Meetup good. Conference better?

The Auckland Content Strategy Meetup has officially survived a year! Since February 2014 we’ve met up at least once a month and talked content. And it’s been surprisingly fun. Emma, Michelle and I had no idea what to expect when we decided to give this thing a go, but there’s something great about building a group of people around an idea. As familiar faces (almost all of whom were total strangers last January) keep coming back, we know we’re onto something.

Which raises a question.

What next?

How about a New Zealand content strategy conference of some sort? Would there be enough appetite for a day or two of talks and case studies? I’d like to think so.

I keep thinking I should assemble a team and start something, just to find out.

Content Strategist: Master of Contingencies

This is a post from Blog Secret Santa
This post was written as part of Blog Secret Santa 2014. It was an anonymous gift post, published here unedited. Here’s the full blog roll, including something by me.

In his play The Cenci, poet Percy Bysshe Shelley weaves a tragic tale of villainy and disaster.

A bloodthirsty 17th-century nobleman becomes the target of a murder plot. In today’s parlance, we’d say that “no jury in the world” would convict young Giacomo and his cohorts of plotting to murder the abusive, lecherous Count Cenci.

But after concocting their scheme, Giacomo is dismayed to hear that the evil count has escaped his clutches. By chance, the count has missed his date with destiny by embarking on a journey an hour too soon.

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Talking Author Experience with the guy who wrote the book about it

When I first met Rick Yagodich in 2012, we got talking over lunch about his ideal CMS. I may have been slightly hampered by a karaoke-related hangover at the time (thanks, CS Forum), but as Rick raced through his incredibly detailed plans for keeping information in its context, for putting references and cross-references at the forefront of information management, and for pushing content presentation way down the list of jobs a CMS does, I realised that this needed more than a chat over a meal to explain. “He should write this down,” I thought. “Maybe then I could keep up.”

One very simple idea was at the heart of things, though, and that was to make the job of authoring and maintaining content as simple as possible. The actual experience of being an author hasn’t been taken seriously enough, which causes a lot of common problems with content. That was something else that I though Rick should write down.

Two years later, bingo. Author Experience: Bridging the gap between people and technology in content management lays out all this and more. My copy arrived this week, but by then I’d already read a draft version (and found myself mentioned in a footnote. Mum! I’m in print!).

I’d also chatted with Rick about introducing AX to the enterprise. Like most of the larger problems we content people face (or imagine ourselves facing – this was very much a theoretical discussion), a lot of it came down to interpersonal stuff, and politics, and money.
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Sticky note overload! My talk from UX Design Day

UX + Content Strategy = Better business

stickyuxcs

So, UX Design Day in Dunedin was a great little conference. My place in the programme was as the one and only content strategist, in town to pitch for as much cooperation as possible between UX and content people as we work on building things.

And what’s the best way to win the hearts and minds of UXers? With sticky notes. So here are my slides.

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