Who Cares About Your Content?

I’ve just returned from the 2011 Lavacon conference in Austin, TX where I presented "Who Cares About Your Live Content?". The audience at the conference included content strategists, techpubs, elearning and techcomm managers. There were great sponsors present, such as: Adobe TCS, Astoria, SDL LiveContent, IXIAsoft and Madcap Flare.

I’m sharing my deck with you here because I think it’s a great crash course on the real world benefits of help and product content across an entire organization.

Also TechWhirl provided a great overview of my talk.

..a thoughtful session about the importance of engaging technical writers and customer support agents with the goal of decreasing support costs and increasing client satisfaction. Three stakeholders in the question of who cares about content are the company, the customers, and the technical communicator.

During his session, [Corey] explained how his employer, MindTouch, forged relationships with its customers and found opportunities for selling its products and services.  The approach was a unique combination of interacting with the customer on a personalized level and allowing the customer to provide feedback whenever possible.

Corey laid out a framework for analyzing how customers utilize help documentation. A key component of this task is to create content measurement methods from the users’ perspective, such as how many times a help topic is accessed, whether the topic solves the issue, or if the topic results in a customer support call…

The three takeaways from this session are:

  • Marketing, sales and support departments all rely upon the technical writer.
  • Documentation is an evolving, collaborative process that involves technical writers, subject matter experts, customer support agents and livecontent.
  • Customers need social interaction at some level.

Here’s my deck. Please let me know what you think.