Publishing workflow

In an ongoing effort to redefine customer help, MindTouch announces support for common CCMS vendors like Astoria, DocZone, SDL Trisoft, and IXIAsoft. Releases business “how-to” toolkit for socializing CMS and CCMS.

Austin, TX, November 17, 2011 — MindTouch, the provider of exceptional product help experiences, announced at Lavacon this week support for common Componentized Content Management System (CCMS) vendors such as Astoria, DocZone, SDL Trisoft and IXIAsoft.

XML and DITA based CMS’s have proven market value by decreasing the cost of authoring, maintaining and translating content. While powerful in lowering costs, CCMS platforms are publishing value laden content into obsolete pre-Web formats such as PDFs, static HTML and first generation knowledgebases.

End users’ expectations are higher than ever. Twenty year old static formats are still the primary mediums used today and these fail to meet the needs of end users. Recent studies (Greenfield Online, Datamonitor, Ovum Analysts and Genesys) estimate the failure to meet customers’ support needs is the primary cause of customer churn and this creates as much as $83 billion of annual losses caused by product abandonment.

Companies like Autodesk, Paypal, Intuit and thousands of others, have turned to MindTouch. As of this week, MindTouch now enhances CCMS investments by creating a publishing end point that offers users a social, collaborative and analytics rich environment for end users. Now, CCMS’s can create revenue and customer engagement. MindTouch offers effortless product help anywhere, anytime in the form of a social help center for customers, a social knowledgebase that integrates seamlessly with support ticketing and an in-product help system.

“MindTouch is offering a new social publishing endpoint for help and product content” said Aaron Fulkerson, CEO of MindTouch. “We are replacing static HTML and PDF as the primary help publishing medium with a social experience that taps into the dynamics of the web. We fight for the users.”

In seconds CCMS users can now publish tens of thousands of their product and knowledgebase articles into a MindTouch powered social help center. Hierarchies, cross-link references, image and page formats are maintained and/or created in real-time. Content is automatically organized by tags, metadata and hierarchy. Content is indexed by a powerful search tool. Users are accelerated to expertise with auto-related topics, tutorials, videos and content from support ticketing. A variety of feedback mechanisms encourage customer engagement. Furthermore, behavioral analytics inform content, product, sales and marketing strategy corporate wide.

Product managers value MindTouch because it enables great user experiences, improves user adoption, and allows them to better understand how users utilize products. Support teams can effectively target and address support hot spots in record time with support ticketing integration. Technical writers and content strategists know precisely where and how to improve content and love the in-product help system that allows them to fix documents in real time, run sophisticated analytics, and dynamically organize content without tedious manual work.

MindTouch collaborated with the Gilbane Group, the Society for Technical Communicators (STC), customers and several industry experts to develop a toolkit that provides a “how-to” for repurposing Componentized Content Management Systems (CCMS’s) by adding a social publishing layer. This benefits your users in profound and measurable ways. If you use a CCMS and care about your users, you will want this toolkit. Download the Socializing your CCMS toolkit.

About MindTouch

An enterprise collaboration leader since 2005, MindTouch converts users into experts with a cloud based social help center for help, technical and product content that includes a knowledgebase with support ticketing integration and a help button that can be added to any web application in minutes. Millions use MindTouch every day.
Great companies like Cisco, Intuit, Paypal, Autodesk, Hewlett-Packard, Mozilla, HTC, Viacom, Panasonic and EMC rely on MindTouch.
Learn more at http://mindtouch.com.

I’ve just returned from the 2011 Lavacon conference in Austin, TX where I presented "Who Cares About Your Live Content?". The audience at the conference included content strategists, techpubs, elearning and techcomm managers. There were great sponsors present, such as: Adobe TCS, Astoria, SDL LiveContent, IXIAsoft and Madcap Flare.

I’m sharing my deck with you here because I think it’s a great crash course on the real world benefits of help and product content across an entire organization.

Also TechWhirl provided a great overview of my talk.

Read more…

Today MindTouch announced new product capabilities for enhancing CMS and CCMS vendors like Astoria, DocZone, SDL LiveContent, Trisoft and IXIAsoft.

doc1WHY
Better customer help, happier customers.
HOW
Socialize existing publishing pipelines.
WHAT
Replace PDF and static content outputs from current publishing pipelines with a social publishing endpoint.

XML and DITA based CMS’s have proven market value by decreasing the cost of authoring, maintaining and translating content. While powerful in lowering costs, CCMS platforms are publishing value laden content into obsolete pre-Web formats such as PDFs, static HTML and first generation knowledgebases.

End users’ expectations are higher than ever. Twenty year old static formats are still the primary mediums used today and these fail to meet the needs of end users. Recent studies (Greenfield Online, Datamonitor, Ovum Analysts and Genesys) estimate the failure to meet customers’ support needs is the publishing-flow3primary cause of customer churn and this creates as much as $83 billion of annual losses caused by product abandonment.
Read more…

MindTouch worked with the Gilbane Group, some of our customers, the Society for Technical Communicators and several industry experts to develop a toolkit that provides a “how-to” for repurposing Componentized Content Management Systems (CCMS’s) by adding a social publishing layer. This benefits your customers in profound and measurable ways. If you care about your users, you need this toolkit.publishing-flow2

CCMS’s like SDL Trisoft and IXIAsoft have proven their value to the market by lowering the costs associated with producing, maintaining and translating content. However, MindTouch customers, companies like Autodesk, Paypal, Intuit and hundreds of others, have been proving that this content can be used to create the foundation of a social learning community that increases top line revenues and improves the quality of end user support.

Read more…

Technical communication is currently suffering the side effects of a “social revolution” and is failing to evolve to the needs of the customer.

Industry leaders such as IXIAsoft, SDL with Trisoft and others have done an excellent job of innovating the ease in which companies can manage content. Focusing on XML authoring tools and Component Content Management Systems (CCMS) has provided tremendous value by lowering costs. In the fervor to lower the costs of technical writing and translation there is one stakeholder that has been overlooked; the customer.

The end user still has to crawl through PDF’s, sift through compiled HTML (.CHM) or static HTML sites and in many cases companies’ are still relying on disc media to get out the help and product content. Even when there is an online help site output from CCMS systems these take the form of an archaic 1984 knowledgebase, as if this is an improvement. The output from a CCMS, such as SDL Trisoft, should include a social engagement layer, effective search, feedback mechanisms and analytics for informing content, product and marketing strategy. Case in point: Autodesk, which is one of the many customers MindTouch has that have used MindTouch to provide a high value social layer atop their DITA XML publishing pipeline (SDL Trisoft in this case).

MindTouch provides the social publishing endpoint that your documentation needs to deliver for the needs and demands of your users. These days, users aren’t getting help the way they used to. By publishing your DITA and other documentation to MindTouch you can put curated help in the hands of your users.
Read more…

This year at TCWorld in Germany, Scott Abel hosted a full day of content strategy talks. The participants included an illustrious group in the content strategy space including: Ann Rockley, Charles Cooper, Rahel Ann Bailie, Geoff Roberts, Noz Urbina and Ray Gallon. Scott did an amazing job of organizing the speakers and focusing the content. This track was really relevant and valuable. It was helpful to anyone in customer support, marketing, product management and, of course, techcomm. There were two primary foci of the talks: the benefits of help and product content to digital marketing and the evolving landscape of digital publishing. Read more…