Content toolkit: Decision trees

Use decision trees to help with content decisions

Decision trees support decision-making by clearly laying out the questions that should be asked about content, and presenting the array of responses and consequences.

This can be a really effective tool if your content team finds itself in these situations:

  • Saying no (especially without any supporting reasons) to various departments who want more content added to their section of the website.
  • Choosing which channels, platforms, or areas of your website are best for a new piece of content.
  • Deciding whether a topic would best be conveyed through video, infographic, or an article.

Before creating a visual representation of content decisions, make a list on a word document. See our example below:

Example: New content request

Decision: Should this new content go on our website?

1. Does it fit within our agreed upon five topics?

     a. If yes, go on to next question

     b. If not, reject request

2. Does this content already exist?

     a. If yes, ask requester to send change request

     b. If not, go on to next question

3. Does it fit a business or customer need?

     a. If yes, go on to next question

     b. If not, reject request

4. Will this help a significant number of customers? (80%)

     a. If yes, go on to next question

     b. If not, reject request

5. Is there a plan to maintain this content?

     a. If yes, approve request

     b. If not, revise request

Once you have your questions and answers, the next step is to convey this visually for easy reference. We use Lucidchart for creating decision trees, but any program with shapes will work just fine. You could also go old school and create a giant poster by hand, especially if you have people lining up at your office door to request content!

Check out our finished product below for inspiration.

Sample decision tree

Further reading

How to design an effective content toolkit

Our content services