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How Content Models Bring Value To Customer Engagement

Digital content team

Precision Content recently sponsored a webinar featuring Michael Andrews, content strategy evangelist at Kentico, makers of the omnichannel content management system Kontent.

If you were unable to attend the live event, this article summarizes what you missed. Use this link to watch a recording of the presentation when it fits your schedule.

What is the value of content?

The value of content, Andrews says, comes from our ability to “match our information to prospective and existing customers’ needs and expectations.” Structuring content, Andrews explains during the 60-minute webinar, provides us with valuable opportunities to deliver content in different ways to match individual people’s needs at scale.

What are content models?

Content models represent the way we plan to structure our content, Andrews says. “Content modeling allows us to plan our content—to precisely define our information’s meaning, breaking up complex documents into independent pieces that can be recombined to match individual consumers’ needs and expectations.”

Content models capture the structure of the content we produce. Structured content, whether in a textual, visual, or playable format, is content that conforms to organizational and semantic rules that allow machine processing to meet specific business requirements.

Related: Precision Content Structured Authoring Training

Andrews uses several real-world examples to explain how to exploit the interrelationships between modular chunks of content (topics and subtopics) to provide value to content consumers.

When we’re modeling content, we’re not aiming to provide a specific deliverable, like a white paper, article, or a web page. Instead, we’re just planing the content that we need to produce to deliver valuable information experiences.

They permit us to meet the expectations of content consumers by “varying the details we furnish to them,” Andrews says of content models.

How are content models used, and by whom?

Authors (and other content contributors) use content models to help them plan and create content. Andrews says content models let writers know what content they need to make. Models guide content production and promote consistency between authors, especially on teams where multiple authors collaborate on content creation.

Content management systems (CMS) use content models to help govern and control our content. “Content models make it possible for CMSes to do things with our content in flexible and scalable ways,” says Andrews.

Related: Precision Content Quick-start Packages

How do content models deliver value to content consumers?

Content model facilitating multichannel publishing

Content consumers benefit from the power content modeling provides publishing teams. Content models help us determine which slices of content to present to consumers during each phase of their interactions with our content. Content models allow us to synchronize our content to the omnichannel customer journey.

“We don’t need to show them everything at once,” Andrews claims. Our job is to serve up little slices of useful content so consumers can sample it as they see fit. Content models specify and control which information consumers encounter, allowing us to adapt what we present to them when consumers shift from one channel to another (e.g., from email to website to telephone support).

How do we create content models?

Although Andrews’s presentation did not cover the intricacies of content modeling (that’s fodder for an additional webinar), he did provide some sound and straightforward advice about architecting content: “Structure content around how people make decisions.”

“Focusing on how consumers make decisions will help you clarify what content is worthy of modeling and structuring. Focusing solely on the decisions consumers care about helps you determine what details you don’t need to include in your models,” Andrews advises.

Information architecture (IA) defines the structure of the information we create, from global navigation elements to the placement of related content on a web page. Well-founded IA aligns our business, editorial, technical, and product stakeholders to achieve the correct categorization and organization of content to deliver our users’ best experiences. IA can also help us ensure that all stakeholders understand that content is a core asset of our enterprise.

Related: Precision Content Information Architecture Services

How do content models deliver value to content consumers?

During the webinar, Andrews identifies a two-step process to help us avoid producing too much content. This simple process enables us to prioritize the information we show to content consumers and ensure we deliver only the content that matters most to them.

Andrews does a great job of exploring how to present different views of content to individual consumers. He uses examples to show how some publishers provide three views of content to consumers: The preview, the overview, and the viewfinder.

Structuring content, Andrews explains during the 60-minute webinar, provides us with valuable opportunities to deliver content in different ways for individual people with identifiable needs at scale. To be effective, we must look for ways to avoid wasting our time modeling and structuring content without understanding how those efforts deliver to content consumers only the content they need.

Andrews says that our job is to help people find and use the content they need when they need it. It’s also our job to help people make decisions when they are uncertain about their exact content needs.


Use the link below to watch a recording of the presentation when it fits your schedule.

Watch the webinar: “How Content Models Bring Value To Customer Engagement”

Need help in creating a content model?

Precision Content provides a full suite of content transformation services and training. We can help you rethink, restructure, and rewrite your high-value content to make it more usable, discoverable, and valuable for both the people — and the computer systems and software products — that require it.

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