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Have you applied the bacon principle to your content hub?


I’ve lost count of the number of websites that build their resources sections so you search by format type: videos, webinars, white papers, case studies. And you have to go into each and every section to look for something that may be of interest.


Since when did you last take a shopping list that said box, carton, bag, tube, jar? Unless, dare I say it you’re an artiste bidding for the Turner Prize, you didn’t. Your list said butter, bacon, eggs, cheese (mm – getting sidetracked with omelette thoughts!)

[Introduce thunderclap]

So I assert therefore: your user doesn’t browse by format, they browse by subject. 

Meat section, ah.. there’s the bacon. Once I’ve found the bacon section, then I go on to think ‘do I want back, streaky, smoked, rindless, lardons?’

Now I’m honing that choice based on what I want to USE the ‘bacon’ FOR and HOW LONG I’ve got to prepare it (think carbonara, turkey trimmings, stuffing – ready chopped? Anything to save time!)

The parallel: I’ve got a problem that I’m looking to solve
and I’ve got 3 days before I come back to my boss with answers..so the chances are I’m looking for:

-    examples from other people / companies in the same situation
-    ‘how-to’ advice – with hints / tips of how to solve X problem
-    talking heads debating this particular issue
-    wiki definitions and answers
-    slides that I might ‘draw inspiration from’ for my presentation

....and so on

But I search first and foremost BY SUBJECT to see what comes up. The answers will be in multiple formats – video, blog, ppt, case study, e-book, guide. I might dip into one, bookmark a blog for later, download an e-book to the desktop.

BUT I AM NOT GOING TO RUN AROUND THE SUPERMARKET PICKING MY BACON UP FROM 5 DIFFERENT SECTIONS! 

No. I’m simply going to go to elsewhere, where I can get what I want QUICKLY and SIMPLY.

So if I can offer one strong piece of advice: don’t be led by all those websites that categorise sections by format. They’re wrong. Think content, theme, problem, hook first - in short, the subject. Then, and only then, think format.

That’s not to say of course that your visitors won’t get sidetracked by the ‘finest’ range and the ‘deli’ counter and obviously I always end up with more in my trolley than I had on my list...but let’s hold that thought for another day. Anyone want to add their two rashers worth?

* If I did type ‘subject case study’ or ‘subject blog’ into Google, would your post come up or are your case studies called ‘ACME Solutions delivers world class solution for X company’. You might want to tweak your titles...

 

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