Intranet content tactics - Interaction 2014

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Content tactics to help execute your intranet content strategy. Crafting great intranet pages. Presentation given at Interaction conference, London, October 2014.


  • 1. TextContent tacticsexecuting your strategy on the pageV2

2. @Wedge kilobox.netWedge BlackUKPast intranet managerCurrently consultantClearBox Consulting, andContent Formula, and theWICI like dogs, cats, books, plants(not flowers), and insects 3. TextBeyond the technicalBeyond features 4. Creatingintranet contentEffective headlinesImagesLinksLayoutSearchWritingDocuments vs pagesEngagementChannelsMobile 5. Content strategyContent strategy plans for the creation, publication, andgovernance of useful, usable content.Kristina HalvorsonThe main goal of content strategy is to use words anddata to create unambiguous content that supportsmeaningful, interactive experiences. We have to beexperts in all aspects of communication in order to dothis effectively.Rachel Lovinger 6. Content tacticsMicro-content strategyPage-level / interaction-level content strategyUX + UI + ID + communicationsA matter of scale and focus 7. Effective headlinesHelp people choose what to readShort and clearHelp people know what's relevant to themSummaries help convey further detail 8. Effective headlinesPresent tenseSuccinctInformative, detailing the who and whatDirect and to the pointStatements, not questions 9. ImagesAttract interest and conveying meaningFormat images so they look consistent and pleasingalongside your contentChoose your file-type and file-size carefully, to makesure the image loads quicklyPut the image on the right-side of the content, unlessthe image is the main focus 10. ImagesCrop photos to focus on people or relevant detailUse photographs taken inside the organisation or by colleaguesAvoid clip-artPermission from the owner, and preferably from anyone shownUse fresh images.jpg / .pngAlt text 11. LinksEmbed links in meaningful text within your sentencesLet people know if you're linking to a fileRead navigation design using card sorting [PDF; 425KB] learnhow to use simple cards to define your menus.Never say 'click here' 12. Links for navigationAvoid using the term Quick linksAvoid ordering items by importanceAvoid alphabetising a long list of linksGroup lists of links by function 13. LayoutStructure articles forscanabilityOpening paragraph shouldcommunicate the mostimportant factsUse sub-headingsthroughout the articleRespect that many peoplewill not read the full article 14. LayoutF-patternLeftRight 15. LayoutIn-page menu links (for long pages) a topic menu at the topthat links to content further downLots of sub-headings to break up the content and definetopicsIn-page links to return readers to the top of the pageBullet points people love the simplicity and richnessMultiple paragraphsShort sentences, in the active voice 16. SearchHow to help people search for, and find, your contentDifferent people use different terms and names for thesame thingsClear, sensible headlines and factual summaries helppeople find content through the search engineLinks from other pages to your content are invaluable 17. Search checklistClear, plain headings that express the subject matter succinctlyRepeat keywords relating to the subject in sub-headings and the body of thearticleUse alternative keywords, nouns and common termsLabel your content using appropriate tags and / or meta-dataWrite a clear opening paragraph to explicitly summarise the content of yourarticleAsk for links to your new page from owners of related pages around the intranetPublish your page in the appropriate section / area of the intranet, following theexpectations of audience members (not simply in your section) 18. WritingWrite for your audience, not for your bossGet the formality level right for your culture and thetopicUse short, simple sentences be clear and directAvoid humour, metaphors, acronyms and jargon unlessyou know your audience very wellBut, if you can tell a good story, dont worry too much 19. TextThe equation for good comms 20. Documents vs. pagesGovernance / guidance: when to use PDF, Word, andother formatsUse intranet pages rather than Office documents unlessthere's a specific reason not toConsider replacing policies and guides in PDF with acollection of intranet pagesIf linking to a PDF or Office file, let people knowexplicitly [Word; 300KB] 21. Documents vs. pagesPeople prefer single-topic shortpages that link to each other,except when an officialprocedure Word document canbe presented as a long web pageinstead.Such official documents (likeprocedures, work instructions andpolicies) could be onecomprehensive page, orpublished in sections over severalintranet pages. 22. EngagementWrite to start a conversationSome content serves its purpose merely by being read,other content is only truly valuable if people engagewith it in more active waysComments, social sharing and the creation of newobservations and ideas can unlock the knowledgewithin your organisationAn informal tone can encourage feedback 23. EngagementShare progress, not just resultsShare ideas, not just decisionsBlogsDiscussion forumsESN 24. ChannelsThe intranet is not anamorphous channel its a city of sectors,communities, highwaysand byways. We shoulddiversify our comms andstop simply publishing asingle news story. Jaakko Hakulinen 25. ChannelsDon't only rely on thehome page to get yourcontent noticedUse different areas of theintranet in different waysActively engageaudiences by using thechannels they alreadyusePhoto: Alex Brown 26. Creatingintranet contentEffective headlinesImagesLinksLayoutSearchWritingDocuments vs pagesEngagementChannelsMobile 27. Text@Wedge you - Interaction, October 2014