AW: Minimalist or low-level?

Subject: AW: Minimalist or low-level?
From: Shea Michael EXT <Michael -dot- Shea -dot- extern -at- icn -dot- siemens -dot- de>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 5 Mar 2002 14:48:15 +0100

Geoff Hart responds to Scott Parsons:

> <<I've read through the archive, and some say that this decision is best
> made when you know your target audience. Since this is unlikely, I've
> assumed our target audience is a general user. Somewhat familiar with our
> system, yet new to whatever concept or procedure I am writing.>>
This sounds like a good opportunity to actually begin getting to know your
audience. You can often find out what they're thinking by joining an online
discussion group and listening in (e.g., eHelp should monitor techwr-l to
find out what we think of RoboHelp); don't think of this as spying, since
you're actually doing it to figure out better ways to help them use the
product. (If no such community exists, why not start one up? They're a great
[Shea Michael EXT]
This is an excellent suggestion. I recently worked for a manufacturer of enterprise backup and availability software and was responsible for monitoring the independent mailing list for my company's products for our publications department. I would watch for concepts the list members did not understand or for specific comments about the documentation. I would then pass the comments on to relevant writer. I had ambitions of categorizing the e-mails that some kind of metrics could be applied, but I never got around to it. Whenever list members praised our documentation, I passed it around to the entire pubs department. It served as a morale booster and as ammunition for our pubs management to show the difference we were making to the rest of the company.

Michael Shea
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