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What is intelligent content?

Progressive digitisation influences both, the creation of product documentation and other content and their distribution. Intelligent content is a prerequisite for a target-group specific provision of information.  The creation of content or information is made intelligent by using specific concepts and enhancing it with metadata. To do this, analysis of products and the target group is essential: a content strategy is part of the process of creating intelligent content, whereby especially a metadata concept plays a central role.

Intelligent content has the following features:

  • Structured: only structured information, e.g. XML documents, can be further processed automatically by the software.
  • Semantically classified: the information is semantically tagged, i.e., tagged with metadata.
  • Automatically detectable: semantically tagged information can be searched for automatically. The metadata serves as the filter criterion here.
  • Reusable: the content is contained in a module and not a document. The information can be reused at various places. Modules can be searched for in a targeted manner – using its metadata.
  • Reconfigurable: reusable content is modular content. Modules can be exchanged quickly and easily. Thus they meet the requirement of flexible, specific product information.
  • Customisable: structured and semantic content can be published for appropriate output channels as required and then distributed.

With this enhanced, intelligent content you can provide additional information, thereby generating real added value. Users can make full use of the search functions of portals only if the data that you want to display is intelligently tagged with metadata.

The content is not created on a content delivery portal (information portal); instead it originates from one or more systems, for example, a content management or an asset management system.

What are the advantages of intelligent content?

You can offer intelligently-enhanced content for download: content delivery portals have a web-based interface that can be used for presenting, searching and downloading extensive product documentation or other documents. Content can be used internally or provided externally to customers and vendors with the help of an appropriate interface. This is therefore an attractive solution for existing customers, who have already purchased a product and now require additional or updated product documentation. Those who wish to find out about a product rummage through brochures or read manuals to get information about the product functions. However, to make the search experience more comfortable for the user, content should be enhanced with intelligent data, for example keywords or precise headings, so that the search is successful.

From intelligent content to searching on content delivery portals

The content of a content delivery portal is enhanced with metadata either when it is created or at a later stage. The contribution of the Marketing and Technical Documentation departments consists of writing customer magazines, brochures or manuals and tag them with metadata. This makes the content intelligent.

The portal supports the filtering of information and semantic search queries by target groups and by context. This is because the volume of information can often be so large or so diverse that users would not easily find the information they are looking for in one navigation system.

Finding content: using metadata for faceted search

Faceted search, also known as filter navigation, is a good alternative. The search results of this search function are modelled on the conventional navigation because they are presented like those in the known navigation structures. When content is enhanced with a well-structured metadata concept with taxonomies, users can navigate to specific content using a combination of search and navigation.

Therefore writers create content with metadata, taxonomies and search functions so as to achieve sophisticated navigation through intelligent content. On the other hand, users actively limit the search result selection while carrying out a search and focus on the relevant content.

Hence it is important to focus on the potential users when creating a metadata concept: what are the keywords they search for? Which information or products do you want to provide to your users? In short, metadata already provides answers to the questions that users will probably ask in future. It makes content delivery portals - equipped with intelligently created content - an instrument for customer retention.