Content Design portfolio

Hey, I'm James

I’m an experienced Senior Content Designer - currently working at the BBC - with a background in Conversion Rate Optimisation, eCommerce and user-centred digital product development.

My experience


Manchester, UK
2019 - Present

Senior Content Designer


Content Designer

2019 - 2021

The Co-operative Bank

Manchester, UK
2017 - 2019

Digital Product Journey Executive

2017 - 2019


Milton Keynes, UK
2015 - 2017

Digital Planning Executive

2016 - 2017

Digital Content Editor

2015 - 2016


BBC Sport: mandatory sign-in content strategy



To make our Sport app experience feel more personal and relevant, we were challenged with asking our remaining signed-out users to create an account or log in.

To do this, we had to understand why people had resisted up to now, as well as manage reputational and performance-related risks.


  • gathered and analysed data from previous BBC app sign-in migrations
  • defined key user groups within the cohort, as well as their potential needs and motivators
  • forecasted optimistic and pessimistic outcomes, and presented to senior stakeholders
  • developed and proposed a 7-phase content strategy to focus on key user groups


Over a six week period, we reached a sign-in rate of 97% without a drop in users or app store ratings. The remaining 3% are likely to be mostly inactive users/installs.

The learnings from this content strategy are being used around the organisation to improve sign-in experiences across the BBC.

BBC Bitesize: Daily Lessons



In response to the Coronavirus pandemic, Bitesize scrambled to offer online lessons that directly support the UK school curriculum.

I led on content design to shape a new user journey into something children, parents and teachers could all understand, and managed a number of reactive changes to our strategy as the nation moved in and out of lockdown.


  • facilitated naming and promotional copy workshops to reframe the experience as we navigated national lockdowns and school closures
  • supported editorial colleagues using the new Bitesize voice and tone documentation to create lesson content
  • developed a flexible content strategy that could allow us to react to the shifting government communications on school closures and reopenings


In three weeks, we reactively created an new online experience that helped children, parents, carers and teachers navigate over 1800 lessons.

Bitesize Daily Lessons reached over 70 million views, and evolved continually as the UK moved in and out of lockdown, and schools opened and closed.

Now, the successes from Daily Lessons are used to steer Bitesize’s strategy for the future.

BBC Sport: an improved onboarding experience



In all of our research, users wanted a more relevant, personalised experience. While our personalised tab, MySport, lacked engagement.

We set out to improve discoverability and interaction with the MySport features, ultimately redesigning the onboarding process to prioritise favourite sport and team selection.


  • mapped a new onboarding experience alongside design and product colleagues
  • developed three copy variations to A/B/C test a motivational, instructional, or balanced approach to onboarding users
  • synthesised and played back research findings, refined the most effective approach before deploying permanently


We improved our sign-in rate, as well as encouraging half of our new users to select a favourite sport. New users engaged more with their MySport tab than existing users.

- 71.5% optional sign-in rate
- 50.8% users selected a favourite sport
- 19.7% selected entered a favourite team

Unified pitching and commissioning



The scope of this project was to a design a single, simplified solution to our many disparate and outdated commissioning tools and systems across Radio, TV and online.

It could streamline our internal processes for commissioning new shows and content, as well as make it easier and more accessible for show creators to pitch to the BBC.


  • performed a content audit of existing tools
  • led discovery sessions with commissioning colleagues to understand complex departmental and industry processes
  • crafted UI, instructional and microcopy for both internal and external-facing systems
  • led usability testing of the new tool with commissioning colleagues
  • gained senior stakeholder buy-in to make sure colleagues would support the shift towards plain, universally understandable language


Preliminary sign-off has been reached to standardise the language we use to describe the various stages of the commissioning process. And we’ve began to review and rewrite all external facing documentation on the existing, older systems.

The Co-operative Bank: mortgage calculators



Design and develop dynamic calculators to help existing mortgage customers view mortgage products that are relevant to their situation, before applying online.

As a result, we could reduce processing time for users and colleagues.


  • embedded myself within the mortgages product team to learn the nuance and complexity of mortgages
  • worked closely with legal teams to make sure all the content was compliant
  • crafted a scalable content system to standardise 100+ product pages
  • designed a scalable inputs error messaging matrix in collaboration with the developer


We reduced the time it takes for a customer to switch their mortgage with the bank from two weeks to three days, and removed 40 calls/month into the bank’s contact centre.

After this, we quickly ported the calculators to the Bank’s mortgage broker-facing website: Platform.

Nightfall: Voice and Tone design



Nightfall was a Research & Development exercise for the BBC, to create the BBC’s first online multiplayer game and build the capabilities to support online gaming.

To complement the brand documentation for the BBC’s first online multiplayer game, I led the cocreation of the brand voice and tone with our editorial and design colleagues.

I also led on content for the app and web UI, Bestiary (an index of all the game’s monsters, lore and characters) and website.


  • facilitated a series of voice and tone workshops with editorial, product, marketing and design stakeholders
  • mapped ‘interaction groups’ to steer the brand tone in different contexts
  • created documentation, and codesigned app settings, Bestiary and narrative content with editorial colleagues to embed the guidelines within the team
  • supported usability testing, focusing on language comprehension and effectiveness of the brand’s voice and tone


Nightfall reached over 10k downloads on iOS and Android, with a Play Store rating of 4.1/5.

Comprehensive voice and tone documentation helped editorial teams to create clear, usable and entertaining content for seasonal updates two years.

In 2021, Nightfall was decommissioned. But I’ve built a strong relationship with our R&D department as a result of the project and still provide UX Writing support.

Want to work together? Get in touch!

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