No, the Primetime Emmy Awards hasn’t added a category for Best Digital Experience or Best Performing Web CMS.

But Web CMS and customer experience will be a major behind-the-scenes component on the day the television awards show announces its nominees online at the Emmys website.

Acquia, which provides a platform for content, community and commerce, is powering that website with its Acquia Cloud -- which was also the Web CMS engine behind the Grammys -- that includes an elastic infrastructure and delivery solutions for Drupal.

“It's critical that our site performs at its very best,” Marc Wade, executive director of digital for the Television Academy, said in a statement. “That's why we sought a technology partner with the experience and Drupal expertise to ensure scales to meet the massive demand generated by the Emmys and other events, and that search led us to Acquia."

The Numbers 

web cms, And the Emmy Award for Web CMS Goes To ... Acquia

So let’s dig into the numbers. Demand for the awards shows’ website and content on nomination days is through the roof.

Last year during the Emmy nominations – due out Thursday this year -- saw 719,000 unique visitors and 3.5 million page views, according to Chuck Fishman, media, entertainment and publishing director at Acquia. And 300,000 came via mobile.

After the nominations are announced on a live webcast, the interest continues through all the events and content that lead up to the telecast of the Primetime Emmy Awards. That night, during the pre-show, the telecast and post-show, (which feeds into offers information on all the nominees, behind the scenes interviews and moments with the night's winners and presenters with a second-screen experience, “Backstage Live.”

Learning Opportunities

Why Acquia?

CMSWire asked Jess Iandiorio, vice president of product marketing at Acquia, what sets the Acquia CMS apart from the competition. Acquia, she said, takes a holistic approach to resiliency. It starts with giving customers access to tools that "test and validate" the quality of their application, such as Acquia Insight.

Customers can use its continuous delivery platform to develop their applications, and via Acquia’s API can add custom tests to run against their code when moving it from development to staging, and finally to production.

“Ensuring the application is the highest quality is our first priority,” Iandiorio said, “because that ensures the application is ready to scale when planned or unplanned traffic spikes occur. When the events occur -- in the case of the Emmy's it's nomination release day, and the awards show day (Aug. 25) -- our Drupal-tuned infrastructure and cloud operations team then takes over to ensure resources are added on-demand as site traffic peaks.”

Acquia Cloud being Drupal-tuned sets it apart from other hosting options, she said. The provider’s customized its infrastructure architecture to fit Drupal scalability needs in the following ways:

  • Across the database layer using MySQL for data replication
  • The file system layer utilizing GlusterFS to ensure the file system is synced
  • Through dedicated memcached servers for sites with high workloads, moving to the web server layer where it runs active web servers in multiple availability zones
  • By running multiple load balancers to ensure traffic is distributed

“This level of ‘Drupal-aware’ customization doesn't exist outside of Acquia,” Iandiorio said. “At the end of the day, it's not just about the infrastructure. Virtual resources alone can't ensure success. Our approach to ensuring application quality moving into big events is what really sets Acquia apart.”