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What is “The Magic Layer” of content strategy? (Confab Slides)

What is “The Magic Layer” of content strategy? (Confab Slides)

Confab 2012, the 2nd premier content strategy conference, is already a blur, and it was only a couple days ago. Months in advance, the conference was sold out to about 600 content strategy enthusiasts; it’s so awesome to see such focus on our industry!

Here’s my presentation — though it doesn’t really work well without the talk itself. If you have any questions, please do comment below or contact me.

The Magic Layer: The Secret to Every Successful Content Strategy from Shelly Bowen

Here are a few key takeaways:

  1. The bottom line: The Magic Layer happens at the intersection of company and audience needs, where people come together and discover and share innovative solutions.
  2. Deliverables are not content strategy. Deliverables are components or products within content strategy.
  3. “When the right people come together and when they collaborate in the right way, what happens often can feel like magic.” — Jonah Lehrer. (The studies below are also from this book*.)
  4. In a research study, Karim Lakhani, a professor at Harvard, discovered that problem solvers are most effective — and innovative — when working on the edge of their fields.
  5. In another study, Tom Allen, a professor at MIT said that the “highest performing employees are the ones consistently engaged in the most interactions.” Content strategists should talk to lots of people.
  6. The format of your deliverables should match the needs of the people who are executing the content strategy. In other words, don’t use spreadsheets if they hate spreadsheets.
  7. Conflicting points of view are assets. They force you to see lots of different ways of doing things before making decisions. Just make sure you have a clear decision maker.
  8. You should like your content strategist — you need to collaborate, discuss, disagree, and trust him or her. Likability matters.
  9. Not all content strategists are the same; just ask a few about their backgrounds, skills, and approaches to see what I mean.

Confab 2012 was a fabulous experience, and I wish you could have all been there. Check out photos and more on our Facebook page. I’ll post my favorite takeaways from other presenters in the next few days.

*I only hope they are accurate; definitely inspiring.

Author Shelly Bowen

Shelly Bowen, Pybop's chief content strategist, has led teams of writers and creatives to develop websites and interactive content for more than 15 years. Read more about Shelly.

Contact Shelly

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