Intelligent Content

A Smarter Way to Create Content

Ingeniux Web Experience Management Products: A Smarter Way to Create Content

Ingeniux CMS is based on an intelligent content model. While editing content is simple and requires no mark-up, behind the scenes the Ingeniux CMS editor structures all content as XML and JSON to make it easier to reuse, deliver, and discover. 

We believe in the COPE (Create Once, Publish Everywhere) model for content management. The demand for consistent, engaging content across all your organization’s channels has changed the way you create and manage content. It’s no longer enough to create multiple versions of your content for each channel; you need a way to create content once and reuse it across all channels and devices.

Intelligent content (also referred to as ‘structured content’) is content you create and manage separately from how you publish it. When you create content in Ingeniux, you include metadata and other information that describes what the content is, enabling you to reuse it across your channels – websites and within a site, web applications, portals, mobile apps, and more – in different formats and views.

Intelligent content is content that is:

  • Structurally rich
  • Semantically categorized
  • Reusable
  • Reconfigurable
  • Adaptable

The Ingeniux CMS intelligent content management model lets you define how you will create, manage, and deliver content across the organization. Let's look at how it works.

Start with a Content Strategy

Every organization creates and manages content but what you don’t want to do is allow each department or team in your company to create and manage content in its own way. Why? Because most, if not all, the content you create is used in some way to support the customer. Without a centralized content strategy, you’ll wind up with an inconsistent customer experience and most importantly, unhappy customers.

The simplest and best definition of content strategy is “Content strategy guides the creation, delivery, and governance of useful, usable content.”

When you break it down, a content strategy provides a few different things. It:

  • Identifies the topics and types of content you create.
  • Defines how the content is organized, formatted, and published (structure of the content).
  • Describes the processes, tools, and people involved in creating and managing content through its full lifecycle.
  • Identifies who is involved in defining and adapting the content strategy, including key decision-makers, stakeholders and influencers.

With a current state defined, you can now take the next step and plan your go-forward content strategy. The plan will include information such as:

The topics, themes, and areas of focus for your content

  • Who owns each
  • The taxonomy your content will map to
  • The metadata your content will include
  • SEO guidelines
  • The workflow processes involved in creating, managing and publishing content types
  • Voice and brand guidelines for public-facing content
  • The content governance model.
  • How you will ensure the quality of your content
  • The channels you will deliver content to, including the format of the content for each channel

A content strategy must be communicated and shared with everyone in the organization. It should include tools and information that help others follow the strategy in their work.

The Content Model

The main component of intelligent content management is the content model. A content model defines the type of content you create, how to structure that content, as well as the metadata to associate with the content.

Define Content Types

To create an intelligent (or structured) content model, you start by defining content types such as an article, image, news story, press release, knowledge base article, and so on.

Next, for each content type you define a set of elements, also called attributes, such as title, description, summary, media file (image, video), author, main body. You also define the format of each element (date, text – 50 characters, number, image, etc.). The number of elements you have will depend on the content type and how you envision using it across the organization. The key to creating structure is to break down the content into its key elements, but you don’t necessarily want to break it down into too many discrete elements that you will not use.

For example, when you create a press release content type, you might define elements including title, subtitle, summary, main body, but you don’t need to break down the main body into separate elements for each paragraph because you wouldn’t use the individual paragraphs. However, you might want to create a separate element for a quote so that you can use it for different purposes.

The decision on how to break down a content type into its elements depends on several factors: how you want to layout the content in different channels and how you want to reuse the content in different channels.

After you define the content type elements, you then define the metadata associated with each content type. Metadata are content type elements that you don’t see and include things like Create Date, Publish Date, SEO description, author. Metadata comes in several flavors:

  • Descriptive Metadata: title, abstract, author, keywords
  • Administrative Metadata: date created, file type, access/permissions
  • Structural Metadata: version, relationship to other content types

Define Relationships

Once you have defined all your content types, you need to define the relationships between content types. For example, the Content Type ‘Author,’ is related to the Author element in the New Article content type.

CMS and the Content Model

With Ingeniux CMS, once you have your model defined, you can set it up in the CMS using the Schema Designer. Without a schema designer like the one in Ingeniux, you may be required to modify your content model to fit the capabilities of the CMS.

The Ingeniux Schema Designer creates XML schemas that are then natively available as XML or JSON. It supports over 25 standard element types, such as Text (string), XHTML (WYSIWYG editing), image, media file, database query, navigation, etc. The Schema Designer allows content models to change and web administrators to selectively update existing content with those changes through versioning as well as syncing and replication to propagate changes across existing content items.

We’ve looked at modeling your content, now let’s look at how the Ingeniux CMS stores it for easy access and management.

Content Repository

Ingeniux CMS stores your content in a NoSQL database. A NoSQL database is schema-free, so content can have any structure you define, and you can change that structure over time without development or database changes. A NoSQL repository supports millions of topics and documents. Automatic clustering and sharding allow repository clustering without DB administration or development costs.

You store content in a NoSQL database as documents or JSON objects. Content has rich metadata, and you can easily search and retrieve it using that metadata. All the content in the repository is indexed and cached in memory, enabling information to be quickly processed and delivered without any performance impact, database IO, or SQL injection risk.

NoSQL is less expensive than a relational database and easier to administrate, making it a good choice for cloud-based deployments.

Content Delivery and Access

Ingeniux CMS solution offers multiple deployment options to fit how the organization needs to deliver its content now or in the future. These may include:

  • Dynamic delivery using a server technology like ASP.NET or Java
  • Multi-format delivery using mixed or different server technologies
  • Web services delivery using a REST or SOAP-based API
  • Device-targeted delivery using a mobile detection system
  • Push-based delivery such as XML, JSON or into an external database so a remote application can consume the content
  • Plain old HTML delivery for static Web content

Let’s examine four of these in more detail:

Delivery Via Dynamic Delivery Server

In an intelligent content management system, your backend content management administration is separate from content delivery. One way to deliver content is by using a loosely coupled delivery server that acts as the delivery tier. In this case, you have a content delivery framework or application used to render dynamic content and other services.

When you have a website or microsites that you want to deliver content to, this approach works well. The dynamic delivery server can not only deliver content to a website; it can apply business rules for personalization or device and channel optimization.

Web Services Via Headless Content API

One of the benefits of intelligent content management is the ability to deliver content to channels separate from your CMS. This is done through the delivery of content through a headless content API.

Any application, including native mobile apps, that want content managed within the intelligent CMS, pulls that content from the CMS using a content API. The application or website then formats the presentation of that content any way it wants.

The Content API approach works for organizations building applications using modern client-side JavaScript frameworks like AngularJS and Ember or companies building highly customized web experiences not supported through the CMS.

Device-Targeted Delivery Using Mobile Detection

Not every mobile experience should look that same. An intelligent content management system can detect the type of mobile device requesting content and deliver that content in the appropriate format.

Mobile detection requires the management of a device library that is regularly updated (mobile device form factors and capabilities change often).

Push-Based Delivery Using XML or JSON

Instead of an application or website “pulling” content from the CMS using a content API, the CMS can automatically “push” content to an application or website in XML or as JSON objects the website then loads.

This approach works well for managing help content in the CMS, and other content that doesn’t change often but you want to manage in the CMS so that you can use it in multiple channels.

An Ingeniux Way to Create Content

Intelligent content management focuses on identifying the right content strategy, mapping the content model, and then implementing that model within the Ingeniux content management system. Once you impliment intelligent content, it's made available for multiple channels regardless of where that channel resides or what the experience looks like.

The famed content strategist Ann Rockley said the key to creating intelligent content is to think about what the content is, not what it looks like. The channel will define how it looks. It's about understanding the content model and how you can break it down into its key elements, describing it as accurately as possible so that any application that requests it will understand what it is and how it's structured.

Ingeniux CMS is built from the ground up to manage intelligent content. We provide the tools and the expertise to help your organization end content chaos, and start building content that supports your strategy and roadmap. 

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