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on April 15, 2012
About a year ago, a web designer recommended that I read "Content Strategy for the Web" by Kristina Halvorson. Although the designer was very enthusiastic about the book, I felt my nightstand was already overloaded with "must reads," and I politely declined. What a mistake!

There is a bright side. By waiting a year, I was able to read the second edition of "Content Strategy for the Web" by Kristina Halvorson and Melissa Rach. This book is compelling, entertaining, visionary, instructive, applicable and needed. I'm a Marketing Director, and I've made this required reading for my web team and writers. I've also shared highlights with my boss and my boss' boss.

I'm joyfully spreading the word about the importance of web content. Content needs to be considered at the beginning and throughout the web development process. Good content improves SEO, increases web traffic, establishes your brand, and works with the site design and architecture to create an engaging and satisfying user experience that promotes customer relationships and repeat business. See how important content is?

This book will lead you step-by-step through web content production, process, implementation, and maintenance. The book is very thorough, consistently logical, and surprisingly funny. I suggest you read it with a highlighter, but this is more than a "how to" book. It's a revolution, and it will completely change your view of web development. I would also buy two copies of the book because you will want to share it, and you won't want to give your copy away.
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on August 13, 2014
Not helpful for start-ups or small, lean, fast groups of people building a content strategy from scratch. Made for large corporations with existing content and who need to persuade layers of people.
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on June 24, 2013
This book is a great introduction to the world of content strategy.
My only issue is that it is lacking in what I feel is the most important chapter: Discovery / Audit.
Example, "there are dozens (if not hundreds) of possible subjective factors you can review during a qualitative audit." However, only 9 examples are given.
Additionally, the Findings Report section gives only 3 examples of insightful reports. It would be awesome to have more examples of audit reports.
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on May 20, 2013
If this book had five pages, it would be a masterpiece. Quite useful hints to organize content. With its actual size, it is almost painful to read. And, oh, yes, I'd pay gladly the same value for those five unvaluable pages.
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on August 7, 2014
A bit more basic than I'd hoped, and a bit obvious in its suggestions. I did learn a few things, but largely, I felt like the book was written specifically to have a book written... not so much because the authors had great insights to offer.
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on June 6, 2016
Excellent content strategy overview. This book has a bit of everything from start to finish in working on developing and rolling out a content strategy project. I especially loved the questions it asks you to consider for your situation when working on each part of the strategy. Great, conversational tone and easy-to-understand writing doesn't further complicate what can be a complex subject. My only minor quibble is that it is heavily web-focused (obviously, it's in the title). But anyone with critical thinking ability can expand this to a global content strategy beyond the web. The questions still apply, the concepts still apply, the payoff still applies. Invaluable in my business case when I was trying to describe what a content strategy IS to people who have never heard the term.
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on June 26, 2012
If a management consultant and a website copy writer got married, then "Content Strategy for the Web" would be their first child. It's one of those books that you'll want to read cover-to-cover to get the big picture, and then re-read, scissors in-hand (well, Evernote), to pluck out the many useful methodologies.

What makes this book so useful is that the authors know that no matter how brilliant the strategy, no matter how creative the content, if you don't have the buy-in of the organization and embrace the mundane details of execution, you'll fall flat on your face. This svelte 184-page guide goes into just the right depth on:

* What content is
* What an effective strategy looks like
* What screws up strategies
* The roles of each person in the content creation supply chain
* How to dissect the content creation workflow
* Tools that will make your life easier (my favorite part)
* How to do a content audit
* How concepts like "voice" and "messages" fit in

All of this is done with a minimum of jargon, a maximum of realism, and a smattering of humor to keep you motivated through the end. Authors Kristina Halvorson and Melissa Rach also deserve a round of applause for one final touch: at the end of the book they list blogs, Meetups, Google Groups and other books that continue your education on content strategy. Those are several steps further than most authors take, and as a reader, it's much appreciated.

Content Strategy is available on Kindle, but I picked up the print version because that's where I saw it first and I couldn't resist. In retrospect, the beautiful layout gave me the mental room to reflect on the weight of the ideas better than the e-version would have. Either format will work, so pick the one you'll most likely read.
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on May 13, 2013
I love Kristina Halvorson's entertaining writing style. Some may think this is a dry subject matter, but Kristina's writing style is witty and very entertaining. I was able to attend one of her conferences recently and as in the book, she brings great insight into content strategy in very layman terms.
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on October 20, 2014
Building an online business? This is one of the best books to get and look for it's updates as much has changed in the online world of content marketing with Google's introduction of Panda, which rolled out this past spring but has been officially implemented since this fall, since the last writing. It's entertaining as a book about SEO, SEM, and content can be, filled with a lot of examples and strategies for strategically managing and analyzing online content for business and marketing.
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on August 22, 2013
Good book full of great insight but better suited to a large corporation than a small business.
A majority of the book deals with managing and organizing the flow of content between various "stake holders," perfect if you work at huge company with a bunch or bureaucratic hoops to jump through.

If you are a small business with only one or two points of contact and largely self manage your own website, Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business (New Rules Social Media Series) is a much better choice.
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