Auditing and modelling for the Mental Health FoundationDigging into content, culture and audience for better mental health information
The Mental Health Foundation strive for good mental health for everybody. They find and address the sources of mental health problems, and support people to live mentally healthier lives. They are the home of Mental Health Awareness week in the UK. We carried out a programme of content strategy work that created solid foundations for their forthcoming website project.
The Mental Health Foundation had ambitious new targets to reach millions more people and to increase their impact. They were getting ready to rebuild their website, but had a lack of evidence about and understanding of the current state of their content and of the needs and wants of their diverse audience.
To reach more of the right people with the right content, they needed to shift their attitudes and their culture. Some solid content strategy work would facilitate that change.
We designed a programme of work based around becoming more audience led and taking a content-first approach in order to achieve their goals.
Building the evidence base
We audited their content across channels, both qualitatively and quantitatively. We analysed the findings and drew out key conclusions.
We did a detailed comparator study, finding unusual suspects that we could learn from, as well as direct competitors.
We also undertook a cycle of audience research which involved: reviewing existing audience profiles for accuracy, usability and classification logic; refining groups and use cases for validation testing; designing a quantitative and qualitative survey to validate our hypotheses; and synthesising and analysing the survey results.
Laying the foundations
We worked with a representative group of stakeholders from across the organisation to co-create an aspirational content strategy vision statement.
We put together a content strategy action plan, with practical recommendations for the new website and beyond. We delivered a set of foundations for the website rebuild project, including a content model, information architecture principles, maintenance and archiving principles, and a set of evidence-based visitor types, each with priority tasks.
Internal content champions would be vital for success, so we worked closely and collaboratively with digital and communications staff throughout, building trust and giving them new knowledge, skills, tools and tactics.
The organisation understands the valuable role of content in effectively serving audiences and achieving organisational aims. They also have more knowledge and an improved understanding of what their audience wants and needs and the beginnings of a listening and learning culture. And they have a clear path to more action-focused, user-centred content that will help them achieve their aims and reach people who need them and have not previously been catered for.
Your work will greatly help us go forward. I’ve personally learned a lot and the work you’ve done has been critical to taking us on the next stage of our journey as an organisation. In particular, it’s helped us get the internal buy-in we need to achieve what will be a substantive change.
Richard Grange, Associate Director of Media and Communications