Accounting For Context In Content Strategy

By 01/10/2011 January 11th, 2011 Content Management, Content Strategy, Context

I’m tickled pink to see more and more Content Strategists finding their way onto twitter, and getting involved in CS forums. And I’m glad to see that more and more clients seem to be asking for Content Strategy by name, even if they don’t seem to understand entirely why they need it.

You can’t have a content strategy without content planning and it won’t be good strategy without the Ménage à trois between CS, an information architect and your content team. That’s all fine and good. Now, where where the hell is the context?

Just starting to think about and plan for content is a huge step in making Web sites more usable, but it’s troubling to me that as content strategy seems to become more popular and more and more people are calling themselves content strategists that this practice becomes more and more divorced from usability and information architecture.

I don’t like to get hung up on definitions and I’m not against people calling themselves content strategists even if they have no or only limited usability background, but I am very bothered that many people simply see content strategy as another exercise in content planning for random audiences who “could” potentially be users. We owe these people context as well as good content.

I think that’s a content strategist’s job and I think we’ve been skirting the issue for too long. So, for the next four Wednesdays, I’m going to try to explain why content strategists need to start paying closer attention to context and how they can start to do that.

I hope you’ll join me and I hope you’ll comment, because context is something I think way too many content strategists and digital strategists ignore when it comes to planning and executing their content strategies. I started this conversation at Internet User Experience 2010, but in 2011 I’ve vowed to go bigger or get the hell out of the conversation. Please help me make it an intelligent discourse.

Ménage à trois Photo Used Via: WikiCommons

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