What is Content Management, and Why Does it Matter


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Keynote presentation for the first Web Content Management Conference in Chicago, 2005

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What is Content Management, and Why Does it Matter

  1. 1. Hilary Marsh, www.contentcompany.biz What Is Content Management, and Why Does it Matter?
  2. 2. Does content management keep your CEO up at night? <ul><li>Actually, it does… </li></ul><ul><li>although the CEO may not realize it. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why do we buy CMSs to manage content? <ul><li>5. Relieve IT of production responsibilities </li></ul><ul><li>4. Compliance </li></ul><ul><li>3. Enable consistent, accurate, up-to-date information </li></ul><ul><li>2. Make use of what the Web can enable </li></ul><ul><li>But the top reason is </li></ul><ul><li>1. Content is the way our organizations meet their top business objectives </li></ul>
  4. 4. Content is how business strategy is executed <ul><li>Customer retention </li></ul><ul><li>Raising awareness in the marketplace </li></ul><ul><li>Cross-selling multiple products </li></ul><ul><li>Content management is more than just a good idea. </li></ul>
  5. 5. So what, about content strategy? <ul><li>Most organizations have never had one </li></ul><ul><ul><li>wasn't seen as necessary pre-Internet </li></ul></ul><ul><li>They don't know they need one </li></ul><ul><li>Huge political roadblocks </li></ul><ul><ul><li>my content, my information, my vehicles, my pages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>what's in it for me to contribute? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>what's in it for me to use someone else's content? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>why are my communications suddenly being controlled? </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Start with the “what” and “why” <ul><li>What content needs to be managed, and why? </li></ul><ul><li>Relate to business's strategic goals </li></ul><ul><li>Show risk of not managing content, and the value of doing so </li></ul><ul><li>business gains </li></ul><ul><li>risk reduction (SOX, legal) </li></ul><ul><li>cost and time savings </li></ul>
  7. 7. Anatomy of an effective content strategy <ul><li>Part 1: inputs </li></ul><ul><li>Content audit — what’s there now? </li></ul><ul><li>Gap analysis — what’s missing? </li></ul><ul><li>Stakeholder interviews — how do things work now? </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership buy-in — are the goals important to the organization, and is the Web an important channel to reach those goals? </li></ul>
  8. 8. Anatomy of an effective content strategy <ul><li>Part 2: output </li></ul><ul><li>Content plan — how often will specific types of content be updated? </li></ul><ul><li>Staffing plan — who will play what roles (author, editor, approver, etc.)? </li></ul><ul><li>Governance structure — who will be in charge? </li></ul><ul><li>Metadata strategy — how will content appear in the right places? what is common taxonomy/vocabulary across business lines? </li></ul><ul><li>Archiving strategy — where will content go, how will it get there, and how long will it stay? </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunities for content reuse </li></ul>
  9. 9. Anatomy of an effective content strategy <ul><li>Part 3: implications </li></ul><ul><li>Content management requirements — how will a CMS enable all of this? </li></ul><ul><li>Information architecture/content organization — how will information be findable by the people visiting the site? (involves user research) </li></ul><ul><li>Usability by target audience, not just creators </li></ul><ul><li>Search engine optimization — content must be visible to search engines, structured correctly, title tags, user-friendly URLs </li></ul>
  10. 10. More than just a Web solution <ul><li>(although few organizations have really conquered Web content strategy and management issues) </li></ul><ul><li>Email marketing </li></ul><ul><li>Print </li></ul><ul><li>Call center applications </li></ul><ul><li>Intranet </li></ul><ul><li>Each has different team, culture, reporting structure </li></ul>
  11. 11. CMS is the “how” <ul><li>A content management system is the technology that: </li></ul><ul><li>enables the rules established by the content strategy </li></ul><ul><li>empowers organizations to use the Web flexibly and powerfully </li></ul><ul><li>enables IT to focus strategically instead of being expensive data processors </li></ul>
  12. 12. Why don't we talk about content strategy more often? <ul><li>Difference between content strategy and CMS requirements is not clear </li></ul><ul><li>Not sexy like technology </li></ul><ul><li>Looks like spending money vs. investing </li></ul><ul><li>Hard to quantify value </li></ul><ul><li>Communications/content not valued enough </li></ul>
  13. 13. Language issues <ul><li>Semantics make it difficult to translate content strategy into CMS requirements </li></ul><ul><li>IT folks say &quot;workflow,&quot; content people say &quot;editorial process&quot; — don't understand each other's worlds </li></ul><ul><li>There isn't always an articulated process for publishing, and certainly few standards across the organization (no reason to, until now) </li></ul><ul><li>Much content is created by a small group for a specific audience — under the radar </li></ul>
  14. 14. Change management issues <ul><li>Culture shift from &quot;knowledge is power&quot; to &quot;sharing knowledge is power&quot; — why? how? </li></ul><ul><li>Content reuse requires willingness to collaborate — people feel threatened. Need to establish trust....in some cases, for the first time </li></ul><ul><li>Subject matter experts are not writers — can't just institute decentralized publishing overnight. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Content strategy must precede CMS selection <ul><li>If not, CMS efforts may be wasted </li></ul><ul><ul><li>adoption </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>understanding/correct usage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>time/cost savings realized or not </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>continued evolution, additional value </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It's very expensive to buy a CMS that only IT uses! </li></ul>
  16. 16. Technology enables the solution <ul><li>These are business issues with business solutions. </li></ul><ul><li>Technology enables those — in fact, they could not be easily solved without it. </li></ul><ul><li>But technology is not, itself, the solution. </li></ul>
  17. 17. My info Hilary Marsh Content Company, Inc. http://www.contentcompany.biz [email_address] .biz 708.217.3922 708.575.3450 fax