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Content Strategy and the Royals

KateWillsIt was recently announced that in the UK, the Royal Family was going through a bit of a corporate merger and restructuring, one might say. Her Majesty The Queen is getting up there in age (she’s almost 88 years old), and while she still maintains a full schedule that probably would put people half her age to shame, it was announced that her communications office and the communications office of her son, HRH The Prince of Wales, would be merging. This inferred that 65 year-old Prince Charles, who’s of retirement age himself yet shows no signs of slowing down either, is slowly going to be taking on more affairs of the regency on behalf of his mother. While the Queen has vowed never to abdicate or give up the throne (and if she lasts as long as her own mum, that could be another 15 years), it looks like she might be winding down to a point that she is slowly transitioning the affairs of state to Charles, as well as delegating responsibilities to her grandchildren as well. According to the Sunday Telegraph, “Reports suggest the move should avoid clashes of coverage of royal events as younger royals perform more engagements, and spread expertise in modern media.”

For more information, read this article.

Even HRH Prince Charles is wondering how this transition relates to content strategy. "Do tell, TechCommGeekMom."
Even HRH Prince Charles is wondering how this transition relates to content strategy. “Do tell, TechCommGeekMom.”

So, all this is fine, but what does this have to do with content strategy, you may ask? Simple. This scenario really isn’t that different than any other company having to merge content written by different departments, like that of technical content writers and marketing content writers. Everyone in the merger or restructing needs to speak the same “language”, or to use a better description, they all need to use the same terminology. One of the issues that has been surfaced in recent tech comm talk in conferences and blogs is the idea of “silos”–different departments writing content, but not getting together to make sure that everyone is using the same terminology and language to communicate the company message consistently. This can lead to mixed messages in print, in multimedia, and online very quickly if everyone isn’t on the “same page”. Joe Gollner’s Adobe Day-Lavacon 2013 talk came to mind as I was thinking about this merger, and what it meant to have different departments sending out different messages.

Don't think too hard about it, Prince Harry. It's really not that complicated.
Don’t think too hard about it, Prince Harry. It’s really not that complicated.

So, the merger of the royal communications offices makes total sense, really. In an age where news is spread quickly throughout the internet, especially through social media, it seems like a proactive move on the part of the royals to start this transition. One office will need to juggle multiple products–in this case, the royal family members–by providing a single voice and consistent message to promote their activities or relevance, whether it be in print or by digital means. The royals are already a bit ahead of the curve of many corporations, having already set up fairly active websites and social media presence on the internet. They even have their own YouTube account and several Twitter accounts, for example! The communications offices are already on top of internet media, and this step seems like a modern move that many companies are still hesitant to make.  Perhaps the royals, known for being a bit stuffy and overly traditional, might actually be cutting edge, and setting the example of how to move forward in the 21st century.

It’s something to think about.

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I’ve hit the “Big Time” in Tech Comm!: I’m an Adobe Webinar Presenter now

It’s been rather exciting in the last week or so for me. Much like being in Times Square where there are so many lights and sights and sounds that one can’t possible keep up with it all in one outing.

Last week was a big week for me. My much-publicized webinar that was hosted by Adobe was presented last week. It went by so fast that it almost feels like a dream! But now I have evidence that it really happened, as Adobe just published the recording of the webinar presentation on its Technical Communications Suite -OnDemand Seminar  website today.  I’d been waiting all this time to comment about it, but wanted to have the link first.

You can find my webinar–now an Adobe OnDemand seminar here:

Transition from Content Consumer to Content Creator: Dual Viewpoints.

(There is a sign in at the Adobe site, but it’s free.)

I need to thank Maxwell Hoffman for his guidance in the process. He gave me a lot of fantastic advice and things to think about, as well as some great editing of the drafts for the slideshow that accompanied the talk.  If you ever have the chance to work with him, you will definitely enjoy yourself and learn from a master.

I also need to thank Adobe and especially Parth Mukharjee for the opportunity of a lifetime to do this. It was Parth who read my posting here and contacted me through Twitter to make it all happen.  Thank you, Parth! Another Adobe “shout out” to Saibal Bhattacharjee as well for his assistance in this process. I have to say, all I did was use my voice, and to know that people at Adobe were listening, well, that feels rather great, and again, I appreciate this fantastic opportunity. I was already an Adobe fan, but this experience made my loyalty to the brand even deeper. I would readily welcome the opportunity to do another webinar or any other opportunities that Adobe might bring my way. 🙂

I also can’t forget to thank Mr. Mobile himself, RJ Jacquez, blogger of The m-Learning Revolution blog. In the past few months, this former Adobe evangelist has become my friend and a mentor, and I felt that before I took on this endeavor, I needed his blessing. (I didn’t really need his blessing, but it felt right to talk to him about it first.) He definitely supported me and encouraged me to take advantage of this webinar opportunity, and I’m glad he did. So, thanks RJ. You da man. 😉

And then there are the other friends from all walks of my tech comm life that attended–many thanks for your support as well!

I’m proud of the work I did for this presentation, and I hope that anyone who takes the time to listen and watch it will get something helpful out of it, and learn something. I will never claim to be an expert on anything, but as this entire experience has taught me, it is worth it to try new things out by doing and not be afraid to use your own voice now and then to express yourself. You never know what good things might happen. 😀

(Update 9/17/2015 – The links to the webinar have been updated as Adobe has archived the presentation’s location on their website.)