Confab 2020

May 18–20, Online

This was the year Confab went virtual! Check out the smart talks, candid conversations, and funny nonsense we enjoyed.

Photos of Confab speakers
Rebekah Baggs
ONWARD
Aaron Baker
Harvard University
Kathrine Becker
Capital One
Margot Bloomstein
Appropriate, Inc.
Katherine Bradshaw-Jones
BBC
Malaika Carpenter
SayCred Media Group
Meghan Casey
Do Better Content Consulting
Chris Corak
ONWARD
Clay Delk
Shopify
Dana DiTomaso
Kick Point
Beth Dunn
HubSpot
Jarle Fjeldstad
Netlife Design
Michael Haggerty-Villa
Intuit
Erika Hall
Mule
Kristina Halvorson
Brain Traffic
Ariba Jahan
The Ad Council
Ravi Jain
Boston College
Rhiannon Jones
Deliveroo
Dayana Kibilds
Western University
Scott Kubie
Independent
Rosamund Lannin
Bounteous
Amy Lipner
Collective Health
Leslie Mac
Resist University
Keri Maijala
LinkedIn
Lisa Maria Marquis
Independent
Hilary Marsh
Content Company, Inc.
Rachel McConnell
Clearleft
Gerry McGovern
Customer Carewords
Michael Metts
Allstate
Jessica Milcetich
USAGov
Amanda Mohlenhoff
GetYourGuide
Dan Newman
NPR
Anna Pickard
Slack
Tracy Playle
Pickle Jar Communications
Dan Ramsden
BBC
Colleen T. Reese
Think Company
Sarah Richards
Content Design Centre
Are W. Sandvik
Netlife Design
Dorian Taylor
Independent
David Dylan Thomas
Think Company
Libby Varcoe
Atlassian
Eileen Webb
webmeadow
Andy Welfle
Adobe
Awen Wen
Alibaba Group
Crystal Yan
Remitly

Program

Keynotes & Q&A

Meghan Casey
Meghan Casey (Do Better Content Consulting) - Tough talks and how to have them

Relationships with internal stakeholders are often the key to planning, creating, and maintaining strategic content that gets results. Being able to have productive conversations, even when the topic is tricky, is a skill every content professional can and should develop.

From having to tell a stakeholder their idea isn’t on-strategy, to critiquing a non-writer’s writing, to approaching a frank conversation about content that is offensive or insensitive, we’ll walk through an approach to planning for and facilitating tough talks with stakeholders.

Using real-world examples from 20 years in the fields of marketing, communications, content strategy, and user experience spanning a wide variety of industries and organizations, this session will give you a framework to:

  • Determine whether a conversation is needed.
  • Apply methods we practice with content to plan the conversation.
  • Facilitate challenging conversations productively.

Who should attend: This session is for anybody who would like to hone their skills for difficult conversations. We’ll even practice! Don’t worry. It won’t be scary … well maybe a little for us introverts, but we’ll get through it.

David Dylan Thomas
David Dylan Thomas (Think Company) - Conversation design to save civil discourse

In the current political climate, it seems like we've nearly given up on productive discourse. However, there are design and content strategy choices we can make that encourage collaboration over conflict, even when dealing with hot-button issues.

In this session, we'll look at real-world examples of how the way we phrase a question or design an interaction can have a huge impact on the quality of conversation, and three rules you can use to change course from a fight to a constructive exchange.

You get the conversation you design for. This session will help you design for a better one. You’ll walk away with:

  • Tips, tricks, and exercises to get folks who usually argue to collaborate instead
  • Examples of content strategies and interaction designs that have successfully reduced online harassment
  • An understanding of how cognitive biases can prevent us from having better conversations, and how to design content to mitigate them

Who should attend: This will most directly apply to anyone who has to deal with comments sections, social media, or any other community-related aspects of content, but it will also be useful to anyone who has to get internal teams, clients, or management to align or collaborate on a project.

Colleen T. Reese
Colleen T. Reese - On optimization and idleness: Why content strategists should do less

As content strategists, we’re often tasked with creating order from disorder. We categorize, compartmentalize and structure content so that each element fits within a specified set of rules. But what if we are “optimizing ourselves to death”? What if content needs a few degrees of uncertainty, and maybe even of idleness?

Drawing heavily from studies on the Default Mode Network and musings on the idle mind, this talk explores how we can allow for a more natural and nonlinear approach to defining, developing and enforcing a content strategy.

In this session, you'll learn:

  • What the Default Mode Network is and what happens to our brains when we idle
  • Why it’s important for content strategists and content to idle
  • How to create space for the unknown and the uncertain
  • How to apply nonlinear thinking to information architecture and content structures

Who should attend: Content strategists working with varied, diverse audiences, and content strategists who feel burned out or uncertain of how to measure the value of their work.

Rhiannon Jones
Rhiannon Jones - Collaboration: You’re not alone (even if you sometimes wish you were)

Writing for product means you never work alone. Ever. Your work is intertwined with the work of a UI designer, a researcher, a product manager, an engineer and a handful of people you haven’t met yet, but who are going to email you screenshots of your designs covered in their rewrites anyway, because hey, they had eight minutes spare and thought it’d be nice to help out.

Collaboration is deeply uncomfortable—it hurts. Especially if your happy place is headphones on, eye contact avoided. But if you can’t collaborate, you will miss out on how much better it makes your products—and how much fun it can be, too. Come and hear how one UX writer pushed past the pain and learned to collaborate, with solid, practical techniques.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • Solid, practical techniques for collaborating better
  • How to resolve creative conflict
  • When and how to say no to feedback
  • How to communicate with people who don’t think the way you do

Who should attend: This session will be most useful to content people who tend to be introverted souls, thrust into the loud, extroverted, bullish environment of software development.

Keri Maijala
Keri Maijala - Bring it in: Creating a strong community of practice

A community of practice (CoP) doesn’t just happen. It takes planning, effort, and a lot of listening to build a supportive community. When LinkedIn’s team suddenly grew from one UX writer to seven, they had to come together quickly as a strong, connected team.

Luckily, their research team had completed an extensive study on professional communities. Using those findings—along with what they’ve learned from established CoP leaders—this group soon discovered what works, what doesn’t, and where to go from here.

This talk is a playbook for intentionally creating your community, rather than hoping it just comes together.

This session will teach you:

  • What LinkedIn’s research revealed about building professional communities
  • Best practices from CoP leaders
  • How to connect with different reporting structures, locations, and employment types
  • How and when to include those outside your discipline
  • How to do a “listening tour” 


Who should attend: This will be helpful for managers, independent contributors, and anyone responsible for bringing teams together around a single discipline.

Kathrine Becker
Kathrine Becker - Think like a songwriter to tell better stories

Musical theater creates unforgettable moments that drive stories home for audiences, because songwriters distill epic tales and staggering sagas into concise, memorable, and engaging forms. How might the story mechanics from Broadway and pop music be applied to shift narratives in our careers?

This talk will explore three tried-and-true story hacks found in musical theater that have been shifting narratives for generations. You’ll learn how to tell stories that establish your identity, unify disparate audiences, and protect the momentum of your journey (not to mention, your precious morale!) when facing set-backs.

In this talk, you’ll learn:

  • When you want to be remembered, tell an “I am/I want” story to clearly and quickly establish your identity.
  • When you’re trying to align groups who don’t want to work together, use a “Banner” story to unify your audiences.
  • When facing set-backs, tell a “Torch” story to protect your momentum and morale.

Who should attend: This will be useful to folks who are shifting career paths, or who may need help reframing the pivots in their journey. Also, anyone for whom persuasion, storytelling, and problem-framing are essential can add new techniques to their soft-skill toolbox.

Pre-recorded talks

Amanda Mohlenhoff
Amanda Mohlenhoff - Research in action: Talk like (and build for) your user

People who write for a living are used to adapting their work to their audience. When you’re writing for user experience, incorporating user research and insights into your work takes this to the next level.

But how do you know when to A/B test and when to use qualitative methods? How can you translate research findings into content that helps users and your business? This talk will help you ask the right questions to start research, make use of existing findings, and communicate your decision rationale with data and confidence.

In this session, you’ll learn how to:

  • Incorporate user insights into every level of your content strategy: from tiny microcopy, to user flows, to high-level information architecture.
  • Decide what type of testing you need: quantitative (like A/B tests) or qualitative (like interviews).
  • Develop a clear rationale for your content decisions to gain buy-in from your teams and stakeholders.

Who should attend: Content strategists, UX designers, and marketing writers will learn practical ways to gain content direction from research—even when you’re not running the research yourself.

Amy Lipner
Amy Lipner - Don’t be creepy: How to write for an increasingly personalized world

Personalization is everywhere. You see it in those all-too-accurate Instagram ads all the way to banking and credit card recommendations. Services are getting smarter about what customers might actually want, but what does it mean to offer a recommendation in a highly sensitive moment? Or around personal information? And as content strategists stationed right between data and humans, what should our role become?

This session is grounded in the speaker’s experience of developing and executing content strategy around personalization in a healthcare startup.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • Four principles to keep you on track
  • What a personalization content strategy actually looks like
  • Where personalization can go oh-so-wrong and how to make sure that won’t happen
  • Where personalization is headed and how you, as a writer, can help shape it

Who should attend: This will be especially useful if you are working with personalization in highly regulated spaces, or at a company where you’re managing many stakeholders. This is for anyone looking for a framework to measure the risk/reward for personalization and a content strategy approach to help develop content that resonates.

Ariba Jahan
Ariba Jahan - Who’s not in the room? Build better products by engaging hard-to-reach usersSlides

As technologists, one of the hardest things to remember is that we’re not our users, and our assumptions can easily extend into our work. If we aren’t careful, we can easily end up designing products based on our assumptions and biases rather than insights from the actual audience. If we want to build better products, we need to include our target audience in the creation process and listen to their feedback every step of the way.

In this talk, we’ll hear what a team at The Ad Council learned from a project where they worked directly with teens experiencing various forms of bullying that directly informed the product’s goals, UX, and content.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • What types of biases to watch out for and how to challenge your own assumptions
  • How to engage hard-to-reach audiences
  • How user-driven insights can uncover the struggles unique to a community
  • How to make design decisions and product iterations that will ultimately be valuable for all humans

Who should attend: This session will be helpful for attendees who either work in UX design or are interested in learning how UX principles can be applied to create better, more inclusive content.

Awen Wen
Awen Wen - UX writing for international audiences

When you write UI copy in English, knowing it will be translated into multiple languages, do you recognize your own cultural biases? How would you avoid getting lost in translation? What are the best practices in developing localization-friendly content?

Writing UI copy is not easy, and writing for users from all over the world is even more challenging. You want to be equipped with strong writing skills, user empathy, product thinking, and more importantly, a global mindset.

Drawing on her work experience in the U.S. and China, Awen will share her observations, best practices, learnings, and maybe some unique ideas.

In this talk, you’ll learn:

  • How Alibaba writes for their international audiences
  • Tips for developing a global mindset and applying it into daily UX writing work
  • Best practices in developing localization-friendly content

Who should attend: This session is for anyone who works on UX content and localization for global users, or who is interested in learning more about cultural bias and user empathy.

Crystal Yan
Crystal Yan - Content strategy for humanitarian immigration services

In a place far from home, how do asylum seekers find information about and understand how to navigate a complex government process of applying for asylum?

In this presentation, you’ll learn how one team conducted human-centered design research at asylum offices, how those insights illuminated areas of improvement for content strategy and service design, and how they redesigned content and services while balancing needs for ease of use and data security. Finally, you’ll see how content strategy work illuminated the need for overhauling the organization’s overall strategy.

This session will offer:

  • Insight into the opportunity and impact of thoughtful content strategy in government
  • Examples from a specific case study of the work of the US Digital Service in designing content for asylum seekers
  • Recommendations on how to apply these lessons to your own content strategy work

Who should attend: This session is for people who want to hear specific examples of design ethics in practice, and how thoughtful, intentional content strategy decisions make public services more accessible and inclusive to vulnerable communities.

Dan RamsdenKatherine Bradshaw-Jones
Dan Ramsden & Katherine Bradshaw-Jones - Building a discipline: How they do UX writing at the BBC

This session will offer two perspectives on how the BBC has built a new UX Writing discipline—and how it fits into the existing design team and process. You’ll hear about creative leadership and strategic planning, as well as the importance of developing, protecting, and promoting craft.

Learn how these two presenters work in partnership with editorial teams to make sure the surrounding context of a design supports and complements the content. Sometimes they concentrate on designing the surrounding context. At other times they help teams optimize content for audiences and technologies.

In this session, you’ll learn how to:

  • Talk about the value and role of content design in a large, well-established organization.
  • Grow a team (and recruit the right people).
  • Find the right work, and say “no” to the wrong work.
  • Develop and communicate a sense of your strengths as individuals and as a team.

Who should attend: This talk will offer some insight to leaders with responsibility for content teams, but most of the talk will focus on practical steps individual practitioners can take to create the right context to do meaningful and valuable work.

Dana DiTomaso
Dana DiTomaso - Evaluating content success with analytics

Is your content successful? What needs to be changed and why? This can feel like a shot in the dark, particularly when you’re not sure if you’re relying on the right metrics—or if those metrics are even reliable in the first place!

In this talk, you’ll learn how to build a measurement strategy for content including which metrics you can rely on, and which you can ignore.

You’ll walk away with:

  • An understanding of how to bring a new measurement strategy to your organization (and actually get it implemented)
  • A starting report that you can build on for your specific content challenges
  • More confidence and knowledge about how to measure user behavior on websites

Who should attend: This is for anyone who doesn’t feel confident that they are reporting on the right things or making decisions based on the right data.

Daniel Newman
Daniel Newman - Helping users find their own way: Creating modern search experiences

Google changed user expectations about how search should work, and voice platforms like Alexa are changing mental models again. It’s time to modernize our search experiences to meet the user needs of today and tomorrow.

This session will discuss 8 key principles of modern search experiences. Then, building on the NPR’s own experience in re-platforming its cross-platform search service, this session will explore how to apply those principles to the web, mobile, voice platforms, and beyond.

You’ll learn:

  • The fundamental expectations and mental models about “search” that your users are bringing with them when they use your system.
  • The limitations of machine learning and the essential role that human judgment and high-fidelity metadata play in crafting great search experiences.
  • The value of domain expertise in crafting bespoke search-based experiences that are specific to your industry, content, and audience.
  • The forthcoming metadata and filtering challenges posed by emerging platforms like voice assistants and AR/VR—and some potential steps you can take today to better “futureproof” your search indexes.

Who should attend: This talk is ideal for designers, content strategists, and technologists of all stripes—anyone whose product could benefit from integrated search that actually works (which is perhaps most products!). This conversation will be most applicable to mid-career and senior folks who have the power to champion the importance of search within their organization.

Dayana Kibilds
Dayana Kibilds - Get stuff done: Project management hacks for content strategy

In our jobs, we (rightfully) focus on meeting the needs of our constituents. But things fall apart when we are faced with logistical nightmares, bureaucracy, micromanagement, and miscommunication. So what do you do when you don't have an official project manager?

This session will focus on the basics: scheduling meetings, taking meeting notes, handling document versions, creating documentation, and writing effective emails. Anyone can do these things—but not everyone is doing them right. You'll learn:

  • Tips and tools to help you communicate clearly
  • How to make your life a little easier
  • How to GET. STUFF. DONE.

Who should attend: This session will be ideal for people who need to do their own project management. Actual project managers might find the info a bit introductory.

Eileen Webb
Eileen Webb - Supporting accessibility in content, user experience, and organizational culture

Everyone knows that creating accessible content and digital experiences is the right thing to do—right for users, right for businesses, right for society. And yet. Accessibility is still mostly an afterthought, is generally limited to the bare-minimum effort, and is the first thing to get compressed or rushed or entirely cut when there’s budget or schedule pressure.

Why do we have such a hard time upholding our values? Creating truly accessible websites requires that we do more than just using semantic formatting and adding alt tags to images. If we want to build accessibility into our digital experiences from the ground up, we have to start by addressing the ableism embedded in our organizations and work culture.

In this talk, we’ll explore:

  • How to recognize the ways ableism in our workplaces gets in the way of accessibility work
  • The most effective approach for getting the whole organization (including leadership) committed to disrupting these patterns
  • Actions individuals can take to make a difference, even if their colleagues aren’t backing them (yet)

Who should attend: This will be most beneficial for those people who believe that this problem exists and want things to change, but have no idea how to make that happen. We also hope folks who are targets of ableism will feel more included and validated.

Hilary Marsh
Hilary Marsh - Making content strategy stick: How to operationalize and socialize your work

Once the pieces of your content strategy statement are in place, the day-to-day work really begins. Making your content strategy sustainable means making it part of people’s everyday work, keeping the principles and practices of content strategy on everyone’s mind.

Importantly, this isn’t top-down work, but work best done from the inside out. And it requires skills that most content strategists already have: listening, sharing, and fostering connections.

This session will include examples from organizations of various sizes and types, and participants will come away with ideas they can put to use immediately. You’ll learn how to:

  • Involve people in the content strategy effort so they feel invested in its success
  • Empower content contributors so they are motivated to follow the rules rather than go around them
  • Help good practices go viral inside the organization

Who should attend: This session will be especially useful for people who create or manage content for a large, content-rich organization. They will benefit by understanding how to use upfront content strategy work on an ongoing basis.

Jarle FjeldstadAre W Sandvik
Jarle Fjeldstad and Are W Sandvik - The content sprint

The Norwegian Environment Agency had embarked upon an ambitious project. In the redesign of their new website, a handful of communication staff set out to rewrite all of the content, with the reluctant help of over-worked subject matter experts (SMEs).

It didn’t go well. By the time they hired outside help, they had lost key staff due to burnout and resignation.

When the team from Netlife Design joined the project, their first task was to find a way for a small team with only a minimum of domain knowledge to jump straight into any topic and be productive from day one, creating content of high value before moving on to the next piece. Come and learn how they created a hybrid method based on their own Core Model and a Google Design Sprint, resulting in a platform that allowed SMEs and communication staff to collaborate and develop the best, most user-centric content prototype.

In this session, you’ll learn how to:

  • Apply the method and tools developed during this customized content sprint.
  • Get SMEs and communication folks to work efficiently together.
  • Keep a high pace during content creation, without allowing the quality to drop.

Who should attend: This session is for anyone from the communication side who has to work with subject matter experts in a project with multiple topics. It’s a good fit for web editors, content producers, and content designers—both in-house and from the agency side.

Jessica Milcetich
Jessica Milcetich - Launching a chatbot: Lessons from USAGov

Chatbots can help your users quickly and easily get answers to their questions about your products or services. But how do you develop a chatbot that meets your audience’s expectations?

Using the USAGov chatbot as a case study, this session will cover how you can use the basics of user research and content design to launch your first chatbot or make iterations to an existing one. We’ll also explore ways to use quantitative and qualitative data to make iterative improvements to your bot over time.

Attendees will learn:

  • How they can launch a bot with a small team and a small budget
  • How user research will help you design the content that powers your bot
  • How to use metrics from the bot to learn what users need and make iterative improvements

Who should attend: You’d most benefit from this session if you’ve been thinking about launching a chatbot at your organization, but aren’t sure where to start. You could also benefit from this session if you’ve very recently launched a chatbot and are trying to figure out how to make improvements to make it more user friendly and helpful.

Leslie Mac
Leslie Mac - Show vs. tell: Content creation for action

In this presentation, national organizer Leslie Mac discusses why toolkits don’t work—and an alternative method for helping workgroups, clients, and communities make collective, impactful decisions together.

In this melding of a field organizer’s best practices and proven digital strategy methods, attendees will leave prepared to create containers that help move work along a ladder of engagement in a logical way.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • The differences between a toolkit model and a workbook model.
  • How to stop creating toolkits no one uses and place the work of deciding what to do where it belongs—with those who will actually be doing the work.
  • The basic components needed to create a workbook that empowers users to take action.

Who should attend: Anyone who does work that employs toolkits to disseminate information will benefit from this session. They will learn a new way to engage people by creating containers that help their target audience decide what they want to do.

Libby Varcoe
Libby Varcoe - Content transformation on a large scale: Turning the Titanic faster

Working in large organizations where content isn't always recognized or understood as a critical business asset can feel like living in a war zone. Our content armies are often invisible, under-resourced, under-valued, and under-utilized. Turning the ship around can be a daunting and very slow process.

As the Australian Government’s former Head of Content (Digital Transformation Agency) and now principal content designer at Atlassian, Libby brings you tales and takeaways from the front line. She’ll share her experience of improving the visibility and value of content through community empowerment, executive buy-in, and using a “bottom up, top down” approach.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • The power of connecting and creating communities as a way of building bridges between the silos that the business has created and you’re unable to change (yet).
  • How to apply service design thinking to solve and sell the interconnections between content design and content strategy with other parts of the organization that typically wouldn’t care.
  • Lessons for bringing executives on the journey and cultivating the right sponsors and champions you need to support change management.

Who should attend: This session will be a good fit for those working in, or aiming to work in, content leadership roles in big companies, government, or large organizations.

Michael Haggerty Villa
Michael Haggerty Villa - On the same page: Unify your teams with a powerful style guide

How did a financial technology company get four business units and 10,000 employees to consolidate many content style guides into one powerful resource? This case study offers the answers and demonstrates the kind of thoughtful collaboration your content team can do to find allies, extend your influence, and improve content across your entire enterprise.

At the beginning of this story, the content designers working on TurboTax, QuickBooks, and Mint were miles apart literally as well as figuratively. Using content strategy and a healthy dose of people skills, the teams came together to publish a style guide all Intuit content creators can call their own: contentdesign.intuit.com.

This session will explore:

  • The practical steps to take to unify a variety of voice, tone, and style guidelines
  • How to approach content teams across silos and transform team members from strangers into allies—and, hopefully, into advocates
  • How to use a design system and a culture of standards to win over other designers, engineers, product managers, and stakeholders
  • Ways of creating ongoing enterprise-wide communication about style, standards, voice, and tone
  • The two magic words that make all the necessary kindness and collaboration possible

Who should attend: Content strategists and content designers who are in companies with a variety of content creators (product, marketing, social, PR, etc.) can benefit from this collaborative, open approach to content standards and systems.

Rachel McConnell
Rachel McConnell- Getting buy-in: A new way to talk about content strategy

Understanding content strategy can be tricky—everyone seems to have a different definition of “strategist” when it comes to advertising job roles, and strategy descriptions can often feel abstract. Even when we have a good handle on it ourselves, explaining it to stakeholders can be difficult, especially when businesses expect a “content strategy” to be magical document that fixes everything overnight. If only!

Sure, we know that good content needs strategy behind it, from an organizational level right down to product level. But how do you create, explain, and implement a strategy in a way that brings others along for the journey?

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • A simplified way to explain the process of content strategy to others
  • How clear direction and actions can make your strategy more tangible
  • How your stakeholders can co-create meaningful results

Who should attend: This session is for anyone who sometimes feels overwhelmed having to explain what content strategy is but really wants to achieve a strong, impactful strategy for their business.

Rosamund Lannin
Rosamund Lannin - Modular content: Designing in pieces for flexible experiences

As component-based design becomes more commonplace, it brings with it the opportunity to adapt content to a modular framework. But incorporating information into a design system can be a process. Challenges like streamlining copy, template dependency, and image sourcing make content strategy critical: a successful, sustainable design system means a common understanding that content should be intentional and flexible.

In this session, we’ll demonstrate how working with a predefined set of pieces doesn’t have to limit expression—how breaking free from the idea of content as a fixed spot on a webpage helps express ideas in a fresh and lasting way.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • Why having endless space and no restrictions actually makes it harder to craft good content
  • How a strong up-front content strategy supports component-based UI design
  • Common challenges and solutions related to incorporating information into design systems

Who should attend: This session will be a good fit for people who need an introduction to component-based design or are looking for new solutions to challenges they might not have considered, or for UX practitioners looking to better understand how content strategy, IA, and visual design interact through the lens of component-based design.

Panel discussions

Under the hood: How to power your content project with process and structure

Tracy Playle (Pickle Jar Communications), Malaika Carpenter (SayCred Media Group), and Clay Delk (Shopify) talk through considerations for content strategy at every stage of a project.

Tracy Playle
Tracy Playle
Pickle Jar Communications
Malaika Carpenter
Malaika Carpenter
SayCred Media Group
Clay Delk
Clay Delk
Shopify
SEO, analytics, and measurement

Rebekah Baggs (ONWARD), Chris Corak (ONWARD), Aaron Baker (Harvard University), and Dana DiTomaso (Kick Point) have a conversation about the different ways they approach content measurement and success.

Rebekah Baggs
Rebekah Baggs
ONWARD
Chris Corak
Chris Corak
ONWARD
Aaron Baker
Aaron Baker
Harvard University
Dana DiTomaso
Dana DiTomaso
Kick Point
UX writing and content design

Scott Kubie (author, Writing for Designers), Beth Dunn (Hubspot), and Amanda Mohlenhoff (GetYourGuide), and Ariba Jahan (The Ad Council) have a conversation about how they each approach UX writing and content design in their work.

Scott Kubie
Scott Kubie
author, Writing for Designers
Beth Dunn
Beth Dunn
Hubspot
Amanda Mohlenhoff
Amanda Mohlenhoff
GetYourGuide
Ariba Jahan
Ariba Jahan
The Ad Council

Content Strategists in Quarantine

Anna Pickard
Q&A with Anna Pickard

A frank conversation with Anna Pickard (Slack) about work and life during a pandemic.

Eileen Webb
Q&A with Eileen Webb

A frank conversation with Eileen Webb (webmeadow) about work and life during a pandemic.

Erika Hall
Q&A with Erika Hall

A frank conversation with Erika Hall (Mule Design) about work and life during a pandemic.

Confab Book Club

Confab Book Club with Sarah Richards

Enjoy live Q&A with Sarah Richards, author of Content Design.

Michael MettsAndy Welfle
Confab Book Club with Michael Metts and Andy Welfle

Enjoy live Q&A with Michael Metts and Andy Welfle, authors of Writing Is Designing: Words and the User Experience.

Gerry McGovern
Confab Book Club with Gerry McGovern

Enjoy live Q&A with Gerry McGovern, author of World Wide Waste: How Digital Is Killing Our Planet—and What We Can Do About It.

Special events

Leslie Mac
The Confab Cake-Decorating Contest

Three brave contestants try their hand at a Nailed It-style competition, hosted by Leslie Mac.

Margot Bloomstein
The Confab Pet Show

Dogs! Cats! Chickens! Host Margot Bloomstein takes our judges on a virtual tour of the animals who live with Confabbers.

Lisa Maria MarquisMat Marquis
Confab’s Highly Unpredictable Variety Show

Have you always wanted to see Ann Handley tap dance in a tiny house? You’re in luck! Hosts Lisa Maria and Mat Marquis show us the many hidden talents in the Confab community.

Ravi Jain
Cocktails, mocktails, and more!

Our host Ravi Jain invites Confabbers around the world to share their favorite morning and evening beverages in this unconventional happy hour.

Ben Kjos
Confab Trivia

If we know one thing about our beloved Confab crowd, it’s that y’all are a bunch of nerds. (We mean that in the best possible way.) Our host Ben Kjos put together this special trivia competition, with questions designed just for content strategists.

Keri Maijala
Confab Karaoke

Our host Keri Maijala invites Confabbers from around the world to sing their hearts out. Special thanks to LinkedIn for sponsoring this beloved Confab tradition!

Quotes & testimonials

“I was really impressed with how well it was organized and executed. A ton of great speakers and valuable large/small group discussions. A+, two thumbs up, and five stars.”
testimonial photo
Steve Heald
“All I can say is wow and well done. For this first-timer, you made Confab 2020 a memorable, phenomenal, perspective-enhancing experience.”
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Jonathan McFadden
“When a professional conference leaves you feeling like maybe there is some hope for humanity… just wow. Beyond grateful to be part of this community.”
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Anne Haines
“Shout out to the Confab team for making a virtual conference feel as warm and inviting as it ever could. The last two days have been amazing and I’ve learned so much and met so many amazing people!”
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Theodora Karatzas
“Confab has been professionally and beautifully designed and obviously obsessively and carefully thought over. Thank you Team Confab!”
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Donald Carson
“I’ve never been to a virtual conference but it was 100x better than any other conference I’ve been to before - polished and professional, yet completely human.”
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Paloma Medina
“If there is anyone who knows how to put on a fabulous online conference it’s Confab.”
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Katherine Gray
“Attending Confab 2020 virtually and feeling so rejuvenated given all the like-minded content people I’m meeting and learning from! This is exactly what I needed - thanks to Brain Traffic for pulling this global group of experts together!”
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Nadine Gregerson

Photos

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Confab on Twitter
Photos
Confab on Instagram
2020 Playlist
Confab shop
2020 Playlist
Confab 2020 playlist
2020 Playlist
Ten Years of Confab playlist

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