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3 ways digital-first content businesses need to be structured today—and into the future

image of woman using Brightspot's content management system on a laptop

Over the past few years, technology has evolved to become more intuitive, streamlined and flexible to support ever-changing business needs. During the COVID-19 pandemic alone, digital trends that once might have been expected to take hold over months or years have changed over the course of days. Today, content management solutions are growing alongside these shifts in consumer and user behavior to support digital-first content businesses in transforming for the future.

A content hub sits at the center of everything.

First, today’s organizations and publishers utilize a content hub at the center of their content strategy. A decade ago, businesses were focused on adopting the latest and greatest technologies. Before the right solutions existed, this resulted in multiple disparate systems at play, a huge investment in technology, the inability to gain training efficiencies for scattered teams across the globe and an overall inefficient publishing process.

screenshot of Brightspot Content Business Platform UI

Now, a content hub brings together all existing and new solutions in one place, and can seamlessly handle integrations. Modern content management systems bring those multiple systems, channels and processes in play into one central hub that keeps businesses moving forward without slowing them down.

6 benefits of a content hub

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Supports easy migration and integration
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Allows for custom workflows
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Eliminates siloed systems
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Avoids a rip-and- replace approach to transformation
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Extends existing business logic
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Accelerates innovation as new technology emerges

Flexibility is paramount.

Today’s digital-first businesses are structured around flexibility—both on the back and front ends. On the back end, the ability to create custom workflows is a must for overcoming bottlenecks. Every organization has unique challenges to solve for, and workflows give them a flexible solution to address specific business needs.

screenshot of Brightspot CMS UI

As organizations and publishers grow, custom workflows for each site they manage allows them to maintain complete control over the content-development lifecycle, and gives them the freedom to build around their specific business needs as opposed to taking a one-size-fits-all approach.

On the front end, digital-first businesses know priorities are always changing, and the channels or sites they’re operating on one year might shift the next in order to meet customers where they are. Today, a headless CMS, for example, provides ultimate front-end flexibility for organizations to be able to quickly take content and push it out to different channels—be it web, mobile or IoT. Brightspot, however, takes this a step further. The Brightspot CMS’s extensible architecture supports a traditional, decoupled, headless or hybrid CMS solution.

This flexibility in how digital content is created and presented means increased operational efficiencies through fast content delivery and complete control of where content is published.

At Brightspot, we believe in front-end freedom of choice—to be able to choose the architecture that best suits each individual organization’s unique needs. That’s why we’ve designed the Brightspot CMS to operate as a traditional, decoupled, headless or hybrid CMS solution.
Image of Brightspot founder and CEO, David Gang
David Gang, CEO & Co-Founder, Brightspot

Success starts with data

Beyond a content hub and flexible architecture, digital-first content businesses today are built around data. Easy access to data, including analytics and insights on customer behavior, is key to being able to make measurable and meaningful decisions around your content.

screenshot of Brightspot Content Business Platform UI

With integration-ready solutions, organizations and publishers can easily leverage existing data rather than start from scratch, while they can also integrate new data over time. Real-time access to insights through machine learning also means businesses can make quick, strategic content decisions to better engage with their audiences.

What’s next for the future of content management?

We’ve talked about the past and present of content management systems. Heading towards the future, there are three key trends we can expect to take shape over the next few years.

  1. Employee mobility and increased consumption of content will make flexible workflows more important than ever. Before, there were no toolkits that could help solve workflow distribution. Now, as more employees work from home partially or permanently as a result of the pandemic, content workflows that can be customized to meet unique team needs will be critical to keep the publishing process on track. More demand for content with more people at home also means the publishing process needs to be smooth and fast; content workflows give editors the ability oversee each step of the process to ensure things get done efficiently.
  2. Integrations will support faster adaptation and help future-proof organizations. The idea that every problem has to be solved by replacing platforms will no longer be considered an efficient way of doing business. With a modern content management solution, it won’t be an either/or decision that you have to give up one thing in order to make room for another. Being able to integrate with other technologies using your CMS as a central hub will be critical for organizations and publishers to be able to adapt quickly to changing industry needs, and allow them to transform more effectively by using the data, programs and processes they already have in place as a starting point.
  3. Headless architecture will continue its rise in popularity as demand for flexibility increases: New content channels emerge every year. Especially as workforces will likely continue to be remote for the long haul, people will increasingly ingest content on more non-traditional (non- website) devices. Businesses need to deliver digital experiences as this evolution happens, and headless architectures will enable them to do so more easily.
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