Content Under the Hood: Where It Lives and Why It Matters
Today I'm sharing a post that I wrote for the Lexicontent blog. It's one of the most popular ones I've written to date, because it really hits an important notion home: it's the hidden content that's the most crucial content.
When it comes to creating content that's attached to interfaces, or as Cap Watkins calls them, the "dark corners of your UI", we're often dealing with opportunities to rectify negative emotions that come along with task completion. In fact, offering an excellent turnaround strategy during a sub-par experience not only has the potential to boost brand loyalty, but the efforts at redemption may just buy you a customer for life.
Unpleasant feelings of frustration, anxiety, anger and despair run rampant when we try to get things done. In these instances, content may be the only "human" link between the user and the website or app interface – the only chance to speak to your users in a way that talks them off the ledge. "Pretty" content might as well take up room in the basement.
When it comes to working under the hood, if it's not useful, usable, or helpful, your content is simply not doing its job.
For this reason, our team works in sync (that is, simultaneously) with user experience designers and developers as they're building out the product and never ex post facto. Content's objective in these situations is less about making you look pristine, and more about supporting the user in what they set out to do, helping you feel more empathetic, and making them feel better for having trusted you in the process.