This is one of those incipient terms, although what it represents is only an evolutionary extension of what it was.
Content strategy and Digital strategy are closelyhaved although content itself can flow to the print world as well. Digital strategy would seem to be more of a broadly-scoped discipline but in reality these are concepts and avoiding the temptation to intellectualize it’s a good habit. Because of this and because there are no negative ramifications, I will talk about Digital strategy as Content strategy.
Several tiers of digital strategy to be mindful of:
1. Having good content
1b. Having the appropriate content to engage.
1b1. Having the ability to score content against personas, those seeking value from your digital properties.
Brochure sites with generic content are blah. It used to be that people had websites because everyone else did. Now, we are able to dynamically alter experiences and have meaningful dialog with customers. In this sense, good content will also be localized content. Not just translated text. Digital strategy may encounter things like the EU cookie law. How do you deal with that? Your strategy becomes a bit more complicated.
2. Architecture. The term “template” is very overused. Still, we see fundamental OO techniques here. If an implementation firm is building a reusable library of components, at the most abstracted level you will only find the essentials. Once packages are up and instantiated at a client, more configuration and other details can be added. At the installation itself, those abstracted components become resident and tied to that solution. Good Digital strategy will accomodate abstraction and extensibility of not only templates and controls, but also Objects of Knowledge. An Object of Knowledge is something that is relevant to the site’s purpose and managed as an item with potentially rich metadata. “Products” fall into this bucket. “News stories” do also. By standardizing on a data model our abstracted view of these content types, we bake in interoperability and multi brand sites, cross or multi channel campaigns and integration, facilitation of additions, and more, are made far more able to be accommodated.
Today the emphasis is on integration through services or APIs. Good reason for this. A CMS platform cannot be all things. It may need to link to a CRM or ERP system. Understanding the DTDs and the way the packages of XML will arrive on the XML bus goes far toward arresting two of my top two challenges: integration and migration.
3. Customer Engagement. This is the application of pathways toward achieving your business goals. It will leverage sound content strategy with carefully architected Digital strategy and enable dramatic agility for the enterprise. It uses content, and as what dynamically responds to user interaction to unfold a customized path for that user, it needs to be set up with goals in mind.
You can’t hit a target if you don’t have goals.
4. PATIENCE. You don’t know what you don’t know. Identify key content and basic prudish and then watch your analytics database. Sitecore add fantastic analytics. These things don’t just report…they teach.Beyer dusting broad and shallow here to begin with.
5. Meta stuff. Taxonomies and SEO data can be baked in. Content editors should not have to keep adding fundamental tags. Defining a good taxonomy governance approach its another topic for another time. Suffice to say, I’d expect librarians to be thrilled yet somehow saddened by their drawers of index cards. Simpler times…
6. FUTURE. I happen to believe that real semantic web is coming (machine readable) and that you should at least not eliminate the possibility of accommodating it. This is largely a copy writer task,.but not many are familiar with writing for sem web.
More to come.
Contact me to shoot the breeze about this. These are things to think about before you go too far. This is not a complete list. Different platforms pose additional challenges and benefits as well. Industry leaders like Sitecore and CQ are very capable. It really comes down to implementation.