Content strategy, service design and physical objects

I had the opportunity to begin learning about content strategy in the last two months or so.

I’ll probably have more to say on how this changed my perspective in thinking about a lot of things in another post. Sarah Wachter-Boettcher’s book  Content everywhere: strategy and structure for future-ready content got me started and Jonathon Colman’s Epic List of Content Strategy Resources pointed me to more great resources on the topic.

I might have stumbled across the term content strategy in Milan Guenther’s book Intersection: how enterprise design bridges the gap between business, technology and people. The enterprise design framework uses 20 aspects (organised in 5 layers) of design work in an enterprise context. The second layer, anatomy, includes these aspects: actors, touchpoints, services, content.

I was happy to find a strong element of service design in the framework, but thought emphasising the content aspect odd. Well, maybe for mostly digital services that made sense… But what about (physical) evidence? But then I’ve had issues with overemphasising service evidence, too.

By now I see the point in discussing content (strategy) at this layer in the framework, but I still feel uneasy about the (state of the discussion) of physical objects in service design. (Or am I just not reading the right stuff or talking to the right people?) Thinking of physical objects (including goods, physical products) as vehicles for provisioning services (as discussed by Dave Gray, among others) seems promising. Physical objects can certainly also be vehicles for delivering content. (We could also view content delivery as a type of services.) And then there’s a role for physical objects in a service evidence context (in a narrow sense, please).

Is it time to bring these thoughts together and elevate the discussion of physical objects in service design?

Updates
2014-09-21: Tom Graves has written a brilliant post titled From Product To Service.

Advertisements

4 thoughts on “Content strategy, service design and physical objects

  1. Jeff Sussna

    I’d say that in general we need to consider relationships between physical and digital. More and more they are inseparable. Consider the car with Google Maps or Onstar or Pandora built into it. As much as we may interact with each other virtually, we are still physical beings doing it in a physical place (office, coworking, coffee shop, living room).

    Reply
    1. Oliver Baier Post author

      Indeed. Perhaps it was (initially) necessary or merely easier for both service design and IT to focus on what differentiates them from other fields. Acknowledging similarities can be scary.

      Thinking this over, the above might be more true for service marketing than service design.

      Reply
  2. Pingback: Products and services, again | Oliver's Blog

  3. Pingback: Enterprise Design Framework: Anatomy | Oliver's Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s