Last week, I saw this great tweet by the University of Kentucky’s Jeana Clark:
@markgr IA = the building/rooms/floorplan. UX = Hospitality in the building.
— jeana (@jeana_with_a_j) May 2, 2012
So, if UX is hospitality, how do we express that hospitality? In a hotel, hospitality may be conveyed in part through tone of voice, manner, the questions we ask and answer—in short, content.
Ginny Redish, author of the essential “Letting Go of the Words,” [affiliate link] recently wrote about how, for a visitor, using a website is like starting a conversation. If that’s the case, how will we respond? What tone will we use? How hospitable will we make the experience? She goes on to offer several guidelines for planning successful conversations, guided by goals, audience and user needs.
IA, search, design, and technology are all there to support the content that people come for: the words and images that make up the conversations between your visitors and your site or app.
Source: Content as Conversation by Ginny Redish, UX Magazine, May 4, 2012