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Role of the Content Strategist


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Updated presentation of Lisa Trager'sy methodology for content strategy.

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Role of the Content Strategist

  1. 1. Lisa L. Trager Content Strategist | Information Architect October 2011 The Role of the Content Strategist
  2. 2. Why Content Strategy? <ul><li>We’re in the age of hyper-connectivity </li></ul><ul><li>Information overload </li></ul><ul><li>Time deprivation </li></ul><ul><li>Digital content must rise above the noise and be designed to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Help </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Inform </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Entertain </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be relevant </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Trusted </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accessible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immediate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Definition of Content Strategy <ul><li>A Content Strategist brings an understanding of: </li></ul>Who? What? Who is the targeted audience? What information is relevant When? When is the best time to present contextually relevant content? Where users are coming from and most likely going next Why users are coming to the website and what are they looking for? Where? Why?
  4. 4. Roles and Skills of a CS
  5. 5. Principles =Value of CS <ul><ul><li>Understands the current state </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Becomes a subject matter expert </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Identifies gaps between current and ideal future state based upon: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Makes recommendations for the future state based upon overall analysis to improve the: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Structure </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Access to information </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Relevancy of content to the targeted audiences </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Methodology <ul><li>Repeatable – In order to remain efficient, there needs to be a process that can be duplicated </li></ul><ul><li>Flexible – the methodology can be expanded or contracted depending upon the type project </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Scope </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Budget </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Timeline </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Teamwork <ul><li>Constant interaction and iteration between </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Content Strategist </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>IA </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Creative Team </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Marketing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Business Analyst </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Client remains central </li></ul>
  8. 8. Methodology <ul><ul><li>Discovery </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Analysis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Design </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Testing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maintenance/Updates </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>New tools </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Applications, </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>CRM campaigns </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Microsites </li></ul></ul></ul>Client
  9. 9. 1. Discovery
  10. 10. Content Audit <ul><li>Includes and tracks: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Site Level </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Page Name </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Description </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>URL </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content Type (doc, xml, pdf, etc) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content Group (About Us, Products, Contact Us, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Purpose </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Relevance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Targeted Audience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Date last modified </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Author </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Comments </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Heuristic Evaluation
  12. 12. Stakeholder Interviews <ul><ul><li>Clients define their objectives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SWOT of brand </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Answer questions identified in audit </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fill in gaps to get a full understanding of the product, brand, company, consumers, sales chain, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be sure you ask about the: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Targeted audience </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Other marketing initiatives </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Competitors </li></ul></ul></ul>
  13. 13. User Interviews <ul><li>1:1 Interviews </li></ul><ul><li>Focus Groups </li></ul><ul><li>In field observations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>See what they do vs. having users tell what they do </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Metrics <ul><li>Use site metrics to evaluate current </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Top pages based on hits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Visitors path </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Topics of interest </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bounce rates </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Duration of time on site </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Good sources: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Google Analytics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Webtrends </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Keyword Research <ul><li>Provides insights into what users are looking for </li></ul><ul><li>Leverage insights into content strategy </li></ul><ul><li>When selecting keywords consider the: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Frequency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online competition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Where are they ranking? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Why are they ranking? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Keywords will help shape site: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sitemap </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Copydeck </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Page titles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Directory structure (page name) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Headings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Text </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Competitive Analysis
  17. 17. Third Party Resources
  18. 18. 2. Analysis & Recommendations
  19. 19. Sitemap Purpose: To illustrate the structure or skeleton of a website, upon which everything else resides. The sitemap is a way to clearly see the organization of information reflected in the topics as well as nomenclature.
  20. 20. Personas or Mental Models <ul><ul><li>Personas are fictional characters representing a cross-section of customers, and they embody goals and needs of the audiences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mental Models are based more on a composite of real people </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Drives the design process to create site experience that meets users’ expectations, including task flow, content and interaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Identifies and represents segments that need to be treated differently in their online experience with the brand </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. Content Matrix <ul><li>Repository of information: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Aligns with Sitemap and Wireframes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provides page descriptions, call-outs, keywords, resources and references and more! </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Gap Analysis
  23. 23. User Flows <ul><li>Where they are coming from </li></ul><ul><li>What they are doing </li></ul><ul><li>Back-end </li></ul><ul><li>Calls to Action </li></ul>
  24. 24. Copy Writers <ul><li>Copywriters are brought into the process </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Editorial begins and decisions are made about style, standards, and voice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content owners are identified and a client approval process is put into place </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Depending on the shop, the Content Matrix can be turned over to the Editorial Team or remain under jurisdiction of CS </li></ul>
  25. 25. Social Media <ul><li>Don’t forget to include it in your overall strategy! </li></ul><ul><li>Growing role in: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hosting content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Driving traffic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Facebook is now referring more traffic than Google to certain sites: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>CafeMom </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Evite </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Facebook – great aggregator of user information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Age </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sex </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Location </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Number of Users </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keywords </li></ul></ul>
  26. 26. Mobile <ul><li>Less is more </li></ul><ul><li>Be strategic! </li></ul><ul><li>Consistent branding and messaging </li></ul><ul><li>But – massage the message to be relevant for each platform </li></ul>
  27. 27. 3. Design <ul><li>Wireframes </li></ul><ul><li>Comps </li></ul><ul><li>Together, the Sitemap, Content Matrix, and Wireframes become a major resource for team </li></ul>
  28. 28. Integration <ul><li>Integration of Content Strategy with Functionality </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sitemap/Wireframes/Content Matrix need to be in sync </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Messaging </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Calls to Action </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>SEO </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Social Media </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Page numbers </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Titles </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>User behavior </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Targeted audience </li></ul></ul></ul>
  29. 29. 4. Testing <ul><li>Test early and often! </li></ul><ul><li>Usability studies are important throughout the process! </li></ul><ul><li>Role of CS can include: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Developing test script </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Overseeing testing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Assessing and implementing changes that need to be made to sitemap, content matrix, and messaging </li></ul></ul></ul>Oh no!
  30. 30. 5. Development <ul><li>With a sound foundation, your job as developer should be made easier! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Less questions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Clearer path </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Documentation to support objectives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Less work! </li></ul></ul>
  31. 31. Content Management <ul><li>CS can be a major contributor to setting up organizational structure of directories and naming devices in Content Management Systems </li></ul><ul><li>Overseeing execution of uploading content into CMS </li></ul><ul><li>Designing of CMS screens to ensure that they work with content structure </li></ul><ul><li>Working with content owners to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Repurpose old content for new redesign </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Identify and determine best document type for new content (ie. Doc, PDF, PPT, Text on page </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Training </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Teach client’s employees how to use and navigate new CMS system </li></ul></ul>
  32. 32. 6. Maintenance | Updates <ul><li>CS can help identify: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New areas of work to pitch based upon success of project </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New areas to continue delving related to the campaign </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>CRM </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Tools </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>E-Newsletter </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Micro-sites </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>More! </li></ul></ul></ul>
  33. 33. Resources for Content Strategy <ul><li>Web Content Strategy - </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A book on Content Strategy by Richard Sheffield </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Predicate, LLC – </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Jeffrey MacIntyre’s blog and consultancy </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Brain Traffic - </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A consultancy that that specialized in Content Strategy and IA </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Also features a blog by President Kristina Halvorson, considered by many to be the country’s leading web content strategists. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>A List Apart - </li></ul><ul><ul><li>An online “magazine” that explores the design, development, and meaning of web content, with a special focus on web standards and best practices. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Scatter Gather - </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Ideas and opinions from content strategists at Razorfish” </li></ul></ul>
  34. 34. Contact <ul><li>Lisa L. Trager </li></ul><ul><li>Other ways to connect: </li></ul><ul><li>Linkedin: </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter: #Lisalt </li></ul><ul><li>Slideshare: </li></ul>Role of A Content Strategist by Lisa Lehman Trager is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License .