What is the content problem? Is it the constant demand for fresh content and information? The speed at which it needs to be produced, updated, and delivered? The multitude of output channels and mediums needing to be address? Well, all of these factors combine to pose a content dilemma of serious proportion – but not impossible to solve. We explore how one well established media house is not only tackling these challenges, but winning at them too.
Let’s go back to the classic image of the journalist, the stereotype forged by the black and white films of the late 40s and early 50s. The press man with his notebook, trilby and press card jammed into the band.
Immediately following some sensational trial or political announcement, he makes a dash for a convenient rank of payphones to file copy down the line, where ranks of typists are waiting to take it down for it to be rushed to the presses. Today, however, the newspaper typing pool is now largely defunct. Most journalists type and file their own copy, even sourcing their own images and, in some cases, laying out and subbing their own pages.
Technology has, of course, been behind the rise of the ‘jack of all trades’ journalist but it has also created a whole new media landscape. We’ve seen the rise of the citizen journalist, where members of the public increasingly become both tipster and journalist, or amateur paparazzo, with user generated content (UGC) blurring the lines between professionally created product copy and looser but perhaps more authentic user reviews and opinions. Social media, personal blogs, vlogs and Tik Toks all mean that content professionals have had to change the way they work to keep pace with change.
And what a pace that is. Even in a typical printed news environment, one of the fastest turnaround types of copy pre internet age, a story would be assigned, reviewed, allocated budget, discussed, written, copy edited, laid out and eventually sent to print. Today, whether it’s news or a product update on a retailer website , content is uploaded almost immediately. Then it’s reviewed, refreshed, added to or amended as conditions merit. With a news story, this might be as fresh information comes to light. For products, it could be the addition of a new photoshoot, industry award, or specification update.
In this environment, you would imagine that several layers of human review would be vitally important. It is their job to check sources, legal issues, accuracy and so on. But the reality is that the speed of upload and the vast number of content sources and engines means it’s simply not practical for individual pieces of content to go through several layers of manual review.
And when you add in the complexities of targeting multiple audiences across a variety of regions, languages, and media, along with the differences in specifications, legal requirements, and siloed processes which might come along with addressing multiple territories, the margin for error, duplication, and inefficiencies begins to grow wider and wider.
In order for the volume and speed of content work not to become unsustainable, many publishers are looking once more to technology and software to solve the challenge. Take, for example, Bauer Media Group. The publisher owns more than 600 print, digital, TV and radio brands across 17 countries. It has 93 magazines alone and in order to keep pace with competitors both on and offline, it simply has to operate as efficiently as possible.
Before involving a software solution, the company used “a manual and time consuming process with lots of paper moving around and little visibility of what stage things were at,” explains Leigh Cresswell, Director Publishing Technology at Bauer’s UK head office. It was even using paper plans stuck to office walls.
By implementing a centralized asset and content management system such as censhare’s, however, Bauer was able to go from this to managing 2,100 pieces of content a week, produced via a single workflow. There are more than 550 people working across all 93 titles, and they’re able to create and collaborate on content via a single hub which can be accessed from anywhere, allowing for example, journalists to upload their copy from the location of reporting, the instant it is ready.
This single hub forms the center of all content operations, with brands, editors and contributors all connected via the single solution. It also forms the basis for Bauer’s licensed and syndicated content, feeding into an online portal so that partners can buy and download whatever content they need whenever they need it. You can explore more about the how and the why behind Bauer’s decision to optimize its content workflows with censhare in this customer success story .
The currently insatiable demand for constantly refreshed content in real time has the potential to overload publishers and producers alike. With little time for human oversight, there is plenty of scope for error and runaway costs.But by implementing a system like censhare, where resources are centralized, subject to a series of rules and checks and accessible by a wide range of people from across the organization, the opposite becomes reality. Single sources of truth and process automation removes the risk of duplication and frees up journalists to focus on the quality of their contributions, not just the quantity, which in turn enables the creation of a more efficient and effective organization.
Get in touch if you’d like to learn more about the capabilities of the censhare Universal Content Management platform, and what it could do to help your organization face its content challenges.
A censhare customer success story - learn how Bauer Media UK uses censhare to make it easier than ever for its brands to create and distribute contentRead Success Story