The Secrets of Sitecore Content Hub: Part 3

Bringing the vision to life: Creating a true enterprise content hub

In our previous blog, we introduced the wide-ranging capabilities of Sitecore’s Content Hub and shared an example of how one content-intensive enterprise uses it to ensure that their “backstage” content operations and their “onstage” content experiences deliver maximum value to both their audiences and their business.And as we noted in that blog, Content Hub offers such a broad array of capabilities that it can sometimes be hard to figure out where to start, and how these powerful tools fit into existing and future teams, processes and tech stacks. Here’s a framework around which you can begin to organize your planning:

A hub for whom?

Content Hub has the potential to be just that – a true “hub” for all content that an enterprise creates and manages. So, it’s not just a tool for marketers. Any area of the organization that creates content could use it: product, legal, HR… the list goes on and on. Horizontal’s typical approach for an organization not already familiar with true enterprise content management is to start small, and advance in stages. You might start with your digital marketers, then expand into the broader marketing organization. After that you can move into product, internal use cases, and so on. Similarly, you don’t have to implement all of Content Hub’s capabilities at once. Your decision should be based both on your prioritized needs and on the organization’s readiness to embrace potentially significant change management. If the team has never used a DAM, you might start there and get them comfortable with how it changes their way of working. Then graduate to MRM and/or CMP. There is no right or wrong order; it’s about ensuring that your team is prepared to learn, adapt and optimize new ways of thinking about how content tasks and workflows are completed.

A hub at the center

Well duh, right? A “hub” is, by definition, at the center. But the center of what? The below illustration positions Content Hub between a variety of example inputs and outputs.

Inputs: Content Foundations

Content Hub can be the one-stop-shop for your day-to-day content execution, but getting started requires careful planning based on several foundational inputs:

  • Enterprise & digital brand standards and style definitions
  • Information & data typing standards (i.e. taxonomies, ontologies, lexicons and other pre-existing structures)
  • Content KPIs and associated analytics & BI solutions
  • (Maybe) external authoring and workflow solutions (some people still like to write in Word!)
  • Content team resourcing, roles & skill sets
  • Compliance and other governance requirements & processes
  • Etc.

These and other foundations help establish both the current state of content operations and the structures/plans that will drive the future, optimized state with Content Hub at the center.

The Hub: Content Operations

Content Hub focuses your content operations in a single or primary suite of tools, but it often exists alongside other operational components. These could include external, adjacent systems like:

  • Translation services
  • Creative tools (e.g. Adobe Creative Cloud)
  • External tagging/taxonomy solutions
  • External rights management
  • Etc.

Remember that Content Hub is a suite of related tools, and you don’t need to buy all of them. So you might already have a DAM that works just fine, but you need a Content Marketing Platform. In this case, your existing DAM can readily integrate with Content Hub’s CMP.

Outputs: Content Presentations

With Content Hub orchestrating your content operations to the point of publication, you get to decide just where you want that content to show up. For the non-technologists like me, this is what “headless” means. Content Hub’s API-first solution means you can present your content anywhere you like, including multiple destinations at once.For me, the best example is a corporate press release. That single content item might need to show up in any number of contexts:

  • On a website powered by Sitecore Experience Platform, Drupal, AEM or similar
  • On a corporate blog powered by Wordpress
  • In an email delivered via Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Eloqua, Marketo or similar
  • In a syndicated news feed powered by Cision/PRNewswire
  • On your corporate intranet powered by Workday
  • On screens hanging in your office lobbies around the world
  • On your mobile app
  • …and so on.

Content Hub gives you the ability to create that content once: author, assemble assets, determine presentation channels, plan publication timelines, manage authoring/reviewing/editing/approving workflows, and ultimately distribute everywhere. It’s a simple but powerful example of how a true Content Hub can streamline content operations for maximum ROI.Knowing that there are an infinite number of use cases and potential solutions built around Content Hub, we’d love to hear about your content challenges. Drop us a note and we’ll gladly spend some time thinking about ways you can maximize the value of your content investments.