What is your content strategy?       Practical strategies for empowering your people to       produce usable, accessible a...
Today’s route: from basecamp to summit       1. Your mission: get inhouse content authors to populate a website       2. G...
Imagine you’re here       • Last century website with volumes of old content       • Sprawling menu structures       • Mea...
And you’ve got to get to here       Slick new website powered by shiny new content management       system with usable, ac...
No mean feat!       In the main, IT / web teams take care of the technology       implementation.       The content part o...
These projects need to pack in a lot of stuff       • New content management system       • New usable menu structure and ...
Governance, content experts, training       and tools       At every turn, your content project must look       strong to ...
Executive must outwardly support the mission       Head your project with an executive: your CEO is best.       • Signals ...
Brief the whole content community in person       • CEO visible from the outset.       • Start with a bold vision and expl...
Choose an experienced guide: content manager       • Knows the terrain and can plan the best route       • Has great leade...
And expert support crew       • Contract in specialist skills: information architecture and usability.       • Menu and de...
Spend time on proper engagement       • Consult in person with key managers and staff.       • Genuinely invest in getting...
Make the journey as easy as possible       • Give your troops great training and tools.       • CMS templates: support goo...
Get your team mountain-fit       • Train authors in the basics of web writing, plain language,         keywords, metadata,...
Break your journey down       Short content release cycles are easier to manage,       easier to track, and less demanding...
How to break the journey down       • Focus on the 20% of content that 80% of your audience wants       • Aim for a conten...
Select a reconnaissance team       Find the best team to make the first trip.       • Who owns that 20% of content?       ...
Size up the journey       Scope is critical. Content experts should work along side content       owners to nut out what’s...
Fire the team up!       • Get the CEO to meet them.       • Workshop your approach, menu, design and content scope.       ...
Agree on realistic timeframes       • Show respect for people’s existing work commitments.       • Enter a terms of refere...
Support the team       • Remain actively involved.       • Meet with each author fortnightly.       • Set up monthly group...
Quality control       • Make sure content approvals are not holding things up.       • Spread the load : 10-20 approvers, ...
Release your content as soon as you can       • 200 accurate, findable pages often better than 1000 poor pages       • Maj...
Next leg: gear up to do it again       • Engage the next team for the next release.       • Improve the way you do things ...
Contented guides know the terrain       Content strategy and content services       Web writing and accessibility audits  ...
Content author training: our specialty       • Unique in the market       • Low-cost, high impact       • Online, self-pac...
Looking back       • Executive role       • Experienced content manager and content experts       • Counter technology wit...
Tell us your content project story           Keep in touch:           www.contented.com           alice@contented.com     ...
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What is your content strategy? Practical strategies for moving your whole organisation to produce great web content

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Your strategic plan says that you will have a new, state-of-the art website that delivers quality information and services to your public—compliant with WCAG 2.0 Guidelines.

Your IT team and suppliers are responsible for the CMS implementation. They have the time, the budget and skills. They are amped and ready to go. Sounds good.

But here’s the thing! Often the biggest part of your web project is delivered by your general staff, that is, the guts of the website—the content. Your staff are busy with their everyday jobs, they don’t necessarily have the right skills and they haven’t got an allocated budget.

Everyone knows the website is a critical business asset. Yet everyone ducks and dives from the responsibility of producing the actual content. Sound familiar?

How do you motivate and mobilise your whole organisation to support and actually deliver on the vision?

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What is your content strategy? Practical strategies for moving your whole organisation to produce great web content

  1. 1. What is your content strategy? Practical strategies for empowering your people to produce usable, accessible and findable web content.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  2. 2. Today’s route: from basecamp to summit 1. Your mission: get inhouse content authors to populate a website 2. Governance, experts, training and tools 3. Break the journey down into short trips 4. Contented guides know the terrain© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  3. 3. Imagine you’re here • Last century website with volumes of old content • Sprawling menu structures • Meaningless search results and poor metadata • No regard for accessibility and no clear ownership© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  4. 4. And you’ve got to get to here Slick new website powered by shiny new content management system with usable, accessible, findable web content.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  5. 5. No mean feat! In the main, IT / web teams take care of the technology implementation. The content part of your project is typically delivered by the business and requires heavy business engagement.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  6. 6. These projects need to pack in a lot of stuff • New content management system • New usable menu structure and design • Content audits and rewrites • Staff training in web writing and new tools • NZGWS / WCAG 2.0 accessibility compliance© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  7. 7. Governance, content experts, training and tools At every turn, your content project must look strong to gain respect and ultimately to move staff to act in the project’s interests.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  8. 8. Executive must outwardly support the mission Head your project with an executive: your CEO is best. • Signals the importance of the project to the executive • Managers more likely to resource project with authors and take direction from the content / web manager.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  9. 9. Brief the whole content community in person • CEO visible from the outset. • Start with a bold vision and explain why the project is critical. • Follow up with live CEO briefings every 1-2 months. • Specify content owner and author roles in job descriptions.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  10. 10. Choose an experienced guide: content manager • Knows the terrain and can plan the best route • Has great leadership and communication skills • Has real authority to lead and make final decisions© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  11. 11. And expert support crew • Contract in specialist skills: information architecture and usability. • Menu and design changes must be usable and meaningful. • Involve stakeholders and authors in this process.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  12. 12. Spend time on proper engagement • Consult in person with key managers and staff. • Genuinely invest in getting buy-in—never assume. • Gently unpack concerns and niggles. • Give solid reasons for big decisions made. • Post weekly project updates: engage internal Comms team.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  13. 13. Make the journey as easy as possible • Give your troops great training and tools. • CMS templates: support good writing and accessibility. • PDF templates: inbuilt style and accessibility features. • Build the draft menu structures in your CMS with empty pages. • Make publishing processes quick and simple: 1-2 approvals.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  14. 14. Get your team mountain-fit • Train authors in the basics of web writing, plain language, keywords, metadata, accessibility. • Train them in the proper use of the CMS.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  15. 15. Break your journey down Short content release cycles are easier to manage, easier to track, and less demanding on authors. New content gets out there and working for you, and project progress is visible.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  16. 16. How to break the journey down • Focus on the 20% of content that 80% of your audience wants • Aim for a content release every 3 months • Small scope for each release: 10-20 authors, 10-20 pages each • Part-time author with BAU commitments: 1 page every 2-4 days© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  17. 17. Select a reconnaissance team Find the best team to make the first trip. • Who owns that 20% of content? • Who is available right now? • Which content is stable right now? Stands alone? • Who would make a good role model?© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  18. 18. Size up the journey Scope is critical. Content experts should work along side content owners to nut out what’s in and out of scope.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  19. 19. Fire the team up! • Get the CEO to meet them. • Workshop your approach, menu, design and content scope. • Demo the CMS, training and tools. • Explain processes and timeframes.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  20. 20. Agree on realistic timeframes • Show respect for people’s existing work commitments. • Enter a terms of reference with each author’s manager. • Track author progress against content scope.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  21. 21. Support the team • Remain actively involved. • Meet with each author fortnightly. • Set up monthly group meetings in the computer room. • Find content champions to buddy up with other authors.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  22. 22. Quality control • Make sure content approvals are not holding things up. • Spread the load : 10-20 approvers, 10-20 pages each • Get one web editor to proof read each content release. • User-test any tricky or highly critical content with 5 external people.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  23. 23. Release your content as soon as you can • 200 accurate, findable pages often better than 1000 poor pages • Major CMS delays: aim to go live on existing website • Challenges: Experts have seen it all before.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  24. 24. Next leg: gear up to do it again • Engage the next team for the next release. • Improve the way you do things each time. • CEO: publicly praise performance. • Reward good work. Enjoy the view!© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  25. 25. Contented guides know the terrain Content strategy and content services Web writing and accessibility audits Web writing and accessibility training© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  26. 26. Content author training: our specialty • Unique in the market • Low-cost, high impact • Online, self-paced, mass training Content reaches a tipping point where quality becomes the norm.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  27. 27. Looking back • Executive role • Experienced content manager and content experts • Counter technology with the human touch • Agree to the important stuff upfront • Explain decisions made • Release often: keep scope small • Spread the load • Invest in quality training and tools • Show and reward progress • Learn as you go: adapt.© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited
  28. 28. Tell us your content project story Keep in touch: www.contented.com alice@contented.com rachel@contented.com T: @aliceandrachel FB: /writingskills© copyright Contented Enterprises 2006 IP Limited

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