Are we nearly there yet? The journey from Content Management to Customer Experience Management

I feel your pain, fellow marketers, for I have just spent a weekend battling holiday traffic to get to the beach hearing the inevitable question “Are we nearly there yet?” from the back of the car every few minutes. The same question applies to the journey digital marketers have had with web content management.  WCM was meant to elevate the tactical content management function into a highly strategic business function that positively impacts key customer metrics such as loyalty, retention and conversion.  But the sands beneath our feet have shifted massively in recent years; the need to deliver content to a plethora of new devices and social channels, with ever greater personalisation using social graph, location or just information people choose to share with us. As I shared in a recent post, the complexity is only going to get worse.

Are we there yet?

To understand more about where we all are on this journey, we have just published our latest Digital Intelligence Briefing, in association with Econsultancy, about web content management (WCM). (You can download a free copy of the briefing by clicking the link above.)  The report is based on a global survey which has attracted more than 1,000 respondents, a record for this on-going series of reports, and a clear testament to the reality of the content and experience challenges marketers face.

Some of the findings are insightful about where we are on the journey:

  • 70% of organisations surveyed agree that ‘delivering optimal experiences across all screens and devices is a major challenge’
  • Only 14% of responding businesses say that their ‘CMS enables them to have a complete view of engagement across all channels’
  • A third of respondents (33%) say that mobile website functionality and responsive design is the one feature they would ‘add to their CMS right now’, more than twice as many as for the next most sought after feature (targeting / segmentation).
  • Almost two-thirds (63%) of respondents agree that managing and measuring social media activity within their CMS is difficult.

The strategic importance of web content management is increasingly referenced in analysts’ reports such as Forrester, which stress the importance for companies to move beyond using a CMS as a means to simply manage content and strategically utilise it in order to create digital experiences.  And yet, just 38% of this survey’s respondents agree that their CMS facilitates a ‘brand enhancing digital presence’.

At Adobe, our focus has been to help companies address the challenge of web content management in an increasingly mobile and social world where consumers are often switching between devices and channels.  Adobe Experience Manager, part of Adobe Marketing Cloud, highlights our commitment to helping organisations deliver personalised experiences across the web, mobile devices, social community and video.  Our mission is to help companies not only to deliver engaging experiences, but also to measure and quantify this activity.

Are we at the beach yet? Perhaps not, but maybe it’s not as far as you think! What do you think still needs to happen to get CMS elevated to a strategic business function that creates engaging, relevant digital experiences?  Please leave a comment below or engage me on Twitter @neil_morgan_uk.

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One comment on “Are we nearly there yet? The journey from Content Management to Customer Experience Management
  1. Doug Kessler says:

    Excellent post — if the CMS world doesn’t step up to this challenge, CMS could be pushed to the periphery of the marketing suite. Just a final delivery layer.

    That would be a shame as it’s perfectly positioned to be the core of the next generation of marketing platforms.

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