Simple Content Models

Content Modeling is not complicated.

Content Modeling is – well, exactly that.  We’re going to basically start writing our site before we even dream of how it’s going to work.  Here’s three simple ways to get started with Content Models.

Start with a conversation

Do you start your sales calls with a deluge of information about your company? No? So why are so many sites organized along the lines of “Kitchen Sink HomePage – About Page – Product Page -FAQ – Contact”?  Writing for the web is not the same as an in person conversation, but the insights you get from talking to real live customers should inform how you organize and write for your site.

Objections!

A web site is the perfect place to get the perfect response to sales objections front and center.  Every single time you hear a pattern of objections you should be figuring out a method to overcome those objections on your site.  If you need a place to start with web copy, look to the things that have held back your business in real life.

Venn Zen

Make two lists: Everything your team wants on the site, and then everything your customer wants on your site.  If there’s a union (things that show up on both lists), congratulations!  Those get top priority.  The next tier of information is what the customer wants, and the last tier (if you even need it) is what you want. Remember: to benefit you, the site must first benefit your customer.

When taken together, these three models form the backbone of an effective site or application.  It also prevents your site from looking, feeling, or being cookie cutter, even before the first sketch is drawn.