When going over the books for the final, they both worked in their own way and together. Content Strategy for the Web by Kristina Halvorson, Melissa Rach, introduced the problem, solution and then the steps to achieve it through research, people and strategy all revolving around the web. The Networked Non-Profit by Beth Kanter, Allison Fine, got you used to non-profits, the struggles they face and then taught you how to work with and around any problems you may face when helping or being a non-profit organization. Both of these work perfectly for this class since we are working with non-profits with the web.
Both novels highly encourage working closely with your audience and the people you are working with. Content Strategy for the Web pointed out that we often “make deadly assumptions” and a great way to avoid making these mistakes is to get close with your audience that you are trying to relate to, motivate or persuade. The Networked Non-Profit has two entire sections on getting close to your audience like section 8 “Working with Crowds”, and section 9 “Learning Loops.” Using their strategies for getting close helps build that trust with the audience that make them want to come back for more, with its to simply listen or eventually help your cause.
Now obviously these two novels have their differences too. While some might not consider this a strength, it was very important to me while reading Content Strategy for the Web, it was very easy to read for 2 reasons. The tone and style of writing was more of a conversation than a long drafty paper like The Networked Non-Profit. This helped me relate more, and allowed it to be read smoothly and actually get the information I needed from it. It also had a nice design in it, with the occasional picture in the text to help see what she was talking about and to rest the eyes a bit. A great example for a great photo in the novel is this diagram.
The nice lists and bullet points for steps and examples also helped. For these reasons, I was able to easily learn and retain the knowledge for the class and able to use my new web strategies when working with the FM-Ballet.
The Networked Non-Profit has its own strengths too. While Content Strategy for the Web may have been easier to read, The Networked Non-Profit had some pretty powerful messages behind it, especially with their examples. On page 6 they introduce the story about Peggy Padden. Over the next couple pages it talks about the hardships and struggles Peggy and her family go through after her sons are born with a genetic blood disorder (something they couldn’t control). The story can be very relateable whether your a parent, a patient of a genetic disease, or any other reason, the story really gets to you. And by sharing this sad and powerful story so early on in the novel, it establishes a drive for the reader to want to help families like Peggy’s and non-profits. The various examples, facts, statistics throughout the novel show how big the problem can be for many people and how much more we should be helping if we can. The Networked Non-Profit both helped me relate to non-profits and motivate me to do the best I can to help. It’s strategies about getting closer to them and helping them become simple and efficient for the best results also helped me when I was working with the FM-Ballet.
I know this is short, but I cannot really think of anything else to say and really do not want to just mumble on or repeat myself. Both novels have amazing styles and methods for helping the reader in two great fields. Their unique ways of writing both work well to get their points across and to help the reader learn. Together they make a great combo for this class (and a lot of reading too……) to help us learn. I was trying to let my writing snowball and grow much more for this final post, but I think my previous posts have already established I am not the best at making word requirements.
Until next time, stay frosty!!!!!