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Attending DrupalCon 2024 in Portland helped us learn many things about Drupal from daily sessions and talking with our peers. The event’s most significant revelation though, came during its keynote, when Dries Buytaert, Founder and Project Lead of Drupal, announced an exciting new feature — Drupal Starshot, which has the community abuzz. Learn more about Starshot.

One of the DrupalCon sessions I attended was called “Mastering Consistency: Expanding content across multiple sites and touch points,” which was put on by Mandee Englert and Amanda Konopko. This talk focused on higher-ed and using multi-channel engagement across different platforms. I attended it because even as a developer it's important to understand how content can impact your website user’s experience, and how having consistent content can improve your site’s overall performance.

Mandee Englert and Amanda Konopko’s talking points worked very well for education-based applications, but you could also leverage them for any business. So, I reflected on their talk and came up with some thoughts on how to apply their advice no matter what industry you’re in.

Use Data to Organize Your Content 

Data plays a crucial role in any organization and how it portrays itself to its audiences. It provides a structured way to categorize and describe content, which makes content easier to find and manage. Utilizing a consistent and manageable dataset you can also assign specific attributes to your content, such as tags, keywords, and descriptions, which help classify and organize content based on its characteristics. This ensures your content is optimized on single and multiple sites to improve your overall user experience. 

With structured data, you can easily create taxonomies and hierarchies to organize your content logically. For example, you can create categories and subcategories based on the data, making it easier for users to navigate and discover relevant content. In Drupal, Content Types and Vocabularies are key to planning your site’s design because they allow you to define relationships between different pieces of content, which enables content sharing and cross-referencing. 

Understanding your data and its role in content organization is essential for maintaining content reliability and structure regardless of your industry or content management system. 

Implement Data Best Practices for Consistency 

Implementing data best practices ensures uniformity in your content management system. Here are some best practices to consider.

Standardize Your Data Schema

Establish a standardized schema for data and its attributes across all sites. This ensures consistency in how data is defined and used. 

Use Controlled Vocabularies

Implement controlled vocabularies for data values to avoid discrepancies and improve searchability. Do it by creating predefined lists of terms for specific types of data.

Provide Well-Defined Guidelines

Clearly define and communicate data creation and usage guidelines. This includes assigning data attributes, what values to use, and any specific formatting requirements.

Regularly Review and Update Data

Schedule intervals to review and update your data to ensure it remains accurate. Add new attributes as needed and remove outdated or unused ones.

By following these best practices, you can maintain consistency in your data and ensure that your content is meticulously organized.

Utilize Data for Content Sharing and Distribution

Data plays a crucial role in content sharing and distribution across multiple sites. By utilizing data effectively, you can easily share and distribute consistent content. Here are some examples of how to share data directly with your audiences or other applications.

One way to utilize data for content sharing is by leveraging syndication or feed mechanisms. With data, you can specify which content to include in the syndication feed and define the feed’s data attributes. This allows you to share consistent content with other sites or platforms, that accurately represent your business.

Another way to utilize data for content distribution is through Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). By exposing data through APIs, other systems or applications can access and retrieve your content based on specific data structures, content types, or vocabularies. This enables seamless content integration and distribution across platforms with consistent, up-to-date data.

Overall, utilizing data for content sharing and distribution enhances your content’s reach and visibility, while maintaining accuracy.

Learn more about how data can help you make the most of your website’s content.

Our team can show you how to utilize data to streamline and enhance your website’s content so it’s more impactful with your audiences.

Use Data to Align Content with Company Goals

Leverage data to align your content with company goals and objectives. Using data strategically, your content can support and align with your company's vision and mission. 

One way to leverage data is by defining specific data aligned with your company's audiences or target market. For example, if your company primarily targets a certain industry or demographic, you can create content sections, or forms, that capture relevant information about that industry or demographic. This helps in tailoring your content to meet the needs and interests of your audiences.

Additionally, you can use data to track and measure the performance of your content against your company goals. Using tracking software and tagging specific pieces of your content that reflect key performance indicators (KPIs), you can easily analyze and evaluate the effectiveness of your content in achieving your desired outcomes. This allows you to make data-driven decisions and optimize your content strategy accordingly. 

Leveraging data to align with company goals enables you to create targeted and impactful content that supports your overall business objectives.

Explore Different Data Performance Types

There are three main performance types you can use to expand content across multiple sites: cross-site, federated content, and content hub. 

  1. Cross-site Performance involves sharing and displaying content seamlessly between sites. This is achieved through integrations or syndication mechanisms, where data plays a crucial role in ensuring the consistency and accuracy of the shared content. Cross-site performance allows you to maintain a consistent brand identity and user experience across multiple sites.
  2. Federated Content Performance involves aggregating and displaying content from multiple sites in a unified interface. This is often achieved through APIs or content aggregation platforms, where data is used to categorize and organize the federated content. Federated content performance allows you to create a centralized content repository while maintaining each site’s autonomy and individuality.
  3. Content Hub Performance refers to the centralized management and distribution of content across multiple sites. In a content hub model, a central hub acts as a repository for all content, which can be distributed and displayed on different sites. Data is used to categorize and organize the content within the hub, ensuring consistency and alignment with company goals. Content hub performance allows for efficient content management and distribution while maintaining brand consistency and control.

By understanding and exploring these different performance types, you can choose the most suitable approach for expanding your content across multiple sites and ensuring consistency of brand and data.

Leveraging Data to Deliver Impactful Content

Data is a powerful tool to streamline your content so your audiences can easily find what they need when they need it. You can use data to organize your content, implement data best practices to ensure uniformity in your content, utilize data for content sharing and distribution, leverage data to align your content with your organization’s goals, and you can explore data performance types to find the right one for expanding content across your websites. All these pieces are valuable ways you can harness the power of data to deliver organized, consistent, and impactful content that will resonate with your audiences. This content will drive conversions and deepen your relationships with your users.

Want to learn more about how data can help you make the most of your content? Contact us. Our team of experts can show you how to utilize data to streamline and enhance your website’s content.


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