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50 Sites, 10 Months, 1 CMS

A CAS E STUDY O N W NE T.ORG ’S M I G R AT I O N TO WO R D P R ESS

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


AGE NDA

1. WNET.ORG + Tierra Innovation

2. Project Overview

3. Why WordPress for a CMS solution?

4. Take WordPress beyond blogging

5. The Results

6. WordPress CMS Toolkit

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


ABOU T T IE RRA IN NOVAT IO N

Tierra designs and develops engaging, easy


to use and cost-effective digital products
Tierra offers a full range of services from designing and developing websites, publishing
software and mobile apps to conducting user experience research and executing
marketing initiatives. Based in New York City and Lost Angeles, Tierra’s clients include:

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


ABOU T WN ET.O RG

WNET.ORG is a pioneering provider of


television and web content
WNET.ORG is the parent of Thirteen and WLIW21 (both PBS stations). WNET.ORG serves
the NYC metro area with unique local productions and national PBS broadcasts, and
produces numerous acclaimed broadcast series and web productions including:

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


WNE T.ORG P ROJECT OVE RV I E W

The Problem
WNET needed to shift focus from design/production to content/audience growth
–  too much effort was going into design and build
–  not enough energy spent on content acquisition and ongoing marketing

WNET.org needed to streamline its website publishing operations


–  dozens of sites produced and launched each year
–  consistently inconsistent templates, standards, branding, and design
–  took all of team’s energy to produce, and support
–  no time to nurture growth

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


WNE T.ORG P ROJECT OVE RV I E W

The Old Process

Design
Priorities/budget
set by program/
series
Build
Mostly new tech
spend $ Populate
Incremental
content, acquired, Launch
created $$ broadcast-driven
timeline

Long-
term?
WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009
WNE T.ORG P ROJECT OVE RV I E W

The Solution
Create a central content management system (CMS) to support all WNET.org websites

Requirements:
–  Centrally hosted and managed
–  Accessible by editorial teams anywhere
–  Easy to use interface for non-technical users
–  Take advantage of latest web standards for displaying and publishing content
–  Standardize and simplify all front-end templates to create a seamless user experience

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


WHY WO RD PRE SS FO R A C M S

WordPress enforced standardization and


let WNET focus on content
How?
– “hyper-standardization” initially as a form of “shock therapy”
–  Gets series producers focused on content creation,
–  Gets interactive team focused on marketing
–  Makes sure back end is super user-friendly and accessible
–  Makes sure front end is super user-friendly and accessible (we had a history of
overcomplicating)

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


WHY WO RD PRE SS FO R A C M S

The New Process

Design
Emanates from
platform strategy Build Populate
Modular Leverage video
templates content-creation
process
Facilitate sharing,
multi-user publishing, Launch
UGC Web-specific
timeline

Promote
WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009
TAKE WORDPRESS BEYOND BLOGGING

How we tackled the project


To migrate dozens of legacy websites into a new set of standardized templates powered by
WordPress, Tierra and WNET.ORG had to:
–  Standardize content imported from legacy sites
–  Dump content into WP posts and pages in standard set up
–  Design templates that could support multiple brands and functionality, but require minimal
setup and development effort
–  Create an array of new plugins to make WordPress a more flexible and scalable publishing
system, including:
a)  developing ways to re-organize standard hierarchy of WordPress categories to support
free-form content organization
b)  creating new tools to enable easy publishing of promotional billboards, audio, video
c)  ensuring that database queries against WordPress installation are optimized so that
dozens of high-traffic sites could run on the centralized system

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


TH E RE SU LTS

During 2008-09, WNET.ORG launched


50+ sites using WordPress as a CMS

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


WORD P RESS C MS TO O L K IT

WordPress CMS Toolkit:


www.tierra-innovation.com/wordpress-cms
The Toolkit was launched by Tierra and WNET.ORG as part of a commitment to sharing
our work with other organizations and the WordPress development community.

What’s in the Toolkit? So far, released plugins include:


– Audio Playlist Manager – extensive flexibility for embedding mp3 audio
– Extend KSES – extends HTML functionality to the WP kses.php file
– Smart Category Ordering – sort post content (per category)
– WPDB Profiling – examine database queries against your WP install

The WordPress CMS Toolkit site is available for anyone to use and plugins are free. We are
planning to release additional plugins, templates and more documentation in the coming
weeks so check out the site and stay tuned…

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009


Thank you
Jamie Trowbridge Dan Goldman Todd Stowell
Founder & President Executive Director Software & Web Development
Tierra Innovation WNET.ORG Tierra Innovation

WWW.TIERRA-INNOVATION.COM / WORDPRESS-CMS WORDCAMP NYC NOVEMBER 14, 2009