TruEdit and Twixl Power New NEA Today Magazine App

National Education Association and Network Media Partners Launch New NEA Today Magazine Mobile App—with Workflow Powered by MEI’s TruEdit and Twixl Publisher

The National Education Association (NEA), the nation’s largest professional employee organization, is committed to advancing the cause of public education. NEA members work at every level of education—from pre-school to university graduate programs. The Association has affiliates in every state and in more than 14,000 communities nationwide.

This spring, NEA debuted a new version of the NEA Today magazine app, which is now available to the organization’s 3 million members. This launch represents a major accomplishment, made possible by the Network Media Partners design team, and the TruEdit HTML content creation and Twixl Publisher mobile app platforms.

“NEA wanted to increase advocacy and engagement among our members, and we also wanted to reach new pro-public education audiences by expanding our digital footprint into the Apple and Android marketplaces,” says Earline Spence, who led the project from concept to delivery.

The original application was produced using Adobe’s Digital Publishing Suite (DPS). That version lacked a number of components that NEA had envisioned, and with fewer than 1,000 downloads during the first 18 months of the apps existence, the project was minimally successful.

“Our annual survey readership results found that very few NEA members realized that an app version of the flagship magazine existed,” Spence says. “The need for a new approach was clear, so we launched an extensive RFP process, during which we selected Network Media Partners for development of the new application, and Weber Shandwick to build a cohesive marketing strategy.”

To boost results, Network created a new content strategy with NEA, and started work on a redesign of the NEA Today app using Twixl Publisher. Network also partnered with Managing Editor Inc. (MEI), provider of TruEdit and North American reseller and support partner for Twixl Publisher. MEI worked with Network to integrate TruEdit and Twixl Publisher to enable Network to develop and implement the new NEA Today app. The results have been exceptional, and more than 1,800 downloads occurred during the first 3 months alone.

“The new app is more intuitive, and we’ve been able to integrate content from many NEA Today vehicles—not just the print magazines. The redesigned app also includes a carousel on the home screen which allows us to continuously publish fresh content on a weekly schedule,” says Spence.

There have been additional benefits to working with Network and for using Twixl Publisher, Spence continues. “Network has been an incredible partner throughout the development process. They came to the table with fresh ideas and provided excellent support and expertise in a way that made things very easy on the client side,” she says.

“Plus, our costs are down 80 percent. The transition from Adobe DPS to Twixl Publisher with Network as partner has been a seamless, win-win situation.”

Jen Smith, vice president of creative strategy for Network Media Partners, cites her team’s intentional design process as key to the project’s success. “The technology allows us to publish continuously and integrate three NEA Today titles and audiences,” she says. “Also, we’ve built content that is specific to each device, so it’s pixel-perfect for iPads and responsive for smartphones.”

With the new digital app up and running, NEA has begun to use it for events, like the organization’s annual conference. Plans for an NEA podcast are underway, and the association will publish digital magazines more frequently, offering custom versions for various NEA audiences, including students studying to become educators, new K-12 teachers, and higher education professionals.

To ensure digital reader adoption rates continue to grow, NEA will continue to enhance the magazine app.

“Network’s creative design and app-building expertise, coupled with the power of the TruEdit and Twixl Publisher platforms, has drastically enhanced NEA members’ digital experience,” says Spence. “We are confident that Network will continue to help us deliver quality digital products to educators in the months and years ahead.”

DuPont Evalio FieldPartner US App: Powerful Digital Insights for 21st Century Farmers

TruEdit’s mobile publishing capabilities are on display in DuPont’s Evalio FieldPartner US app, available today from Apple iTunes, by providing timely information on proven, local crop protection products for weed, disease, and insect control. Product recommendations are sorted by use with application timing, guidelines and best practices, as well as crop rotation intervals. Crop phenology charts provide information on application timing by crop phase and timing in relation to other crop protection products. For those working in the farming industry, the real-time processing of critical crop protection information in the Evalio Fieldpartner US app is revolutionizing the way crop-protection methods can be effectively managed and employed. And, it works online and offline for when farmers are in the field.

DuPont partners with MEI to Create Crop Protection Sales Enablement Mobile Apps

Chemical leader DuPont’s Crop Protection division is on a mission to help the world’s farmers stave off crop loss and feed a rapidly growing population. The team has partnered with MEI to empower its global sales force and customers with mobile apps that deliver critical product information on demand.

Founded in 1802, DuPont is a science and engineering company dedicated to solving the world’s most challenging problems. DuPont Crop Protection produces insect, weed and disease control solutions designed to improve crop yield and quality. It has more than 10,000 internal and external sales professionals focused on working with millions of large- and small-scale farmers in more than 130 countries.

Challenges

The Crop Protection digital marketing team launched a complete redesign of the division’s websites and mobile applications using the Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) web content management system, along with the MEI TruEdit Content Platform. It was the start of a much-needed digital transformation, but it was not without challenges. The complex project involved creating websites for 37 countries. These sites needed to support content for a dizzying array of product lines. And they needed to house globally mandated brand content while also accommodating locally created content, since farmers in each country grow different crops and each country has different regulatory environments. Given that DuPont Crop Protection sales are literally out in the fields, the DuPont digital marketing team set out to create an efficient and productive mobile experience for the sales force and customers.

We’re glad we turned to MEI to help us navigate the challenges. It’s hard to find that combination of great creative and brilliant technical skills, but MEI has so much mobile publishing experience.
~ Joanne Hewitson,
Global Digital Marketing Lead, Crop Protection

The Solution

The DuPont digital marketing team decided to use AEM Mobile to build and distribute these mobile apps. But they also knew they’d need guidance to make the content creation and app distribution process smooth and efficient, so they engaged MEI to help.

MEI TruEdit enables Crop Protection marketers to easily create responsive HTML for publishing to all mobile platforms and screen sizes. “Our marketing people don’t have to be programmers to put together these apps,” says Hewitson. “It’s a really cost-effective, efficient way for our teams to manage their content, so any time they need to change a picture or headline or adjust copy slightly, they can do it wherever they are in seconds.”

TruEdit also helps Crop Protection teams create content once and publish it many times in multiple languages, saving time and money and ensuring brand consistency. “Our teams are stretched to do so many things,” says Hewitson. “TruEdit makes it easy for them to access high-performing content right when they need it, and that’s a huge win. Ultimately,” she says, “we want to make it so that our customers won’t want to do business with anyone else since it’s so easy to use DuPont.”

The Results

DuPont Crop Protection is already experiencing great results with the MEI TruEdit and AEM Mobile solutions. The company estimates more than $500K in efficiency gains from using a single, shared platform worldwide. Online delivery of information through the mobile apps could save $1M in printing costs. And the company calculates a 50% improvement in time-to-market for its content.

Hewitson says that MEI has helped DuPont Crop Protection fulfill their mobile strategy. “We’ve empowered customer conversations, particularly those between our field reps and farmers. We’ve enhanced the customer journey by making interactions more convenient and enjoyable. We’ve provided training and support for our partners so they can make the most of the apps for their needs. We’ve improved collaboration between marketing and sales. And we’ve been able to capture data and performance analytics in a disciplined way that helps us provide optimal content at all times.”

How MEI Took the Human Rights Campaign’s Equality Magazine Mobile

We sat down with Will Steuber, Creative Marketing Director at MEI, to hear about how he and the Nervous Pixel team helped Human Rights Campaign’s (HRC) Equality Magazine go mobile with Twixl Publisher and TruEdit.

Will Steuber
Will Steuber, Creative Marketing Director, MEI

How did Human Rights Campaign (HRC) first start working with MEI? Three years ago, the HRC was looking to get a digital version and app for their Equality Magazine which is published quarterly for their members. They reached out to MEI because they were referred to us by the Humane Society and they knew our reputation for innovative publishing technology. We had just done some Adobe DPS training and template creation for the Humane Society creative team. HRC print production for the Equality Magazine was well established using an InDesign PDF workflow, but they needed a digital version. When the HRC first started using Nervous Pixel, the MEI in-house agency, to create the digital Equality Magazine, we used the InDesign print files as the basis for content and output for a tablet. The first digital issue went out for Winter 2013. With this latest Fall 2016 issue available on iOS, Nervous Pixel and the HRC have done 14 Equality Magazines for devices to date.

Do many of Equality Magazine’s subscribers access the website from a mobile device? It turns out the majority of their website visits are from mobile devices and especially phones, so we built phone-ready HTML templates and published their first version for the phone. Meanwhile, we were still producing the tablet version with InDesign, so, all together there were three different versions – print from InDesign, tablet from InDesign and phone from HTML.

How did you simplify the process? In the most recent issue of Equality Magazine, we just went for purely responsive design so we could have one version that would look great on any device.

Why did the HRC decide to go with Twixl and TruEdit? By switching to Twixl Publisher for their mobile application platform and using TruEdit with TruAuthor for content creation and management, the HRC was able to save a substantial amount of money on their digital publishing cost and add HTML content authoring for a fully integrated mobile content platform. I have used both on many projects for our clients and Twixl and TruEdit are so easy-to-use, we can turn around apps sooner, for less.

What’s it like working with the HRC Equality Magazine team? They are very professional and detail oriented. At first they were very hands-on, wanting to be sure every headline, image, pixel, gets the right positioning and style treatment. We were able to get everything looking very consistent quite quickly once we put everything into the same creation process using TruAuthor. In the past, the print, tablet, phone and web versions were all edited and updated separately. With responsive design, all the creative is in a single file, so we can literally just review the lay-out once and see how it adjusts for different sizes of devices. Since the copy is the same everywhere, any correction we make works for all output types. Quality is way higher, making updates and edits much faster and more efficient, and we are able to turn everything around very quickly. For their members and readers, the digital experience is much more robust across print, web, and mobile.

How did you educate the HRC team on how to use TruEdit and Twixl? Our usual model at MEI is that we train up the client’s team and get them ready to go, passing on our best practices. Other times, our in-house agency, Nervous Pixel, are hired as their interactive creative team and they use us to get their digital apps published. For the HRC, we explained that by adopting Twixl and TruEdit and moving to responsive design with a single file for all creative, we won’t have the control over pixel-by-pixel minutiae and lay-outs as we did in the past on the tablet version, but now the benefit is one review and approval cycle that is light years faster. They were really open to that and wanted to move forward. Now, we send them the first draft and are usually done after one revision.

Do you plan any updates for the Equality Magazine app? There are two settings the publisher can select when they publish a collection or issue: readers can download the whole issue upfront or can do it per article. The HRC wanted to make sure that no matter how old the phone, that people could download article by article and not get hung waiting for the full magazine to download. Once the article or issue is in your cache, it is there forever and doesn’t need to be downloaded again. In the future, we may decide to have the reader download the entire issue at once but, for now, the quick gratification of downloading only the article you want to read seems to be working.

What’s the next step for Equality Magazine now that they have a phone app? Their content is very current affairs based. Equality Magazine now has the TruEdit and Twixl platform that enables them to evolve the frequency, timing, and number of output channels into weekly, daily, hourly, anywhere they want it. They can easily keep up with a static quarterly magazine, and have the option of evolving their process into writing, editing, producing and pushing out one article at a time, as quickly as they like.

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Human Rights Campaign Blazes Digital Trail for Equality Magazine with MEI

hrc-everyone-counts

We recently had the opportunity to interview Anastasia Khoo, CMO of Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and learn how they are using TruEdit with Twixl Publisher to publish the Equality Magazine mobile app and her digital marketing plans for the future.

How have things changed since you first got involved with HRC? I’ve always worked on progressive issues. When I made the move from Greenpeace to the Human Rights Campaign 11 years ago to help fight for full LGBTQ equality, I knew I was standing on the right side of history. We have seen sweeping change – it’s been a very exciting opportunity for me to help make history with HRC.

Anastasia Khoo, CMO, Human Rights Campaign
Anastasia Khoo, CMO, Human Rights Campaign

How has your perspective changed on the use of digital media and technology? My tenure here coincided with the rise of digital and social media. One of the ways we have been the most successful is by putting digital communications at the forefront of our communications strategy. We’ve seen that we are able to connect with people and meet them where they are and, increasingly that is on digital. How you get your news, connect with friends, support your social cause and finding information is all digital. Over the last ten years, so much has changed to make that possible. What we strive to do here at HRC and part of my work is to change hearts and minds, and you can’t do that without connecting with people where they are. We have been incredibly successful using digital channels to help advance our mission.

Remember your Facebook campaign in March 2013 when everyone adopted the red-tinted HRC logo as their personal profile to show support for marriage equality? That resulted in exponential shares and likes. In 2015, the Supreme Court ruled that marriage equality is a fundamental right. That is probably our best viral campaign example that captured people’s imaginations. It demonstrates the widespread support for marriage equality and it was one of my proudest moments both professionally and as an American.

What are the main goals of Equality Magazine and how does your use of digital publishing and workflow automation impact that? Our editorial is very strong and I wanted to take the next step to bring that online. Although the magazine is a benefit to members, so much time and work goes into creating it, we wanted it to be an an extension of our social media experience and to increase our footprint. With the rise of digital, everything changed from the way we write a report to the way we publish. We started with an iPad app, then we extended into the Apple Newsstand. Now we have an iPhone app, and we are continuing to look for opportunities and ways to use our great content, have additional presence across channels, and get our message out there. Historically, since it has been a print piece, the magazine has been a little slower to transition to an online property. We are excited about the possibilities to continue to push this forward.

Your members and readers read the quarterly Equality Magazine cover-to-cover. Do you have plans to change the way the print and digital interact? I am not really a print mail person myself, so I am always surprised to review our surveys and see how much our members love and look forward to receiving Equality Magazine. With our focus on digital first and saving resources, we have a lot of support to offer a paperless, environmentally-friendly approach to publishing the magazine that is more cost-effective and accessible. Our community is highly digitally savvy and embraces change.

How did you first hear about MEI and Twixl Publisher? We looked at other organizations that are similar size but different missions. The Humane Society spent some time with us discussing how they approached publishing their magazine, and they were really generous and forthcoming. One of the outcomes of that conversation was and introduction to MEI. I think MEI has done a great job helping us to refine our process, become more efficient, and expand our reach by introducing a phone app, while continuing to be mindful of cost. That is why we moved to TruEdit for content creation and Twixl Publisher for the mobile app.

What are the benefits you see in terms of automation and efficiency and how your creatives and editors spend their time on Equality Magazine? I think one of the most exciting things is that because the printing and mailing process can take such a long time between when we put the magazine to bed and when it gets into the hands of our members, readers get a sneak peak and see our work. That we are so much faster and more efficient for the online piece is really important from an ROI perspective because of all the time, energy, staff, and internal resources that go into producing the magazine. I love getting two bites from the same apple and our members get the benefit of their tablet and their phone, providing two more opportunities to connect and interact.

How many people that come to your website are mobile? We have over 1.5 million members and Equality Magazine is the largest LGBTQ publication in the country. More than half our website visits are mobile these days and that number is increasing. This was a big factor when we redid our website and developed a responsive design.

Is the content in the magazine exclusive? There are times when we cross-publish like a celebrity interview but mostly the content is expressly created and written for the magazine.

Do you see there being a role at HRC for interactive mobile apps beyond digital publishing? That is definitely possible. Mobile has forced us to think about things differently. We have taken a mobile first approach to how we design and communicate. It is really reframing communications for us. I think video and mobile are the focus to help us push our mission forward. We do have other apps including a Buyer’s Guide to LGBTQ equality. As a not for profit, it always comes down to budget and the best way to package content that is accessible to people.

What do you think about the digital first idea many brands are embracing of having a central content hub where you create content one time for output to any channel? We are very nimble and have managed the acceleration of communications brought on by digital. The nature of our work is that we operate in real time due to the need and urgency to be part of real time conversations. Our work impacts live of our community so we often don’t have the luxury of an extensive review process. We are always thinking about how do we make it better, tweak it and test. I think we are best in class when it comes to content and brand marketing. We do things in a way that is both efficient and effective.

Do other organizations come to you to get advice on how to reach more people? Yes. HRC is very open and transparent about how we do things and we like to share our success with other organizations to help them with their own communications and marketing endeavors. I am very proud of the way we are great partners with the progressive community.

If someone comes to me and says ‘how do I make it go viral?’, I know they have already failed. They’re missing that it’s more than just going viral, it’s about creating an emotional connection with members and supporters. Marketers need to be thinking about how to build its brand and audience, day-in and day-out. HRC’s success with the magazine, social media, mobile, and apps is endemic to how we approach communications which is a constant process of refining.

How do you hope this app changes your relationship with your readers? We want to expand our audience with this additional point of contact by making it freely available. For the LGBTQ kid may not have a supportive community, we want to show them via digital that  there is a big world out there, that they can be loved and accepted exactly the way they are. Digital allows us to reach the people most in need, right where they are.

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Boost your Adobe DPS Performance with this Free InDesign Interactive Template

DPS-Interactive-Slideshow-MSO-Free-Template-Download

When I’m tasked to convert someone’s print publication into a tablet edition, I always look for new ways to engage the reader; give them something that they can’t get in the print version. Since the simple mention of HTML sends me into a panic attack, I’m limited to what I can do in InDesign using the Adobe DPS tools. Fortunately, I’m crafty as well as meticulous.

Continue readingbb Boost your Adobe DPS Performance with this Free InDesign Interactive Template

Analyze Your Adobe DPS Storefront With MEI Portico and Oplytic

MEI Portico allows customers to review analytics for any app built through the Adobe Digitial Publishing Suite, but now the level of analytics has increased with the recent announcement that MEI has partnered with Oplytic, a Chicago-based enterprise platform that allows anyone to track their marketing success across all major channels.

Continue readingbb Analyze Your Adobe DPS Storefront With MEI Portico and Oplytic

Honeywell App Receiving Plenty of Attention

This past November, MEI was asked by Honeywell to develop an Adobe Digital Publishing Suite app with a Portico storefront that would demonstrate how their software could help clients improve their safety, reliability, efficiency and sustainability. Thanks to Portico’s tested and proven solutions, Honeywell didn’t have to worry about their app having an issue during the creation and approval process. Instead of spending time and resources to make coding changes and resubmit, Honeywell was able to receive an app in just four weeks that was polished and ready for their annual conference.

Honeywell MEI Portico App

Today, the app was offered to the general public, being well-received and getting major attention on the front page of Honeywell’s website.
Continue readingbb Honeywell App Receiving Plenty of Attention