Track: Content Strategy

In this session, Aaron Fulkerson, Founder and CEO at MindTouch, will explore what it takes to deliver great customer experience. The topics covered during this presentation include:

  • Creating a global, multi-channel help experience
  • Deploying a killer product experience systemin days not months
  • Increasing the SEO value around your product experience
  • Using machine learning to optimize content organization and search results
  • Empowering customers, partners and more
Brenda Huettner
Independent consultant

It happens all the time: You find a company offers a free product, or an open source tool that does exactly what you need. But free often comes with associated costs of one kind or another. During this session, we’ll go over some of the most common types of expenses associated with free (such as time, effort, portability, expertise required, and compatibility). We’ll also take a close look at some popular free programs to evaluate first-hand what they might really cost you and your company.


Today, content creators have an opportunity to position content as the most pivotal asset to a company’s continued success. The world has changed and users now want instant access to information. Content creators have to evolve into Knowledge Brokers and align their development process with their company’s business strategy.

This presentation discusses the powerful role Knowledge Broker content plays in business strategy. It also covers the correct workflow that is needed to generate revenue through documentation. Finally, it looks at methods used to deliver content across multiple devices and the method that is most effective and why. If you want to increase the role of documentation in your business strategy, this presentation will give you the right mindset when looking at strategies for your content.

Jennifer DeAngelo and Allison Joyce
Experis Global Content Solutions

The Content Assessment Hero League fought the evil of increasing costs of content authoring and localization by using the super powers of strategy, reuse, and automation technology. We’ll take a look behind the masks at our heroes’ identities (Experis and Acrolinx), and how they prepared for their fight with the right tools (strategy, process, and software)—and won.

Performing a content audit might sound scarier than it is. To help fight that trepidation in the hearts of communicators and marketers everywhere, we break down the content audit process into three simple steps:

  1. Ask the right questions. What are your business objectives? Who are your target personas? Are you reaching them at all stages of the buying process?
  2. Assess your content. Using a straightforward grid, you can take an inventory of all the content you have created – and see where the holes are in your communication arsenal.
  3. Correct the imbalance. Start creating the content you need, based on your work in Step 2. Fill in the gaps for your most critical personas along the buying process.

Along the way, we’ll talk about best practices in content creation and touch on ways to reuse content to make your job easier.

Jo’lene Jernberg and Suzanne Mescan
LSI Corporation / Vasont Systems

With the challenges of a globally dispersed team, a wide variety of products, a unique and varied publishing model, and continuous corporate acquisitions and divestitures, LSI Corporation has conquered the issue of global content collaboration within their organization. In this case study presentation, you will learn how to:

  • Build and retain a productive global team
  • Enable efficient content collaboration in a dispersed writing group
  • Enforce governance over corporate content assets
  • Improve content quality and consistency across the content base
  • Better respond to their clients’ needs by providing on-demand and custom deliverables
  • Leverage existing technologies while implementing new technologies to improve the content lifecycle
  • Afford resources to implement this new content strategy while still producing and maintaining regular content deliveries
Joe Gelb
Joe Gelb, founder and president of Suite Solutions

It’s all about the customer and creating an experience that builds value for them. That means targeting your audience by understanding who they are, what they are trying to accomplish, and meeting their evolving expectations.  In this session we will demonstrate how you can use taxonomy, subject classification and filtering to provide quick access to contextually relevant information of different types, and enable your users to build their own documents and access them in multiple formats for desktop and mobile.

Joe Gollner
Director, Gnostyx Research

This presentation delves into a recent project experience where content issues were found to lie at the heart of high profile problems and where content solutions were found to deliver high visible benefits. Professional communicators have long been accustomed to pleading for budget dollars for even essential tasks. And great effort is applied to the crafting of business cases to justify anything requiring new money. In all of these activities, communicators have a sense that, in their organizations, the financial departments are the center of power and that surely they can be resistant to requests for funding in part because they have everything in their
own shop in good order.

This turns out to not be true. What was discovered in this case study was that the financial department was a veritable sinkhole of spending largely because it handled content so poorly and depended on it so completely. Even more interesting was the fact that the expenditures that this financial department had been making to address its communication problems, pouring untold millions into Business Intelligence (BI) executive dashboards, had been complete and utter failures.

The irony in this story is that with the tactical injection of just a little bit of content technology and a helping or two of sound communication practice this particular financial department was able to make monumental improvements in how it handled financial information and how it communicated it to its executives and to its external partners. Numerous lessons cascade out from this case study but none more important than the fact that content problems exist in every part of your organization and it turns out that the more high profile and “important” departments represent some of the best opportunities for content professionals to demonstrate what they can do to help the organization perform better.

Laura Blaydon
Senior Manager, Content Strategy at SapientNitro

Most organizations today are facing an increasingly competitive global market, requiring greater brand and product differentiation than ever before. In this environment, assessment of competitor content offerings provides valuable insights that can be leveraged when creating near- and long-term content strategies. Whether highlighting opportunities for creating newcontent, repositioning current offerings or completely overhauling content, competitive assessment enables content strategists to provide specific, targeted recommendations that can transform a brand and win the hearts and minds of consumers.

In this session, you will learn:

  • How to identify organizations that could benefit from competitive and/or market review
  • What resources are needed to conduct comprehensive and “quick-hit” assessments
  • What outcomes to expect, and how to position findings for maximum audience impact
  • How to develop and prioritize recommendations to inform a strategic content plan
Marisa Peacock
Business Strategist and Marketing Consultant, The Strategic Peacock

A content strategy is usually only as good as a company’s listening culture. By creating a listening culture, a company will be able to listen to the trends and behaviors of its constituents so it can adjust decision-making processes to reflect and respond to what they hear. Working together, across departments companies can:

  • Audit its current workflow to understand how content is being created and shared
  • Improve content workflow so that processes can be streamlined and optimized
  • Leverage existing media for content development and curation
  • Choose the right online tools to help monitor online conversations across social media
  • Create and deliver reports, which share insights about conversations and necessary actions

In this session, participants will learn how to effectively work together with other departments so they can best optimize their content workflow to meet the needs of their audience across the right channels.

Marli Mesibov
UX and CS Specialist

Every strong brand has a personality behind its voice. How do you ensure the personality remains consistent across multiple audiences, who speak with a variety of vocabularies? In this session, we’ll review brands with compelling personalities, and we’ll explore content strategy tools to create and enhance brand personalities and voices.

Melissa “Misty” Weaver
Content Strategist, Content Insight

An effective content strategy fits the goals of an organization, identifies its key audiences and accounts for the multitude of platforms and channels available to broadcast content. In teaching Content Strategy through practical partnership with a nonprofit that needs a more effective communication plan, I’ve also found that the ability to audit content contextually brings out recommendations a client can quickly understand and adopt.

In this talk, I will cover a series of research audits conducted in my course as a case study on multi-channel content strategy. I will address how to customize and prioritize categories and areas for audit-ing and best practices for making audits less time-consuming and more results driven. I will explore how to reframe the audit process for clients and colleagues and how auditing can help make the need for sustainable, holistic content planning is a must for any organization.

Pam Noreault
ACI Worldwide

This session’s focus is on next steps. The content strategy is completed and approved, you’ve purchased your tool set, you’ve implemented structured authoring and content, and you’re well on your way to making your strategy a reality. So what’s next? You can’t be done. You’re never done. The next step is constant improvement and you must plan it. In this session, attendees will learn about planning the next steps and what to consider. This session will discuss:

  • Metrics and measurements – Proving the ROI you said you’d get
  • Integrating other departments and company acquisitions
  • Streamlining processes and workflows
  • Implementing multi-channel publishing
  • Implementing on-demand publishing
  • Improving content quality
  • Generating revenue
  • Integrating customer research, feedback, and ideas into content
Rhyne Armstrong
Director of Documentation, RouteMatch Software

Silos can be bad for employees, but it can be down-right dangerous for your clients. In this session, we will discuss how we are using a multi-team approach to content creation, and how we developed a single tool for content distribution. A single place for marketing, support, and documentation information.

Shawn Prenzlow
Team Manager and Content Strategist, Steyer Associates

You’re defining your project strategy, maybe started your content inventory or audit. But before long you’ll need to tell the powers-that-be what resources you’ll need for the project and how much it’s all going to cost.

There are many “Content Strategy 101” resources, but what about “Content Resourcing 101” and “Content Budgeting 101”? Where is that information? It’s in this workshop! Shawn Prenzlow, an experienced Content Strategist with 20 years of content-planning experience, will share the fruits of long labor with you. After planning dozens of real-life projects, that were funded and that shipped(!), she can’t wait to tell you how she did it.

This workshop will include several examples of resource evaluations and plans for projects: some small, some large; some simple and some multi-channel. Along the way, Shawn will also describe how she thinks through options for building scalable, non-traditional resource models that are uniquely structured for a project’s individual needs. She’ll also spend a goodly chunk of time with Excel, demonstrating the budget-estimating methodology she uses for each project.

After attending this mini-workshop, you will be able to:

  • Prepare a detailed, quantifiable justification for their project resource requests
  • Create a spreadsheet-based budget estimate for a content project
  • Identify non-traditional options for resourcing their project
Steve Walker
Experis Global Content Solutions

Content is everywhere, in every company, but not every executive sees the financial benefit. In this session, we’ll use story-building techniques to market your content strategy to the Executives and prove how a well-developed business plan with a story equals a bigger budget.


Technical communicators or managers are often tasked with researching the benefits of converting to structured content and using a component content management system (CCMS) to manage and produce their business information. But finding solid information on the benefits can be difficult, as can identifying costly bottlenecks in the current process. Join this open forum discussion moderated by DCL and Vasont Systems about how to identify the key elements involved reaping a solid return on investment of a content management strategy. Get the answers to questions, such as:

  • What are realistic improvement numbers to strive for?
  • What is the true cost of current processes?
  • What are the benefits of a hybrid approach?
  • What are the critical factors for a successful content management strategy?
  • How can you eliminate content quality issues?
  • In what areas should I see an ROI?

This session will be an interactive discussion, so come prepared to participate!


In 2012, VMware introduced a new Web-based client for its flagship vSphere product that presented a very different user experience from the previous installed client. The company was concerned that customers might balk at adopting the new software because the user experience was unfamiliar.

In this session, attendees will learn how the VMware Technical Publications team led a crossfunctional effort to create a library of videos to help customers make the transition to the new client. We involved a number of teams across the company in every stage of the process from identifying which workflows to document through scripting and production of the videos. I’ll discuss how we gathered input from various teams to shape our strategy. For example, the user experience and technical marketing teams provided feedback from customer demos on troublesome workflows. I’ll also describe how the cross-team collaboration with our technical marketing and support teams, who also produce video, prevented duplication of effort. The end result was a series of more than 20 videos that gathered over 50,000 views in the first several weeks they were live.