In a recent installment of the Real Story Group webinar series, I’ve addressed the Web Content Management industry from Marketing & Business perspectives:
The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads This blog is on fire!
The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health.
The average container ship can carry about 4,500 containers. This blog was viewed about 17,000 times in 2010. If each view were a shipping container, your blog would have filled about 4 fully loaded ships.
In 2010, there were 3 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 250 posts. There were 4 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 2mb.
The busiest day of the year was May 31st with 221 views. The most popular post that day was WEM to WCM is What Golden Gate Bridge to San Fran.
Where did they come from?
The top referring sites in 2010 were twitter.com, en.wordpress.com, jonontech.com, Google Reader, and google.com.
Some visitors came searching, mostly for irina guseva, razuna review, cq5, cushy cms, and day cq5 review.
Attractions in 2010
These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.
WEM to WCM is What Golden Gate Bridge to San Fran May 2010
Review: Day Software’s CQ5 WCM November 2008
Review: SDL Tridion R5 Web CMS September 2008
Nexus One: A Gadget for Google Addicts January 2010
Installing Day Software’s CQ5 WCM November 2008
The WEM Marketplace: Blueberries and Ricotta
As Web CMS products reached maturity, a standard set of features became core for most vendors (i.e. templating, workflows, in-context content preview, integration APIs, scalable architectures, delivery and caching, etc.) Things are different with Web Engagement Management. The industry is still trying to figure out what this WEM thing is all about.
In the WEM sector, we’re in a market that sells oranges, apples and blueberries from the same bin as ricotta cheese. Spaghetti is positioned on the same shelf as the Russian Caravan loose leaf tea, right next to heavy-duty laundry detergents. But this is slowly changing, as the WEM evolution is happening right before our eyes.
Who Plays in the WEM/WCM Space
WEM capabilities of varying degrees are offered by most mature Web CMS vendors (but not by as many Enterprise CMS vendors). However, comparing those capabilities one to one would be rather difficult in this stage of WEM evolution.
Just take a look at how some WCM vendors position themselves and draw your own picture based on the messaging we hear from them:
Alterian has email marketing, web behavior analytics, social media marketing, social media engagement, social media monitoring and sentiment analysis capabilities to offer with its Alterian SM2 product.
Autonomy Interwoven is focusing on Meaning Based Marketing. Using Autonomy’s IDOL server, their products are able to extract meaning from various content types to help marketers improve customer experience. Web CMS comes with integrated multi-variate testing (MVT), email management, analytics and a multichanel optimization module.
CoreMedia proclaims itself as a “Complete Communications Suite” that allows for a combination of Web CMS, social software and CoreMedia Adaptive Products offering adaptive personalization and delivery, mobile optimization, cross-channel interactions.
Day Software’s CQ 5.3 Web CMS comes armed with personalized content delivery, campaign targeting, customer targeting and segmentation, campaign measurement, content optimization capabilities, and support for A/B and MVT testing.
Ektron provides social media management, integrated web analytics with Google Analytics, MVT in the PageBuilder, content optimization, etc. — as part of the latest release of CMS400.NET v8 Web CMS.
EPiServer’s Marketing Arena came out in 2009, focusing on the “new era of the engaged web,” with WEM features like landing page management, digital visibility management, campaign monitoring and optimization, SEO support, personalization and prospecting.
FatWire’s WEM proposition — Web Experience Management Framework — is based on modules for UGC and interaction (Community Server), content targeting (Engage) and content optimization (Analytics) connected to FatWire Content Server (the CMS part).
Open Text Web Solutions is a combination of Vignette and RedDot and has a number of WEM-related products and features. The Vignette Community Applications is now part of Open Text’s Social Media offering (note that OTEX also has its own Social Media product) with community management, social interaction and collaborative communication features. There’s also Vignette Experience Optimization that includes a recommendation engine, analytics, and delivery of personalized and multi-channel content.
SDL Tridion’s WEM proposition comes under the umbrella of the Unified Online Marketing Suite that includes audience management, email and multi-channel, multi-lingual campaign management, personalization and profiling, and E-commerce with the recent acquisition of Fredhopper.
Sitecore has a product called Sitecore Online Marketing Suite that claims to provide WEM functionalities like visitor experience analytics, real-time personalization, landing page optimization, campaign management, etc..
WEM Needs WCM (And Vice Versa)
If your Web CMS doesn’t have WEM capabilities, it’s stuck in the Netscape era. With that said, you don’t necessarily have to buy WCM and WEM functionalities from the same place. Some vendors offer both, some — only Web CMS. But there are third-party tools that can be (or should be able to be) integrated with your Web Content Management System.
It may be difficult to find a Web CMS that offers a complete set of WEM functionalities that you need to achieve your goals, but a sound engagement strategy comes first. What are your goals? What are the objectives? What are you trying to achieve? Most number of likes? Selling more products? Increased customer loyalty? Word-of-mouth marketing opps?
Mere mention of such WEM buzzwords as online marketing, social analytics, web engagement and eCommerce in a marketing brochure authored by a CMS vendor you’re considering may not guarantee it’s a fit for your goals.
When looking at particular features of a WEM-friendly Web CMS, ask vendors to show you how their features will help you get where you want to be. Knowing your goals and being familiar with your WEM strategy will help you help the vendors on your short list – in the end though, benefiting you with the closest match of technologies for your strategy.
Nowadays, the relationship between Web CMS and Web Engagement Management is akin to the one between the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco: It has to be there, the city would look odd without it, and it’s just plain necessary.
When I look at the relationship between WCM and WEM, there are several key concepts that deserve attention. While both strategies/technologies are inherently different, they both first and foremost focus on content. Let’s take a look at those concepts, starting with the ‘C’.
The C in WCM — Content is Still King
What has been proclaimed by Bill Gates years ago is still true. No WCM or WEM strategy will help your business if you lack good content. And by good I mean relevant, timely, engaging.
Even though analysts and consultants in the content and information management industry constantly debate over the definition of content, by content I mean not just your corporate website or product descriptions pages. The content now also means comments, Twitter feeds, Facebook likes, item ratings, micro-blogs, activity streams, tag clouds, etc.
The web that we now call “Web 1.0″ was more of an informational resource — mainly uni-directional way of communicating. The web known as “Web 2.0″ and beyond is different. It’s more human, more talkative, more impatient and more demanding. To address these demands you need a more sophisticated content strategy as the foundation for your online engagement strategy.
Just like with the evolution of Web 2.0, these days, web engagement management in WCM is sometimes misunderstood – often, due to the lack of clear definition and direction around web engagement management (or is it web experience management?). To clarify, let’s agree that we’re talking about engagement here – not to confuse the E with any other e-things that are used in some vendors’ product names. And let’s move onto the E in more detail.
The E in WEM
Engaging content converts web visitors into participants, into relationships. But for most of you content alone is not going to ink the deal. Nurturing a relationship is what makes it work. You have to engage, pay attention and be responsive. Web engagement means conversations with your audience, replying to their @s, likes and comments, and picking up sentiments and addressing them.
While engagement is not all about technology, or which Web CMS to use, WEM does call for WCM systems that are capable of “talking” to other tools inside and outside the organization, and for a thoughtful customer engagement strategy that gives both form and policies.
Which tools and capabilities do you need to *not* suck at web engagement? Here are a few:
- A Web CMS
- Web and social analytics
- Segmentation and personalization
- Content and campaign testing
- CRM and social CRM
- Multi-channel marketing and content delivery
- Social media monitoring and analysis
WEM tools allow you to test and measure results — enhancing the effectiveness of your communications via web and social analytics, CRM-driven intelligence, segmentation and personalization.
Lather, rinse, repeat until you’re experiments are working and you’ve got happy, repeating customers who participating in the recruitment of your growing fan base. The cycle never stops.
The M in WCM and WEM
That brings us to the M of both acronyms. The M stands for manage, monitor, measure, maximize — to name a few notions. Chances are your Web CMS cannot (and by design, is not necessarily supposed to) do much more than “manage” content. Other tools can do the others Ms: mine data, leverage social network interactions, quantify customer feedback, monitor and analyze, and deliver personalized content to specific segments.
True customer engagement doesn’t stop at the web URL level (think mobile, too). Our audiences are getting increasingly diverse in how they access content: from their iPads, mobile phones and other portable devices. Mobile content management has never been more crucial.
Your customers now have more ways to say things about you. WEM tools should help you manage those conversations that happen outside your corporate site. Accurately measuring customer feedback and appropriately reacting to it should be part of your web engagement management activities.
Knowing your engagement goals and objectives, having done content planning and having developed your WEM strategy will help you help the vendors on your short list.
WEM is not a subset of WCM, nor is it a new wave of CMSs. The two notions may be converging, but WCM and WEM are not replacing one another. They need to exist together and complement each other — just like San Fran and the Golden Gate Bridge.
Part 2 – WEM Marketplace: WCM Players and Ricotta – coming next.
Thanks to @IanTruscott for letting me bounce some ideas off him.
If I haven’t admitted this in my earlier egotistical posts, now would be a perfect time. My name is Irina, and I am a Google addict. Anything Googly you can think of, I use: search (of course!) for anything from which mountain cabin to pick to translations from Dutch, Gmail, Voice, Calendar, Checkout, Maps, GTalk, Documents, Reader, Gears, Picasa, Health, etc. I even attempted to understand Google Wave.
Nexus One was a logical choice for my next mobile toy (to replace two other HTCs of varying ages) due to its tight integration with everything Google. No, I am not an iPhone user. Never owned one, but toyed enough with those belonging to friends, exes, foes, random strangers to get the idea. But this post is not about how Nexus is the iPhone “killer.”
So, my first impressions about Nexus One for those of you who asked. Nothing geeky, just initial thoughts of an end-user. Let’s start from the outside.
It’s very elegant. Gorgeous, in fact. It’s light and slim. It is thinner and lighter than the iPhone, actually. I have pens thicker than this smartphone. And my butt looks more equalized, sans a bulge on one side, when I carry it in the back pocket of my jeans. Talking about priorities ;) Tactile pleasures abound, the device is smooth and silky.
Nexus One: Ups and downs
Everything you might’ve read about the tech specs is true:
Beautiful big touchscreen, bigger than the iPhone’s (3.7 inch, 480 x 800 OLED) with self-adjusting brightness is a work of art. Scrolling through three views, 3D, apps screen, re-arrange and add/delete shortcuts, CoolIris in the gallery, vertical-to-horizontal movements and tipping is all just too pretty.
Live wallpapers are eye candy. I am now on the one with lake and falling autumn leaves. When you touch the screen, the water ripples.
Quadband, so it works on European trips.
The trackball I didn’t care much for, and don’t even like the idea of it shining in various colors to alert me of notifications – I have set up beeps for that. Twitter notifications oink, email dings.
Proximity sensor is one of the features I really like about Nexus. You start talking and the screen is disabled to avoid random “Opps, my left cheek (accidentally) hit the hang up button” situations. When you take the phone a little further away from your ear, the screen is enabled and lights up, making it easy to press hold, mute or speakerphone buttons.
The Snapdragon 1 GHz core processor makes it very fast. Really, the fastest I’ve seen even with this kind of heavy 3D and a plethora of apps running at the same time. One minor inconvenience: when you want to kill a running app, it’s not that easy to find it in the UI. But no worries, it will crash on its own.
Camera is a 5MP average camera, but does have built-in flash.
Touch buttons at the bottom of the screen – back (sadly, no forward), home, search, menu — set them to vibrate, otherwise you’d be hard pressed to know whether you actually pressed hard enough to get the desired outcome.
In my experience with Nexus One, I did notice that I was pushing buttons and UI clicking more than I expected to get what I needed.
No physical keyboard takes a bit of an adjustment for those fat fingers. But no worries, because…
Most activities can be performed via voice input: Twittering, texting, emails – pretty much every text field. Good in theory, but Nexus needs a lot more work in voice recognition features. “Voice keyboard sucks indeed” in my Gtalk over Nexus chat was interpreted as “Voice keyboard loving me.” I realize I have an accent, but that undecipherable? Voice activated Google search is, nevertheless, a neat idea.
Battery life is comparable to many other smartphones I’ve used. Meaning the charger is your next best friend.
Compass, cell tower positioning, navigation and GPS receiver – all helpful, even though not entirely accurate.
Having been once accused of owning more cables than an average male geek, I am all about cable interoperability and felt awkward adding yet another one to my arsenal. Nexus uses mini USB cable, so no re-use with my Nikon D90/external hard drives/etc. More to pack.
Market is Google’s alternative to iPhone’s App Store. Google Checkout rocks again with one click buying. Comments and ratings are useful. Not all apps are very stable, and I see a lot of duplication. What’s Google’s approval process, I wonder?
Contacts management was a fun exercise. At first, I freaked out when I couldn’t see the contacts from my SIM card. All is lost, I thought, until I found the Import Contacts option. So, contacts imported and synced with Google Voice contacts. Then came contact lists from not-related email accounts, Facebook, as well as attempts to import contacts from other applications. So now, my Google Voice Contacts/Nexus One Contacts are “nicely” synchronized (=a bit of a mess) and include everyone I ever came in contact with in any way over the past decade, and this is not necessarily what I want.
But the good thing about synchronization is that email and calendar (oh well, and contacts) are always completely synced up in real time without having to be attached to a computer or any manual syncing endeavors.
Call quality: As long as you’re not using the provided (stereo) headset that happened to turn my voice into mambo jumbo, you should be good with all that noise-canceling beauty that Nexus One offers. Oddly though, the mic is in the far corner and not in the center of the bottom panel.
Speaking of the headset… I am convinced I just got a bad one… Pandora was one of the first applications I downloaded, gave it a little spin and paused it before jumping on my first conference call on the new gadget. Five minutes later, I was hyperventilating with Massive Attack roaring over the caller on the other side, and me frantically looking for a way to stop the music without dropping the call. Couldn’t find one. See, the headset controls both the built-in mic, as well as music playback. Without “muting” music apps with priority on calls. And I pushed the mic button (also the play button). I guess there’re folks out there who may listen to Pandora while on a conf call. But I – mortified — had to excuse myself, drop the call, kill the damn Pandora and dial back in.
Is Nexus an enterprise phone?
Perhaps. I still cannot get it to work with MS Exchange, as the Nexus app keeps crashing or going as far as displaying a stark black screen for Inbox, while allowing me to compose and send (!) emails through submenus. Additionally, if you’re looking for enterprise phones with all the corporate security policies boogie woogie, you know to look at Blackberry and that same iPhone, which both provide better security options. Unless, of course, your shop is a Google addict just as moi. Then again, there’s this whole cloud storage idea…
There you have it. I’ve been using Nexus for only a couple of days now, but all this hype is just exhausting! It’s just a smartphone. It is definitely better than any other Android device. Nexus One is the (for now) crème de la crème of devices built on the Android stack. No wonder they call 2.1 Éclair. But it is also only the first little step for Google.
To me though, it’s a keeper. Nexus One is the first phone that allows me to free myself from the laptop and still do everything I need to do.