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Predicate | The Day 2 Problem: A Tour of Editorial Strategy

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Predicate | The Day 2 Problem: A Tour of Editorial Strategy

  1. 1. The Day 2 Problem Jeffrey MacIntyre CHI*Atlanta 2009 Predicate, LLC Atlanta Content Strategy
  2. 2. Introductions I’m an independent content strategist in NYC. My practice focuses on editorial product strategy. ‣ Jeff MacIntyre, Principal @jeffmacintyre
  3. 3. The Story So Far
  4. 4. Content Strategy Today
  5. 5. Before Content Strategy ...
  6. 6. “Tragedy = comedy + time” Woody Allen
  7. 7. How the Content Strategist Still Sees (a Lot of) the Web.
  8. 8. “Design without content is decoration.” Jeffrey Zeldman
  9. 9. Louis Rosenfeld: ‣ “Redesign must die” ‣ “Every large website is a complex adaptive system.” Credit: “Redesign Must Die” ,
  10. 10. The Content Strategy Gospel ‣ The web is a publishing medium. ‣ Content is integral (to experience). ‣ Content producers = de facto publishers. ‣ To users, the web is awash in content. Site owners feel the floodwaters, too. So, sink or swim. Filter or be flooded.
  11. 11. Editorial Strategy: Content Strategy as Product Strategy?
  13. 13. “The Day 2 Problem” Postlaunch is a project phase. Nothing shines a light on the good faith agreement between client and consultant than thoughtful aftercare. Editorial strategy is about caring for content after launch day. Credit: Flickr Commons
  14. 14. Your website isn’t a magazine.
  15. 15. “[G]etting better at publishing is the only way you’re going to get better at content.” Gerry McGovern Content Critical
  16. 16. Your website isn’t a magazine!
  17. 17. Publishing is Pivotal ‣ Everything I learned about content strategy I learned from being a web editor.
  18. 18. Your website isn’t a magazine. But it should be.
  19. 19. Recognizing an EDITORIAL STRATEGY
  20. 20. Do You Have One? Editorial strategy is ... ‣ a set editorial mix Credit: Jessica Hagy ‣ scheduled release of ongoing content ‣ packaged as a bundle of like content ‣ supported through masthead workflow ‣ guided by a product strategy
  21. 21. Defining Editorial Content What is it? A publishing asset. ‣ Repeatable and repeatedly published content in a recognizable form (article, podcast, etc.) and packaged (e.g., edited) for consumption; ‣ Made valuable to an audience by: being innovative; through subject matter expertise or authority; by voice or other brand attributes.
  22. 22. Example: Slate’s “Today’s Papers” 12 years ago, pioneered a daily form of content aggregation for news consumers. It evolved from novel convenience to meta-digest to spin-offs to modular, near- realtime editorial.
  23. 23. Key Debates in Editorial Strategy ‣ Free v. paid (rev. models: licensing, etc.) ‣ Production model: factory v. atelier ‣ Curation v. aggregation ‣ Original content: longform/shortform ‣ Editorial mix: stock & flow
  24. 24. Editorial Strategy FYI Credit: Jonathan Maziarz, Credit: Clinton Forry, Credit: Jason Santa Maria, SVA presentation Credit: Luke Hayman, Credit: Adam Taplin, Content Strategy Google Group Credit: Robin Sloan, Credit: Prasanna Lal Das, Credit: Muriel Vandermeulen,
  25. 25. Delivering an Editorial Strategy
  26. 26. Our Methodology 1. Audit 2. Plan 3. Build 4. Grow content content editorial content audit strategy specification calendar content migration plan copy deck style guide inventory metadata content gap analysis schema development
  27. 27. Our Editorial Strategy 1. Audit 2. Plan 3. Build 4. Grow content editorial strategy calendar style guide content development
  28. 28. Content Strategy ! ! !
  29. 29. Style Guide Editorial Calendar !
  30. 30. Content Development Credit: Webbmedia Group
  31. 31. Cui Bono?
  32. 32. The Future of Publishing: The Future of Literacy. Credit: Denis Pelli & Charles Bigelow,
  33. 33. Panel Discussion SUSAN Robinson, CDC RICHARD Sheffield, UPS TRACY Wilson, HSW

Editor's Notes

  • Hello, Fort McPherson!

    I fell asleep in the barber chair. True story.
  • I’ve been working as a titled content strategist for about 5 years and been in professional services and interactive media for 10.

    The editors of A List Apart asked Kristina Halvorson and I to introduce the field of content strategy to its readers about a year and a half ago.

    The rest is history--but let’s have a quick refresher.
  • To the content strategist, the history of content online is essentially a history of shovelware.
  • Unwritten: don’t treat content as an afterthought in your web projects.
  • What’s the role of content strategy--intelligent, structured content--and editorial strategy in advancing from prototype to product? What about packaging, producing and selling it?

    How will digital publishers expand their current editorial properties in a way that maintains (and broadens) their relevance online?

    They’ll look to something called editorial strategy. And so will anyone looking to effectively engage users with ongoing content production.
  • He has said similarly that “treating content as a high-value asset requires a publishing approach”.
  • It’s true. And it’s a good subject for the next time we get together.

    Every problem with content is about being effective, relevant and remarkable with content.

    The same is true of publishing.

    Content strategy, like information science, is descended from publishing.

    Content strategy is a form of product development. We are situated between PRODUCT and plumbing.
    The strategy and tactics underpinning a digital property’s content offering at launch and beyond.

    It is a product strategy for establishing the right mix of at-launch content production and aggregation for all content types, including directional postlaunch recommendations. This document informs the Content Specification.
  • STYLE GUIDE* and EDITORIAL CALENDAR* are cousin deliverables aimed at operationalizing content activities. The Style Guide is a detailed production guide for all content modules intended for content owners and authors. The editorial calendar is dashboard tool for planning, tracking and measuring content production, delivery and related analytics.

    The former, often paired with creative design specifications (e.g., image sizes), consolidates house editorial standards as they relate to the new platform. This can include detailed workflows and standardized processes, a governance model for various content types and even walkthroughs and training related to new tools and process improvements. At its most extensive, this document can double as a metadata schema or asset management guidelines.

    The latter, combined with a programming matrix, acts as a management tool for rationalizing content production requirements for editorial management and for aligning content activities (in multiple channels) to business and brand priorities through a unified framework.