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"Making things real: Content strategy for realistic content management" - Confab Intensive 2017

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From Corey Vilhauer's workshop "Making things real: Content strategy for realistic content management" at Confab Intensive 2017 in Denver, Colorado.

Everyone has a plan. Until reality sets in.

You've seen it all before. A marketing team that's created unreasonable expectations. A designer who's looking to break barriers—without regard to the content model. The myth of personalization. The dangers of the completely customizable website.

And now it's your job to bridge the gap between dreams and usable web programming. How do we take what we want and translate it into something usable? How do we take someone's ideas and turn them into a usable web implementation, navigating the constraints and pitfalls of project dreams, organizational bias, and unrealistic expectations?

It's called "reification," and it's the act of making something real. We're not talking code. We're not talking CMS selection. We're simply talking about helping those we work with understand the content management landscape though a common language and practical questions. Let's take the best case scenario and get it closer to a real life scenario. Let's make things real.

Published in: Internet
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"Making things real: Content strategy for realistic content management" - Confab Intensive 2017

  1. 1. MAKING THINGS REAL A very professional workshop by Corey Vilhauer about content strategy and content management systems
  2. 2. me, pretty much
  3. 3. THE PERFECT LESSON PLAN
  4. 4. THIS IS ME @mrvilhauer
  5. 5. the disclaimer
  6. 6. LET IT OUT
  7. 7. CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS
  8. 8. CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS ARE NOT THE PROBLEM WE ARE
  9. 9. PROCUREMENT BUDGET DISSONANCE OUT OF OUR CONTROL
  10. 10. BALANCE COMMUNICATION TRAINING IN OUR CONTROL (mostly)
  11. 11. WE ARE HUMANS. IT IS ROBOTS.
  12. 12. “There’s a murky space between the idea of content and the hard reality of a content management system.” - Deane Barker
 author, Web Content Management
  13. 13. EXPECTATIONS MEASURED RESTRICTION TRANSLATION BALANCE
  14. 14. THE EXPECTATION BARRIER: OR, OUR DREAMS ARE ALREADY DEAD How do we help teams understand the reality of content management, and set expectations accordingly?
  15. 15. Content Strategy User Experience/IA Visual/Front- End Design Development & Deployment YAY WEBSITE!
  16. 16. Content Strategy User Experience/IA Visual/Front- End Design Development & Deployment Marketing/ Communications Executive Stakeholders Editors & Creators YAY WEBSITE!
  17. 17. Content Strategy User Experience/IA Development & Deployment Low Tech/ High Need High Tech/ Low Need Marketing/ Communications Executive Stakeholders Editors & Creators
  18. 18. CONTENT STRATEGY CONTENT CREATION CONTENT MAINTENANCE THESE ARE ALL CONTENT MANAGEMENT
  19. 19. Article Category Ad Banner Title Short Title Meta Title Preview Title Header Image Preview Image Image Caption Image Maintenance Body Copy Category Feed Content Break Points Alternate Tags Opengraph Another Ad Banner Editorial Categories Byline Name Date
  20. 20. NAME THAT TYPE
  21. 21. EXAMPLE: Newsroom News Listing News Feed News
  22. 22. WE STILL KIND OF SUCK AT MAKING OUR WORK SOUND HUMAN
  23. 23. “…developers should watch for ambiguity or inconsistency that will trip up design.” - Eric Evans
 author, Domain-Driven Design
  24. 24. When we say: Content Model We mean: A conceptual term for the collection of content types, attributes, relationships and datatypes in place to accurately describe a logical domain of content. In other words: How pages, blocks, and other content are shaped and work together within the CMS.
  25. 25. use ur words pls The Balance of Message and Structure The Priority of the Machine Permanence vs. Flexibility Communicate the Purpose
  26. 26. THE BALANCING ACT: OR, THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN “WE CAN” AND “WE SHOULD” How do we balance the rigidity of a content model with the creative flow of a marketing team?
  27. 27. “If we have learned anything at all in this century, it is that all new technologies will be put to use, sooner or later, for better or worse, as it is in our nature to do.” - Lewis Thomas
 author, “Autonomy”
  28. 28. Structure Customizability
  29. 29. WHAT CAN BE DONE SHOULD
  30. 30. “Content modeling is an editorial issue.” - Sara Wachter-Boettcher
 author, Content Everywhere
  31. 31. YOUR NEW CMS CAN’T READ OR REASON
  32. 32. PAGES
  33. 33. PAGES COMPONENTS
  34. 34. PAGES COMPONENTS AGGREGATIONS
  35. 35. PAGES COMPONENTS AGGREGATIONSINTEGRATIONS DATA!
  36. 36. Pages Home Page Section Home Page Components General Text Page Program Search Undergraduate Graduate School Program Major Directory Directory Bio Faculty Listing Story Stories Student Media Map Home Calendar Event Image Block Video Block Link List Block Program Block Directory Listing Story Media Type Event Accordion Table Carousel Promo Block Academics Block School Listing Faculty Listing Major List Course Catalog Search Results
  37. 37. HIGHLY-STRUCTURED PAGE MORE GENERIC PAGE WITH COMPONENTS
  38. 38. PAGE COMPONENTS AGGREGATION INTEGRATION
  39. 39. BALANCE THAT CONTENT
  40. 40. MEASURED RESTRICTION: OR, NOT DOING EVERYTHING, ALL THE TIME, EVERY TIME Understanding the budgets we all have to live within - from time, to money, to attention.
  41. 41. MEASURED RESTRICTION (a thing I made up)
  42. 42. STRUCTURED OR OPEN? How similar is this from page to page? What integrations do I need to use? How often does this content change? How many will we create?
  43. 43. THE SITE MAP CMS-DRIVENVISUAL 1.0 - About USD 1.1 - Why USD? 1.2 - Quick Facts 1.3 - Campus 1.4 - Office of the President 1.5 - Mission and History 1.6 - Art and Culture 1.7- Campus Policies 1.8 - Consumer Information 1.9 - Emergency Information 1.3.1 - Visit 1.3.2 - Map and Directions 1.3.3 - About Vermillion 1.3.4 - The Future Campus 1.3.5 - University Police 1.4.1 - Executive Leadership 1.4.2 - Strategic Plan 1.4.3 - Accreditation 1.5.1 - Past Presidents 1.7.1 - Policies 1.7.2 - New Policies & Rev. 1.7.3 - Student Rights/Respons. 1.7.4 - Student Handbook 1.6.1 - Museums and Galleries
  44. 44. PAGE PURPOSE ≠ PAGE TYPE
  45. 45. EXAMPLE: News Feed Press Release Feed Case Study Feed Article Press Release Case Study +categories +components
  46. 46. THE BASE SITE (i know!)
  47. 47. THE BASE SITE (i know!)
  48. 48. The Base Layer The Component Layer The Specialized Exceptions
  49. 49. MINIMUM VS MAXIMUM
  50. 50. Do we suppress? Do we require? Do we ignore?
  51. 51. LOCAL VS AGGREGATED
  52. 52. Manual entry? Categorical aggregation? A mix of both?
  53. 53. CATEGORY VS RELATIONSHIP
  54. 54. Category assigned to both? Explicit relationship? Manual entry?
  55. 55. STRUCTURED OR NON-STRUCTURED
  56. 56. Can a machine learn it? Will it make the job easier? Is there an editorial reason to do it?
  57. 57. BUDGET Entry Development Maintenance Training Highly Structured Open WYSIWYG High Medium Low Low Low High Medium Low
  58. 58. BAD COP
  59. 59. THE TRANSLATION POINT: OR, WELCOME TO THE MACHINE How do we take our ideas and turn them into a usable web implementation?
  60. 60. WHAT I LEARNED QAing WEBSITES
  61. 61. “Editors will circumvent poor tools” - Rahel Ann Bailie
 author, Bridging UX & Web Development
  62. 62. BUILD YOUR AUTHOR EXPERIENCE INTO THE CMS
  63. 63. Meta Title Page Title Menu Title Content Title
  64. 64. Meta Title Page Title Menu Title Content Title URL Slug
  65. 65. ACCESSIBILITY?
  66. 66. Set blank alt text field as <img alt=“”>
  67. 67. Set a heading tag and a heading class in the WYSIWYG.
  68. 68. ACCESSIBILITY? SEARCH ENGINES?
  69. 69. Meta Title Page Title Menu Title Content Title URL Slug
  70. 70. ACCESSIBILITY? SEARCH ENGINES? OPENGRAPH CARDS?
  71. 71. Opengraph Summary Opengraph Title Opengraph
 Image Meta Title Page Title Meta Summary Truncated Body Copy Preview Image Resized Hero/ Fallback Image
  72. 72. DOCUMENTATION
  73. 73. WRITING IS EASY WRITING FOR THE CMS IS HARD
  74. 74. TABLE THAT PAGE
  75. 75. AND IN CONCLUSION: OR, MY TIME IS NEARLY GONE Does any of this apply to me, and why the you-know-what should I care?
  76. 76. CONTENT IS NOT ART IT REQUIRES STRUCTURE
  77. 77. “Broken gets fixed. Shoddy lasts forever” - Jack Moffett
 author, Bridging UX & Web Development
  78. 78. “There’s no API call for makeShitUpHere()” - Deane Barker
 author, Web Content Management
  79. 79. THANK YOU for making things real The notes and slide deck will be ready SOON, at: www.eatingelephant.com/intensive17

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