Rocketpower your content operations with EnonicMorten Eriksen on
What the Enonic platform can offer in regard to ContentOps.
Content operations is a principle for integrating people, process, and technology in producing quality content in a more efficient and frictionless way than before. The need for ContentOps has sprung out of the multichannel world of digital experiences, which has put a strain on the content creators.
While content strategy and distribution are probably handled well already by the leadership and the developers of your organisation, content authors have been left in the dark. With ContentOps one of the aims is simply to treat content with the same respect given to software development, as Angus Edwardson of GatherContent elegantly put it.
One of the pillars of content operations is technology, and having the right digital tools to elevate your content and thereby your business is of grave importance. Choosing the right digital platform—including CMS—matters. We think Enonic is especially suited for ContentOps, so let’s see why.
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Content Studio + ContentOps = ❤️
Enonic’s platform ships with a CMS called Content Studio. This is the preeminent hub for your ContentOps, being content-driven to the core. In Content Studio you get a clear and neat overview of all your content, and every individual item—from pages, posts, and person profiles to quotes, images, and documents must have a defined content type.
We will take a closer look at several key aspects of Content Studio and show you how they can contribute to strengthen your efforts in content operations.
Workflow, issues, user roles
Bringing different contributors together in a complex organisation is no simple matter. Copywriters, project managers, subject matter experts, editors, legal experts, and senior stakeholders need to collaborate on brainstorming, outlining, producing, reviewing, verifying, greenlighting, and publishishing content.
Luckily, things are made simple by the nature of Content Studio, as it includes mainly three features to help you align your people and editorial process:
- User roles
Workflows are built-in statuses in Content Studio, inherent in every action you perform—including creating a new content item, editing drafts, marking the content as ready, requesting publishing, and finally publishing. All these steps are marked by visual signals in the UI, as well as their own logic. For instance, in draft mode a given content item cannot be published.
Issues management is the internal support and communication system in Content Studio. From the top right menu you can create an issue for anything, assign relevant content items, assign relevant colleagues, and have a dialogue. For instance, if you require proofreading, are requesting a missing image, or have encountered a bug, you can instantly notify your colleague through the system and emails.
User roles and access management is another powerful feature arriving out of the box with Enonic and Content Studio. You can easily specify user roles and what permissions any given user group has access to at any time. Copywriters should for instance be able to edit content, but not publish them, while editors should naturally be able to publish and unpublish at will. More on this later.
Landing page editor
Content Studio features a visual landing page editor, where you can build entire pages from scratch or through templates. In an intuitive drag and drop interface, you can place and decide layouts with one, two, three columns (or any setup you require), text fields, images, and advanced and reusable components called “parts,” showing whatever you want. This could be a contact form, a list of recent articles, a matrix of employees, a banner, or a button.
Now, why is this great for ContentOps principles? While it is an enormous advantage to distribute structured content from a database to any channel, most organisations still have a website. Being able to both edit and see how the finished product will look and feel is as good an advantage for content authors as for senior stakeholders.
Also, any author or editor can quickly and easily rearrange elements with the landing page editor’s drag and drop function or through the component view, which provides you with a schematic and neat overview of your landing page. This makes the editing and reviewing process a breeze.
Images are a large part of our daily digest of content. Being able to handle images is therefore a requirement in any content production process, but how do you make it as efficient as possible?
Reducing the number of required tools to fulfill your tasks is one surefire way to ContentOps success. With Content Studio’s included image editor tool, you no longer need third-party image software or services to make necessary adjustments before publishing.
With Enonic you can easily crop, flip, and rotate uploaded images, as well as assign a focal point. This last feature is a gem—just simply decide a point on an image you want to be shown, and this part of the image will always be centered wherever and however you choose to display it: a horizontal slit, a vertical portrait, or anything in between.
Integrating marketing tools
On a busy workday a content editor may need to use a tool to quickly assess the grammarly state of a given text, while a marketing professional would like to fine-tune that SEO just a little more. Luckily, Enonic supports third-party marketing tools to enhance content operations.
For instance, our Siteimprove integration delivers a dashboard straight in the Content Studio interface, giving you tasks to complete—like broken links, misspellings, and technical issues. SEO Meta Fields can similarly be installed in Enonic to give you full control over what is shown on social media and Google, while Google Analytics lets you see insights directly in the user interface.
Learn more: Guide to Enonic Market »
One implicit aspect of ContentOps is the need for usability across every process and technology in order to empower the people who will produce, review, and publish content. One of the driving forces behind the creation of Content Studio is exactly great user experience.
Content Studio is easy to learn for both professionals and more sporadic users. The general navigation should be familiar from anyone who has encountered a standard operating system: the interface is split between an action bar at the top, a browsing tree to the left, and content preview to the right.
Added to this are just as familiar actions for content items—like new, edit, duplicate, move, and delete—as well as familiar keyboard shortcuts like CTRL + S/⌘ + S for saving and Alt + N for creating a new item.
The interface is sleek and visually appealing, the operations are reasonable and logical, and the mentioned workflows should make processes more streamlined.
While your people may be enthusiastic about ContentOps and are as ready as they can be to enact the principles in practice, it makes little difference if the technology is outdated or difficult to handle. This is also relevant for making adjustments to looks and functionality.
You can deploy new changes to power your ContentOps as often as you like without downtime, due to the platform’s continuous deployment solution. Developers can also use their favourite continuous integration tools, making it even easier to make what you want, when you want it.
As mentioned, every content item in Content Studio must have a defined content type. This approach allows for a serious advantage in the form of structured content. This essentially means that every content item of the same type can be treated similarly—every item of a common type has identical structure, logic, and fields, and can consequently be treated the same, every time.
The lowdown of this? The reuse of your content in any channel through headless delivery. Enonic fully supports headless CMS, in addition to more traditional CMS features like landing page editing, previewing, templating, URL handling, and so on. Enonic is thus a hybrid CMS—perfectly suited for content operations.
One of the chief reasons for the advent of ContentOps in the first place is the strain put on content production by the new omnichannel reality, where content can be presented in almost any form in almost any channel and almost any device. Being able to deliver pure, structured content to any channel should be a staple of every CMS touting ContentOps excellence.
ContentOps is all about producing content as effectively as possible. As we have mentioned already, Content Studio includes tonnes of features that make content production effective as a fox in a hen farm.
We have mentioned several features already, like the page editor, navigation, keyboard shortcuts, issues management, image handling, and marketing tool integration, but here is a quick recap of even more time-saving features:
- Search: Super fast with ability to filter content types
- Responsive design: Large buttons and collapsible panels for both big and small screens
- Macros: Adapt any content for quick embedding
- Content duplication: Duplicate items, child items, and even entire sites in a single stroke
- Dependencies widget: See and highlight content that links to and is linked to from a content item
By being one of the three main pillars of ContentOps, people and the need to organise them is of utmost importance. Luckily, the Enonic platform offers exactly what you need: access and user roles management.
In the main menu of XP there is a tool called “Users,” where you get an instant overview of what roles you have, what the roles have access to, and what users populate each role. Switch roles, edit permissions, re-assign people, or revoke access–it’s all up to you, just in a few seconds and a few button clicks.
Whether your copywriters need to edit, your subject matter experts need to read and modify, or your editors need to publish content, you can easily assign (or revoke) the appropriate permissions in Content Studio.