Dynamic templating

Last updated: Dec-28-2022

The dynamic templating feature frees DAM users to create customized marketing assets or adaptations from Adobe InDesign templates directly within the Cloudinary DAM. With this feature, users can create adaptations from templates whenever and wherever they like, using an intuitive web interface, without needing to know InDesign, and without needing help from a designer.

Designers creating InDesign templates that might be freely adapted by DAM users can control which template elements are editable and which are locked, to ensure that the rendered adaptations conform to brand requirements and other standards.

Once the template is created, it can be uploaded to a server using the provided InDesign plugin and automatically synced with Cloudinary so that it's accessible to your users via the Cloudinary DAM. Although the template retains its InDesign file format, it’s now editable by Cloudinary DAM users via a friendly web interface.

Users can now create adaptations from the templates and edit them, and can easily insert images directly from the Cloudinary DAM into their adaptations.

  • This feature is enabled by Santa Cruz Software Company’s PrintUI technology and available only to Cloudinary customers on an Enterprise plan plan. Contact support to select the relevant dynamic templating plan that best meets your needs and have the feature set up on your product environment.
  • To help designers, the Creating InDesign templates for Cloudinary DAM section of this page provides general instructions for using PrintUI plugin features. For more detailed information, see PrintUI's FAQs and documentation, in particular, the Tips for template designers PDF.

Managing template adaptations in the Cloudinary DAM

Once a template is uploaded and synced with Cloudinary, DAM users can access the template and use it to create and customize marketing assets or adaptations.

DAM users can view all the templates in the product environment and manage each adaptation per template, including editing the adaptation and downloading the final version.

View all templates

Users can view all the templates available in the Cloudinary DAM.

To view all templates:

  • Click Templating from the Product Navigation menu, located on the left side of your console. The Templates view opens:

    Dynamic templating

Manage adaptations

Users can view and manage each of the adaptations that were created per template, and they can create new adaptations based on the selected template. They can also select to edit an adaptation if it needs to be customized before it's ready for production. Once an adaptation is complete and ready, users can download it.

To access all the adaptations for a template:

  • Select a template from the Templates view. The Adaptations view opens showing all the adaptations for that template:

    Dynamic templating adaptations

To create a new adaptation:

  • Click + Create New.

To manage an adaptation:

  • Click the adaptation you want to manage. Users can:
    • See who created the selected adaptation and when it was created.
    • Delete the selected adaptation.
    • Duplicate the selected adaptation.
    • Select to edit the adaptation. This opens the selected adaptation in the intuitive web-based editing interface.
    • Select downloading options and Download a customized adaptation. Downloading options include:
      • The format of the downloaded adaptation (PNG, JPEG, or PDF).
      • If the template has more than one page, the page that will be downloaded (unless you’ve selected to download as a PDF in which case the PDF will include all pages).

Edit an adaptation

Editing an adaptation enables the users to customize an asset based on the selected template and change its content to make it suitable as a final product.

Users can easily select and insert Cloudinary images directly from the DAM into the adaptation.

To edit an adaptation:

  • From the Adaptations view, select an adaptation and click Edit.

    The selected adaptation opens in the intuitive web-based editing interface:

    Dynamic templating adaptations

    In the editing interface, you can:
    • Switch pages and add Cloudinary images and text using the buttons on the top left.
    • Click an object to edit.
    • Format your new and existing objects using the Format panel on the right.

To save the changes:

  • Click Finished and confirm.

Creating InDesign templates for Cloudinary DAM

In order for your Cloudinary DAM users to be able to create adaptations, your designers first have to create the templates in InDesign and make them available in the DAM via a special InDesign plugin.

Installing the PrintUI plugin

The InDesign plugin enables your designers to upload InDesign templates and automatically sync them to Cloudinary.

Once Cloudinary support has enabled the feature for your product environment, you will receive an email for Cloudinary Support with links and credentials to download the plugin.

The PrintUI plugin is compatible with InDesign CS5.5 and newer.

To install and connect the plugin:

  1. Close instances of InDesign.
  2. Download and install the plugin.

    As part of the installation process, you'll be asked to enter your product environment credentials that you received from Cloudinary Support.
  3. Open InDesign.
  4. From the Windows menu, choose Extensions, then PrintUI Management.

    Connecting the plugin in InDesign

    The plugin is now connected and the PrintUI Management panel is displayed: The PrintUI Management panel in InDesign

Working with templates

Your designers can create their InDesign templates as they normally do. It's important for your designers to keep in mind that the templates they are creating are dynamic, meaning, they can be reused for different campaigns, ads, and other purposes.

Therefore designers should try to make their templates as versatile and flexible as possible to accommodate different content. For example, if a template is intended to be used for ads that target various states, the text box containing the name of the state should be designed to accommodate both long and short state names (i.e., Ohio and California).

In addition, designers may want to prevent users who are creating adaptations from making unwanted changes to elements in the template.

The InDesign plugin enables designers to create objects for dynamic use.

Designing objects dynamically

When creating the template, designers have several ways to control how end users can edit objects. Some options prevent edits to the object completely, or place restrictions on the content entered while others enable objects for different uses.

Use the PrintUI Frame Options panel to set some of those options:

  • From the Windows menu, choose Extensions, then PrintUI Frame Options. PrintUI Frame Options panel

From this panel:

  • Mark an object as Non-selectable to make it uneditable by the end user.
    The InDesign Lock feature can also be used to prevent objects or layers from being moved (see InDesign's documentation about locking objects), and you can move the layers and objects that need to be fixed and uneditable by the end user into the Background layer.
  • Depending on the object type, additional options become available.

    • For text frames:
      • Fill Text Frame indicates that the text should shrink as a user enters more text than will fit into a text frame, or, conversely, expand as they enter less text. If this option is selected, the Min Text Size and Max Text Size become available, which enable setting the minimum and maximum font size in points. All text in the frame will have the same size.
      • Content Validation is used for text frames containing content that must be formatted in a very specific way. For example, a template that will be used for business cards may need the phone number to be formatted according to company branding guidelines. A text frame can be validated as a Phone Number, Email Address, URL, or Date.
        • If Strict Validation is not selected, an alert will appear in the editor if the content does not validate correctly, and the user will be allowed to keep the non-validated content.
        • If Strict Validation is selected, the content will be reverted if validation fails.
    • For non-text frames:

      • A single non-text frame (either shape or image) per spread can be set as a Replaceable Background. If this option is selected, an additional button or pop-up will appear in the web editor to allow for replacing either the color of the shape, or the actual image you selected as the replaceable background. For more information, see the Tips for template designers PDF.
      • The Min. Image Resolution can be set for an image.
        • Keywords can be passed to an image gallery to limit which images an end user can choose to use for a particular frame. A developer must have designed an image gallery in order for this to work.
        • No Preflight is used to skip checking a specific frame during preflight and should be used very rarely.

Managing the template with the InDesign plugin

The special InDesign plugin provides several options for managing the template. These options are accessible from the PrintUI Management panel:

PrintUI Management panel: Setup PrintUI Management panel:
Uploaded image with background removal add-on applied PrintUI Management panel:
successful upload

If the panel isn't visible, from the Windows menu, choose Extensions, then PrintUI Management.

Here's a summary of the available options:

  • Setup:
    • Initialize Template: Some changes will be made to prepare the template for uploading and syncing to DAM. The most visible change will be the creation of a Background layer in your document.
    • Template Options: Allows setting options such as whether the template background is transparent.
  • Package & Upload: As part of the Upload process, the template is checked for errors (preflight) and is saved with all its related files in a local folder called packed templates (packaged). Preflight and Package can each be done separately, but don't have to be because Upload will preflight and package automatically.

    Documents that don't pass preflight can't be uploaded, so any errors encountered during preflight must be fixed. If preflight fails, the Management panel will bring up a dialog to assist in fixing errors.
    To upload a template, the designer must be logged into the account and correct product environment using the credentials sent to your email by Cloudinary Support, and the template needs to have been initialized.
  • Templates: Displays a list of all templates currently available for use in the product environment. Select a template to perform one of the following actions on it:
    • Download Template: Useful if a change needs to be made to the template, or a new derivative template needs to be created from an existing template that's not currently on the local machine.
    • Test Template: Allows previewing the template on a private-demo web page in the browser.
    • Remove Template: Removing a template from the server removes the template as well as all its adaptations.
  • Uploaded Fonts:
    • Upload Font: Allows selecting a font file to be uploaded to and used with the dynamic templating feature.
    • Remove Font: Allows removing a previously uploaded font. If the font has been used by a template, removing it will cause the template to no longer render correctly.
    • Download Font: Allows downloading a font for use to the local machine.

For more information, select the Tips for template designers PDF in the PrintUI documentation.

Use the panel fly-out menu to enter your login credentials, log out, find where templates and all their dependent files are stored locally, and get help:

Fly-out menu

Related topics
  • For answers to common questions about the PrintUI plugin, see PrintUI's FAQs.
  • For more information for designers and developers about how to use the PrintUI plugin, see PrintUI's documentation.
  • To learn more about InDesign, see Adobe InDesign Learn & Support.

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