Sitecore Content Hub 101: Part 1

In a world where your car can (almost) drive itself, there are still a few things the robots haven’t yet learned how to do. One of them is content. Content is how you tell your brand’s story — it’s your primary weapon in the never-ending battle for relevance and mindshare.  

But doing content right is time-consuming and expensive. Plus, it’s still heavily reliant on human beings to deliver the refined nuance in strategy, tone, and presentation you need to make your messages resonate.  

Do you work in a regulated industry? Let’s add legal and compliance considerations to your content execution. Oh, and you’re global too? Those considerations just multiplied, and you’ve added multi-lingual to the mix. It all adds up to a lot of work, a lot of time, and a lot of cost. 

Just like the so-called “self-driving” cars, the need for human involvement in content creation isn’t going away any time soon. But Sitecore’s Content Hub is the Tesla of content. It creates entirely new ways of thinking about how brands create, deliver, manage, and measure their content.  

The only challenge — as far as we’re concerned at Horizontal — is creating a smart plan to onboard and implement everything Content Hub has to offer. Because Content Hub is more than just a piece of software: it’s an entire suite of tools that supports the full content lifecycle, including functions for which you might have historically relied on separate, disconnected products.  

At Horizontal, we’re very bullish on Content Hub. Its transformative capabilities can manifest itself in infinite ways, and the second article in our three-part blog series will take you through some example scenarios. But first, let’s start with a summary of the different components of the Content Hub suite: 

Sitecore Content Hub

Digital Asset Management (DAM)

Of all Content Hub’s capabilities, the market is most familiar with DAM. But many businesses with digital asset management capabilities in place struggle to connect their DAM strategy to the rest of their marketing and content management operations.  

Content Hub makes it easy to centralize all of your asset creation, tagging, access, and rights management in one place. But that’s just basic blocking and tackling for a DAM. Content Hub takes it further by connecting those DAM capabilities — ensuring that assets are readily available for use and optimization across all channels. It also enables your internal and external resources to integrate your digital assets across the broader content production and optimization lifecycle.  

Content Marketing Platform (CMP)

An orchestra conductor is more than just a person waving a stick around: they make 100+  musicians function as a single, highly tuned machine. Content Hub CMP is the conductor’s baton: it’s the guiding force that keeps everyone in sync. A little louder over here, a little more color over there.  

As an Experience-Forward consultancy, we put the end user’s experience at the center of everything we do. Content Hub CMP helps you define and segment those end users and plot your content strategy around them. It identifies gaps in your content and campaign strategy and documents your execution plan so everyone knows how and where to prioritize content production and optimization efforts. It’s a must-have governance solution for high-volume, content-intensive enterprises that need to manage and optimize content execution at tremendous scale.  

 Marketing Resource Management (MRM)

If CMP helps you manage and optimize your content strategy, Marketing Resource Management (MRM) helps you manage your content tactics. (Think multi-channel campaign calendars, content collaboration & workflow, and resource reporting all in one place.)  

MRM brings your internal and external teams together in a single productivity system to establish synchronized collaboration both vertically and horizontally, ultimately accelerating time-to-market for new content and improved ROI on your content investments.  

 Product Content Management (PCM)

Content: it’s not just for marketers anymore! Actually, it never was. But unless you’re on the product marketing team, it’s easy to forget how content-intensive product businesses can be. And those folks are intimately familiar with an alphabet soup of systems (ERP, PIM, PLM, DMS, etc.) that often play disparate and disconnected roles in managing content associated with products and documentation.  

Enter PCM, the connective tissue that can unite existing data (specifications, variants, data sheets, instructions, price books, etc.) with the marketing content that brings your products to life. PCM also helps you keep track of where and how product content is being used — from your own web and other digital channels to social media, CRM, third-party aggregators, and third-party platforms (Amazon, anyone?). 

Web-to-Print (W2P)

Print? Is that still a thing? It absolutely is. And many of our clients operate their print and digital content workstreams entirely separately. Content Hub’s Web-to-Print capability can unify and streamline those workstreams, helping digital-first organizations break into the print scene. For example, many organizations need brochures, posters, and signage for retail locations, branches offices, or franchises. W2P can templatize and automate that work — accounting for language and location variations — while staying within the guardrails of enterprise brand and compliance standards.   

Ready to solve your content challenges? 

Content Hub: it’s a lot. The great news is that it’s an infinitely flexible, malleable suite of capabilities you can mix and match to meet any number of content operations needs across your entire enterprise — not just your marketing organization. In the next installment of our blog series, I’ll walk through a couple of real-world use cases to spur your own creative thinking about how Content Hub could help you and your target audiences extract more value from every content asset you create.  

But don’t stop there. My team and I will be glad to spend some (free!) time brainstorming with you about your current content challenges. Just drop us a note and we’ll be in touch to schedule a conversation.