My dream job would be to be a content creator. I’ve always had a big passion for creating, ever since I was a little kid. I would write out scripts for me and my neighbors to put on for our parents. Funny enough, that led me to where I am today. After a few bumps in the road I re-discovered my passion for creating when I switched my major (for the second time) to Film, Television, and Media Arts. I was fortunate enough to be able to write a feature-length script as my senior project, and it’s one of the pieces of content that I’ve created that I’m most proud of.
The process of writing that feature-length script was probably my first introduction into content strategy. “Content strategy plans for the creation, publication, and governance of useful, usable content” (alistapart.com). Now, during that process we didn’t go through every step of content strategy. We went over the creation portion. In writing a script this would be the Beat Sheet, treatment, character descriptions, potential actors we would want, and then of course writing the script itself. We talked for a little about the publication process. Mainly, where we could submit it in order to gain the most attention (The Nicholl Fellowship). Then of course how pertinent it was to register our scripts with the WGA (Writer’s Guild of America) so it’s officially ours to use.
This past summer, up to now, has been the most content I’ve produced. I’m currently starting a business (metanet.gg). My job has been to produce social media posts about how the site has been coming along and updates about our Kickstarter (we reached our goal!). Our content will now be shifting towards what we believe our users want. That would be articles and videos geared towards the gaming industry (as the site is for gamers). We’ve already produced two short articles which would give us 14 benefit points, “600 words, meaning a cost of 3 minutes to read (assuming a reading speed of 200 wpm). 7 benefit units gained from reading each article” (nngroup.com). We’ve also produced a guide on how to play Samus which is a longer article (as well as a video) which gives us 10 benefit points, “1,000 words, meaning a cost of 5 minutes to read. 10 benefit units gained from reading each article” (nngroup.com).
The trend we have is good, two short articles to every one article. We’re definitely going to try to keep to shorter articles as “…short articles were 60% of the length of the long articles but still provided 70% of the benefit” (nngroup.com). Even with that being said, the longer articles do still have a place on the site as a mix of the two will generate the most benefit units per hour.
The Nielsen Norman Group states, “If you want many readers, focus on short and scannable content. This is a good strategy for advertising-driven sites or sites that sell impulse buys. If you want people who really need a solution, focus on comprehensive coverage. This is a good strategy if you sell highly targeted solutions to complicated problems.”
Since we want a combination of both (many readers and people who want to focus on comprehensive coverage) the 2/3 short articles and 1/3 long articles is the best content strategy for our site.
Halvorson, Kristina, et al. “The Discipline of Content Strategy.” A List Apart, 17 Dec. 2008, https://alistapart.com/article/thedisciplineofcontentstrategy/.
Nielsen, Jakob, and Jakob Nielsen. “Long vs. Short Articles as Content Strategy.” Nielsen Norman Group, Nielsen Norman Group, 11 Nov. 2007, https://www.nngroup.com/articles/content-strategy-long-vs-short/?lm=content-strategy&pt=course.