Content Orchestration is built on the holy trinity of People, Process and Technology. So it’s important to identify and integrate the right software for your content orchestration goals.
Because every organization and use case is unique, the best software for content orchestration will look different in your organization to others. It will depend on what you’re trying to achieve and what systems you already use.
What software do you need for Content Orchestration?
Whilst there is no single ‘best software’ for content orchestration, some software solutions are fairly fundamental to the process. Here are five tools that are typically combined in a content orchestration strategy.
Note that these aren’t the only software systems you can combine. With the right support, you can combine any number of applications into a bespoke solution to meet your strategic objectives.
Publishing is one of the most common use cases for content orchestration – and the tech developed for publishers is increasingly useful to content-heavy brands in other sectors too.
Publishers need to manage high volumes of content, get sign-off from various contributors and stakeholders, and prepare content for publication to a wide range of channels. There are lots of publishing software solutions to support this process.
For example, editorial workflow management solutions help streamline the process of creating, approving and scheduling content for publication. Multichannel publishing platforms take this process further, taking that editorial content through design and publication to various print and digital media.
Content management system
A Content Management System is used for creating and managing websites and digital content. Users can add copy and content to web pages and publish them, without needing to know code. CMS typically support a range of additional functionality – such as integrating ecommerce and marketing tools.
A CMS will include the ability to add and manage media. But this functionality will not be as advanced as you find in a dedicated Digital Asset Management system. Combining DAM with CMS is common in content orchestration.
Design is an essential part of the content supply chain – bringing campaign ideas to life on screen and in print. Designers use tools like Adobe Creative Cloud for graphic design, video editing, web development, photography and more. Integrating Adobe Creative Cloud into a content orchestration system reduces the friction between design software and other tools.
For example, linking Adobe CC with a DAM lets designers access digital assets without leaving their artboard – searching their full library to find the perfect asset for every project. Whilst integrating a PIM with Adobe CC can automatically import product information into design templates. Read more about Adobe InDesign automation.
Digital Asset Management system
A Digital Asset Management system makes it easier to identify, find and re-use digital assets. It is a single source of truth for all of your images, logos, video, audio and more.
As we’ve already mentioned, a DAM system can be easily integrated with other adjacent tech to put files at the fingertips of the people who need them. The metadata attached to assets in a DAM means it can be used to power automations, such as pulling assets automatically into design templates and ecommerce store fronts – as well as automatically optimizing assets for different formats and crops.
Product Information Management system
A Product Information Management system is used in retail, ecommerce and manufacturing to manage information and data about products. In these use cases, a PIM can be integrated with a DAM and design tools to deliver up-to-date information to content for print and digital channels. This can be synced and updated in real-time, so every customer touchpoint is consistent. Read more about InDesign automation with EasyCatalog.
Other system considerations in content orchestration
Hosting and management
It isn’t just the software itself you need to consider when it comes to content orchestration. You also need to think about how that software is hosted and managed.
Software can be deployed in the following ways:
- On-premise – hosted on your own servers and typically managed by your in-house IT experts
- In the cloud – known as Software-as-a-Service (Saas) – hosted remotely and typically managed by the service provider
- A hybrid of the two approaches
It is usually easier to implement a content orchestration approach if all of your software is cloud-based. SaaS platforms are easier to integrate than on-premise solutions because they’re designed to connect easily – often with APIs and other integration tools built-in.
Cloud-based software is also accessible to users from anywhere with an internet connection – whereas on-premise solutions can sometimes only be accessed on-site – which limits the flexibility of your new end-to-end process.
You also need to think about who will be responsible for integrating your software.
Managed SaaS means you’ll have access to their on-call IT experts to help you. This is a real benefit to organizations without an in-house IT team. But that support will be limited to their individual product. Although it may include help integrating the software using built-in APIs, it’s unlikely to stretch to combining multiple software solutions.
To combine lots of software solutions into a single seamless system, you’ll need support from someone who has an overview of the entire software stack – either an in-house IT manager or an external IT consultant. Find out more about who can help with content orchestration.
What about specific content orchestration software?
There are software solutions that identify as ‘content orchestration platforms’. These platforms are typically concerned with improving access and organization of content in the digital supply chain – providing a centralized place for content briefs, planning, collaboration, and scheduling. They often integrate with other software to automate processes like posting content to social media.
This service is extremely valuable to organizations with a more straight-forward content orchestration use case. The approach we use at Qonqord – integrating multiple adjacent tech into a bespoke software stack – is designed for more complex content orchestration strategies.
It is worth exploring all of your options before deciding which approach best meets the unique needs and objectives of your organization.
If you’re interested in unlocking the benefits of content orchestration – like faster time to market, higher productivity and more scalable content operations – Qonqord can help. We have more than 20 years of experience supporting publishers and global brands to implement a content orchestration strategy.