Getting Your Message Heard

How do you know if your online documentation is meeting the needs of the customers for your products and services?  Most small businesses and corporations would be at a loss to answer definitively. Does your content solve the needs of your customers?  Does your search engine provide the keywords and phrases that your customers are searching for?

Keep your blog posts and articles clear and current. Ask for clear objectives in order to satisfy your visitor’s needs. The right keywords and phrases will improve search results. This will help you be found faster by potential customers.

Are you asking the right questions to ensure that visitors will return to your website?  Write a compelling story about your products and services.  Choose some attention grabbing words from your customers.  Create a lasting impression. Good design practices will withstand the test of time and allow visitors to return to your website to find the information they need. Your writing should serve as a resource for reliable and helpful content.

Curation and Your Website

Thousands of potential customers may be visiting your site on a regular basis.  How would you know if they are satisfied with your content?  Suppose some people are visiting your site because of a tutorial in your documentation that makes it easy to set up your product.  Unfortunately it’s buried on page 4 in the documentation and hard to find.  How much more product would you sell if it was easier to find?

Users are finding solutions to their problems but the content is not satisfactory.  Perhaps it only addresses a fraction of your customers needs

Most technical communicators would welcome the ability to deliver higher quality content to their readers.  The ability to curate content to the front page based on search results would be a valuable tool.   Especially if it improves customer satisfaction and results customer service expenses.  Tools to help curate content are just starting to emerge.  Managers will no longer have to rely on a lengthy process to update old content.  Auditing content is a first step.  A strategic approach to documentation including curation is necessary.

Curation implies putting content together to make meaning not just collection.  The term curate has become the new buzzword of the interactive world.  This word has gained traction at near warp speed.  What is it about this word that deserves redefinition?  Curation has a distinguished history in galleries and museums.  Curators develop a refined sense of style to communicate their message.  As the digital landscape becomes more complex, businesses become more comfortable using the web.  The techniques of museum curatorship can better inform how we create online experiences.  This is especially true when we consider content.

We have considered digital objects such as articles, slideshows, and video to be short-lived.  Today, more and more sites are becoming institutions that collect, preserve and create content packages that offer unique perspectives.  Bloggers can also be considered as curators and experts.

When a site is launched, the audience is ready to learn more about what you know most about.  It is important for the content strategist to create meaning and spur excitement.  The content experience must exhibit consistent purpose.  The content strategist must approach the business’s content as a medium that should be strategically selected and placed to engage the audience and inspire action.

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