Editorial workflow for all media channels


Content-X is a simple, small and incredibly efficient solution. It’s never been easier to convert data, process images, create newspaper layouts, fill mobile offers with content or create archives.

Peter Zehrer - Technical Prepress Manager, Russmedia

Vorarlberger MedienhausThe editorial system Content-X has arrived – in one of Europe’s most modern and innovative media companies. A family business in step with times, Russmedia continues to pursue new paths and serves as a benchmark for the entire industry. Until recently, the editorial workflow at Russmedia, which included the daily newspaper Vorarlberger Nachrichten and a number of magazines, weeklies, websites and mobile products, was very simple. InDesign. Period. Simple, functional and output-oriented – but only in terms of print. Because there are problems with exporting content via XML. However, the XML files are what Russmedia’s digital products are based on and are therefore extremely important.

Content-X closes the gap

With Content-X, a joint InDesign-based, media-neutral editorial solution developed by the Hamburg-based software manufacturers and specialists for publishing solutions, ppi Media, and Digital Collections (DC), the management in Vorarlberg have now closed this gap by introducing a new workflow that covers the entire range of digital products apart from its print products. After the editorial solution was set up quickly and straightforwardly, Peter Zehrer, technical prepress manager at Russmedia, stated confidently:

“Content-X is a simple, small and incredibly efficient solution. It’s never been easier to convert data, process images, create newspaper layouts, fill mobile offers with content or create archives.”

Both companies, ppi Media and DC, have combined the best of their respective products in this solution and created a product for a media-neutral editorial workflow which sets a new standard on the market.

“Cooperation with both companies was extremely targeted and of considerable added value,” says Peter Zehrer, describing the project work.

Goal accomplished, but the work will continue

Ambitious goals and creative visionaries are what create outstanding performance which, in turn, promotes the development of products and achieves fast results. And sometimes things happen even faster than expected. At Russmedia, individual milestones in installing and setting Content-X up were not only accomplished quickly, but excellent ideas were also implemented. The set target of creating “more channels, a greater reach, new target groups and always being close to the reader” has been achieved by using Content-X. No one in Vorarlberg is thinking of stopping or resting on their laurels. There’s still a lot to do. Even though a lot has been achieved by converting to Responsive Web Design and HTML5 for online, mobile and tablet.

“Content-X handles all these channels automatically, creates transparent processes, an end-to-end workflow and maximum satisfaction with users – our editors,” says Peter Zehrer.

And readers benefit as well. The reading experience has been raised to a new level through modern web technology, and the news is optimized for each output medium from print to the fast-growing mobile market (smartphone and tablet).

Small, powerful and smart

Content-X differs from the large solutions on the market in a number of ways. Deliberately. It’s easy to use, with extremely intelligent data management, flexible image workflow and enhanced InDesign functions. Content-X perfects the basics and is both intuitive and smart.

According to Peter Zehrer, “the large number of drag & drop functions make a difference.”

Duplicate worksteps are a thing of the past, nothing is lost and, best of all, editors can work much more efficiently, are highly satisfied and can go home earlier. The time pressure is still there – but this solution is so much easier.

A further advantage of Content-X is its flexibility. Due to the Content Management System DC-X being directly linked to InDesign via a plugin developed by ppi Media, the worksteps can be performed in any order: the layout as a basis for content, content as a basis for the layout, or a combination of both.

The future begins with intelligent investment

In an industry looking for answers and solutions, Russmedia stands for state-of-the-art technology for software and hardware, creative minds and the courage to try out new things. Once again, all eyes are turned towards Austria, where a new success story is emerging. And as far as Peter Zehrer is concerned, the publishing industry has all the time in the world. “We’ll be around for a long time yet.” This is partly due to the newspaper market in Austria, which, by international comparison, boasts a sound economic foundation and good ad sales, and partly to the innovative approach the media company takes.

“By using Content-X as an editorial solution, we see ourselves as a successful benchmark for other small publishing companies who are cost-conscious and do not need an editorial system that has endless functions, is difficult to operate and needs high investment. We can definitely fully recommend Content-X,” says Peter Zehrer.

It’s exactly this intelligent investment, their stringent check of the solutions used and the resulting successes and savings that make this Austrian media company so succesful.

Facts and figures

More than 1500 people are employed at 23 Russmedia sites across Europe and produce high-quality products for different target groups every day. The small, regional printing office with a 100-year history has now grown into an international media enterprise.

Russmedia’s core competences are to develop, produce and market digital media and to publish and produce print media. All their activities focus on their readers’ and customers’ requirements. The secret to the company’s success is to concentrate on market segments that were clearly defined from a regional or topical point of view.

Text: ppi Media, August 2014