A Thing or Two About Supporting a Content Project or Two

I’ve been working for MEI on the Customer Success team for approximately six years. My primary responsibility is to provide software training and support for our customers using TruEdit and the Twixl Publisher and Adobe Experience Manager Mobile app building platforms. The range and depth of knowledge that is required to stay on top of responsive content authoring and these mobile app platforms can be astounding. My challenge is to communicate detailed and complex software configurations, techniques and best practices in a clear and cogent format for experienced and new users. My typical day includes leading remote training sessions, calls with clients to work through issues ranging from problems with an image in an InDesign file to techniques for displaying fonts on an HTML page, to providing assistance with building and submitting applications to iTunes and Google Play.

My role here at MEI requires that a majority of my time is spent working and interacting with clients. This gives me a unique insight into their challenges when working on their publishing projects. I have built great working relationships during the many hours of training, troubleshooting and just shooting the breeze. I enjoy this part of my job and I think the clients do too. One of my clients once sent me a “Sweet and Salty” gift basket as a thank you, which I think was meant as a comment on my patient but thorough training style. Another client based in Utah was so gracious as to track down a local pizzeria and send me a surprise pizza lunch to the office. I like pepperoni pizza by the way – for future reference.

I’ve trained hundreds of people across dozens of companies. I’ve answered hundreds of support questions and I have reviewed even more. Through all of that, I’ve discovered that the biggest challenges I encounter with clients are not necessarily about technical skills or software – rather it is providing assistance on the transition from traditional publishing to digital publishing. Here are a few pointers that I always share:

Mobile must be part of the strategy

Mobile devices reach into every corner of home and business on the planet. We willingly bring them along with us on our daily routines and more often than not these devices consume a great deal of time in our daily routine. According to studies, the average U.S. consumers now spends up to 5 hours per day on their mobile devices — that’s 35 hours a week, which is just shy of a typical 40-hour workweek! It’s critical for a publisher to adapt a mobile and content strategy that enables them to create, update and deliver mobile-friendly content.

Don’t treat your mobile content initiatives as an afterthought

One of the first hurdles is the process for transitioning content intended for print production by massaging it into a format that is optimized for a tablet, phone, or a website. Treating your digital “mobile” friendly content as an afterthought in your print workflow doesn’t work. Stop thinking about how to make a double page spread look good on a phone and start thinking about how the elements can fit together on mobile screens to best convey the story. It does not mean that you stop designing pages, it just means you don’t need to rely on a print layout as your starting point.

Create your content in a malleable way from the very beginning

Create your content in an HTML format that is flexible and responsive so that it can be easily adapted for any and all devices as well as for print output. Eliminate the need to create multiple layouts to address various tablet sizes, phone sizes, print pages and web content. If you can produce content that is in a format that is responsive, the time saved by not having to re-create the same content can be applied in far more creative ways. You can create the content once and output to several channels without the need to redesign or layout the content in numerous ways. My value to the MEI clients is based on making them more efficient and focused on the creative and substantive aspects of content creation and design – not manually re-formatting the same content for different output channels.

Don’t abandon the most critical aspects of your traditional workflow process

A content creation process that allows people to work independently or together as a team in order to leverage the many skills and tasks needed to produce great content and be efficient are keys to success. Allowing teams to monitor and control different aspects of a project is critical in a multi-channel production process.

You don’t need give up those tried and true workflow steps that have worked well for your team in your current workflow. Bring those same controls to your digital workflow using a tool like TruEdit.

Every day, digital content creation is changing and I strive to stay on top of best practices.

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.”

Time Inc.’s MNI Targeted Media Gets Major Value from MEI Portico

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MEI Portico continues to show its impressive flexibility by providing key app solutions for companies across a wide range of industries. The latest company to find value in Portico is MNI Targeted Media.

A division of Time Inc., MNI Targeted Media provides targeted advertising solutions for print and digital publishers. MNI is able to provide opportunities through their partnership with prestigious magazines such as Time, People, Sports Illustrated and Forbes.

MNI is currently developing a tablet app as a tool for sales enablement that will make it easy for sales representatives to demonstrate the value of MNI’s solutions to prospective clients.

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Portico 2.11.0 is Available

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MEI is excited to announce that Portico version 2.11.0 is now available! This newest version of Portico includes three new valuable features to boost any Adobe DPS storefront:

3rd Party Analytics Integration

Portico now allows for 3rd party analytics integration, meaning that your company can track storefront events in web analytics tools such as Google Analytics or Adobe Omniture. The Portico storefront can allow events to be recorded to your analytics dashboard, including:

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Lumin Publishing Finds Major Gains with Portico

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Lumin Publishing is the latest company that has found significant value using MEI Portico. Lumin is a print and digital publisher that is responsible for developing digital content for Zions Bank, a bank that has over 150 locations between Idaho and Colorado. Zions produces Community, a lifestyle magazine that focuses on the local culture scene and provides financial and legal advice to readers. The magazine is distributed six times a year to 50,000 of the top account holders and business clients.

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MEI Portico Powers Zions Bank Community Magazine

MEI Portico has been the chosen app storefront for many high-profile clients such as Wall Street Journal, Honeywell, and Billboard Magazine. What makes a Portico storefront so flexible is that it can be used for apps across several different industries, not just publishing. In addition, the Portico admin tool makes it simple to build and edit the storefront when work is needed, saving companies from needing their own app development team.

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National Geographic Expeditions Powered by MEI Portico

Screen Shot 2015-06-29 at 12.30.24 PMWhen choosing a solution for their Adobe Digital Publishing Suite app storefront, National Geographic Expeditions looked no further than utilizing MEI Portico. MEI had previous created a customized storefront for TCS & Starquest Expeditions, so they were able to use their previous experience to build a storefront that highlighted the National Geographic brand.

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The Wall Street Journal’s Ad Sales App is the Latest to be Powered by Portico

Wall-Street-Journal-app This week, The Wall Street Journal became the latest high-profile organization to publish an app with the MEI Portico mobile experience, as their Ad Sales app was accepted into the Mac App store. The purpose of Ad Sales is to give The Wall Street Journal’s team a secure platform that they can easily use for sales enablement. The app highlights products, videos, and case studies that demonstrates the high value when advertising with The Wall Street Journal.

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 The app’s public view, available to all downloaders

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