Monday, August 1, 2011
The 3 Hats of a Content Strategist: What We Really Do
In my practice as a content strategist, I have come to realize that I actually do three different things that in actuality separate from each other and yet still inform my practice of each.
I think most content strategists feel that the definitions of content strategy are still milling about in the air like many uncaught fireflies on a summer night. For the purpose of bringing some added clarity (and not further confusion), I will seek to summarize what it is in fact, I think we do.
As content strategists, we create or help to create:
1. Messaging Strategies—the specific and targeted messages about the overall brand as well as the detailed nuances of how that is played out in cyberspace
2. Content Strategy—a digital publishing strategy that will include four phases: plan, create, publish, govern
3. Content Design—this combines both the messaging strategy and editorial guidelines to create supportive content and linguistic cues that support the users in all of their tasks
Now, you may only do one of the above, or maybe even part of one of the above as a content strategist. But what I find, from my readings of others’ blogs and talking to other content strategists, is that we all kind of do a little bit from each section. It’s essential for us to know this as an operating community because when we sell our capabilities, we can delineate where we can be most effective for a client.
So if you’re a writer, or a content marketer, or a content strategist, or a UX professional, or even a client, I’m interested to hear if you agree.