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@ redsesame
#confabEDU
1
Better Strategy
Through Structure
CONFAB	HIGHER	ED	|	NOVEMBER	15,	2016
LISA	MARIA	MARTIN
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
2
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
3
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
4
Big-time nerd-o.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
5
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
6
Yes, I’m hinging this
entire presentation on
1990s analog publishing,
fight me.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
7
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
8
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
9
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
10
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
11
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
12
That is one weird
memory palace, huh.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
13
“Before the spread of
printing, a highly developed
Memory was needed by the
entertainer, the poe...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
14
“The printed book would
be a new warehouse of
Memory, superior in countless
ways to the internal...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
15
Structured information is
useful information.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
16
Structure helps us:
• Understand content
• Organize content
• Connect content
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
17
Understanding
content
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
18
“…to make every
subject easier to
understand...”
B A R B A R A A N N K I P F E R
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
19
Plan your audit with
purpose.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
20
Plan your audit with
purpose.
• Quality
• Data
• Structure
• Design
• UX
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
21
Plan your audit with
purpose.
• Quality
• Data
• Structure
• Design
• UX
Message,
voice & tone,
...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
22
Plan your audit with
purpose.
• Quality
• Data
• Structure
• Design
• UX
Volume,
distribution,
c...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
23
Plan your audit with
purpose.
• Quality
• Data
• Structure
• Design
• UX
Hierarchy,
categorizati...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
24
Plan your audit with
purpose.
• Quality
• Data
• Structure
• Design
• UX
Modules,
buttons,
inter...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
25
Plan your audit with
purpose.
• Quality
• Data
• Structure
• Design
• UX
A little of
everything…
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
26
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
27
Track patterns and
themes.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
28
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
29
Track patterns and
themes.
• Keep separate notes for high-
level observations
• Group and regrou...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
30
Be particular about
presentation.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
31
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
32
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
33
Be particular about
presentation.
• Visualize content distribution
and other data points
• Lead ...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
34
Organizing
content
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
35
Ground your sitemap in
your strategy.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
36
Ground your sitemap in
your strategy.
• Strategy statements
• Concepts
• Design principles
• Aud...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
37
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
38
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
39
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
40
Test and iterate for
best results.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
41
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
42
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
43
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
44
Test and iterate for
best results.
• Revise with feedback
• Test with users (Optimal Workshop)
•...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
45
Build for next steps.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
46
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
47
Build for next steps.
• Who needs to understand it?
Approve it? Build from it?
• What other work...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
48
Connecting
content
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
49
Understanding structure
comes from constantly
moving between
macro and micro.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
50
Prepare stakeholders for
content modeling.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
51
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
52
Prepare stakeholders for
content modeling.
• Don’t jump to technicalities too
soon
• Identify br...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
53
Build relationships,
not just categories.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
54
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
55
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
56
Build relationships,
not just categories.
• Taxonomies are your friend
• Structure and design th...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
57
Use structure as a
collaboration point.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
58
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
59
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
60
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
61
Use structure as a
collaboration point.
• Consider who else needs to use
your documentation
• Do...
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
62
And then what?
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
63
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
64
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
65
Structure helps us:
• Understand content
• Organize content
• Connect content
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
66
Structure helps our
strategy.
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
67
Thank you.
CONFAB	HIGHER	ED	2016
LISA	MARIA	MARTIN
@REDSESAME
LISA.MARIA.MARTIN@GMAIL.COM
@ redsesame
#confabEDU
68
Resources
• Content Analysis Tool, content-insight.com
• Treejack, optimalworkshop.com
• Boardth...
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Confab Higher Ed 2016: Better Strategy Through Structure

Information is at its most useful when it’s clear, consistent, orderly, organized—in other words, when it’s well-structured. And well-structured web content not only brings a bucketful of benefits to the user experience, but also delivers a deeper understanding of the content to us, the web professionals building that user experience.

Learning to focus on structural considerations—how content is built, organized, and connected across the experience—can change the way we work, fostering a more collaborative redesign process and enabling us to better execute our strategies. Using examples from several universities that recently overhauled their sites, this talk shows how structural approaches to content can:

* Make content easier to understand (and improve!)
* Enhance communications with stakeholders and across teams
* Lay a foundation to support future development, editorial work, and governance plans

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Confab Higher Ed 2016: Better Strategy Through Structure

  1. 1. @ redsesame #confabEDU 1 Better Strategy Through Structure CONFAB HIGHER ED | NOVEMBER 15, 2016 LISA MARIA MARTIN
  2. 2. @ redsesame #confabEDU 2
  3. 3. @ redsesame #confabEDU 3
  4. 4. @ redsesame #confabEDU 4 Big-time nerd-o.
  5. 5. @ redsesame #confabEDU 5
  6. 6. @ redsesame #confabEDU 6 Yes, I’m hinging this entire presentation on 1990s analog publishing, fight me.
  7. 7. @ redsesame #confabEDU 7
  8. 8. @ redsesame #confabEDU 8
  9. 9. @ redsesame #confabEDU 9
  10. 10. @ redsesame #confabEDU 10
  11. 11. @ redsesame #confabEDU 11
  12. 12. @ redsesame #confabEDU 12 That is one weird memory palace, huh.
  13. 13. @ redsesame #confabEDU 13 “Before the spread of printing, a highly developed Memory was needed by the entertainer, the poet, the singer, the physician, the lawyer, and the priest.” D A N I E L J . B O O R S T I N
  14. 14. @ redsesame #confabEDU 14 “The printed book would be a new warehouse of Memory, superior in countless ways to the internal invisible warehouse in each person.” D A N I E L J . B O O R S T I N
  15. 15. @ redsesame #confabEDU 15 Structured information is useful information.
  16. 16. @ redsesame #confabEDU 16 Structure helps us: • Understand content • Organize content • Connect content
  17. 17. @ redsesame #confabEDU 17 Understanding content
  18. 18. @ redsesame #confabEDU 18 “…to make every subject easier to understand...” B A R B A R A A N N K I P F E R
  19. 19. @ redsesame #confabEDU 19 Plan your audit with purpose.
  20. 20. @ redsesame #confabEDU 20 Plan your audit with purpose. • Quality • Data • Structure • Design • UX
  21. 21. @ redsesame #confabEDU 21 Plan your audit with purpose. • Quality • Data • Structure • Design • UX Message, voice & tone, audience, readability…
  22. 22. @ redsesame #confabEDU 22 Plan your audit with purpose. • Quality • Data • Structure • Design • UX Volume, distribution, categorization, consistency…
  23. 23. @ redsesame #confabEDU 23 Plan your audit with purpose. • Quality • Data • Structure • Design • UX Hierarchy, categorization, navigation, URLs, linking…
  24. 24. @ redsesame #confabEDU 24 Plan your audit with purpose. • Quality • Data • Structure • Design • UX Modules, buttons, interactions, visual patterns…
  25. 25. @ redsesame #confabEDU 25 Plan your audit with purpose. • Quality • Data • Structure • Design • UX A little of everything…
  26. 26. @ redsesame #confabEDU 26
  27. 27. @ redsesame #confabEDU 27 Track patterns and themes.
  28. 28. @ redsesame #confabEDU 28
  29. 29. @ redsesame #confabEDU 29 Track patterns and themes. • Keep separate notes for high- level observations • Group and regroup notes to find patterns • Try Boardthing or post-its
  30. 30. @ redsesame #confabEDU 30 Be particular about presentation.
  31. 31. @ redsesame #confabEDU 31
  32. 32. @ redsesame #confabEDU 32
  33. 33. @ redsesame #confabEDU 33 Be particular about presentation. • Visualize content distribution and other data points • Lead with themes, not spreadsheets • Share raw data as a reference
  34. 34. @ redsesame #confabEDU 34 Organizing content
  35. 35. @ redsesame #confabEDU 35 Ground your sitemap in your strategy.
  36. 36. @ redsesame #confabEDU 36 Ground your sitemap in your strategy. • Strategy statements • Concepts • Design principles • Audit insights
  37. 37. @ redsesame #confabEDU 37
  38. 38. @ redsesame #confabEDU 38
  39. 39. @ redsesame #confabEDU 39
  40. 40. @ redsesame #confabEDU 40 Test and iterate for best results.
  41. 41. @ redsesame #confabEDU 41
  42. 42. @ redsesame #confabEDU 42
  43. 43. @ redsesame #confabEDU 43
  44. 44. @ redsesame #confabEDU 44 Test and iterate for best results. • Revise with feedback • Test with users (Optimal Workshop) • Keep it flexible
  45. 45. @ redsesame #confabEDU 45 Build for next steps.
  46. 46. @ redsesame #confabEDU 46
  47. 47. @ redsesame #confabEDU 47 Build for next steps. • Who needs to understand it? Approve it? Build from it? • What other work will it inform? • How much detail does it need? What other layers can it support?
  48. 48. @ redsesame #confabEDU 48 Connecting content
  49. 49. @ redsesame #confabEDU 49 Understanding structure comes from constantly moving between macro and micro.
  50. 50. @ redsesame #confabEDU 50 Prepare stakeholders for content modeling.
  51. 51. @ redsesame #confabEDU 51
  52. 52. @ redsesame #confabEDU 52 Prepare stakeholders for content modeling. • Don’t jump to technicalities too soon • Identify broader content needs and groupings • Lay groundwork for future structuring
  53. 53. @ redsesame #confabEDU 53 Build relationships, not just categories.
  54. 54. @ redsesame #confabEDU 54
  55. 55. @ redsesame #confabEDU 55
  56. 56. @ redsesame #confabEDU 56 Build relationships, not just categories. • Taxonomies are your friend • Structure and design the connections • Create multiple paths through content
  57. 57. @ redsesame #confabEDU 57 Use structure as a collaboration point.
  58. 58. @ redsesame #confabEDU 58
  59. 59. @ redsesame #confabEDU 59
  60. 60. @ redsesame #confabEDU 60
  61. 61. @ redsesame #confabEDU 61 Use structure as a collaboration point. • Consider who else needs to use your documentation • Don’t be afraid to make changes • Make sure your content is aligned
  62. 62. @ redsesame #confabEDU 62 And then what?
  63. 63. @ redsesame #confabEDU 63
  64. 64. @ redsesame #confabEDU 64
  65. 65. @ redsesame #confabEDU 65 Structure helps us: • Understand content • Organize content • Connect content
  66. 66. @ redsesame #confabEDU 66 Structure helps our strategy.
  67. 67. @ redsesame #confabEDU 67 Thank you. CONFAB HIGHER ED 2016 LISA MARIA MARTIN @REDSESAME LISA.MARIA.MARTIN@GMAIL.COM
  68. 68. @ redsesame #confabEDU 68 Resources • Content Analysis Tool, content-insight.com • Treejack, optimalworkshop.com • Boardthing, boardthing.com • Eileen Webb’s taxonomy work on the-toast.net: http://responsivewebdesign.com/toast/taxonomy/ • The Order of Things, Barbara Ann Kipfer • The Discoverers, Daniel J. Boorstin • Thanks to the clients whose work I’ve shown here (Carnegie Mellon University and Seton Hill University), and the agencies I’ve worked with (Brain Traffic, Seven Heads Design, and Happy Cog) • Photos sourced from Unsplash.com under a CC0 license

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