benefits can be achieved, making your solution a reality for the prospect C
  • 29. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 29 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  90% of the customer’s experience with the product is direct use  Cognitive Dissonance is the inner tension a customer feels when expectations are not fully met  The best way to relieve this is through strong communication  Documentation lives in this stage and can be the most effective tool a company has to: ◦ relieve tension ◦ create product value ◦ promote customer loyalty C
  • 30. As you design your information solutions, ensure that you align documentation procedures with current business strategy C
  • 31. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 31 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com C
  • 32. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 32 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com C
  • 33. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 33 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  This can happen regardless of what strategy a company decides on!  Cost leadership  Differentiation  Focus/Niche Porter’s Generic Strategies C
  • 34. Develop a workflow to generate revenue through customer retention B
  • 35. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 35 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com Your customers Your competitors’ customers Other businesses50% loss every 5 years C
  • 36. 13:11@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 36 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com Your customers Your competitors’ customers Other businesses50% loss every 5 years CB
  • 37. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 37 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com Your customers Your competitors’ customers Other businesses5% less defection = 25-125% more profit C
  • 38. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 38 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com Cost to retain current customers Cost to acquire new customers: 5x more C
  • 39. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 39 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  50% of a businesses customers are lost every 5 years (average according to Harvard Business Review)  61% of consumers take their business to a competitor when they end a business relationship (new revenue you are handing a competitor)  73% of customers leave because they are dissatisfied with customer service ◦ The company losing the customer thinks only 21% leave because of customer service (according to RightNow Technologies) C
  • 40. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 40 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  T2 Systems has a small team that uses a CMS, writing tools, and DITA  Amy and Kelsey are responsible for all of the user documentation T2 delivers with all software and hardware solutions  Challenges ◦ Large legacy conversion ◦ Migrate to new software ◦ Develop templates ◦ Learn the system  Solution ◦ Convert content to DITA ◦ Implement a CMS ◦ Learn writing basics ◦ Custom training /support  Results ◦ Improved docs ◦ Legacy Word to DITA ◦ Well acclimated to the new writing environment ◦ Structured authors ◦ Perform basic CMS administration ◦ Publish in multiple formats B
  • 41. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 41 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  A few years into the project they decided to automate and publish via stylesheets  They asked us to build this for them  Again, they were happy with the results  This year (FIVE years into working together) they came back again  We’d like to use of conditional content! When we first went live back in early 2009, you helped us set up ditavals for some of our content. A new project is a perfect use case for conditionals, and we’d like to try and re-implement them. Could we re-engage your services and schedule a call where you can show us how the process works. B
  • 42. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 42 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Technical Documentation becomes pivotal to a company’s success through supporting the overall business strategy and retaining customers  You have to have the proper workflow to do this  The proper workflow allows for ◦ Analysis of information ◦ Continuous improvement ◦ Customer involvement C
  • 43. Come on, you KNOW they have to be in any company presentation
  • 44. Measured results also include revenue C
  • 45. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 47 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  SMART Goals en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMART_criteria#Developing_SMART_goals ◦ S pecific ◦ M easurable ◦ A ttainable ◦ R elevant ◦ T ime-bound  Historical data wins it for the long haul, so keep records! Quantify and Qualify  Brag, brag, brag and when you are done, brag some more  Measure yourself through feedback mechanisms Example: Software Advice C
  • 46. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 48 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com Blog Views Comments Link Love Shares RSS Feed Subscriptions  The Death of SEO: The Rise of Social, PR, and Real Content ◦ www.forbes.com/sites/kenkrogue/2012/07/20/the-death-of- seo-the-rise-of-social-pr-and-real-content Likes Comments Shares ClicksFollows Retweets Mentions Favorites Views Comments Shares/Likes Connections Views Subscribe Comments Favorites Promoted C
  • 47. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 49 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com Change your mindset: I am a Knowledge Broker Sell product or service through documentation Align procedures with business strategies Write to create a loyal customer Measure results: Show me the money! C
  • 48. What we have discussed and how to follow up with the presenters
  • 49. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 51 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Today, Content Creation is the most pivotal asset for a company’s success  Technical Documentation can increase profitability no matter what strategy the company decides on, with the proper workflow and the mindset of a Knowledge Broker  Measure your success  It’s your choice… C
  • 50. 13:12@PublishSmarter www.publishingsmarter.com 52 @WebWorksChris www.webworks.com  Contact Bernard ◦ bernard@publishingsmarter.com ◦ Call 905 833 8448 ◦ Twitter: @publishsmarter OR @aschwanden4stc ◦ LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/bernardaschwanden  Contact Christopher ◦ christopher@webworks.com ◦ Call 512 381 8895 ◦ Twitter: @WebWorksChris ◦ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WebWorksChris ◦ Company Facebook: www.facebook.com/WebWorksePublisher ◦ My Blog: http://blogs.webworks.com/christopher BC

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