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What's your business problem - selling content strategy

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Getting management to buy into a content strategy is a little like selling a car by describing the transmission. A new framework is needed: you're solving a business problem that can be fixed with a content turn-around. Here are some ideas to get you started.

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What's your business problem - selling content strategy

  1. 1. www.scroll.co.uk © 2015 Scroll LLP Photo credit, all photos: Rahel Anne Bailie What’s Your (Business) Problem? Selling content strategy into organisations
  2. 2. Rahel Anne Bailie Chief Knowledge Officer, Scroll 15+ years content strategy 10+ years tech communication 5+ years business communication Consulting / Instruction / Author @ScrollUK @rahelab
  3. 3. WHAT IS YOUR PROBLEM?
  4. 4. Selling content strategy into an organisation • Frame the pitch • Refine the pitch • Segment the strategy • Avoid blockers and busters
  5. 5. FRAME THE NEED
  6. 6. Frame the need for a content strategy • Speak their language • Show them the money • Be clear and decisive
  7. 7. Speak their language
  8. 8. Speak their language People trust other people “in the know” • Show that you understand the business goals • Use the vocabulary of the organisation • Teach them your jargon
  9. 9. MANAGEMENT CONSULTANT specialising in CONTENT TURN-AROUNDS
  10. 10. Show them the money
  11. 11. Show them the money Ultimately, there must be business impact • Work through the aspects of business value • Sit down with finance to run the numbers • Be prepared to defend your position
  12. 12. Representative business drivers
  13. 13. Be clear and decisive
  14. 14. Be clear and decisive Ultimately, there must be business impact • Work through the aspects of business value • Sit down with finance to run the numbers • Be prepared to defend your position
  15. 15. WHAT I CAN DO FOR YOU is SYSTEMATISE YOUR CONTENT
  16. 16. REFINE THE PITCH
  17. 17. Have the right conversation with the right audience • Pitch to the right audience • Have the right conversation • Make your success their success
  18. 18. Pitch to the right audience
  19. 19. Pitch to the right audience Content strategy is cross-functional Potentially has far-reaching implications • Budget holders • Executive sponsors • Heads of functional areas • Technologists
  20. 20. Have the right conversation
  21. 21. wah wah wah XML wah wah wah CMS wah wah wah content strategy wah wah wah wah wah wah wah wah wah content curation wah wah wah wah ..
  22. 22. Have the right conversation Transportation Sports Their business Walk the talk of getting “the right content to the right people at the right time” • Inform, educate, persuade • Emphasise the benefits, hard and soft • Use metaphors and examples the audience understands
  23. 23. Make your success their success
  24. 24. Make it collaborative It takes a corporate village to manage content • Take hold of the process, not the credit • Educate, inform, persuade • Their success is your success • Have a project, a budget, and clear governance
  25. 25. The thing about governance A content strategy has lots of moving parts and affects many departments, and needs: • Buy-in from multiple teams • Teams to work together for end-to-end results • To get systems working together • To establish ownership and responsibility • To enforce the work that comes with responsibility
  26. 26. SEGMENT THE STRATEGY
  27. 27. Position the strategy for success • Break the strategy down into digestible chunks • Expect many stages of Yes • Position the project for quick wins
  28. 28. Break the strategy into digestible chunks
  29. 29. Break the strategy down into digestible chunks Photo credit: Stephan Schuster lab, Penn State A content strategy can seem too big and scary • Find a manageable starting point • Fence it as a pilot project • Determine how to scale it • Agree on check-in points
  30. 30. Expect many stages of yes
  31. 31. Expect many stages of yes Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Easier to get buy-in for immediate effort • Remind them where you’re at • Remind them what they’d agreed to • Discuss the next stage • Repeat as needed
  32. 32. Position the project for quick wins
  33. 33. Position the project for quick wins Everyone loves a winner • Find small ways to win • Show how the win corrects a pain point • Connect the dots to future work and wins
  34. 34. AVOID BLOCKERS AND BUSTERS
  35. 35. Avoid blocks and busters • Governasties • Technologists • Controllers
  36. 36. Governasties
  37. 37. Governasties Governance can go awry with: • Entrenchment (“just say no”) • Death by silo • Benign neglect • Willing but unable (Dunning-Kruger effect) • Misunderstood goalposts
  38. 38. Technologists
  39. 39. Technologists Technology groups can be formidable blockers: • Expediency over efficacy (minimum viable product) • Obfuscation by diversion of attention • Inappropriately placed authority • Limited themselves to their own sphere (“we don’t know what the question is, but the answer is always what we know how to do”)
  40. 40. Controllers
  41. 41. Controllers Control issues show themselves in several ways: • Gatekeepers (passive-aggressive form of sabotage) • Objectives and solutions don’t mesh • Leaving project at business unit or department level • Each department trying to solve problems in isolation
  42. 42. • Do your research – gather all the facts you can • Be confident in your presentation – know your arguments thoroughly • Be generous with your coaching: prepare to bring the organisation along with you
  43. 43. By email: info@scroll.co.uk rahel.bailie@scroll.co.uk By telephone: UK +44 (0)203 318 1828 (office) UK +44 (0)7869 643 685 (mobile) Social: Twitter: @ScrollUK LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/scroll-llp Twitter: @rahelab LinkedIn: https://uk.linkedin.com/in/rahelannebailie Services: www.scroll.co.uk Training: www.digitalcontent.academy SCROLL London, UK

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