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Published on November 6th, 2008 | by Rahel Bailie


Content Convergence is resonating with multiple audiences

My 2008 has been the year of content convergence. In March, there was the Content Convergence and Integration (cci2008) conference, which introduced the concepts. The conference was rather unique; instead of running separate streams for the producers of technical content, marketing content, and so on, we started each morning with a plenary session that addressed the places that content converges. Then delegates went off to sessions that helped them understand whatever struck them as important during the plenary. The first day’s theme was content, the second day was technology, and the third day was relationships. These three aspects of content convergence, together, affect the success of a content strategy.

The main thrust is that content can’t be produced and consumed in silos any more. It’s no longer practical, on a number of levels.  First, organizations cannot afford to produce unique content for multiple products and product lines. Second, as consumers get used to engaging with social networking applications, the bar is raised; users demand more and better information to be delivered faster. Third, the type of strategy makes all the difference in an organization’s success; a too-timid strategies may do enough to get noticed but not enough to really satisfy requirements. Or, worse, a mal-adapted strategy may backfire if the outcome delivers the wrong content (or format) to the wrong users, in inappropriate channels or at the wrong time.

The feedback from the conference was: talk about this more – we need to further this discussion! Therefore, this autumn I’m taking my content convergence message on the road.

First stop: DocTrain East 2008 in Burlington, MA (just outside of Boston), where I’ll present Content Convergence: Trends in the Creation, Production, and Maintenance of Technical Content
Second stop: LavaCon in Honolulu, HI, where the program shows Content Convergence: The Future is Closer than You Think is followed by It’s the Content, Not the Tool: Making Project Decisions to Ensure Smooth CMS Adoptions
Third stop: STC Central New York in Syracuse, NY where I’ll talk about the principles of content convergence in the context of technical communication

You can see the slides, which I’ve posted to SlideShare, or read more about Content Convergence and Integration in TechCom Manager or in the Data Conversion Laboratory newsletter.

As well, if you’re already integrating and converging content, let me know. I’m interested in knowing about organizations who are using content convergence principles in interesting and effective ways.

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About the Author

Rahel Anne Bailie is a synthesizer of content strategy, requirements analysis, information architecture, and content management to increase the ROI of content. She has consulted for clients in a range of industries, and on several continents, whose aim is to better leverage their content as business assets. Founder of Intentional Design, she is now the Chief Knowledge Officer of London-based Scroll. She is a Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication, she has worked in the content business for over two decades. She is co-author of Content Strategy: Connecting the dots between business, brand, and benefits, and co-editor of The Language of Content Strategy, and is working on her third content strategy book,

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