There’s a broad scope of knowledge and experience required to truly understand what it means to create content across multiple devices and platforms. If you’re typically a film maker then understanding what works in the games or book publishing industries may not be on your resume.

Here’s some handy tips to fast tracking your knowledge and some tools you can start using straight away.

 1.     Understand your audience.

Knowing detailed statistics is crucial when making a choice about what mediums or platforms you’re going to use to tell the story on. There are some great places to get market sizes and numbers of users on various devices, including NewZoo, which offers easy to digest data on various audiences in gaming and digital entertainment.

2.     Understand the landscape.

Drilling down deeper into behaviours and trends across each platform you’re thinking of using is worth the effort. Try exploring places like App Annie for performance data as well as useful insights into usage behaviours.

3. Know what it takes to actually develop content for specific platforms.

It’s difficult to be an instant publishing expert on all forms of publishing right out of the gate. Take some time to understand the technical process and the limitations of your chosen platform. This will help you manage expectations for both you and your production team. Try signing up to project management software like Kanbanery which will walk you through user tutorials that help give insight into the project management process from a development perspective.

4. Make a plan (and accept that you’ll probably not stick to it).

Content strategies aren’t dissimilar to release schedules. Expect delays, learn how to be agile enough to respond (in real-time if necessary) to what your audience needs across multiple platforms / devices. Map the relationships across content and platforms / devices before you even start production. Planning your content strategy is as essential as planning your production schedule. For those not familiar with content mapping, creating a visual plan is often helpful in articulating your strategy to others. Try MindJet MindManager to create visual frameworks you can easily share.

5. Understand what makes your audience tick.

Aside from the hard data you can rummage around the internet to discover about your target audience, actually testing your fan base/audience as it evolves is a crucial insight tool that won’t cost you anything to leverage. Try using Optimizely to get a sense of what’s working for your audience. Even Survey Monkey (when used properly) can help you to refine and focus on the key elements that are resonating with your audience.

As with all tools, they are what you make of them – so explore, experiment, expect some trial and error to find the right combination of tools that work for you and your team. Find out more about creating content and publishing across multiple devices through the Cross Media Storytelling Course with Raindance.