800 Boylston St, Boston

Acquia targeted personalized digital experiences at its first customer conference last fall. This year, it's turning its attention to internal processes, specifically enterprises that need to share content between web content management systems (Web CMS) and other digital distribution channels.

Today, at its Acquia Engage Conference, Boston-based Acquia released the Acquia Content Hub, a cloud-based distribution and discovery service. 

Acquia built its platform on the open-source Drupal model, which was created by Acquia founder and CTO Dries Buytaert. This release aims to make it easier for CMSs to talk to each other, Acquia officials told CMSWire. 

The company hopes to accomplish this through APIs that connect the Acquia Content Hub with other content channels. 

The product is targeted at "enterprise customers with complex silos and systems that need a better way to get content out of legacy systems, into more modern systems and across various distributed partners and teams," Kelly O'Neill, senior director of product marketing for Acquia, told CMSWire in an interview last week.

Acquia Engage runs through tomorrow at the InterContinental Hotel in Boston.

Still Personal

acquia content hub product screenshot

Acquia received $55 million in a funding round last month. It also landed in the “leaders” category back to back in 2014 and 2015 in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web CMS. It’s a “strong performer” in Forrester’s similar industry report — the Wave for CMS.  

It's been a year since Acquia debuted Acquia Lift ContextDB, a data warehouse solution to help enterprises provide personalized digital experiences. Acquia builds off that effort today. 

If you want personalization, you must have the right content, Chris Stone, Acquia chief products officer, said in a statement. Stone continued:

“As digital teams race to deliver personalized customer experiences, they must first make sense of the chaos that has resulted from the explosion of content and sites. Delivering relevant content across a rapidly growing number of sites, applications, and technologies is the new challenge, and we’re enabling our customers to stop laboriously sharing content via email and spreadsheets and start collaborating across departments and sites" through Content Hub.

Content Hub's discovery, sharing and distribution tools include:

  • A repository that aggregates and normalizes content and data from any external source or CMS
  • Discovery tools, including content subscriptions and faceted search, to help builders and editors to find relevant content from other sites, departmental archives or content management systems 
  • Automated updates from authors to content consumers — both internal and external audiences — in near real time, respecting local changes and workflow rules connections created to access and publish content within existing workflow

"Our customers have a hodgepodge of systems," O'Neill said. "They're running a mix of Drupal and maybe an old Vignette site, and they need a way to get content out of those sites and enable them to normalize their environments. There is valuable content in those systems. ... Sharing content via email or in Google Docs just isn't efficient."

Centralized Model

Christian Yates, vice president of product in the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) division for Acquia, said the Content Hub APIs allow for integrations with platforms like Java and PHP. He cited a life sciences or pharmaceutical client that needs to have compliant terms and conditions. If a company updates its main website, it needs to ensure the hundreds of local sites do, too.

"It's about finding content," Yates told CMSWire, "whether it's in Drupal or outside the Drupal ecosystem. Content Hub allows you to have a centralized model and anchor site that allows you update other sites automatically. And it's in milliseconds because it's cloud-based."

Global Partners

In other news this week, Acquia announced that London-based WPP, a global communications services group with $19 billion yearly in revenue and 188,000 employees, joined Acquia in a global partnership to offer clients a digital marketing and technology solution.

The partnership brings together WPP’s existing Acquia partners — which include Globant, Hogarth, Mirum, POSSIBLE, Rockfish, VML and Wunderman — under the new WPP-Acquia Alliance. Its members will draw on Acquia software, training and certification, collaborate on new business pitches and share project resources.

Acquia clients get WPP creative, UX and development resources. WPP gets Acquia's open cloud platform to deliver projects.

The WPP-Acquia Alliance is part of WPP’s Technology Partnership Program.

“The growth of the API economy is changing marketing, and clients require the ability to integrate existing technologies, data sources and media into a central platform," said Scott Spirit, WPP chief digital officer and chief strategy officer. 

"The creation of the WPP-Acquia Alliance gives us an open source digital experience practice at a time when the market is growing rapidly.”

Title image by Michael Eggerl