MuleSoft's Anypoint API Community Manager (ACM) is a digital experience platform that enables companies to provide a customisable developer portal that promotes API products and increases engagement across the API ecosystem.
The ACM extends the functionality of Anypoint Exchange and provides multiple features from both MuleSoft's Anypoint Platform and Salesforce's Community Cloud to help empower app developers, partners, and employees with the self-service resources and support they need to be successful.
In this blog we will take you through the various features and capabilities of ACM and how these can help organisations to innovate within a broader ecosystem of developers, partners and employees, to co-create value and stay ahead of the competition.
Anypoint API Community Manager (ACM)
As part of their digital transformation initiatives, organisations across various industries are now considering APIs as a core asset that can be leveraged to expand their business. ACM is a one stop solution for onboarding communities of developers, partners and customers to seamlessly use APIs. ACM builds on the functionalities within Anypoint Exchange to allow organisations to reuse existing assets to target cross-functional stakeholders. The diagram below explains the purpose of various products within Anypoint Platform and where community manager sits:
Fig. 1 - ACM within Anypoint Platform
Features and functionalities
Anypoint API Community Manager includes the following capabilities to support engagement across your API ecosystem:
- Personalised API portals: ACM allows you to create portals that serve specific API products, news, blogs, events based on geography, referring domain, and more. These portals can be created in minutes with out of the box templates that do not require coding knowledge or skill. You can also reconfigure and reuse elements to create new experiences for target partners or events, such as hackathons.
- Custom Branding: ACM allows you to customise your API Portal with company branding to create a space tailored to your developers, partners and customers.
- Portal Accessibility: You can provide role-based/permission-based access to the portal to ensure the right people can access your API ecosystem at the right time.
- Communities : You can create various communities based on user type. For example, A partner community would have access to various marketing materials which may not be available to the developer community.
- Interactive API Documents: ACM uses Anypoint Exchange's assets to endorse APIs. All API documentation published on Exchange is auto populated inside the ACM; which can be further customised to reflect your brand.
- Consumer Engagement: Based on the target audience, various engagement can be created using various forums and chat families.
- API Support : With API maturity and a large customer base, API support becomes critical. ACM supports various support features like case management, knowledge articles etc.
- API Metrics: Within ACM, you can measure and analyse your API program metrics, track ecosystem engagement and API usage. This helps organisations to measure revenue generated by APIs and identify popular APIs.
Components of Anypoint Community Manager Administrator
The capabilities covered in the previous section are powered by components provided as part of the ACM package. These components are created to take advantage of capabilities within Anypoint Platform from MuleSoft and Community Cloud from Salesforce. The figure below shows you an ACM Administrator screen with a sample community that displays various components of ACM:
Fig. 2 – ACM Administrator Component
Manage APIs: You can manage your APIs from across business groups within an organisation. The list of APIs are pulled directly from Anypoint Exchange which can be customised based on your preferences. You can set visibility, icon and description for specific APIs from the list.
Manage Members: The API consumer community is made up of everyone from internal developers to partners. ACM supports flexible role-based and permissions-based access to manage a community of different users with user management features.
Manage CMS Content : ACM also supports a complete content management solution. Content can be targeted to audience with approval workflow. You can add extended content like news, articles, blogs, etc. to enrich the overall digital experience within the portals.
Manage Forums: ACM support forums within the various communities. You can moderate forums by mentioning forum governance rules, content criteria and member criteria. This allows you to see frozen members, flagged messages and files, pending forum discussions and audit trails.
Dashboards: An organisation’s API ecosystem KPIs need to be monitored periodically to understand overall growth of the business. With ACM, you can create various dashboards from charts and graphs to various other reporting tools. To list few, you can track API footprint, developer activities, experience and engagement.
Community Builder: The community builder provides you with the capability to customise the community with brand-specific assets using out-of-the-box components, themes, page structure and settings. The figure below shows you; a) categories of components which contain out-of-the-box components that can be dragged-and-dropped to your community page and b) theme and page structure to customise look and feel for company branding:
Fig. 3 – ACM Community Builder
The Anypoint Community Manager (ACM) is a great tool that can help organisations to foster API economy as part of their digital strategy. It achieves this by providing customised digital experiences that promote API products to both internal and external communities of an organisation, supporting API ecosystems and increasing API engagement among developers, partners and employees.