Content Strategy Basics


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A very basic introduction to the ideas behind content strategy, aimed at marketers. I gave this talk at UCT's Nomadic Marketing course in 2010.

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  • Practical exercise
  • Most expensive pizza ever made
  • Brainstorm
  • Content Strategy Basics

    1. 1. Content strategy basics Kerry-Anne Gilowey Content strategist: August Sun Projects Or “How To Be Awesome At The Internet In Eight Quite Challenging But Entirely Doable Steps”
    2. 2. Let’s build a house, shall we?
    3. 3. How it’s always been done:
    4. 4. Why do people visit your site? Or follow you on Twitter?
    5. 5. xkcd - getting it right since 2005
    6. 7. So we have a problem. But can we fix it?
    7. 8. YES, WE CAN!
    8. 9. But first, what is content? Body copy and headings Video Sound Menus Hyperlink anchor text Dynamic data Aggregated content Metadata Other ideas? Search results Images Twitter updates Facebook posts Internal documents User-generated content
    9. 10. Pizza Royale 007
    10. 11. Planning, creating and maintaining good content… … is messy … is expensive … is essential. … is time-consuming
    11. 12. STOP! Content strategy time.
    12. 13. 1. Identify your goals and messages. Some find this harder than others.
    13. 14. 2. Find out what your audience wants and needs.
    14. 15. 3. Create a style guide. Instead of… we use… ensure make sure endeavour try wonderful killer
    15. 16. Coming up next: Forbidden Words and Phrases SPECIAL BONUS FEATURE!
    16. 17. Forbidden Words And Phrases solutions customised professional service holistic approach tailor-made just for you synergy we put customers first our areas of specialisation are touch-points value-added utilise
    17. 18. 4. Use plain language. "I know what you're thinking. Did he fire six shots or only five? Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I've kind of lost track myself. But being as this is a 44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clear off, you've got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel lucky?"
    18. 19. "I imagine that you are harboring significant uncertainty concerning the precise number of times that the hammer of this particular multishot firearm was cocked, its cylinder was advanced, the hammer was then released at the rear of its travel, the round in the chamber was fired, and the cylinder was then advanced once again — and specifically whether the exact figure is six, or possibly only five. Indeed, given the ambient commotion, my preoccupation with the need to make multiple, simultaneous and consequential decisions with alacrity, the surrounding high-decibel acoustic percussion, and the substantial ramifications of the firearm having already been discharged multiple times, I myself am experiencing difficulty in quantifying the discharges with exactitude. But inasmuch as the instrument in question, having been manufactured by NASDAQ-listed Smith & Wesson (stock symbol SWHC) with a horizontal barrel dimension of 8 3/8" to propel a projectile with a diameter of nearly 1/2" at a velocity of over 1,000 feet per second and an energy of more than 1,400 joules, is arguably the most powerful firearm in the world (the uncertainty being a function of the particular metric that one might choose, such as overall terminal ballistics, external ballistics, or some combination of other factors), you should be advised that were the projectile from this instrument to strike you in the region between the apex of the cranium and the base of the lower mandible, it would completely sever this entire portion of your anatomy, and in addition transport it a considerable distance from its original location. As a result, it is appropriate that you pursue a specific and directed line of inquiry and self-examination: viz ., in view of all the facts and circumstances, and giving due weight to the relevant risk factors, is it your considered judgment that you are more likely than not to be relatively fortunate?”
    19. 21. 5. Don’t shovel.
    20. 22. 6. Set up an editorial calendar. “ But, but… I’m not a publisher!” OH YES YOU ARE.
    21. 23. 7. Make someone the gatekeeper. Perhaps not this guy. The curse of the CMS “ Yippee! Now we all have keys to the gate!”
    22. 24. 8. Plan for user-generated content too. Or you’ll end up like these guys.
    23. 25. Another bonus feature?!
    24. 26. Twitter tips for everyone! <ul><li>Be real and human </li></ul><ul><li>Be engaging </li></ul><ul><li>Be mature </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t retweet compliments </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t get defensive </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t be gushing </li></ul><ul><li>Lay off the exclamation marks!!!!!!!!!! </li></ul>
    25. 27. US Embassy Pretoria: setting an excellent example
    26. 28. That’s the end. Now go out there and make the world better, won’t you? Kerry-Anne Gilowey | [email_address] | @kerry_anne