Web Experience Management – WEM

Marketing technology landscape explosion and CMS evolution

The most popular and pervasive meme at the recent Gilbane Conference on Content and the Digital Experience was certainly “marketing technologist”. There were many other topic streams but none quite so critical to marketings’, and marketers’, future (and not only marketers, but that’s another story).

One of the three questions we posed to our speakers prior to the conference was, Is there a “Marketing Technologist” role in your organization or in organizations you know of? Should there be? What should their responsibilities be? A number of speakers, including Scott Brinker, provided answers in our speaker spotlight series. Scott also delivered the keynote What is a Marketing Technologist? where he shared a graphic he had created of the marketing technology landscape that illustrates what a marketing technologist has to deal with. Last week he published the new substantially enhanced version below that is now a must-have reference tool.

Marketing technology landscape

What makes Scott’s latest version dramatically more valuable for marketers and IT, or anyone involved in digital experience strategies and architectures is the organizational structure he added. As Scott says this is not perfect or the final word. But the six technology categories and structure are certainly a courageous stake in the ground.

Martec marketing technology categories

Be sure to read Scott’s full post, where he explains what he has done in more detail, provides links to high resolution .png and .pdf versions of the marketing technology landscape super graphic 3.0, links to additional resources, and answers the many comments he has received.

Web content management

Scott’s new landscape also provides some food for thought regarding a second major theme at the conference, which we included in another of the three questions for the speaker spotlights: Do you think “web content management” should be the hub of digital experience management implementations? If so, should it have a new name to match an expanded role? If not, what should be at the center? A slightly different way to think about this is to ask where the center of gravity is in marketing technology architectures.

Scott places WCM and all its variations (CEM, CXM, DXM, etc.) in the Marketing Backbone Platform category. This is surely where it belongs, but it raises lots of questions about just how it ties in with or ties together all the other categories and the variety of technologies within them. And of course there is overlap and competition for the center-of-gravity crown between e-commerce, CRM, and marketing automation platforms, though some of them may not realize it yet. This will be a very interesting game to watch in 2014 (and certainly one we’ll be addressing in this year’s conference). See Scott’s thoughts on this in his CMS Wire post on 9 Key Facts about Web CMS in the Marketing Technology Landscape.

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Creating the Global User Experience

I was gratified to have the opportunity to do a presentation on the Global User Experience at the Gilbane Conference, as well as moderating several sessions in the technology track. For those that missed my presentation, I’ve posted a short recap here and a further exploration of the topic on the Bluebill Advisor’s site.

A common theme throughout the conference sessions was digital experiences and the role of mobile, web, content management, and other technologies in providing superior experiences to customers. That’s to be expected as creating superior customer experiences is a strategic imperative for most organizations, and also the current focus of most content software solutions in the marketplace, including content management systems. What is often overlooked (and the subject of my presentation) is that the CMS doesn’t just support delivery of the customer experience—it also has to support the behind the scenes players that create the customer experience.

Providing a compelling digital user experience is a complex undertaking no matter what the nature of the business or enterprise. It requires a range of talents including authoring, curation, story telling, design, and development, testing and deployment—and the tools to effectively support those diverse skill sets.

The heart of that experience is a modern CMS; in fact, delivering compelling digital user experiences is virtually impossible without one. But selecting the right CMS is challenging—after all, there are many to choose from and it can be difficult to differentiate products—most promise to deliver superior digital user experiences.

But one thing that is often overlooked is that creating great customer experiences requires an orchestrated approach by the “other users” of the CMS: editors and developers. It also requires the integration of tools and content that may reside outside of the CMS. In other words, the quality of the customer experience is directly related to the quality of the experience that a CMS provides to content creators, developers, and integrators.

Digging a bit deeper, content creators are actually a diverse collection of roles and skill sets, not just authors and editors. What’s common across those roles is that many are not full time professional content authors, which makes the quality of the content creator experience vitally important. Content creators want to use tools that are easy and familiar with a short learning curve. Most of all, they want to be able to focus on telling stories and creating great content, not mastering complex tools.

Developers, like content creators, also value ease of use and familiarity. They want to use tools, languages, and frameworks that they are familiar with and that work well in the technology environment in which they live. Most importantly, they want and need to be involved in the process of selecting a CMS—failure to include IT will lead to increased time to operation, and a risk that the chosen solution won’t work well in the enterprise’s IT environment.

The integrator experience involves the developers, partners, and vendors that have to integrate the CMS with enterprise systems and applications (the installed base), but also with solutions from other vendors that help provide the customer experience. If integration is difficult, it will take more time or, worse yet, not be done. Poorly done integration drains energy, productivity, and innovation leading to later, less desirable results.

The solution to providing the global user experience is a well-architected CMS that provides comfortable and easy-to-use core functionality while easily integrating with enterprise and third party tools and applications. The selection of that CMS requires a concerted and cooperative effort on the part of all stakeholders that will ultimately use the content management system. Selection of a CMS is not a technology decision, it’s a strategic business decision that warrants the time, effort, and participation of all business and technology stakeholders in order to render the best decision.

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Speaker Spotlight: Irina Guseva – Neither WCM nor experience management new

In another installment of Speaker Spotlight, we posed one of our frequently asked questions to speaker Irina Guseva, Principal Analyst at Real Story Group. We’ve included her answers here. Be sure to see additional Speaker Spotlights from our upcoming conference.

Irina Guseva | WCM and experience management | Gilbane Conference

Speaker Spotlight: Irina Guseva

Principal Analyst

Real Story Group

 

Do you think “web content management” should be the hub of digital experience management implementations? If so, should it have a new name to match an expanded role? If not, what should be at the center?

Web content management has seen a great deal of evolution since its inception in the early-mid-1990s. Experience management is not a new discipline either, but has garnered heightened attention in the recent few years. The question here is not the chicken-egg type. The question here is having a solid strategy for managing customer experiences (online and offline) first and foremost. The next step is to support this strategy with appropriate and carefully selected technology that matches your needs: be it WCM, DAM, or Digital Marketing tools.

Catch Up with Irina at Gilbane

Track C: Content, Marketing, and the Customer Experience

Tuesday, December 3:  4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

and

Post-Conference Workshops

Thursday, December 5: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 

Find out more about this session and our other conference sessions here.

Be sure to follow Irina @realstorygroup

Complete Program Conference Schedule Register Today

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Gilbane Complimentary Technology Showcase Pass

Gilbane technology showcase ticket

 

Can’t make all three days of the Gilbane Conference?  We’ve got plenty going on in the technology showcase too. Take advantage of our complimentary showcase pass today.

 

Your Showcase Pass Includes Access to:

  • Six Keynote Presentations
  • All Product Labs
  • Technology Showcase Area
  • Sponsor Networking Reception


Register for your free pass now

Opening Keynotes – December 3: 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Moderator:
, CEO, Bluebill Advisors Inc and Founder & Chair, Gilbane Conferences

Speakers:
, Head of Social Media, North America, SAP
How to Make Yourself a Content Stop on the New Buyer Journey
, Senior Director, eCommerce Platform System Management, Marriott International
Rethinking Content Delivery: Moving beyond a Traditional Web Content Management Approach
, Founder & CTO, ion interactive, inc. and Author, Chief Marketing Technologist Blog
What is a Marketing Technologist?

Opening Keynotes – December 3: 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Moderator:
, CEO, Bluebill Advisors Inc and Founder & Chair, Gilbane Conferences

Speakers:
, Research Director, Marketing Leaders Research Team, Gartner
Move Over Big Data – Here Comes Big Content
, Vice President and Research Director, Forrester Research
The Context Conundrum?
, Founder, Real Story Group
ShakesPoint: What the Bard Could Teach Us About SharePoint – And The Digital World

Product Labs

The Product Labs are open to conference attendees and visitors to the technology showcase free of charge, and are moderated and presented by conference sponsors. While the presentations are meant to be educational, they are typically focused on product technologies or customer case studies. They provide a good opportunity to learn more about specific products or vendors. See the schedule here.

Exhibitors

The Technology Showcase provides attendees with a central meeting place and the ability to speak one-on-one with industry-leading exhibitors while learning more about their products and services. See the exhibitors here.

Showcase Hours:

Tuesday, December 3          10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Networking Reception         5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Wednesday, December 4    10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

You can also still register for the full conference:

Register today and save $100. Plus, get a free Google Nexus 7 with your ConferencePlus pass

 

PLATINUM SPONSOR             GOLD SPONSORS Alfresco Software Crafter Software
Adobe e-Spirit Inc. HP Autonomy SDL Sitecore
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Speaker Spotlight: Jake DiMare – Web Content Management Hub, Multiple Channels, and Marketing Technologists

In another installment of Speaker Spotlight, we posed three of our frequently asked questions to speaker Jake DiMare, Senior Project Manager at ISITE Design. We’ve included his answers to those questions here. Be sure to see additional Speaker Spotlights from our upcoming conference.

Jake DiMare - Gilbane Conference

 

Speaker Spotlight: Jake DiMare

Senior Project Manager

ISITE Design

Do you think “web content management” should be the hub of digital experience management implementations?

My personal perspective is the customer is at the center and everything else orbits around them. Thus, if I must use a label, customer experience management makes the most sense to me. That said, and to extend the metaphor, I do think content management is the hub of technology in the ‘low customer orbit’. I believe customers make decisions about where to focus their attention in the digital world based on the content available and so it stands to reason the technology that delivers your content must be rock solid.

What is the best overall strategy for delivering content to web, multiple mobile, and upcoming digital channels?

To borrow an acronym from NPR (National Public Radio), in my humble opinion, the best strategy is COPE or “Create Once Publish Everywhere”.

Is there a “Marketing Technologist” role in your organization or in organizations you know of? Should there be? What should their responsibilities be?

Frankly, ‘Marketing Technologist’ has been an imperative, existing role within digital agencies and on the client side for over a decade. Whether the need is recognized and respected is the real question… And so the title and associated job description are laggards. Predictably, the result is many people within an organization will wear the marketing technologist hat.

In the most practical sense, if your organization engages with customers through any digital channels, whether you want it or not, somebody at some point will play the role of marketing technologist. The size of your organization will certainly dictate when this becomes a full time job or jobs, but the following responsibilities will always need attention:

  1. Coordinating internal and external digital strategists, designers and engineers for the purpose of designing, building and maintaining digital properties.
  2. Working with content strategists to ensure a seamless transition of content across channels.
  3. Coordinating with traditional marketing to ensure digital channels are aligned with overall initiatives.
  4. Measurement and optimization of customer engagement through existing digital channels using analytics and reporting.
  5. Looking forward to determine how to engage audiences with emerging technology.
  6. Understand and grow customer engagement management.
  7. Work with brand strategists to ensure the overall digital customer experience is aligned with brand values.
  8. Accountable for digital projects.

 

Catch Up With Jake at Gilbane

Track E- E5. Incorporating Content Strategy into Your Project: Why and How?
Wednesday, December, 4: 9:40 a.m. – 10:40 a.m.

Hear more from Jake when you subscribe to his blog, The CMS Myth.

Complete Program Conference Schedule Register Today

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Speaker Spotlight: Brian Makas – Marketing Technologist

We recently posed some of our attendees’ most frequently asked questions to speakers who will be at this year’s Gilbane Conference in December. Between now and the start of the event, we’ll be sharing their answers with you. Be sure to see additional Speaker Spotlights from our upcoming conference.

Brian Makas - Gilbane Conference Boston 2013Speaker Spotlight: Brian Makas

Director of Marketing Technology & Business Intelligence

Thomas Publishing

Follow Brian on Twitter @BrianMakas

Is there a “Marketing Technologist” role in your organization or in organizations you know of? Should there be? What should their responsibilities be?

I’m the Director of Marketing Technology & Business Intelligence for ThomasNet, does that count? While I’m very fortunate to work for a company that realizes the importance of a formal marketing technology team, I can’t say that I know of many other people with marketing technology in their job title.

The most important responsibility of any marketing technologist is to act as a trusted advisor and navigator. A marketing technologist needs to be aware of marketing’s goals at all times, be on constant lookout for hazards that may arise on the way to those goals and always be looking for alternate means of achieving those goals.

For example in my own role, when I’m looking to help our clients to prove (and improve) the ROI of their investment in ThomasNet, I’m always listening to their concerns and looking for a connection to technology:

  • What applications already exist that we can leverage?
  • What can be tracked and quantified?
  • When technology alone simply can’t connect the dots, how can we prove the influence their investment had or modify their program to maximize their likelihood of getting a strong ROI

Over the years I’ve found that unless you’re aware of what’s available and what’s going on behind the scenes it’s often impossible to even realize opportunities you’re overlooking or to notice seemingly minor details that can haunt you for years to come. Likewise, if you wait until a project is fully scoped out before involving IT, they may be able to develop what you ask for but rarely are able to develop what you really wanted. On the flip side by working as a part of the marketing team, and keeping my ears open at all times, I’m able to jump in months before IT would typically become involved to explain said opportunities and risks.

While it will certainly take time for the title to be broadly adopted, I feel the role itself is very common. I found my own start in marketing technology by inviting myself to meetings no one thought I needed to attend and offering suggestions that no one asked for. I have no doubt that as marketing’s success continues to rely on its use and understanding of digital technologies, more people will continue to champion the cause and the formal role will quickly become a critical part of every successful team.

Where You Can Find Brian at the Gilbane Conference:

Track C: Content, Marketing, and the Customer Experience
Session C1. Q&A with Real Live Marketing Technologists
Tuesday, December, 3: 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Complete Program Conference Schedule Register Today

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Gilbane Conference Program Posted

The Gilbane Conference program has been posted.

The Gilbane Conference on Content and the Digital Experience will be held at the Westin Boston Waterfront, December 3-5, 2013. Join the content managers, marketers, marketing technologists, technology and executive strategists, and other industry thought leaders who are defining and building next generation digital experiences.

The conference includes 80+ speakers, 6 keynote presentations, 30 breakout sessions, and 6 half-day in-depth workshops. Also, in addition to the technology showcase there are 11 Product Lab or Case Study sessions open to all visitors.

You can also download a PDF of the advance program, just remember the website is more up-to-date with all the latest additions to the event.

Important links to the Gilbane Conference details:

Program Schedule Workshops Hotel  Sponsors

Register Today!

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Don’t miss the Gilbane Conference call for papers deadline

Every year we get a last minute rush of speaking proposals for the Gilbane Conference, and then… we get tons of emails asking when the deadline is, and then we get requests for an extra day or two, and then we get requests to consider proposals weeks after the deadline has passed. We have been extra diligent in getting the word out this year because there are always some late proposals that we wish we had seen sooner.

The deadline this year is June 30th July 7th, so don’t delay.

Submit Your Proposal

Here are the relevant links:

 

Gilbane Conference tracks:

Content, Marketing, and the Customer Experience
Designed for marketers, marketing technologists, growth hackers, web and mobile content managers, strategists and technologists focused on customers and digital marketing.

Content, Collaboration, and Employee Engagement
Designed for content, information, technical, and business managers focused on enterprise social, collaboration, intranet, portal, knowledge, and backend content applications.

Re-imagining the Future: Technology and the Postdigital Experience
Designed for technology strategists, IT, and executives focused on the future of content and internal or external digital experiences.

Digital Strategies for Publishing and Media
Designed for publishing and information product managers, marketers, technologists, and business or channel managers focused on the transition to digital products.

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Gilbane Conference call for speakers and great presentation advice

Gilbane Conference 2013, Banner, Content and the Digital Experience

 

 

 

 

We have our own set of speaker guidelines that are specific to our event that we ask all speakers to read. But last week there were two Harvard Business Review posts that provide some of the best advice you can find anywhere on giving a great presentation or moderating an engaging panel. These are must reads for anyone who cares about presentation or moderating skills, and strongly recommended for Gilbane Conference speakers. Even if you are already a speaking pro, each post is likely to give you at least one new idea. See:

Call for papers

Please review the conference and track topics below and submit your speaking proposal.

Conference description

Businesses and organizations of all kinds are struggling to keep up with the dramatic changes and challenges caused by current and near-term future potential of digital technologies. These challenges are enterprise-wide because everybody from customers to employees to partners expects an integrated and compelling digital experience that just works.

Accomplishing an engaging digital experience requires creating and managing compelling content, but also includes measuring how effective the content is, building interfaces that are consistent yet appropriate for multiple mobile channels, and integrating with e-commerce and enterprise systems. None of this should be news, but putting all the technologies and practices together is still largely uncharted or experimental territory for enterprises. Well-informed decisions on digital experience strategies require proactive dialog with experienced peers and industry experts.

At Gilbane conferences we bring together industry experts, content managers, marketers, marketing technologists, technology and executive strategists to share experiences and debate what the most effective approaches and technologies are, and how to implement them. Our theme this year is Manage – Measure – Mobilize, and we have tracks focused on the customer digital experience, employee digital experience, future technologies for digital experiences, and a track on digital strategies for publishers and information providers where we expand our theme to include Monetize.

 

Main conference tracks

Track C: Content, Marketing, and the Customer Experience

Designed for marketers, marketing technologists, growth hackers, content managers, strategists and technologists focused on customers and digital marketing.

Topics include:

  • Web content management
  • Customer experience management & engagement
  • Digital and postdigital marketing
  • Inbound & content marketing
  • Marketing automation
  • Measuring and analytics: Web, mobile, social, big data
  • Growth hacking strategies
  • Mobile challenges & channel priorities
  • Marketing technologist best practices
  • Responsive design
  • Localization & multilingual content management
  • Content strategies
  • Cross-channel marketing
  • E-commerce integration
  • Search engine strategies

Track E: Content, Collaboration, and Employee Engagement

Designed for content, information, technical, and business managers focused on enterprise social, collaboration, intranet, portal, knowledge, and backend content applications.

Topics include:

  • Collaboration and the social enterprise
  • Collaboration tools & social platforms
  • Enterprise social metrics
  • Community building & knowledge sharing
  • Content management & intranet strategies
  • Enterprise mobile strategies
  • Content and information integration
  • Enterprise search and information access
  • Semantic technologies
  • Taxonomies, metadata, tagging

Track T: Re-imagining the Future: Technology and the Postdigital Experience

Designed for technology strategists, IT, and executives focused on the future of content and either internal or external digital experiences.

Topics include:

  • Hybrid cloud content management
  • Natural language technologies
  • Haptic and gesture interfaces
  • Big data platforms and tools
  • Big data analytics
  • Visualization
  • The future of the open web and walled gardens
  • New mobile operating systems
  • Beyond desktops
  • Distributed data, distributed apps – mixing up code and data
  • Internet of things and digital experiences
  • Wearable content

Track P: Digital Strategies for Publishing and Media

Designed for publishing and information product managers, marketers, technologists, and business or channel managers focused on the transition to digital products.

Topics include:

  • Designing for digital products
  • Business models and monetization
  • Mixing owned, earned, and bought content
  • Ad technologies and strategies
  • App development strategies
  • HTML5 or no?
  • Multi-channel publishing
  • Ebook readers vs tablets
  • Tablets vs smartphones
  • Mobile publishing workflows
  • Matching content to platforms and devices

Submit your speaking proposal. The deadline is June 30th 2013!

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Federal government to spend $1.4 billion on web content management and infrastructure

Before we get to the spending mentioned in the title, there is some important background to cover. In an email to the Presidential Innovation Fellows program mailing list yesterday and a blog post with Small Business Administration Administrator Karen G. Mills last week, White House CTO Todd Park reported on the progress of a pilot program, RFP-EZ, to make federal government RFPs accessible to small businesses.

In addition to making it easier for small businesses to win federal contracts, a key goal is to save the government money since small business bids are typically lower than larger organizations’. Another significant benefit is that it makes it easier for agencies to purchase from innovative small businesses (since more are bidding). In the technology space especially, small businesses provide the lion’s share of innovation.

So how is this program doing so far? From Park and Mills post:

Applying agile development principles, the Fellows team designed RFP-EZ over a six-month period, publishing the platform’s code openly on GitHub. The team then launched the pilot by posting five relatively simple website development and database contract offerings, four of which were also announced via the standard government portal, FedBizOps. On a per-project basis, bids received through RFP-EZ were consistently lower than those received through FedBizOps—19% to 41% lower, and over 30% lower on average. Bids made through RFP-EZ also showed less overall variation. In addition, during the pilot period, RFP-EZ attracted more than 270 businesses that until now had never approached the world of Federal contracting.

Graph of RFP-EZ pilot progress

Ok, now for the spending. First of all, note that the OMB says the total 2014 Federal IT budget is $77 billion. If you haven’t seen it yet the OMB IT Dashboard yet it is worth a look, and you can download a spreadsheet that has details on spending by agency and project. Park and Mills also said in their post that:

According to Office of Management and Budget’s IT Dashboard, the Federal Government will spend more than $1.4 billion on Web Infrastructure and Web Content Management Systems in FY 2014. Based on 2011 and 2012 results, we can expect about half of these projects to be under the $150,000 “Simplified Acquisition Threshold” that would make them eligible for contracting through RFP-EZ.

This may not seem like a lot at first glance, but at $150,000 each it would mean 4,666 web content management systems or web infrastructure projects it would be fairly easy for small vendors and consultants to bid on in 2014.

Presumably the numbers came from the OMB IT spending spreadsheet, but since software category definitions are fluid, to say the least, doing your own analysis would be a good idea. While our community knows that, for example, “web content management” can include or be a component of a collection of digital marketing tools for engagement or experience management, marketing automation, etc. we can’t assume all federal budgeteers do – or did when the budgets were developed.

All of this is excellent news for a substantial number of the vendors, integrators, and consultants who participate in the Gilbane Conference. It is also great news for federal government conference attendees who can more realistically do business with smaller companies who have the latest technology.

To participate in the RFP-EZ program sign-up using the very simple web form.

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