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Intersections of Information Architecture and Content Strategy
 

Intersections of Information Architecture and Content Strategy

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We’ve all wondered how information architecture, content strategy, and user experience intersect. Where do information architecture and content strategy overlap? Where do they differ? Information ...

We’ve all wondered how information architecture, content strategy, and user experience intersect. Where do information architecture and content strategy overlap? Where do they differ? Information architecture is grounded in user experience, but how do we ground content strategy in user experience? As an information architect, Theresa has worked with content strategists on content-heavy user experience projects. Having taken the time to figure it out and implemented the approach on projects, Theresa will share the approach with you.

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  • Thought today would go over some different practitioner approaches. I did survey different Ias and CSs but I couldn’t find much consistency. I wanted to give you something to walk away with and tried to approach answering the question using a methodical approach.
  • How does content strategy affect my work?Confusion between what a CS does and what an IA doesDoes that make me a content strategist? Had a client who hired me to do some content strategy work. This presentation is an exploration of this problem.I know why this problem came up: because content is hard and people underestimate its importance (anyone can do it!)
  • I’ve read that IA provides the structure and CS provides temporal In the next 2 slides are some IA and CS capabilities as I understand them and as I understand where they come from. You can fight me on this, that’s ok, it’s important to have the discussion.
  • In my reading, these were the kinds of deliverables I came across. While it’s not an exhaustive list, it gives us a starting point for comparison. In my reading, I also came across thinking that it doesn’t really matter who does this work, as long as someone does it. I think it’s important to give parameters to jobs so business people know who to hire. If we can’t figure out what we do, then how are business people supposed to figure it out?
  • Dark grey is a responsibility, light grey is either a responsibility or involvement. White is involved with. Note that for the UX portion, Ias can either do it or be involved with it. It depends on the size of the project and the emphasis of the IA. Can either be a UX IA or an enterprise IA. If a UX IA then can do these things. If an enterprise IA, would probably be more focused on the content management and IA columns. Nathaniel Davis at DSIA has a good post about IA capabilities per project size.
  • CS pulls from many different fields. Can overlap between the content management and marketing. Are content strategists who do content modeling and marketing and editorial stuff. There are content strategists who are more in the Content management column. Not involved in UX, but definitely benefit from it. Also, it seems clear that CS is not part of UX. Benefits from UX, but not fundamentally a discipline within UX. This is a huge range of responsibilities. I haven’t met one CS that covers all this territory. I’ve heard a CS say that a really great CS would cover all this territory, but I think it might create too much of a bottleneck.
  • After putting this chart together, it dawned on me that Ias and CS need different things from the same or similar work.
  • As I said at the beginning, for me CS causes an existential crisis. If CS does the same things that I do, does that make me a CS? I think not, because I’m fundamentally not interested in marketing, editorial, XML and DITA. If CS does the same things as I do, then where is my place? I think IA is at an intersection where it needs to mature.
  • Expand our skillset or at least our understanding. Take content into account more. Move away from IxD. Can learn more about content strategy.
  • But can also expand away from simple web and intranet design. Can get into documentation management, digital asset management, component content management, pervasive IA, ubiquitous computing, service design, customer experience.
  • DTDT. These two meanings for the same term are very confusing for people. If I it takes me weeks of research to figure out, how is business supposed to know the difference?
  • Actually, CS pulls from many different fields

Intersections of Information Architecture and Content Strategy Intersections of Information Architecture and Content Strategy Presentation Transcript

  • The Intersection of User Experience, Information Architecture, and Content Strategy Theresa Putkey Information Architect
  • Introductions © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 2
  • Today‟s Discussion 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 3 My struggle with content strategy Some definitions Comparing tools and deliverables Your experiences Where do we go from here? Your experiences © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • The problem I encounter with content strategy is both practical and existential © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 4
  • Working definitions © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 5
  • 1. Information Architecture Definition information The structural design of shared environments 2. The combination of organization, labeling, search, and navigation systems within web sites and intranets 3. The art and science of shaping information products and experiences to support usability and findability 4. An emerging discipline and community of practice focused on bringing principles of design and architecture to the digital landscape. Information Architecture for the World Wide Web – Morville and Rosenfeld (2006) 6 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Content Strategy Definition “A unified content strategy is a repeatable method of identifying all content requirements up front, creating consistently structured content for reuse, managing that content in a definitive source, and assembling content on demand to meet customer needs.” Managing Enterprise Content, 2nd Ed., Rockley (2012) “Content strategy guides your plans for the creation, delivery, and governance of content.” Content Strategy for the Web, 2nd Ed, Halvorson 7 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • The Intersection, Apparently… “As Louis Rosenfeld has said, „If [information architecture] is the spatial side of information, I see content strategy as the temporal side of the same coin.‟” Halvorson, Content Strategy and UX: A Modern Love Story (2011) • Spatial: Of, relating to, involving, or having the nature of space. (The Free Dictionary) • Temporal: Of, relating to, or limited by time; Of or relating to the material world; worldly. (The Free Dictionary) 8 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Part of the problem is overlapping capabilities © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 9
  • Tools and Deliverables 10 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • IA Tools and Deliverables With help from/inspired by Morville and Rosenfeld, Kissane, Davis. 11 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • CS Tools and Deliverables Content strategy grounded in content management Content strategy grounded in marketing and editorial With help from/inspired by Morville and Rosenfeld, Kissane, Davis, Halvorson, etc. See bibliography. 12 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • What are your experiences? © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 13
  • How do we work together? Different needs from the same thing. © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 14
  • Usability Testing Information Architecture • What‟s the user‟s mental model for this process? • Does the site/intranet/ product support the way the user expects to find information? • How does the navigation and search support wayfinding or findability? Content Strategy • Once the user finds the right place, does the content provided answer questions? • Does the content meet branding and messaging goals? • How easy is it for the user to comprehend the content? © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 15
  • Content Inventory Information Architecture • How many pages are in the product? • Are the pages properly structured? • Do they meet wayfinding needs? • What user goal does the content support? • Informs the controlled vocabulary Content Strategy • What user goal does the content support? • What business goal does the content support? • What content can be reused? • What is the quality of the content? • Support the gap analysis and make sure missing content is included in new IA © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 16
  • Others Site Map • IA: Supports navigation • CS: Supports content planning and migration Wireframes • IA: Embodies navigation and information seeking needs • CS: Reflects content needs. Includes placeholders for content or examples of content. © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 17
  • Where to next? © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 18
  • Where Next for IA? “How can we design sites if we do not have a clear grasp of the elements that we are creating the structure for? What does the client have? Why do they have it? Does it still serve a purpose … All of these are part of an ongoing strategy around sustaining the living, breathing entity that a website should be.” (Marianne Sweeny, Personal Email, 2013) 19 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Where Next for IA? “ [IA]starts to address the design of information spaces as a process, opening up a conversation with ubiquitous computing and service design, and where the information architect recognizes gathering, organizing, and presenting information as tasks analogous to those an architect faces…as both design spaces for human beings to live, work, and play in.” Resmini, A Brief History of Information Architecture (2011) 20 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Where Next for CS? Content strategy grounded in content management 21 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. Content strategy grounded in marketing and editorial
  • Where Next for CS? “While differences are often good, our inability to communicate an agreed common definition of what content strategists do is damaging our brand. Our differing views on content strategy … make it challenging for businesses to know what to expect when they hire a „content strategist.‟” Scott Abel, Content Strategists Must Become Engineers of ContentDriven Customer Experiences (2013) 22 © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • What are your experiences? © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved. 23
  • We covered 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 24 My struggle with content strategy Some definitions Comparing tools and deliverables Your experiences Grounded in UX? Not necessarily Where do we go from here? Your experiences © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Contact Me • • • • • 25 604 563 6317 tputkey@keypointe.ca www.keypointe.ca @tputkey www.slideshare.net/tputkey/ © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Book Bibliography • • • • • • • • • • • • • 26 Ann Rockley, Charles Cooper: Managing Enterprise Content: A Unified Content Strategy (2nd Edition) (2012) Dan Brown: Communicating Design: Developing Web Site Documentation for Design and Planning (2nd Edition) (2010) David Weinberger: Everything Is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder (2008) Elaine Svenonius: The Intellectual Foundation of Information Organization (Digital Libraries and Electronic Publishing) (2000) Erin Kissane: The Elements of Content Strategy (Brief Books for People Who Make Websites, No. 3) Indi Young: Mental Models: Aligning Design Strategy with Human Behavior (2008) Kristina Halvorson, Melissa Rach: Content Strategy for the Web, 2nd Edition (2012) Margot Bloomstein: Content Strategy at Work: Real-world Stories to Strengthen Every Interactive Project Peter Morville, Louis Rosenfeld: Information Architecture for the World Wide Web: Designing Large-Scale Web Sites, 3rd Edition (2006) Rahel Anne Bailie, Noz Urbina: Content Strategy: Connecting the dots between business, brand, and benefits (2012) Richard Sheffield: The Web Content Strategist's Bible: The Complete Guide To A New And Lucrative Career For Writers Of All Kinds (2009) Peter Morville: Ambient Findability: What We Find Changes Who We Become (2005) Peter Morville, Jeffery Callendar: Search Patterns: Design for Discovery (2010) © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Website Bibliography • • • • • • • • 27 Andrea Resmini: A Brief History of Information Architecture (2011) http://journalofia.org/volume3/issue2/03-resmini/ Andrew Maier, Complete Beginner‟s Guide to Content Strategy (2010) http://www.uxbooth.com/articles/complete-beginners-guide-to-content-strategy/ Erin Kissane, What Content Strategists Do (2010) http://incisive.nu/2010/whatcontent-strategists-do/ Gene Leganza with Alex Cullen, Rob Karel, Mimi An: Topic Overview: Information Architecture (2010) http://www.forrester.com/Topic+Overview+Information+Architecture/-/ERES55951?objectid=RES55951 Jeff Pass: Information Architecture‟s Teenage Dilemma (2013) http://boxesandarrows.com/information-architectures-teenage-dilemma/ Joe Gollner: The accidental content strategist (2012) http://www.gollner.ca/2012/08/accidental-content-strategist.html Joe Gollner, Architecting Information and Engineering Content (2010) http://www.gollner.ca/2010/02/architecting-information-and-engineering-content.html Joe Gollner, Why Content Technologies are Hard to Implement (2013) http://www.gollner.ca/2013/01/content-technologies.html © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.
  • Website Bibliography • • • • • • • • • • 28 Jorge Arango: … for the World Wide Web (2013) http://www.jarango.com/blog/2013/06/28/for-the-world-wide-web/ Karen McGrane: Why UX Needs Content Strategy (2010) http://www.slideshare.net/KMcGrane/why-ux-design-needs-content-strategy Karen McGrane: WYSIWTF (2013) http://alistapart.com/column/wysiwtf Kristina Halvorson: Content Strategy and UX: A Modern Love Story http://uxmag.com/articles/content-strategy-and-ux-a-modern-love-story Peter Morville: Editorial: The System of Information Architecture (2011) http://journalofia.org/volume3/issue2/01-morville/ Peter Morville, Information Architect (2011) http://semanticstudios.com/publications/semantics/000647.php Rachel Lovinger: Tinker, Tailor, Content Strategist (2012) http://alistapart.com/article/tinkertailor-content-strategist Rachel Lovinger: Content Strategy: The Philosophy of Data (2007) http://boxesandarrows.com/content-strategy-the-philosophy-of-data/ Rachel Lovinger: Content Modeling as a Master Skill (2012) http://alistapart.com/article/content-modelling-a-master-skill Scott Abel, Content Strategists Must Become Engineers of Content-Driven Customer Experiences (2013) http://thecontentwrangler.com/2013/07/29/content-strategists-mustbecome-engineers-of-content-driven-customer-experiences/ © Key Pointe. All Rights Reserved.