Back in October, we introduced content orchestration. With our latest release this May, we’re expanding orchestration beyond Contentful to also include third-party tools for creating digital experiences. What does this have to do with the interstate highway (or autobahn) you ask?
Imagine setting off on the ultimate road trip, in search of wanderlust along U.S. Interstate 90. The breathtaking cross-country journey spans 13 states and 3,000 miles across the entire country from Boston to Seattle. You take in unforgettable sights like Niagara Falls, Chicago, Mount Rushmore, and Yellowstone. Unlike a single-destination trip, a road trip evokes a sense of adventure and freedom from the open road, where state lines blur and the possibilities are endless.
Content orchestration is the interconnected highway enabling content teams to freely access content, wherever it may be, for a multiplicity of digital experiences. It starts with empowering developers to more easily connect content across environments, quickly create content with pre-existing content models, and build apps that can connect to any environment.
What once required custom development now comes out of the box. And now, developers can more easily connect content from complex external systems. The results? Less one-off, manual work, maintenance, and debugging for developers. And the ultimate freedom for content teams to create rich and engaging experiences on a global scale.
Scaling for the road ahead
Today, content is the experience, but rich and engaging customer journeys require content that spans multiple complex internal and external systems.
Imagine the complexities that arise when organizations attempt to scale creation and delivery of content across multiple brands, channels, and regions.
Take a global organization with multiple brands across different regions. Multiply that by different channels — marketing, ecommerce, service, social media, etc. And different devices. Add to that terms and conditions from legal and compliance. It’s easy to see why organizations would need a connected toolchain that enables content teams to orchestrate content from anywhere it exists.
Silos create content gridlock
For too many organizations, the stark reality is that content is stuck in massive monoliths or scattered across disconnected, disparate silos. Without content orchestration, developers fall back on manual, lengthy, and expensive processes to pull together content from various internal and external systems. Or content teams resort to cutting and pasting content which is error-prone and unsustainable.
It’s like trying to take a cross-country trip and having to stop every single time you drive across state lines to learn a new set of road signs, pay tolls manually, or retool at the mechanics. With roadblocks preventing the free flow of content, it’s no surprise that content grinds to a halt and organizations fall short of delivering dynamic experiences.
With content at the center of all customer experiences, content teams need to leverage, and reuse, content to drive results. Many organizations have stuck with legacy CMSes that initially seemed easy to use for content teams but turned out to be next to impossible to expand and scale for an ever-evolving digital era. This creates opaque silos that make it impossible to reuse content freely and easily.
More sophisticated groups have gone the route of composable content. In this approach, teams gain autonomy with their own spaces that fulfill their needs without impinging on others. Distinct spaces can be defined however makes sense — by brand, region, channel… anything. But while teams have tremendous autonomy and power to reuse within those spaces, it’s still been a challenge to work well across spaces.
Accelerate digital experiences with content orchestration
To unlock the power of digital content in today’s customer experience-focused era, teams must achieve agility — and that agility starts with orchestration.
Orchestration connects content sources and teams across the organization. By enabling teams to work autonomously, yet in coordination, they can create, manage, and deliver content with greater efficiency, consistency, and speed.
Contentful already offers pre-built integrations for a wide range of third-party tools that are commonly used with Contentful. We’re excited to announce the latest addition of pre-built integrations in our Marketplace. The Shopify app and SAP Commerce Cloud Connector app provide content teams quick access to external PIM data to quickly create seamless digital experiences.
And the new Google Analytics 4 app means content teams can see how content is performing with the latest analytics tools, without having to leave Contentful.
These integrations are built using Contentful's market-leading App Framework, which allows developers to transform the Contentful experience and build apps and integrations. Contentful provides direct integrations to the tools most widely used by content creators and developers, like ecommerce/PIM, DAM, video, analytics, and more.
There’s more. We’re working on a deeper connection between third-party tools and Contentful content models and APIs. As a first step, we are building advanced integrations that retrieve content from leading partners in specific categories like ecommerce.
The tighter integration makes working with third-party systems much easier by ensuring that developers can connect to those systems with less effort while content teams have the most up-to-date third-party data.
In the vast digital landscape, content teams can be ready for what’s next by quickly adapting content for a multiplicity of digital experiences. Content orchestration, akin to the connected system of interstate highways, puts content teams in the driver’s seat.
Join us on May 24 for a webinar with product demos highlighting how content teams can rapidly bring to life commerce and marketing experiences, thanks to content orchestration that spans Contentful and third-party systems such as Shopify, SAP Cloud Commerce, and Google Analytics 4.