SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Pat Romanski, Gary Arora, Zakia Bouachraoui, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan

Blog Feed Post

Overcoming Complexity in the Digital Era for Media & Entertainment Sites

Digital transformation is a phenomenon that is revolutionizing
the tasks and activities we perform daily. Everything from news consumption to communication has been re-imagined and digitalized. End users’ expectations are rapidly increasing, and with competition just a lcick away, it’s critical to develop an end user experience monitoring strategy to meet the needs of your digital media business and your users.

It’s safe to say that the media industry has experienced one of the biggest digital transformations, with nearly 93% of adults in the US getting their news online. This is forcing legacy media corporations to adopt new online strategies or risk falling behind their competition. While users are spending an average of just 2.5 minutes per visit, making every dollar earned through creative subscription plans and ad revenue crucial to keeping up.

How to choose a content management system (CMS)

In general, there are two main types of digital content management system (CMS) architectures: coupled and de-coupled.

The classic example of a coupled CMS architecture is a blog engine. In a coupled system, the underlying store for your content serves both authoring and delivery. Your authoring capabilities are part of the live delivery system but are available only to those who have permissions. In a coupled system, the process of making content live is typically a matter of setting a tag in the database.

A decoupled system, by contrast, is one that puts authoring and delivery in separate applications, and potentially, on separate infrastructure. In a decoupled system, the process of making content live is done through a publishing mechanism where content is pushed from the authoring platform (and underlying content repository) to a content delivery infrastructure.

Headless CMS technology provides content to the presentation tier (or content consumer) as a service, typically via a RESTful interface in JSON or XML format. This is known as content as a service (CaaS).

The main advantage of a headless CMS (CaaS) architecture is that content is written and published once but can be requested and presented uniquely by any number of different channels/content consumers.

Headless CMS is a content management system (CMS) whose focus is not on the delivery of content through pages, but solely on the backend, providing content creators with the tools to get their workflows up to a point where content is ready to be consumed in a CaaS. It’s just a regular CMS amputated of its web delivery layer; no templating system, no HTML delivery, and no management of the site structure and style.

A headless CMS focuses naturally on supporting users with the following tasks:

  • Modelling content
  • Creating and authoring content
  • Facilitating the workflow and the collaboration around content (including translations)
  • Organizing content in the repository (semantic, collections, taxonomies)

Most enterprises today, especially those with many brands, international audiences, and multiple digital properties, should consider consolidating their digital environments to a flexible, scalable, and decoupled technology platform.

With a modern CMS based on a decoupled architecture, organizations can have the freedom to go headless or traditional — or a combination of the two, depending on the project. More importantly, these systems adapt to the organization’s business needs so they don’t get stuck with limited technology that hinders their plans to innovate.

Architecture selection

Architectures are getting more complex with an increasing number of moving parts. APIs are the default channels of communication in these architectures. APIs and web services are being leveraged for content publishing, curating, subscriptions, and collating, so including architectural components in your end user experience monitoring plan is important to help mitigate vulnerabilities.

The delivery of content directly impacts the performance experienced by the end user while viewing your web pages and in turn impacts user engagement and revenue. Content must be available and accessible at all times across multiple form-factors and locations. Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) and cloud architectures are playing a dominant role in improving the end user experience.

Content Delivery Networks (CDN) and Over-the-Top (OTT) solutions are leveraged to ensure high availability and high performance from anywhere in the world. CDNs also provide the infrastructure used for live and on-demand streaming or video delivery. Keeping these vendors accountable through precise service-level agreements (SLAs) is a major challenge and directly affects the spend of a media company.

Multi-media is a double-edged sword

There has been a radical shift in the type of content produced by the media industry. Online video is already a success story and media sites have increased their use of rich, high-resolution images. Consumers are no longer satisfied just to enjoy print, video, or other forms of entertainment and information passively. In today’s search-driven world, consumers are actively looking for control, community, and interactivity.

User abandonment is high when either the content doesn’t load completely or when a video fails to load. Thus, ensuring the performance and availability of content is essential. For example, for live streaming, it is essential to monitor the live encoder to ensure an available and a smooth viewing experience for the end user.

Data consumption is increasingly delivered via multi-media channels. Data-intense images, videos, and animations are essential for successful user engagement, but these formats can be detrimental to the performance of an application when implemented incorrectly.

The days of simple text and images are gone. Content has evolved to be suave, targeted, and media-rich. End users are abandoning websites with unintuitive user experiences, and a premium has been placed on user-generated content.

With the fear of user abandonment, corporations are undertaking customer outreach programs to engage with their users. Social media integrations are playing a vital role in the constant feedback loop between content producers and consumers. Over 97% of digital media sites are offering newsletters and nearly all of which have an official Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts.

Meeting end users’ expectations

The expectations of end users in the media industry have evolved over the years, and access to seamless content access across devices is now a given. The power of mobile and social platforms is transforming how media is consumed and perceived. In fact, today, more than 50% of internet traffic comes from mobile devices; this is where end user experience monitoring comes in. It is important to ensure that media webpages are optimized for these mobile devices and that the user has a smooth experience while scrolling through the pages.

Personalized content is king, and it’s important to deliver relevant content to users. Companies that can figure out how to push discovery of their content to consumers or help them discover it for themselves will have an advantage over their competitors.

All about advertising

Before the rise of digital media, newspapers, and magazines made the bulk of their earnings on subscriptions/newsstand purchases of print issues and advertising sales. The revenue models for both traditional media houses and new-age digital media corporations has had to change with this transformation to focus primarily on online advertising.

In 2016, eMarketer, a leading market research agency, observed a lot of growth in digital advertising in the US. Digital revenue grew over 20%, from $60 billion in 2015 to about $72 billion in 2016. Mobile advertising’s contribution to this was significant, growing from $32 billion in 2015 to $47 billion in 2016. Pew Research Center noted all this in their 2016 State of the News Media research analysis.

Before the rise of digital media, newspapers and magazines made the bulk of their earnings on subscriptions/newsstand purchases of print issues and advertising sales. The revenue models for both traditional media houses and new-age digital media corporations have had to change with this transformation to focus primarily on online advertising.

In 2016, eMarketer, a leading market research agency, observed a lot of growth in digital advertising in the US. Digital revenue grew over 20%, from $60 billion in 2015 to about $72 billion in 2016. Mobile advertising’s contribution to this was significant, growing from $32 billion in 2015 to $47 billion in 2016. Pew Research Center noted all this in their 2016 State of the News Media research analysis.

With so much at stake, it becomes imperative these media outlets manage their end-user experience with the greatest care. As the content paradigm shifts towards a media-intense experience, users’ patience levels are at an all-time low. As per Kissmetrics, a leading marketing analytics company, over 40% of users abandon a website if it takes over 3 seconds to load.

With such a small margin for error and so much at stake, the need to stay fast, load only essential content and provide a positive user experience becomes a necessity rather than a luxury. In this vicious landscape, end user experience monitoring becomes a vital cog in any media house’s revenue strategy.

Download a copy of our ebook, Overcoming Complexity in the Digital Era.

This post was written by Anand Guruprasad, Navya Dawarakanath, Ashish Kumar, Jermy Varghese, and Moiz Khan.

The post Overcoming Complexity in the Digital Era for Media & Entertainment Sites appeared first on Catchpoint's Blog - Web Performance Monitoring.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Mehdi Daoudi

Catchpoint radically transforms the way businesses manage, monitor, and test the performance of online applications. Truly understand and improve user experience with clear visibility into complex, distributed online systems.

Founded in 2008 by four DoubleClick / Google executives with a passion for speed, reliability and overall better online experiences, Catchpoint has now become the most innovative provider of web performance testing and monitoring solutions. We are a team with expertise in designing, building, operating, scaling and monitoring highly transactional Internet services used by thousands of companies and impacting the experience of millions of users. Catchpoint is funded by top-tier venture capital firm, Battery Ventures, which has invested in category leaders such as Akamai, Omniture (Adobe Systems), Optimizely, Tealium, BazaarVoice, Marketo and many more.

Latest Stories
While a hybrid cloud can ease that transition, designing and deploy that hybrid cloud still offers challenges for organizations concerned about lack of available cloud skillsets within their organization. Managed service providers offer a unique opportunity to fill those gaps and get organizations of all sizes on a hybrid cloud that meets their comfort level, while delivering enhanced benefits for cost, efficiency, agility, mobility, and elasticity.
Isomorphic Software is the global leader in high-end, web-based business applications. We develop, market, and support the SmartClient & Smart GWT HTML5/Ajax platform, combining the productivity and performance of traditional desktop software with the simplicity and reach of the open web. With staff in 10 timezones, Isomorphic provides a global network of services related to our technology, with offerings ranging from turnkey application development to SLA-backed enterprise support. Leadin...
DevOps has long focused on reinventing the SDLC (e.g. with CI/CD, ARA, pipeline automation etc.), while reinvention of IT Ops has lagged. However, new approaches like Site Reliability Engineering, Observability, Containerization, Operations Analytics, and ML/AI are driving a resurgence of IT Ops. In this session our expert panel will focus on how these new ideas are [putting the Ops back in DevOps orbringing modern IT Ops to DevOps].
Darktrace is the world's leading AI company for cyber security. Created by mathematicians from the University of Cambridge, Darktrace's Enterprise Immune System is the first non-consumer application of machine learning to work at scale, across all network types, from physical, virtualized, and cloud, through to IoT and industrial control systems. Installed as a self-configuring cyber defense platform, Darktrace continuously learns what is ‘normal' for all devices and users, updating its understa...
Enterprises are striving to become digital businesses for differentiated innovation and customer-centricity. Traditionally, they focused on digitizing processes and paper workflow. To be a disruptor and compete against new players, they need to gain insight into business data and innovate at scale. Cloud and cognitive technologies can help them leverage hidden data in SAP/ERP systems to fuel their businesses to accelerate digital transformation success.
Concerns about security, downtime and latency, budgets, and general unfamiliarity with cloud technologies continue to create hesitation for many organizations that truly need to be developing a cloud strategy. Hybrid cloud solutions are helping to elevate those concerns by enabling the combination or orchestration of two or more platforms, including on-premise infrastructure, private clouds and/or third-party, public cloud services. This gives organizations more comfort to begin their digital tr...
Most organizations are awash today in data and IT systems, yet they're still struggling mightily to use these invaluable assets to meet the rising demand for new digital solutions and customer experiences that drive innovation and growth. What's lacking are potent and effective ways to rapidly combine together on-premises IT and the numerous commercial clouds that the average organization has in place today into effective new business solutions.
Keeping an application running at scale can be a daunting task. When do you need to add more capacity? Larger databases? Additional servers? These questions get harder as the complexity of your application grows. Microservice based architectures and cloud-based dynamic infrastructures are technologies that help you keep your application running with high availability, even during times of extreme scaling. But real cloud success, at scale, requires much more than a basic lift-and-shift migrati...
David Friend is the co-founder and CEO of Wasabi, the hot cloud storage company that delivers fast, low-cost, and reliable cloud storage. Prior to Wasabi, David co-founded Carbonite, one of the world's leading cloud backup companies. A successful tech entrepreneur for more than 30 years, David got his start at ARP Instruments, a manufacturer of synthesizers for rock bands, where he worked with leading musicians of the day like Stevie Wonder, Pete Townsend of The Who, and Led Zeppelin. David has ...
Darktrace is the world's leading AI company for cyber security. Created by mathematicians from the University of Cambridge, Darktrace's Enterprise Immune System is the first non-consumer application of machine learning to work at scale, across all network types, from physical, virtualized, and cloud, through to IoT and industrial control systems. Installed as a self-configuring cyber defense platform, Darktrace continuously learns what is ‘normal' for all devices and users, updating its understa...
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Addteq is a leader in providing business solutions to Enterprise clients. Addteq has been in the business for more than 10 years. Through the use of DevOps automation, Addteq strives on creating innovative solutions to solve business processes. Clients depend on Addteq to modernize the software delivery process by providing Atlassian solutions, create custom add-ons, conduct training, offer hosting, perform DevOps services, and provide overall support services.
Contino is a global technical consultancy that helps highly-regulated enterprises transform faster, modernizing their way of working through DevOps and cloud computing. They focus on building capability and assisting our clients to in-source strategic technology capability so they get to market quickly and build their own innovation engine.
When applications are hosted on servers, they produce immense quantities of logging data. Quality engineers should verify that apps are producing log data that is existent, correct, consumable, and complete. Otherwise, apps in production are not easily monitored, have issues that are difficult to detect, and cannot be corrected quickly. Tom Chavez presents the four steps that quality engineers should include in every test plan for apps that produce log output or other machine data. Learn the ste...
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...