Chapter 12. Strategy

Strategy 101 is about choices: You can’t be all things to all people.

Michael Porter

In this chapter, we’ll cover:

  • The elements of an information architecture strategy

  • Guidelines for moving from research to strategy

  • Using metaphors, scenarios, and conceptual diagrams to bring your strategy to life

  • Project plans, presentations, and the strategy report (including a detailed example from Weather.com)

Research can be addictive: the more you learn, the more questions you have. This is why doctoral students sometimes take more than a decade to complete their dissertations. We rarely have that luxury: typically, we need to move from research to design according to schedules measured in weeks or months rather than years.

The bridge between research and design is an information architecture strategy. It’s critical that you start thinking about how you’re going to build that bridge before research begins, and keep thinking about it throughout the research process. Similarly, as you’re building the bridge you need to continue your research efforts, continually testing and refining your assumptions.

In short, the line between research and strategy is blurred. It’s not as simple as turning the page from Chapter 11 to Chapter 13. Though the process of moving from research to administration is linear at a high level, as shown in Figure 12-1 (also featured in Chapter 11), when you get down into the details this is a highly iterative, interactive process.

Figure ...

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