The Other Kind of Funnies: Comics in Technical Communication

Han Yu, PhD, Professor of Technical Communication, Kansas State University, originally presented 16 December 2015

“You want us to do what now for that manual?! A comic?! You must be joking!” Well, this presenter isn’t! It may not be an industry standard (yet) or even an idea much heard about, but it is not an outlandish proposal and certainly not one without successful precedents. Not convinced? Come to this webinar to hear about and look at the rhetorical appeals (as well as limitations) of comics-style technical communication. Already on board with comics? Come to this webinar to help develop this exciting idea and spread the word.


TechComm and Search Engine Optimization: A Powerful and Cost-Reducing Combination

Chris Raulf, Search Engine Optimization & Digital Marketing Expert, Boulder SEO Marketing, originally presented 4 November 2015

Every day, companies around the globe invest massive amounts of money to develop customer-facing technical content... and they often fail in developing content that’s actually optimized for online search. Content that doesn’t get found on Google and other search engines increases costly calls to a company’s call centers and ultimately drags profitability down. Learn how to infuse search engine optimization (SEO) into your technical communication strategy and help boost your company’s bottom line.


Topic-Based Writing: An Unexpected Journey

Phoebe Forio, Verint Systems, Inc., originally presented 17 December 2014

Structured Authoring and Minimalism. Just what you need to get your content in shape and under control. But how do you get there from here? This webinar follows the adventures of one writer and her team of handpicked side-kicks as they planned and began their journey from the familiar, unstructured book formats of FrameMaker to the very unfamiliar world of topic-based writing, DITA, and XML. Attend this webinar to find out how creative problem-solving can help you get past the technical, political, logistical, and even emotional challenges and obstacles you can encounter even on a well-planned journey.


The E-book Explosion: Why the Publishing Industry Needs Technical Communicators

Toni Byrd-Ressaire, originally presented 5 November 2014

What does publishing have to do with technical communicators? Technological advances in all fields are blurring the lines of traditional roles. Technical communicators now have opportunities to expand their services by taking on emerging roles in publishing. In doing so, technical communicators are equipped with a coveted set of transferable, core skills.


Tips for Technical Illustrations

Tricia Spayer, originally presented 21 October 2014

Interested in improving your own technical illustrations? Join this webinar to increase your confidence in your own technical illustration abilities, improve your processes, and become more professional in your illustrations.


Taking Help to the Next Step: Embedded Video

Matthew West, originally presented 8 July 2014

People are more connected than ever and video is becoming the ubiquitous channel for delivering how-to content to the connected world. Product help no longer has to be static text and long descriptive passages. That rich text content can be delivered as short video clips embedded into online help, meaning that text can be minimized to key points for those users who need only a simple answer, while complex content can be delivered as a quick video tutorial, reducing complex help documents to simple content that is more likely to be used.


Targeting Content to Your Users’ Goals

Alyssa Fox, originally presented 19 June 2014

In today’s business environment, everyone is doing more with less. How do you provide the content your users need, when they need it, with fewer people and less time to do it? Taking into account these factors, along with our agile environment, the presenter’s team started shifting toward content targeted to achieving users’ goals. This type of content gives specific information when and where necessary, documents best practices, provides extensive and relevant examples, and does not document the obvious or easily discoverable.


That’s a Good Question!

Elizabeth (Bette) Frick, originally presented 24 April 2014

A major factor in a technical communication professional’s success is asking questions—the right questions—of SMEs, managers, clients, users, and yourself. If you’ve ever suffered expensive consequences because you didn’t ask the right question or you framed your question poorly, you’ll benefit from this lively and interactive session on learning to ask the right questions.


Think More, Write Less

Andrea Ames, originally presented 16 May 2013

Are you plodding along, doing the “same old thing” in your documentation? When was the last time you thought about your customers and how effective your current documentation solution is for them? We all—even the veterans—get stuck in the rut of doing what we’ve always done, having no time to think. Get unstuck: Think more, write less!


Tips for How Writers Can Benefit from Enterprise Social Networks

Gavin Austin, originally presented 14 March 2013

Many companies are transitioning from email to social networks, such as Chatter or Yammer. Why is this transition taking place and how can technical writers benefit from this shift in corporate collaboration? Learn tips and best practices to help you, or your documentation team, excel in the new world of enterprise social networks.


The Usability of Hazards

Leah Guren, originally presented 12 March 2013

Technical communicators are responsible for making sure that people can use the product safely and effectively. Unfortunately, a lot of technical communicators follow outdated guidelines for writing hazards and warnings. Therefore, their hazards are not as effective as they should be. This session shows the usability data, focusing on how people respond to hazards.


Towards an Agile Authoring Methodology: Learning From Lean

Ellis Pratt, originally presented 5 March 2013

Today, many manufacturers use Lean manufacturing principles and its principles underpin Agile programming. In this presentation we'll explore whether applying a Lean approach to technical publications could (a) lead to better deliverables and a more efficient system for producing user assistance and (b) better position technical publications in the context of an Agile environment.