By Picturepark Communication Team • Nov 06, 2017
New concepts and capabilities for content management, routing and use.
Email was designed to enable people to communicate more efficiently, while retaining useful conventions of traditional post services, such as unique addresses and signatures.
Likewise, the Picturepark Content Platform was designed to improve upon the most valuable and commonly used conventions of digital asset management, master data management and product information management, while leaving behind what users and managers of those practices find unnecessary, rarely used or cumbersome.
This multi-part series explains some of the ways in which the Picturepark Content Platform differs from traditional digital asset management systems, in terms of capabilities and purpose.
A New Paradigm for Content Management
Differentiators between DAM and the Content Platform include:
- DAM supports content that is file based; the Content Platform supports file-based content in addition to “fileless” content for which any structure can be defined. This is an important requirement for creating new contents based on existing ones, and exchanging all these contents in a highly structured and automated way.
- DAM can store content created elsewhere; the Content Platform stores content created elsewhere, and also permits users to link to contents created elsewhere, acting as a content routing hub. This is important because while content increasingly is no longer created, managed or consumed centrally, a flexible central inventory over all these contents is needed more than ever.
- DAM systems have been optimized so that human users can store and retrieve content; the Content Platform is designed so that humans and connected business systems can access and process content in an easy way. This is important because the amounts of data are growing and so is the need for automated exchange between and processing by systems.
- DAM systems offer APIs to enable developers to build add-ons and integrations for finding and pulling content; the Picturepark Content System was designed “API-first”, making it easier and more affordable for developers to connect systems faster and at a deeper level, and do more with the available content in the ways clients want – all based on latest technologies.
DAM vs. the Picturepark Content Platform is analogous to the comparison of a car vs. an airplane: An airplane is not a faster car; it is a different paradigm for transporting people and goods. When you need to get from San Francisco to Berlin, the world’s fastest car will do you no good. However, when all you need to do is get to the grocery store a few blocks away, even a slow car is a better option than a jet.
It is important that users consider this difference in paradigm when deciding whether the Picturepark Content Platform is a better fit than traditional digital asset management systems, such as Picturepark DAM, and others.
Fileless Content Creation
The most immediately apparent difference between the Picturepark Content Platform and traditional DAMs is that, in addition to working with computer files, such as Photoshop, InDesign, Word, JPGs, TIFs and more, the Content Platform also works with content that is not file-based. In fact, you can create “fileless” content right inside the Content Platform.
Picturepark refers to this type of content as Strictly Structured because the content is created based on templates that define its structure and scope. These templates are called Content Types. The term “strictly” is used because there can be no variation from the structure defined by the Content Type template.
There are a few key advantages to adhering to a strict content structure:
- Ease of creation — Content Type forms act like wizards that guide users through the creation of content.
- Consistency — A strictly defined structure helps ensure that content created by multiple users remains consistent in form.
- Re-purposing & processing — External systems that access the content via the Picturepark Content Platform API will know exactly what to expect, so they can process and present the content reliably, with minimal development effort and greatly improved accuracy.
Consider the matrix below for examples of the types of content you might create using the Picturepark Content Platform:
|Press release||Headline, subhead, body, supporting images or videos, about company, copyright notice|
|Campaign landing page||Title, subtitle, details, link to form, call to action, “hero” image, supporting images or videos|
|Job posting||Title, description, skills required, skills desired, about company, link to form, contact details|
|Product summary||Name, product family, description, benefits, target users, price, colors|
As diverse as these Content Types are, they are each based on a structure that should remain consistent across each piece of content created.
For example, while the content of each press release will differ, the basic structure for press releases should remain consistent. If you issue press releases that should vary in structure, such as corporate announcements vs. events vs. product releases, you would create one Content Type for each press release type.
Once you start to think of content in its structural form, you start to think of all the other uses you might have for Strictly Structured content, such as office locations, partner listings, parts listings, etc.
A traditional DAM system would not be able to manage this content until it was saved into a Word or other type of file that could be uploaded into the system. The Picturepark Content Platform does away with this requirement, enabling you to create this content right inside the system, based either on existing or new content, where it becomes new master data available to other users and business systems.
In fact, putting content examples like these into a files is not only unnecessary, it becomes cumbersome to manage. Consider a job posting: Though it might be initially drafted in a word processor, job listings are virtually never published on websites as downloadable files.
Thanks to a modern, developer-friendly API, content created in the Picturepark Content Platform is easily accessible from websites, mobile apps and other business systems that will format and publish it, further process it, or merge it with data that comes from other systems.
Continue reading the next article in this series or choose from the articles listed below.