Integrations: how we help publishers deliver better research

  • October 9th, 2017

When one technology integrates with another the connections can help deepen and enhance the quality and usability of both systems.

Integrations with publishing systems can both improve the quality of the research made available to customers and enhance the ability of the research provider to manage its day-to-day activities.

Improved storytelling

Certain market information is best presented in either written or numerical form, but for most information text mixed with tables and charts created from related data really helps bring to life the story the author is trying to get over to the end user.

In fact, advances in digital technology mean it’s a bit arcane to think of data and market reports as two distinct entities. It’s now possible to meld content types in ways that help tell complex stories in the best manner possible.

To enable publishers to produce – and edit – integrated reports of this kind, a good-quality publishing platform is needed.

The platform should make it simple to take content in its most accessible format, bundle it together quickly and easily with content in other formats, and present this to end users as a package.

In addition, those research businesses that use the best platforms should be able to make their reports richer, more easily accessible, and even more engaging by drawing quality content from alternative sources.

Let’s take an example from our own experience: we have recently integrated our iReports publishing platform with several third-party software products. We have done this to ensure customers always have the flexibility to tell stories and present information in the best possible way.

Our data product, Dataviewer, is excellent for managing and displaying sales and market data, but there are other datasets out there – and we want to enable publishers to bring alternative datasets into their iReports’ powered websites to help improve the stories they tell their customers.

The trick is the third-party integrations…

One such integration we have developed is with Marketsight. Data and graphics produced around survey information in Marketsight can now be pulled out of that site and embedded into interactive reports alongside native content.

This integration also allows users to dive into individual exhibits and filter the underlying data to create charts and graphics that fit their own scenarios. This is the magic of a good publishing system – it can combine multiple useful pieces of technology in one integrated user experience.

In the coming months, we expect to make announcements about similar partnerships that will help us also bring rankings data, lists, and records data such as company databases into iReports. Once this work is done, it will give our customers the opportunity to enrich their content all the more and to tell stories in an even more acute and meaningful way.

Better business

Integrations aren’t limited to the content-side of the report publishing business. iReports has several ways to connect with technologies that help create efficiencies for the publishers who use the system.

We use metadata to enable the customer to carry detailed and searchable information about each piece of report content on their marketing websites.

Beyond this, we have also created an integration with Salesforce, one of the leading customer relationship management (CRM) products available and, consequently, Publish Interactive has developed numerous connections with the software.

Our principal goal in our integrations with Salesforce is to make life just that little bit easier for those people who use both systems; so, where we can, we have tried to remove some of the need to repeat work on the second platform that has already been carried out on the first platform. Also, this integration helps make site implementations that little bit faster.

Beyond Salesforce, we are rapidly building out a suite of highly useful APIs, so that our customers’ development teams can create connections between iReports and their bespoke systems. APIs also open new opportunities for publishers to plug content into their customers’ systems and integrate this directly into their workflows.

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