In this week's odd-numbered skinny issue:

  • Highlights from Let's Build a Website
  • Closing out February with a final content administration thought starter
  • Three rad content strategy jobs with bonkers salary ranges
  • It's LinkedIn's turn in the chum bucket
  • Links! Google eliminates the news tab (huzzah!), content service thinking, and more
  • Did you read? about my new favorite video game

Next week! March is content production month, and we're going to start strong with big ideas.

Let's Build a Website: Reviewing WYSIWYG content platforms and more

Our 2024 beginner-level livestream project, Let's Build a Website, is chugging along. We've thought through a high-level strategy. We've built a working sitemap and content model. And we've reviewed different kinds of personal website software and platforms, settling on what's probably the most innovative personal website platform available. (Which platform? you ask. You'll have to watch.)

Enjoy a playlist of a few different clips from the livestream below, sign up for the Substack to receive more updates, and tune in on YouTube or Twitch each Wednesday at 6:30 Eastern as I rebuild one week at a time.

More than (key)Words: New course arriving on March 14

Pre-order More than (key)Words now to get the course as soon as it's released. Use the code PREORDERMTK to get the entire course for $199. This offer expires after 30 redemptions or on March 14, whichever arrives first.

In this 5-unit video and email course, you will learn:

  • Where the idea of keywords came from, and how we can apply the origin of the word's popularity to our current content-saturated digital ecosystem
  • What keyword research is and why it still matters as a major pathway to understanding digital audiences
  • When to augment keyword research with other audience research tactics
  • How to use AI tools and prompts to organize your data and expedite what used to be a manual process
  • Why content is higher quality when keyword research is involved

Those who complete the exercises along with watching the video content will come out of the course with a full keyword research project you can use at your work, or as practice for the next big audience research task.

Tell your boss why More than Keywords should be part of your learning and development budget this year.

Content administration thought starter

Content administration covers the business aspects of how content gets made, and it's our focus for the month of February. Read more about content administration, the very boring but necessary processes for how content gets made.

What's one content project management improvement you can implement today? Is it adding in an extra step to refine that metadata? Seeking another round of approvals to will give you more confidence in your content output? Or is it removing a piece of software that hurts more than it helps the workflow?

Sexy unique content strategy and design job alerts

Every time I look into these job postings I consider going in-house. This week it's especially enticing.

From the bottom of the chum bucket

Our chum bucket explores all the weird programmatic content and ads found online. Because "generated content" is a weird, weird thing.

Thanks for the super professional AI-generated DM response suggestions, LinkedIn. You give me great faith in Microsoft's ability to administer a truly jerky future.

Sure, I'll respond to my respected professional contact with "Oh"

  • Publishing content of any kind is a responsibility. Lauren Pope argues that we should embrace that start-to-finish experience ownership with content service thinking: how can we better design experience to be of service to our audience/users/constituents?
  • AI Snake Oil — which is a very technical blog and not snake oil at all — writes about creating credible societal risk analysis frameworks for evaluating open foundation AI models. Yes! Just because an imaginative writer conjures up a worst-case scenario for open source generative AI doesn't necessarily mean that the risk is remotely credible or worth exploring.
  • Google tested getting rid of the news tab on SERPs, via NiemanLab. The test has ended, but I wish they'd gone through with it. Far too many news organizations are hyperfocused on the news tab to realize that no one uses it except other journalists. Most people just use the regular ol' SERP to find news and don't bother with the extra clicks, and all content-based businesses are far better off just building topical authority over time with a well-structured website than gunning for that fleeting news junkie attention.
  • Read Max accurately identifies the hilarity of the Google Gemini image generation controversy with the all-time winning subject line, "Google made an AI so woke it drove men mad."
  • What makes some AI-generated content just turn out better and more accurate? It has to do with vectors versus knowledge graphs. Look, y'all know I'm a Writer fan, and this interview with Writer CEO May Habib in The New Stack describes how knowledge graph RAGs make AI language models better in relatively accessible terms.

The Content Technologist is a newsletter and consultancy based in Minneapolis, working with clients and collaborators around the world. The entire newsletter is written and edited by Deborah Carver, independent content strategy consultant, speaker, and educator.

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Cultural recommendations / personal social: Spotify | Instagram | Letterboxd

Did you read? is the assorted content at the very bottom of the email. Cultural recommendations, off-kilter thoughts, and quotes from foundational works of media theory we first read in college—all fair game for this section.

I am obsessed with The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. Even though the cut scenes are boring. Even though I'm at a point where I'm wandering around aimlessly, trying to figure out what my next quest is. I cannot. Stop. Playing. Fusing monster horns to swords. Flying around to sky islands. Cooking sunny omelets. Dressing Link up in his little climbing bandana so he looks like Axl Rose. Obsessed.