Seeing content from both sides.
Meeting the needs of IT and marketing.
CIOs face the constant challenge of balancing the needs of individual business functions with those of IT. Take marketing. They want to deliver the most updated content to customers in the most efficient way, without having to put in a request to IT. IT teams, on the other hand, want to keep your systems secure and access limited.
No matter the scenario, it’s important to keep in mind that you’re all moving toward the same goal—satisfied customers and a growing business.
We’re going to cover how a next-generation content management system (CMS) can help you strike the right balance between marketing and IT needs, including the following:
• Empowering business users and keeping systems secure
• Delivering content quickly and keeping costs down
• Maintaining consistent branding and reducing brand risk
Albert Einstein once said, “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”
Nowhere is this more appropriate than in the fast-moving realm of IT. Every day, CIOs weigh risk with innovation. Cost with value. Efficiency with quality. All with an eye on keeping the business moving forward. But perhaps the most challenging balancing act of them all is one IT leaders have struggled with since the beginning of time — balancing their own needs for control, security, and cost savings with the riskier needs of other functions in the business.
In a customer-focused organization, your success as an IT leader depends on how well you can partner with teams like marketing to meet larger customer-centric goals. According to Econsultancy, marketers put customer experience and content marketing at the top of the priority list. CIOs also recognize the need to be customer-focused, as 57 percent say customers are their organization’s top business priority, according to Deloitte.
But without meaningful content and the right platform to deliver that content at the moment it’s needed, your customer experiences will fall flat, and business objectives will be left unmet. Even in the larger lens of digital transformation, content plays a leading role. And creating content-led experiences that are cohesive across channels, and that are able to use analytics and customer data to personalize, requires taking a hard look at how well coordination between teams and systems is working.
In light of these market changes, many companies have outgrown their current content management platform or are struggling with the limitations of a legacy system, preventing them from meeting customer expectations, increasing the burden on technology teams, and causing friction between internal business functions and IT. For example, while marketers want to empower business users, deliver content quickly, and keep the brand consistent, IT is thinking about managing user access, keeping systems secure, and controlling costs and risk.
The key to success is to recognize that, while each group may have a different way to get there, the destination is the same — happy customers and a thriving business. A modern-day content management platform can help you keep the needs of IT and marketing in perfect balance so your customer experiences are as powerful as your growing internal partnership.
How a best-in-class CMS helps you find your balance.
Empowered users, secure systems.
Marketers want to empower business users to address changing customer needs, while IT is focused on making sure systems are secure.
Agility is important in the highly regulated financial services industry, where customers want to be immediately informed of changes in rules and regulations. By replacing their legacy content management platform with a modern version, investment management firm Morningstar empowered content creators and marketers to publish important updates more quickly than they could in the past. In addition, the IT team is now able to create templates and components so marketing teams can rapidly create, change, and manage website creation. This agile approach not only speeds up time to market, but it reduces dependence on IT resources.
Like Morningstar, your content management system should help you empower business users to keep up with the rapidly changing expectations of customers. At the same time, keeping your systems secure is a top priority for IT. Here’s how your CMS can help you achieve both.
Look for a platform that gives you the ability to provide immediate value to business users at a low cost. The platform should provide at least 80 percent of functionality out of the box to get users like marketing up and running quickly, while still leaving room for any customized development or technology configurations that may be needed. Not only does this help users become more productive and self-sufficient, but it allows you to more readily realize a return on your content management investment.
User access rights.
Lower the risk that comes with a growing number of business users by controlling access to your CMS and clearly defining who can create, view, delete, or edit content on your sites. Setting access rights at the group level not only simplifies your permissions structure, but it makes it easier to maintain and administer your system in the long run.
Advanced security controls.
Your content management platform should have security processes and controls in place to protect infrastructure, applications, and services, and it should comply with security certifications, standards, and regulations such as ISO27001, SOC2, HIPAA, FERPA, FedRAMP, and others.
Agile teams, lower costs.
While marketers want to deliver content quickly, IT leaders are focused on keeping costs down and conserving resources.
Financial services firm UBS has seen how managing content in a central location has helped support their marketing efforts. With more than 50,000 pages on their corporate site, and 100,000 on their intranet, they needed greater web publishing efficiency, including the ability to reuse components across sites for more efficient web workflows without the need for technical knowledge. They also wanted to deliver dynamic content to both internal and external visitors to keep them more engaged. But their previous CMS made it difficult to maintain and update their sites.
By implementing a next-generation content management platform, developers and content creators were able to reuse components such as buttons, form fields, and graphics on both their customer-facing and intranet sites, making it easier to quickly push out content updates.
With a cloud-ready CMS and an integrated platform, your team — like UBS — can meet growing demands for content in a timely manner without incurring additional hardware or licensing fees, or the cost to hire specialized staff.
Create, manage, and deliver content and digital assets faster without the upfront cost of hardware, personnel, and software development. Scale to hundreds or thousands of sites in the cloud for more efficient multi-site management.
Marketers constantly have to juggle new channels, devices, and limitless ways to connect with customers. Partner with them to meet these challenges by implementing a platform with open frameworks and the flexibility to create experiences in a hybrid CMS environment.
Choose hybrid, and you can control marketing pages while giving the business the ability to deploy and change when needed. This means marketing can work in high velocity to manage in-context web experiences, while developers can easily reuse content for creating custom projects like single-page applications or smartwatch apps.
An integrated platform.
Because you’ve invested money and resources in your existing applications and systems, it doesn’t make sense to start cutting them off by introducing a new platform. That’s why it’s important to ensure that the content management platform you choose plays nicely with your existing databases and systems, such as your CRM and e-commerce platforms.
“We look for systems, first and foremost, that have many APIs. They easily integrate with other systems. You don’t need to abandon everything you own to move forward.”
At the same time, your CMS should help you manage content and applications in an integrated fashion on one platform, making it possible for applications to be deployed as easily as content.
Consistent branding, lower risk.
While marketers are concerned about consistency and brand identity, IT is worried about risks that can cause major brand issues for the company.
When global technology and manufacturing company Philips wanted to build a new digital platform to empower its more than 500 content authors stretched across regions, governance was top of mind. They wanted to standardize how dynamic content was created, delivered, and localized to promote its products and brand, as well as maintain consistent customer experiences. At the same time, Philips wanted more controls in place to help ensure that communications were high quality and compliant with brand standards.
After updating their content management platform, they were able to use page templates on the front end to create a common look and feel. With asset management capability, they can now manage and standardize page elements, allowing authors to drag and drop into existing templates.
Central management helps provide marketing and brand managers governance over what gets incorporated into pages and who has authoring rights. This also ensures that anyone who is adding content to pages is trained on company and content standards, and that they follow proper approval procedures.
While your IT team may not play a leading role in brand management, IT is front and center when it comes to reducing brand risk. If your organization’s data or infrastructure are compromised, your brand can take a huge hit. Although securing your systems is the first line of defense, cutting down on human error in content production is another way to lower brand fallout that can happen if marketers deliver the wrong messages to the wrong audience.
With the help of artificial intelligence, your content can become more intelligent, making it easier to create, manage, and deliver experiences that meet customer expectations and drive business objectives. That means less burden on IT to retrofit legacy systems to do the same, less time spent on repetitive tasks that are best handled by machines, and fewer errors.
Strong strategic partners make better content experiences.
As marketers and other internal business users look for ways to deliver better customer experiences, they’ll need proven technologies to support them and a trusted partner to guide them. Referred to by Forrester as the “technology and content delivery backbone of digital experiences,” a next-generation content management platform is the secret to keeping your teams in harmony — and your business needs fulfilled.
To see how a next-generation content management platform can help your IT and marketing teams deliver better content experiences, visit www.adobe.com/go/contentmanagement.
“Digital Intelligence Briefing: 2017 Digital Trends,” Econsultancy, February 2017.
Giselle Abramovich, “IT and Marketing Have to Be in Lockstep,” Says FranklinCovey CIO,” CMO.com, September 5, 2017.
“Investing in the Future,” Adobe Customer Story: Morningstar, August 2017.
Khalid Kark, Mark White, Bill Briggs, Anjali Shaikh, “Navigating Legacy: Charting the Course to Business Value,” Deloitte, November 10, 2016.
"Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management 2017," Gartner, July 2017.
Mark Grannan, “The Forrester Wave™: Web Content Management Systems, Q1 2017,” Forrester, January 24, 2017.
“Philips Crafts a New Digital Identity,” Adobe Customer Story: Philips, February 2017.
Ted Schadler, Stephen Powers, and Steven Kesler, “The Forrester Wave™: Web Content Management Systems, Q1 2015,” Forrester, February 4, 2015, .
“UBS, delivering superb customer and employee experience online,” Adobe Partner Story: UBS, October 2016.