From the lenses of product design and career development.

The word “words” on wooden cubes
The word “words” on wooden cubes

I’ve worked in every nook and cranny of software user interfaces and led teams of product writers at a technology conglomerate, at an AI company, and now at a Fintech company. Although organizational structures and cultures varied when I started in each company, one common theme played out: people came to depend on us as the experts on everything from writing mechanics to voice and tone. There was no more lorem ipsum when we started in the design files. The teams valued what we brought to the product experiences — clear, concise, and consistent language in each product release. …

Here’s why, and how.

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Source: Shutterstock

I attended Confab Central in Minneapolis 6 months ago. During the three-day content strategy conference, I heard many powerful ideas, including this one.

In her talk, “Words and the design process,” Biz Sanford from Shopify demonstrated how “content first” was done at her company. The designers and content strategists co-designed by making sketches with real words and working their way through high-fidelity mockups.

“That is heartening to hear,” I cheered in my heart, in the room full of content folks eager to learn and get inspired. The woman sitting next to me leaned over and whispered to my ear, “The other teams don’t involve my content strategists early. …

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Credit: First Data

Our story of building a content culture

It’s been nine months since I joined Clover as the content strategy manager. A baby could be born after all this time! As I reflect on this not-so-new job and how far content strategy has advanced in this company, I can’t imagine being anywhere else. I can still feel the excitement when I came on board and continue to feel excited about the opportunities that are coming our way.

Prior to Clover, I had been working at [24]7.ai (formerly [24]7) for two and a half years, building the content strategy practice, growing a UX writing team, and designing AI chatbot conversations. I felt privileged to have the opportunity to work at the intersection of content, design, machine learning, and NLP (natural language processing). …

About

Felicia Wu

Product content designer. Former journalist. Lover of words and great stories.

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