stories with purpose

Jul 10, 2018

Content as a broad term can be scary. Creating pages let alone entire personalized digital experiences can seem overwhelming without clear guidelines or frameworks to follow.Due to the overwhelming nature of creating content that effectively and concisely tells a story, it can be easy to lose track of what the content’s purpose actually should be.

 

To help guide content creators through the age of componentized storytelling on the web and social media, it helps to define what the micro-purpose of each individual element is and whom it is targeting.

 

Defining a content framework is especially helpful as digital aligns to atomic design.There is no such thing as a web page anymore, just components that can be combined to together to tell a story.

 

Below is a simple example of creating a content purpose framework that is applied as a digital story is developed. Each component of a story must identify the target audience and the purpose of its content. In this example, components can be aligned to the purpose of Educate, Validate or Convert.

 

Educate: Provide clear, concise overviews on the value proposition of the brand, concept or product. Page titles, heros, overviews and highlights are examples of where content creators can create content to educate.

 

Validate: Reinforce the value proposition statements with evidence and related content to confirm the users understanding. Good examples of validate are related case studies, articles and insights, testimonials and other related content that reaffirms value or expertise.

 

Convert: Present clear next steps for the user to engage after they understand the value proposition and have that understanding validated. A conversion is an action the user completes such as purchase, share, download or sign-up.

 

As content is generated, this framework can be used to map up which areas of the page impart which type of information, ensuring that all content follows similar patterns that Educate, Validate and Convert. All brand are different so frameworks tend to be unique to each, but keeping them relatively simple helps to keeps digital storytelling consistent over time.

 

A content framework can be used when defining a new digital experience or as a guide for ongoing content development for an existing property. In a new experience, you can begin color-coding elements in a sitemap, wireframes or designs to inform what content purpose a component aligns with. This helps get a jump-start on content creation before a new web experience is ready for launch. For ongoing content purpose alignment, content creation templates and Content Management Systems (CMS) can be aligned to an established framework to ensure new stories are created with the intended purpose.

 

Defining a framework is an easy approach to take to help ensure a consistent approach to ongoing content creation and can scale as your storytelling evolves.