AWS - The Right Cloud for Media and Entertainment Workloads

Posted by Kimi Mahajan on Aug 2, 2019 2:32:00 PM

The media landscape is transforming the way content is being produced and consumed, which is giving rise to user expectations to have more personalized experiences, from anywhere, anytime and on any device. 

This is leading to huge operational changes for media companies to migrate from traditional broadcasting method to digital distribution model. Several media giants are increasingly adopting new cloud technologies to manage the explosive growth of the digital content.

Media enterprises are making a shift to AWS, which is the pioneer in cloud hosting, to take advantage of its high scalability, elasticity and secure cloud services. 

But, how beneficial is AWS in terms of solving challenges of media and entertainment industry? Let’s understand the benefits of moving to cloud and why AWS offers the best services in the cloud service arena.

Why Media Enterprises need to Shift to Cloud?

In a survey, 35% of respondents replied that their enterprises moved to cloud for easier collaboration for post-production tasks.

types-of-business-responding-srijan-technologiesSource: Backblaze

The constant pressure among media firms to invest resources in generating high-quality, creative content and the need to prevent data losses due to natural and artificial catastrophes is pushing them to move to cloud.

So, how is cloud helping the Media and entertainment industry with its major challenges? Let’s review them one by one.

1.Huge Consumer Demand

Today’s consumers of media and entertainment content expect huge content choice, with their demand varying rapidly, which have to be dealt with in real time. 

The media and entertainment sector needs to cost-effectively meet volatile demand, and remain flexible in terms of automatically spinning servers up and down as demand increases or decreases.

2. Continuous Supply of Content

In order to stay competitive, content creators in the media field are under constant pressure to produce and/or distribute original content more frequently, at an accelerated rate.

With cloud, it’s easier to store, manage, and deliver gigantic amount of digital content. Hybrid and multi-cloud deployments can provide an even greater measure of flexibility, allowing workloads to be shifted seamlessly across public and private infrastructures.

3. Cost Benefits of Cloud Computing

Cable or broadcast television section of media and entertainment sector are being challenged by new trends in television broadcasting. Agile and low-cost over the top (OTT) companies selling and/or delivering streaming media content directly to consumers over the Internet are competing against the traditional media distribution methods.

Other factors that are challenging media content are the rising costs of content licensing, as well as shortened technology lifecycles.

By shifting to the cloud’s OPEX model, media companies can reduce their costs involving storage and delivery technologies and infrastructures.

4. High Performance With Minimal to Zero Delays

It is critical in terms of user experience for viewer content to stream with minimal delays and downtime. A six-second delay in streaming an ad for a show can cost a huge loss, with customers likely to switch to another entertainment channel.

The cloud provides architectures which supports high availability and un-compromised performance SLAs.

Advantages of AWS for Media Enterprises

Media enterprises can help their users monitor, manage storage and compute usage and costs with the tools and services with AWS. 

For major tasks around content production, storage, processing, and distribution, AWS brings scalable, elastic and secured cloud services. Equipped with deep learning, NLP, ML, NLU it delights the digital media creators with personalized experiences through smarter content investments.

Secure, Scalable and Cost-Effective Solution

66% of respondents say security is their greatest concern while adopting an enterprise cloud computing platform

AWS remains the best choice for media companies who are looking to adopt private cloud model. As per Cloud Security Alliance report, Amazon Web Services is the most popular public cloud infrastructure platform, comprising 41.5% of application workloads in the public cloud. 

Multinational entertainment firms have become scalable and are also making content available to consumers anytime and from anywhere on leveraging AWS cloud services.

It remains a cost-effective solution for media enterprises which can follow pay per use model for the services leveraged.

Cloud Computing is Changing Economics of Media and Publishing

Simplified Content creation and Production

Media enterprises need not worry about geo and resource constraints. The only focus  should be on creating quality content with HDR, VR, AR and beyond, to keep viewers engaged. 

With AWS, you can connect with world-wide production talent, unlimited capacity, unsurpassed security and the most innovative cloud technology partners in the industry. 

Now, you can optimize valuable insights to improve production investment decisions tailored as per consumers’ needs with the help of machine learning and analytics. Pre-processing and optimization for false takes or cuts comes easy with AWS. ML production edit provides quick turn-around for dailies and editorial review. Prohibited content can be easily flagged for filtered viewing.

Efficient Storage Provider

The media enterprises now have a one-stop solution for their storage concerns by opting for AWS multi-tiered storage solution, which includes Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), S3 Infrequent access, and Amazon Glacier. These solutions allow for massive data storage, allowing huge data ingestion and elasticity satisfying the ever-increasing demand for storage, along with cost management.

Easens Digital Distribution and Post Production Process

AWS can solve the concerns of broadcasting quality video workflows in the cloud and ensures seamless delivery to any device, at anytime and anywhere.

Media enterprises need not worry about live, linear, and on-demand content, as AWS  specialises in delivering and in creating professional quality media experiences for the viewers in much less time, effort and expenses required in a traditional data center.

Pay-as-you-go pricing and fully-automated resource scaling lets you handle any sized audience without upfront capital investment and instead of managing complex infrastructure, AWS video solutions lets you focus on creating user-engaging content.

Live Streaming, Subtitling, Video on Demand Service

Making content understandable to a large audience is easy with AWS cloud solutions which helps generate multilingual subtitles for live over-the-top streaming. 

With AWS, the viewers will be given a choice to choose a movie/video from a wide array of options with the help of video-on-demand (VOD) content. VOD can be available for broadcast and multi-screen delivery.

Migration of VFX renderings to AWS will help media companies to shorten content production times and foster collaboration with contributors from around the world. 

Let’s understand how AWS has been beneficial for giant names in media and entertainment.

Company Description Business Challenges Solution and Benefits

Netflix

Prominent name in streaming online content on smart TV, game console, PC, Mac, mobile, tablet and more.

  • Unable to scale
  • Unable to meet user increased demand
  • Huge infrastructure unable to manage data storage
  • Accelerated deployment of  servers and data storage
  • Stream high-quality content from anywhere, any device
  • improved scalability, with a better architecture
  • Containers optimized their microservices architecture

Discovery Communications

Leader in nonfiction media, reaching more than 1.8 billion cumulative subscribers in 218 countries and territories.

  • Required easy to manage website infrastructure
  • Was seeking cost-effective solution
  • Wanted to consolidate multiple delivery engines
  • Needed scalable and flexible solution
  • Wanted to switch to pay-as-you-go model
  • Migrated more than 40 sites to AWS
  • Highly scalable architecture
  • Entire continuous delivery system and development platform built around AWS API
  • Low latency along with cost savings of 20-25 percent and better manageability

 

Media and entertainment have begun to embrace cloud computing as their technology of choice. Reducing IT operational costs and providing anytime and anywhere accessible high quality content will soon trigger global adoption of cloud solutions by media and entertainment.

Srijan is an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner. Contact us today to discuss how our AWS trained professionals can help you in migrating your media and entertainment-based apps to AWS.

Topics: AWS, Cloud, Media & Publishing

Why Voice technology is the next big thing for media Enterprises

Posted by Gaurav Mishra on Jun 20, 2018 3:57:00 PM

The average human types at almost 50 words per minute, but speaks at around 140. So with a simple ‘Ok Google’ voice command, a user can now get all the information she wants three times faster than she normally would. It obviously helps that Google’s voice search now has an accuracy rate of over 90%.

Why Voice Technology is the Next Big Thing for Media Enterprises

And it’s not just Google, but a whole host of voice assistants like Siri, Alexa, Cortana and more that are now available in the market and continuously improving. Given the rising demand and ease-of-use, it is inevitable that voice technology will be rapidly adopted by brands as their next biggest engagement channel.

We take a look at the current trends in voice tech, and how media enterprises can leverage it to their benefit.

The popularity of voice devices is increasing at a staggering rate

Voice devices have already amassed a massive following in the US. An NPR and Edison research survey found that already 16% of Americans own a smart speaker. This stat increases to 46% when we consider how many people use voice technology in general, including a smart assistant on their phones.

What’s more? Smart speaker ownership grew by 54% in just three months between December 2017 to February 2018. In fact, it is going to beat smartphones when it comes to a 50% adoption in the US household, surpassing the former as the most quickly adopted technology by half the US population. Smartphones took seven years to reach the 50% adoption mark, while voice tech will take only four years.

Voice commerce sales reached $1.8 billion in 2017, and it’s predicted that it will touch the $40 billion mark by 2022. This is clearly a huge opportunity for brands looking to market themselves with optimal ROI.

Some brands have already gained a competitive edge

When it comes to adopting voice tech for enterprise usage, Amazon’s Alexa seems to be leading the pack. Many brands have introduced their own ‘skills’ for the Alexa platform, aimed at providing unique content to their customers.

A skill is like an application one installs on their phone, except that it’s completely voice based. The Alexa tools kit allows a developer to teach Alexa new skills, which could then be used by the consumers. These range from giving a simple weather brief to complex skills like partnering with a web service to book a cab.

Media organizations like the BBC, ESPN, and the Daily Show have created their own Alexa skills, which can give daily news briefings with the command "Alexa, what's my Flash Briefing?". But with currently over 11,000 skills on Amazon Alexa, it can be tough for brands to really stand out.

One media publication that stood out, and plans to invest big in voice in the next couple of years, is Hearst Media. They own over 30 magazine and 25 newspaper publications, and have realized an upper hand when it comes to content production via voice technology.

The popularity of voice devices is increasing at a staggering rate

They unveiled ‘My Beauty Chat’ in November 2017 for Alexa devices, which features editors from Hearst titles like Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping and Elle offering beauty advice. Users can know all about the latest beauty trends, must-have products, and several other beauty tips via a 10-15 minute podcast, twice a day. It also occasionally invites popular celebrities like Jenna Ushkowitz, who offer unique insights into their fitness and beauty regimen.

Hearst’s Alexa skill gives them the opportunity to have a more active interaction with their customers. They are also enhancing the customer experience because now all the information from multiple media portals is accessible on a single platform, so that users don’t have to look anywhere else.

For instance, a subscriber can now get tips for the best mascara available from Cosmopolitan, and know about Rihanna’s latest cosmetics range from Elle, without having to switch magazines for these different products.

Another notable aspect here is that Amazon is pretty adamant about not selling voice advertisements to companies for a royalty. However, Hearst has already managed to land L’Oreal as a sponsor for their beauty chat skill, because big brands see immense value in being able to reach customers on a voice-based platform. And while Hearst might not host overt ads, they will definitely look at organic and relevant ways to bring to promote the L’Oreal brand.

Why should media companies work on voice content?

With major publishing houses already dabbling in voice tech, it’s time to take a look at why exactly it should be the next big investment for media enterprises.

Creating more interactive content experiences

The traditional TV viewing experience was made rather compelling, when BBC allowed its viewers to interact with their content via voice commands on the interactive science fiction comedy ‘The Inspection Chamber.’ They called it “conversational radio” and reported that this neat little experiment met their goals comfortably. They also feel that it’d be interesting to try to get more data that is directly related to the user like their local weather, or taste in TV shows, and then try to work that into the piece.

DC and Warner Bros. partnered with Amazon to create an audio adventure called “The Wayne Investigation” as a promotion tactic for “Batman V Superman”. This, too, was an interactive radio programme that lasted for up to forty minutes, based on the decisions made by the user. They made use of Amazon Skills Kit for its development.

Such  interactive content pieces definitely have an element of novelty, atleast in these initial days of voice tech. So a first mover advantage here could lead to significant increase in engagement, as well as attract new customers.

The experience and learnings from developing standalone content pieces for voice devices at the beginning will also help enterprises understand their audience better. This knowledge would feed into their strategy of effectively delivering more content via voice, in formats that easily fit into their audience’s changing lifestyles and preferences.

Catering to new content consumption needs

In a survey by Global web index, it was found that 1 in every 5 owners of voice assistant devices would like a voice ‘skill’ to improve their daily lives and help them get more organized. With the help of new innovations in voice tech, brands can easily do exactly that for users.

For media companies, this need opens up a huge set of opportunities:

  • Publishing houses can offer latest news stories about specific subjects, at an ideal time based on an individual’s preferences
  • Entertainment firms can create short snackable content based on consumer preferences, that can act as promotional pieces for their large-format content
  • Engaging voice content like lifestyle and fitness routines, educational content and more can be introduced and used to push traffic towards other digital properties

Offer contextual product placements

The usual style of pop-up online ads will not be applicable on content created for voice devices. However, given the level of interactivity consumers have with their voice assistants, product recommendations via these devices could carry the same psychological weight as word-of-mouth promotions. This means that one, extremely contextual product placement here, will potentially be more valuable to brands than a whole bunch of online ads.

While media houses will need to figure out how to keep the product placement highly contextual to the content, they can definitely charge a premium for these personalized ‘ads’.

But there are some key challenges for brands

While voice-tech is definitely the next big investment avenue, there are certain challenges that media businesses should be ready to deal with:

Content Discovery

As of now, users are required to enable a skill and then remember the exact command to launch a particular brand’s skill. They simply aren’t aware of the quality of certain skills they have on their devices, which makes it difficult for brands, and their content, to be discovered.

echo-dot

“The main challenge for media companies on these devices is content discovery. The ones we see that happening with are those designed to be daily habits. And they answer organic questions." said Chris Papaleo, executive director at Hearst Media.

So making audiences aware of particular voice offerings, and driving sustained adoption and engagement is the first hurdle.

Disrupted Content Experience

As mentioned before, the real challenge for driving revenues from voice tech would be to not hinder user experience by including  advertisements along with search results. Since voice assistants are intended to present the user with only the best result, real value will be created only when a sponsored advertisement is actually relevant.

For example, if Alexa is asked about the latest showtimes for Incredibles 2, and it also talks about the best discount vouchers to along with it, then it’s a good value proposition for the user.

So media enterprises have to decide exactly how to package and place ads alongside their content, without coming off as a pushy salesperson.

 

Despite the challenges, media enterprises definitely need to work upon their voice-tech strategy. Half of all the searches on the Internet will be made via voice by 2020. So if media houses are to be ready to deliver content via voice tech, they have to take the first steps now. If they start working out the kinks in content delivery and ad placements at this stage, they can expect to start seeing significant ROI when voice adoption reaches its peak.

Topics: Media & Publishing

Component based development: Why that’s the way to go for media Enterprises

Posted by Ishan Mahajan on Jun 4, 2018 3:02:00 PM

Enterprises today can no longer make do with their online presence being limited to one website. Large organizations, especially media houses, usually have multiple websites and are fast creating other channels like mobile applications, digital signage, and chatbots, to reach potential consumers. They also routinely launch niche digital properties - an app for a movie promotion, a microsite to cover an emerging people’s movement, and so on.

But are media enterprises setting up these channels in the most efficient way? 

An all-too-familiar scenario is that they create different online channels from scratch, and they work just fine, but the user experience is different across all of them. Or maybe different teams are working on different projects, and each team is implementing a different solution for the same design and development problem. 

So there’s duplication of effort, more time and money being spent in development, and yet being unable to deliver a consistent user experience.

So what’s the solution? Component Based Development.

What is Component Based Development?

Component Based Development (CBD) relies on creating “components” - a defined set of design elements and functionalities - and then putting them together to develop a complete page or site or application. 

For example: a “Buy Now” button, which puts together a button shape, colour and text, and the ability/functionality to achieve a certain task, is considered a component. 

CBD can be loosely broken down into three stages:

  • Define the components: What each component looks like and how it functions. So elements like a button, a social share widget, a video, a text box are all components that are designed and developed to function in a particular manner.

  • Design the interactions: Define how components interact with each other. This ensures that there is a predictable outcome, every time we put certain components together. 

  • Develop the system: Once components and their interactions are in place, development becomes just a matter of putting components together to create the systems we want. 

 

Component Based Development requires that you build a repository of components and interactions only once. When you have this repository in place, you get a collection of components that have the desired capabilities and design, right out-of-the-box. And all subsequent development happens by simply reusing these components. 

How Do We Use Component Based Development?

At Srijan, our teams are currently working on revamping multiple sites for a media conglomerate. The sites each have their own styles, and themes, and offer a different use experience. Without any sort of standardization in the design and the code-base, revamping each individual site was looking to be a time consuming process. 

That’s when we suggested that they use the CBD approach to revamp their site. The idea was to standardize each component, so that they offer the exact same functionality and experience across all sites. But we also made sure there is enough flexibility to make the components look different to fit the theme of each site. 

Here’s an example:

component based development: standardization of elements
 

The share widgets on three of the client sites were completely different - both in terms of presentation and functionality, some had a share counter, some didn’t. With CBD, the share widget was standardized - number of social platforms, functionality of the share counter are all similar. But the look and feel of the widget is different across all three sites, in keeping with their themes. 

This is just a small example of how we reused components across different sites. We took a similar approach with defining components like headlines, video and text boxes etc, and then customize them as per the theme of each site. 

Prepare a global style guide

The process of creating components and interactions also allowed us to prepare a global style guide that is applicable to all of our client’s online properties: sites, applications, chatbots, digital signage etc. This means that independent teams working of any of these channels, or even when creating new online channels, have access to a pre-approved set of components. So all their online channels and interactions offer a cohesive look and feel, and consistent experience to the users. 

We use tools like PatternLab, which works on the Atomic Design Principle, to create these style guides. These are readily available to any of our client teams, working on any project, so they can reuse elements without worrying about deviating from brand guidelines.

Here’s an example:

global style guide for photo gallery

This is a photo gallery style guide on PatternLab. Any developer in the organization can refer to the style guide and pick up the exact HTML, JavaScript and CSS from the style guide; to make sure the photo gallery feature of the client’s brand looks and works the same, irrespective of the channel.

Another example is the content listing feature, showcased below:

global style guide for content listing

Here, the image, headline, and social share widget are grouped together to form a ‘Listing’ component. This can be re-used by developers as is, or as a part of a larger component. But this component is ready to use, and will always work the same way, no matter where it is used.

What are the Benefits of Component Based Development?

Component Based Development brought in several benefits for our client:

Faster development and time-to-market

The initial phase of CBD, with the need to build every single component, is time consuming.
However, that is a one-time investment that ensures faster development and time-to-market at every subsequent stage. 

For our clients, adding a new page to a website, or even creating a whole new site, would simply involve reusing the components and coupling them together to design what they want. This is especially helpful when responding to time-sensitive opportunities, or creating temporary niche microsites, let’s say for a particular campaign, or for a rapidly developing story.

There are also significant cost savings to be made, as the teams do not have to create every online channel from scratch.

Easier testing and maintenance

With CBD, every component is tested after development. The components interact with each other through explicitly defined integrations. So when we put them together to create a system, the need for repeated regression testing is reduced. Sites and systems developed with CBD are also easy to maintain since the codebase is clean, and it’s easy to identify and correct errors.

Smoother distributed development

With a pre-designed set of components, each system can be independently designed by distributed teams, without the need for complex branching and merging. Each section of a large site, or each system of an application, can be built by different teams, and then put together to create a whole. Since there are clear boundaries and interaction interfaces between systems, distributed development is easy and simplified.

Incorporate design and development best practices

With different teams working on different sites, design and development is not always standardized. So while one team is following design best practices, the other teams might not be. Similarly, a few teams might be developing keeping in mind code reusability, while others may not be taking that into consideration at all. With CBD, the components have the design best practices and code reusability built into them. So when new sites and systems are developed using these components, they all have the same design and developments standards and best practices.

For media enterprises, time is of the essence. Whether it’s launching new online channels, or reporting breaking news, or promoting a blockbuster movie - early to the market means greater consumption and higher revenues. So the ability to quickly build new online properties, while maintaining consistent user experience is a must-have. And Component Based Development helps do that in the best possible way.

Looking to implement Component based development at you media enterprise? Get in touch with our experts, and understand how best to implement CBD for your organization, and the cost savings you can expect.

Topics: Media & Publishing, Framework and Libraries

Drupal 8 as a Media CMS in 2017 and beyond

Posted by Gaurav Mishra on Feb 3, 2017 4:59:00 PM

What publication in print and in broadcast today doesn’t need a web presence, or a mobile and tablet platform! How effective is a media platform if it doesn't provide an immersive experience across devices? How does one create and deliver content over these channels in the most cost and time-effective way?

If a media organization doesn’t have a system in place that integrates content dissemination across these digital platforms, the company ends up wasting huge resources in duplicated efforts towards creating customized content for these varied platforms it has to serve. 

Let's take a look at how Drupal 8 served as a powerful media CMS two enterprise media portals, to solve this exact problem.

A Tale of Two Media Firms

1843, The Economist

When The Economist redeveloped, re-branded, and re-launched its Intelligent Life magazine as 1843 in March 2016, it received a warm welcome from the readers. However, almost immediately, the management noticed that the magazine’s digital presence remained abysmal, and offered little aesthetic engagement. 

Moreover, the editorial team had to prep the same content approximately five times to cater to the print, the Web, the tablet, and the mobile platforms. Naturally the whole digital endeavor seemed expensive and pointless. 

A London based consultant was promptly roped in to revive the digital platforms. The Economist was using Drupal across its operations for a long time. Hence it was decided that Drupal be used as the chosen media CMS to renew and revamp the digital platforms. 

The decision benefitted The Economist in more ways than one. 

Customized User Experience
As a media CMS, Drupal allows fast delivery and scalability. It thrives on innovation. For 1843, it allowed building customized and intuitive user experiences and content management workflows for the website and apps. It made handling the huge amount of content, data, and images extremely easy, keeping the possibility of traditional user authentication in place. 

The editorial team’s effort around content customization was reduced by more that 80 percent. 

  • Drupal’s power, flexibility, and over 200 “out of the box” features took care of all 1843’s requirements, including web features, custom editorial workflows, and publishing options. 
  • Simplified workflow system where the editorial team fed the digital content in the primary source only once; it could now format and customize the content and its delivery cycle for each platform, with no additional effort. 
  • It also provided a solid base for future website improvements and maintenance, and allowed making immense SEO improvements to the new 1843 site. 

Mobile First Design

Further, Drupal enabled the creation of a mobile-first design, focusing on beautiful imagery, which could be delivered in its best form irrespective of the device or screen size. This helped to replicate the rich and luxurious feel of the 1843 print magazine on the apps. Commercially, this impressed and convinced brand partners and generated premium revenue through advertisement.

The Results

After the digital 1843 magazine was launched on May 7, 2016. 

  • page views increased by 227%
  • visits to the page increased by 295%
  • unique visits increased by 263% 
  • duplication of effort was reduced by 80%

 

Coverage and readership of the magazine increased massively after the launch of the new digital versions, and helped create a new brand impression for 1843, as was desired. 

OPEN Magazine

OPEN was looking to revamp their website into a powerful marketing vehicle that would help acquire prospective readers & subscriptions. They were using Drupal 6 as their media CMS, and needed a facelift as it was more than six years old. They wanted a new site with contemporary design sensibilities, and simpler user experience. Technically, they also needed a platform that allowed their team to easily edit and manage content.

Srijan decided to migrate the site to Drupal 8, making life easier for OPEN’s editorial teams. We did some rapid prototyping to lock in the look and feel of the new site, and then there was the migration.

The Result

  • Drupal 8 gave them the option to create, display and sort all the latest content according to the different categories. They had the flexibility to query the site's content and display it in a block, table, page or in any other format required.
  • Drupal 8’s CKEditor module allowed for simplified and faster website content creation. It is a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor, which means that text edited in it looks as close as possible to the end result that users would see after the document is published.
  • Mobile-first strategy made sure that the site had extremely high usability and article discoverability on mobile

Drupal 8's Media Initiative

While Drupal is bringing great results for companies as a media CMS, it’s getting better and stronger with every version. 

The Drupal 8.X versions offer over 200 new features and improvements. The team has already separated Media functionality into several independent modules and these components are further getting re-architectured. These smaller, independent modules are already being used successfully by practitioners to significantly enhance user experience. These advancements have also made operations and control of complex and larger websites and content management systems easier with Drupal. 

The ownership team working on Drupal Media in Core and media improvements met and sprinted for a week in December 2016. They are now trying to bring media into the core of Drupal, and not just let it lie in the contrib platform. This might look like an unnecessary investment, given their outstanding performance, in the Lightning and Thunder apps. Yet, the team is undertaking this important step to ensure standardization and documentation of the media solutions available in Drupal. This will help new and upcoming Drupal solution providers to access media solutions easily, fly out of the box with these solutions, and promote innovation.

What all of this means for media companies in 2017

It’s proven that Drupal platforms allow for flexibility, innovation, the fastest delivery, and scalability according to business needs and digital versions. It is the media CMS of choice for NBCUniversal, TIME, the Grammys, and several other high-traffic media portals. It saves effort and time, thereby reducing cost and wastage of resources.

Additionally, for media companies, Drupal 8 is good news because:  

Drupal 8 as a media CMS

  
The media module will change the game in 2017. The Drupal Media Team commits to providing the best media solution available in any web framework. Although this will take many more months of work, volunteers are committed to meet at least three more times, for a week each, in 2017 to take the framework ahead. Seeing the magnificent outcome and potential in Drupal’s future, professionals and investors are also stepping up to contribute. 

Now is the right time for businesses to look at Drupal as more than a CMS, and adopt it to power their digital interaction and customer experience because by the end of 2017, the Drupal platform will change the way websites do business for their companies. 

If you would like to take your digital strategy forward with Drupal 8, let's start a conversation about how we can help.

Topics: Drupal, Media & Publishing

Infographic: 7 things a media website owner should ask a Drupal company

Posted by Nilanjana on Sep 8, 2015 3:28:00 PM

Media websites always have a huge task of managing content and monetization, and these are not the only things you should consider if you are running a media website. 

Find out 7 Things a Media Website Owner Should Ask a Drupal Company.

7 Things a Media Website Owner Should Ask a Drupal Company
 

Want to display this infographic on your website. Copy the embedded code below:

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Read complete blog on 7 things you should ask a Drupal company

 

Facts to tweet

Topics: Drupal, Media & Publishing

7 things a media website owner should ask a Drupal company

Posted by Nilanjana on Jul 17, 2015 11:43:00 AM

Media websites are enormous and owing to the large amount of data, they have big expectations from their content management system. While monetization remains a key factor when a media house decides to go online, there are other issues related to content management, responsiveness, etc which need to be take care of. 

Here are the 7 things you should ask before making your website using Drupal.

Monetization: Most of the clients that come to us have a single problem statement – “I have a website and a lot of online traffic. Now how should I monetize it?” Monetization is an extremely critical aspect for any media company because developing and managing such a big website is any day a costly affair and media houses expect their website to make at least 10% of their total revenue online. Drupal has themes where you get various options to earn revenue. Advertising, subscriptions, promotions or one-time purchase interactions are some of the most used ways to monetize the website. Srijan has been helping media companies do this.

 

Understanding of Content Management: From the content management perspective you want your service provider to understand the workflow of your company, various challenges in managing the content and the nuances of the media sector. You need a Drupal company who has plenty of experience of working with media clients and can convert your business requirements into web technology.

 

15

 

Scalability: Some of our very customers like Zee News, CNT and India Today Group came to us wanting to understand how we could scale up their websites with Drupal. Your service provider should know how to manage complex architectures and can scale them up as the traffic and business grows.

 

Security: Like any other product or service, security cannot be neglected. There is a large chunk of data on the website and also at the backend which needs to be protected. Security thus becomes a prerequisite. We have a large team of certified team engineers who take care of security aspects and maintain data privacy.

 

Value Addition: Media industry is very competitive and you need to keep adding value to get user stickiness. Personalization plays a key role here. We create a user profile and try to understand what a user likes to read and arrange the content accordingly. So each user gets customized content. Read our blog on different types of customization for media Websites. Then as a Drupal consultant, we also guide our clients about user generated content and other trends like gamification.

 

Responsive sites: Since the world is going mobile, you don’t want to lag behind. With a majority of people consuming news through mobile devices, getting a responsive website has become a need for media companies. In fact, mobile sites have been performing better than desktop sites. Our media clients, for whom we have developed responsive sites, have witnessed lower bounce rates and higher engagement.

 

Integration: Shareability is as important as generating content. There are various apps which help you achieve the same and Drupal has modules which can help you to integrate these apps. For some of our media clients we have integrated applications like Flipboard.

Topics: Drupal, Media & Publishing

Customization for Media Websites

Posted by Nilanjana on Jun 24, 2015 11:10:00 AM

In our last blog post on media websites, we listed the various reasons which make Drupal an ideal CMS. There are several features which make Drupal very well suited to the needs of the media industry. However, on the basis of our numerous discussions with media clients, one of the first things they expect from us is to help them engage customers in a more personalized manner. This feature, better known as customization in the world of CMS, is the key to survival and success in this content-driven industry. 

We have worked with some of the biggest names in the media sector, and everyone usually has different expectations, but there are three broad categories of customization clients usually ask for:

  1. Backend Customization – Some media companies know their customers really well and understand what kind of audience will be interested in the content on their website. Their firm grip on their defined audience enables them to create relevant content, and then do the customization accordingly. For example, we worked with Open Media Group to develop the OPEN Magazine website, which required customization only at the backend. This backend customization served their purpose: to push the right content at the frontend for their intended audience.

  2. Advertisement-based Customization – There are certain clients who need customization in the advertisement or promotions section. Here, customized promotions are done as per the user’s preference. Srijan worked with Conde Nast Traveler in the past, and their customization requirement was to place relevant promotional offers on the basis of the user’s profile. So, depending on the information the user had provided, the website would automatically place relevant advertisements. For example, there could be different sets of promotional holiday packages for single people and people with families.

  3. Content-based Customization – Content-based customization is one of the most popular types of customization among media companies. Here, you get the option to highlight content on the home page or on certain sections of the website, as per the user’s preference. For example, if a user is interested in reading about the personal lives of sports personalities, the website will push similar content to them.

Drupal gives you the flexibility to integrate all the modules and plug-ins to aid in customization. With its easy to deploy functionality, Drupal is a great choice for a CMS.

Topics: Media & Publishing, Architecture

Drupal for Media Websites: An Ideal Content Management Platform

Posted by Nilanjana Dey on May 13, 2015 4:54:00 PM

Due to the lack of time to read newspapers and rapid growth in the internet adaptation, people prefer taking their daily dose of news from media websites. To accommodate huge traffic while engaging the users, it is vital for media companies to incorporate such a technology on their websites which provides customization, flexibility and high levels of interactivity.  

Some of the biggest names in media are already using Drupal to fulfill this need. The advantage with Drupal is that it provides enterprise class the content management platform that is ideal for media websites. Here are some of the features which Drupal provides and are a must for any media company website.

 

1. Content Management: Drupal is highly content driven. It supports the content management and maintenance dynamically. It also supports different states of content development such as acquisition, production, packaging, distribution and archiving. Media websites need exactly the same thing – vast content to archive, fresh content to produce, and at the same time, managing and distributing the content.

2. Customization and Social Media Interactivity: One of the current and high demands of the media industry is the need to engage customers in a personalized way. The customization is essential because it pushes the users to interact, share and consume. By driving present customers to engage with content, we acquire more customers. Drupal has specific features considering this need.

3. Responsiveness: When you use Drupal, you create a responsive layout where you can accommodate your site at several platforms such as mobile devic1es, tablets, and desktops. Besides responsiveness, Drupal can also provide customization in different languages. The multi-lingual support is part of your model, making it easier to provide regional content translations.

4. Monetization: Along with customization and content management, you can reap monetary benefits as well. You can create business models and strategies to churn money out of the content. Drupal’s theme gives you various options like advertising, subscriptions, promotions or one-time purchase interactions.

 

Below are some of the media websites which are using Drupal as their content management platform and leveraging benefits: 

  • Reuters: One of the world’s largest international multimedia news providers needed a powerful CMS to cover the Olympic Games that could handle the hundreds of thousands of pictures, news stories and results across the event.
  • Social Media Hat: Social Media Hat provides news and information on social media, blogs, internet marketing, SEO, mobile apps and technology to help small businesses and organizations grow their business.
  • World Economic Forum: World Economic Forum is an international institution that engages political, business, academic and other leaders of society in collaborative efforts to shape global, regional and industry agendas.

All these websites needed a careful balance of automation and editor control. Drupal lets them manage their vast content and interact with users. At the same time, it monetizes the websites for advertisements.

Topics: Drupal, Media & Publishing

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