Thursday, 30 June 2011

Content strategy - the "how to" book

I've been reading (well, skimming to be fair) a new book - The Elements of Content Strategy by Erin Kissane. It's pitched as the "how" of content strategy to go with the "why" book by Kristina Halvorson that I've blogged about previously. If you struggle with too much website content and not enough focus, this short book is well worth a read.

Content strategy's relationship with writing is a bit like information architecture's relationship with design. I must admit when I read Content Strategy for the web by Kristina Halvorson, I didn't quite get it. I couldn't see how it was that different to what I already knew. But I has always viewed my experience as relating to information architecture, which isn't quite the same - but it is very closely related.

So anyway - the book. It's short, it's cheap (if you just want to download an e-copy) and it's easy to dip in and out of for reference. So for me, it's a great resource for those of us that lead or manage or coordinate large amounts of online content.

In the book Erin covers:

  • The basic principles - what makes good content? It's all obvious, but many of these points get overlooked in the rush to get stuff done or to keep everybody happy
  • The craft of content strategy - what Erin considers the discipline to be, and what it's not. It's an emerging area so a lot is up for debate, but it's useful to see how your skills and experience map to Erin's view
  • Tools and techniques - what she and others in the field do, and how they do it. This is the area I think I'll keep coming back to.

The basic principles part has been published as an article, which I blogged about last month. Take a look and see if it's for you.

Elements of Content Strategy by Erin Kissane - order and download the book

A couple of relevant previous posts

Checklist for content management work - excerpt from the book (May 2011)

Content strategy resources (August 2010)

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