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Content
Prioritization
A method to inform what to tackle first so it’s valuable for
the business + users
Sara Walsh zails@...
What is content strategy?
Content strategy is determining the best way to present information to
your audience.
It’s also ...
About me
Factors affecting content decisions
Foundational framework:
• Style guide (create, update, maintain)
• Your content strate...
Factors affecting content decisions
Organizational:
• Resources
• IT infrastructure
• Politics
• Existing processes
• Fina...
Factors affecting content decisions
They are all important in deciding what to tackle -- and how effective your
content is
Content people are in the middle
Case in point: Our United project
• Overhauled information architecture for the ecommerce...
Common ways business prioritize content
projects
• Financial impact or decision
• Which group/content owner is the loudest...
Problems with these approaches
• Narrowly focused
• Not considering whole purchase/task path
• Reactionary/too late
• Not ...
Idea!
Can we find a way to consider ALL factors to inform which content to focus
on?
Meet the Content Prioritization Matrix
A method we created that allows you to evaluate content within a project
and measur...
The Content Prioritization Matrix
• Organized by section of content or project
• Driven by top user needs that section or ...
It forces you to do it right.
Such as …
• Consider user needs in context of business objectives
• List all the chunks of c...
Our approach
1. Set up the matrix; played around with it; socialized the idea
2. Tapped “numbers folks” to validate approa...
How we used the results
• To see how sections rank high/low in terms of total points and
averages-- most “value”
• To disc...
Outcomes were good
• We ended up validating some of the current projects that were
prioritized that we were dubious about
...
How to set it up
How to set up a content prioritization matrix
1. Figure out what your top user
needs/tasks are for the project.
Better: Ra...
How to set up a content prioritization matrix
2. List the primary content associated
with completing that task
Ex: Looking...
How to set up a content prioritization matrix
3. Determine the categories and criteria for evaluation.
Category and criteria examples
• Revenue
Distressed inventory (sale), ancillary revenue, mileage
redemption, etc.
• Team o...
How to set up a content prioritization matrix
4. Then, look at the user needs AND the content associated with
completing t...
How to set up a content prioritization matrix
5. Get other teams to help fill in the matrix! Give each team their own
vers...
How to set up a content prioritization matrix
6. Have fun analyzing!
How to set up a content prioritization matrix
Look at total points as well
as averages.
See where content
overlaps.
A mini-matrix exercise
Problem:
There are pain-points in two critical areas for your ecommerce site: the Help
landing page...
Reactions and
questions
Thanks a bunch
Send me feedback!
Sara Walsh zails@yahoo.com
More images of happy
teams
They’ll rock your world.
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Prioritizing Content Strategy Projects So Your Users and Business Win By: Sara Walsh (USA), Motorola

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Your list of content projects is long. How are you deciding which to tackle first? And how do you make the argument to prioritize a project you know is important but always seems to get pushed aside? We'll consider criteria to evaluate content projects and also look at a unique method to help you measure their value for the business AND your users, so you can focus on what's most effective.

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Prioritizing Content Strategy Projects So Your Users and Business Win By: Sara Walsh (USA), Motorola

  1. 1. Content Prioritization A method to inform what to tackle first so it’s valuable for the business + users Sara Walsh zails@yahoo.com
  2. 2. What is content strategy? Content strategy is determining the best way to present information to your audience. It’s also about defining what happens after you publish, so the business can successfully manage the content and users like the content they see and want to return.
  3. 3. About me
  4. 4. Factors affecting content decisions Foundational framework: • Style guide (create, update, maintain) • Your content strategy • User research and analytics • etc.
  5. 5. Factors affecting content decisions Organizational: • Resources • IT infrastructure • Politics • Existing processes • Financial goals • etc.
  6. 6. Factors affecting content decisions They are all important in deciding what to tackle -- and how effective your content is
  7. 7. Content people are in the middle Case in point: Our United project • Overhauled information architecture for the ecommerce site • Needed to update content to match the new architecture • What do we tackle first, and how? • Lots of valid opinions. • Overwhelming to think about
  8. 8. Common ways business prioritize content projects • Financial impact or decision • Which group/content owner is the loudest • What the CEO/leadership wants • User pain point, usually a reaction to user complaints • Content near a “buy” button/revenue
  9. 9. Problems with these approaches • Narrowly focused • Not considering whole purchase/task path • Reactionary/too late • Not always in spirit of collaboration or supporting entire org’s goals
  10. 10. Idea! Can we find a way to consider ALL factors to inform which content to focus on?
  11. 11. Meet the Content Prioritization Matrix A method we created that allows you to evaluate content within a project and measure its value for both users and the business.
  12. 12. The Content Prioritization Matrix • Organized by section of content or project • Driven by top user needs that section or project satisfies • Measurements based on criteria across from cross-disciplinary teams • Simple yes/no measurement • Can be weighted to account for importance
  13. 13. It forces you to do it right. Such as … • Consider user needs in context of business objectives • List all the chunks of content that would touch a project early – This brings a level of detail to conversation earlier to better understand scope • Collaborate and consider all team’s objectives • Removes emotion
  14. 14. Our approach 1. Set up the matrix; played around with it; socialized the idea 2. Tapped “numbers folks” to validate approach and asked stakeholders for input 3. Invited teams to contribute (content champions within a discipline whenever possible) 4. Provided a framework; Included succinct definitions so we all evaluated same way 5. Used the results to offer proposals on how to prioritize
  15. 15. How we used the results • To see how sections rank high/low in terms of total points and averages-- most “value” • To discover which sections and user needs ranked highly multiple times across categories of evaluation • To consider team eagerness and readiness (and not consider it) • To understand the highest-ranking user tasks, meaning they were impt. to user AND business • To make a list of the content touching the most highest ranked task, then check against what was desired vs. already planned for overhaul
  16. 16. Outcomes were good • We ended up validating some of the current projects that were prioritized that we were dubious about • We created a list of content that satisfied multiple user needs across sections to use as a guide • We used data to make recommendations to de-prioritized some content projects in favor of more valuable ones
  17. 17. How to set it up
  18. 18. How to set up a content prioritization matrix 1. Figure out what your top user needs/tasks are for the project. Better: Rank them high/medium/low priority (3/2/1)
  19. 19. How to set up a content prioritization matrix 2. List the primary content associated with completing that task Ex: Looking for last-minute flight deals to a destination means a user could look at the flight offers page, Saver Awards page, the deals & offers landing page, and the fare sale notification sign up page.
  20. 20. How to set up a content prioritization matrix 3. Determine the categories and criteria for evaluation.
  21. 21. Category and criteria examples • Revenue Distressed inventory (sale), ancillary revenue, mileage redemption, etc. • Team objectives (UX) Be transparent, streamline interactions; etc. • Business objectives Keep call center calls down, support SEO, increase email reach, etc. • User principles based on major research project • Eagerness & Readiness High/med/low ranking of willingness and resources of stakeholder teams
  22. 22. How to set up a content prioritization matrix 4. Then, look at the user needs AND the content associated with completing that task and rate yes (1 point) no (0 points)
  23. 23. How to set up a content prioritization matrix 5. Get other teams to help fill in the matrix! Give each team their own version. Celebrate their enthusiasm for contributing and collaborating. This amazing photo is found here.
  24. 24. How to set up a content prioritization matrix 6. Have fun analyzing!
  25. 25. How to set up a content prioritization matrix Look at total points as well as averages. See where content overlaps.
  26. 26. A mini-matrix exercise Problem: There are pain-points in two critical areas for your ecommerce site: the Help landing page and the Homepage, and both are major undertakings. Internally, teams are frustrated with the homepage template as they use it; they find it’s not set up to easily communicate the product story or drive traffic where the company wants. Simultaneously, the customer call center is slammed with calls from people who want to self-serve but can’t find links to basics after they navigate to the Help section. Two options are on the table: One is to overhaul the homepage, and the other is to overhaul the Help landing page. Which of the projects has the larger impact for users and the business in context of resources?
  27. 27. Reactions and questions
  28. 28. Thanks a bunch Send me feedback! Sara Walsh zails@yahoo.com
  29. 29. More images of happy teams They’ll rock your world.

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