To stay up to date with current trends and best practices, my team and I read various industry blogs and websites about both User Experience and Nonprofit Marketing. Content Strategy has been all the rage recently in the UX world and I was excited to see this topic make its way into the nonprofit space. See this great guest post on Katya’s Non-Profit Marketing Blog.
I particularly liked this quote: “In a nutshell, content marketing is the art of understanding exactly what your target audience wants to know about your issue area and delivering it to them in a relevant and compelling way.”
So often, when we work with nonprofits to redesign their websites, content is an afterthought. We start our process with intensive research with the organizations and with their users, our goal being the same as the quote above – to “understand exactly what the target audience wants to know”. Then, we translate that research into a design and user experience that meets the needs of the users and internal stakeholders. No matter how much we start talking early and often about content editing, it seems at crunch time, the content is what gets sacrificed. To be able to launch the site sooner, content is often published as-is, with disregard to all of the great research we conducted to get the design and user experience right. Sound familiar?
Our team has been working on ways to emphasize that content is king and we have some tips and techniques to share to help your organization evaluate and adapt your content. It may be a daunting task but it’s one you can do slowly, starting with key, high-traffic pages and working your way down. Ultimately, if your content is lacking, no changes to your design or even your user experience will keep users interested for the long haul. My colleague, Dimitri Lundquist and I will be posting on this topic for the new few months so stay tuned! If there are specific issues or questions you’d like answered about content, let us know in the comments.