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What is Longform, and Should I Be Doing It? - NTC 2016
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Longform Content: A Cautionary Tale - NTC 2016 Wordpress Day

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Co-presented with Kristina Bjoran
Longform content is all the rage, and for good reason; when done well, it’s powerful, compelling, and audiences want to engage with it and share it around. But what about when it’s done not-so-well? Even with a CMS as perfectly suited for storytelling as WordPress, longform content is not the sure-thing we all want it to be. We’ve seen the good, bad, and ugly with longform content, and we’ve learned a lot about how to avoid the common pitfalls. Through real-life stories, we’ll explore the misconceptions, missteps, and roadblocks that can beat down the best of longform intentions. Join us for this session to arm yourself with the ability to spot these issues early and avoid the common—and often expensive—longform mistakes.

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Longform Content: A Cautionary Tale - NTC 2016 Wordpress Day

  1. 1. LONGFORM a cautionary tale Courtney Clark @circlish Managing Director of UX Kristina Bjoran @bjoran_identity Senior Creative Strategist CONTENT
  2. 2. My name is Courtney. I’m from Kansas.
  3. 3. My name is Kristina. I am a hybrid.
  4. 4. LONGFORM
  5. 5. LONGFORM Mostly Static 2,000+ Words Narrative In journalism, this means “feature”
  6. 6. Sitting in a Tree WordPress + Longform
  7. 7. Reasons! Good Authoring EXPERIENCE Community SUPPORT Content FOCUSED! Nice THEMES Can be CHEAP-ish Good DISCUSSION options Dedicated longform PLUGINS and more!
  8. 8. but...
  9. 9. lessons 7 learned
  10. 10. ROIMAKE A PLAN. HAVE A GOAL. 1
  11. 11. Install analytics Set goals for engagement TIPS
  12. 12. BudgetsMAY VARY... GREATLY 2
  13. 13. Snow Fall. Not gonna happen with $35,000. !
  14. 14. Be realistic Don’t promise the world TIPS
  15. 15. Don’tSTART FROM SCRATCH. 3
  16. 16. Use existing themes, plug-ins Be flexible with your vision TIPS
  17. 17. Don’t hack the theme too much! !
  18. 18. WriterNOT EVERYONE IS ONE* 4 * despite what they may think
  19. 19. Writer / UX Front-End / Back-End Dev Writer / Designer Get an actual writer Let them do their job TIPS
  20. 20. StoryGET IT STRAIGHT 5
  21. 21. Find your narrative Always have a Big Idea TIPS
  22. 22. WriteFOR THE WEB, NOT PRINT 6
  23. 23. Consider components Think of the atmosphere TIPS
  24. 24. AXAUTHOR EXPERIENCE MATTERS 7
  25. 25. Let the author test drive Make adjustments TIPS
  26. 26. Install analytics Set goals for engagementDefine Your ROI Let the author test drive Make adjustmentsAuthor Experience (AX) Consider components Think of the atmosphereWrite for the Web Find your narrative Always have a BIG IDEATell a Story Get an actual writer Let them do their jobGet a Writer Use existing themes and plugins Be flexible in your visionDon’t Start from Scratch Be realistic Don’t promise the worldConsider Your Budget
  27. 27. To Hold & Keep Forever Should I Longform?
  28. 28. We’d never leave you hanging Resources
  29. 29. Pageviews are Passé Engaging Audiences (PDF w/ case studies) How Journalists Can Measure Engagement NPR’s Writing Guidelines The Secrets to Writing Smart, Long-form Articles * We don’t have connections to or vested interest in any of these Aesop Story Engine Longform Pro Theme Editus (front end longform editor) Press75 Longform Builder The Seven Basic Plots Byliner.com Longform.org TVTropes.org Themes & Plugins* Writing for the Web Story & Narrative Engagement & Analytics
  30. 30. Questions & (Hopefully) Answers Thank You! Courtney Clark @circlish Managing Director of UX Kristina Bjoran @bjoran_identity Senior Creative Strategist
  31. 31. BOOTH 623 come say hi

Co-presented with Kristina Bjoran Longform content is all the rage, and for good reason; when done well, it’s powerful, compelling, and audiences want to engage with it and share it around. But what about when it’s done not-so-well? Even with a CMS as perfectly suited for storytelling as WordPress, longform content is not the sure-thing we all want it to be. We’ve seen the good, bad, and ugly with longform content, and we’ve learned a lot about how to avoid the common pitfalls. Through real-life stories, we’ll explore the misconceptions, missteps, and roadblocks that can beat down the best of longform intentions. Join us for this session to arm yourself with the ability to spot these issues early and avoid the common—and often expensive—longform mistakes.

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