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Creating a Bridge Between Contently and Sitefinity

June 01, 2016  /  by  Diane Callihan

Content Management Just Got a Whole Lot Easier

Many businesses use Contently, a content marketing platform, to not only create their website content, but also to manage their workflow and content approval processes.

Additionally, many businesses use Progress Sitefinity, a .NET enterprise-level content management system, to allow them to easily administer their own websites.

The problem is that these two systems are not set up to automatically communicate with one another.

Phytel, An IBM Company, came to us with this issue recently. They wanted to work with Contently to create their content, but once that content was created and approved, they had to manually cut and paste it into Sitefinity to publish it to their website.

For a company with a robust content strategy, this manual process was inefficient and time consuming.

They also had to keep checking in with Contently to see when new content was ready to be posted or when previously published articles had been updated or revised.

The good news is: we found a better way.

Systems Integration for a More Efficient Content Process

First, we had to dynamically pull Phytel’s approved articles from Contently’s web service, and second, we used Sitefinity’s Blog Manager API to create a blog post from that data.

That created the blog post in Sitefinity, but we also needed to automate the process so that Sitefinity would know when a new post in Contently was ready to be published, or when an existing article had been updated.

Contently uses something called a web hook – basically a web event that is triggered and writes to a URL when something has been written or changed in the system. These changes are time-stamped.

We created a .NET handler – a URL that the web hook could write to – on Phytel’s Sitefinity site, so the two systems could communicate.

In essence, Contently now sends Sitefinity a notification whenever new content is added or updated. Sitefinity can “read” through those updates, and automatically imports the new content.

When Sitefinity sees a change has been made to an existing article, it compares the time stamp of the change to the most recent version of the article. If the times match, no update needs to be made. But if the change is new, the updated article will be imported into Sitefinity.

We love stuff like this.

So now, when Phytel approves a blog post on Contently, that blog post is automatically created in Sitefinity. An automated email is then sent to a group of moderators that lets them know the draft post is in Sitefinity and ready to publish. The same process occurs for updates to existing articles.

“We are delighted with the integration between Contently and Sitefinity. It makes the process of creating, updating and publishing blog posts in two separate systems much more efficient and effective. Roger West has been great at developing innovative solutions that are responsive to our needs.”

Carly Sheppard-Knoll, Content Marketing, Phytel, An IBM Company

Bottom line, we were able to leverage Sitefinity’s API to automatically add and edit blog posts from Contently, which has made Phytel’s content process faster and easier.

We’d be happy to help your company do something similar, or help solve any of your other digital marketing dilemmas. Let’s talk.