With the API economy becoming ever more prevalent, as well as organisations increasingly basing their activity around secure access to and exchange of content and data, the wider implications for marketers need to be discussed. A recent report by Forrester Research predicted that ‘PaaS and cloud-first are winning in Web Content Management (WCM)’ and we should take heed.
2017 continues to witness a number of companies embracing cloud-first, platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and microservices-based architectures. There are a number of key reasons why marketers need to start realising why these approaches are essential to success. So what do we need to know?
Increased marketing capability
PaaS is a revolution in the way products themselves are built, going beyond simple cloud-hosting, and is directly impacting on marketing strategies. First of all, deployment of such systems provides increased application independence from the underlying cloud infrastructure on which it runs. Infrastructure becomes a commodity and the real added value lies in the application that runs on top of it, wherever that may be physical.
Secondly, PaaS applications typically expose themselves in a very modularized way, as a series of services that can be consumed from anywhere, by any other application. Services may expose data, content or other digital information, and therefore enable easy aggregation of information from various environments to create a new combined set of information with some unique value.
In the world of Web Content Management, this means that PaaS solutions enable marketers to rationalise and combine their assets, previously not as accessible in locked-down repositories. As PaaS becomes increasingly adopted across different business platforms, it is allowing marketers to broaden their capabilities. Through these cloud-based tools, marketers are able to pull together all relevant strategies, aspects and techniques involved in building a campaign or broader digital experience far more seamlessly. And it becomes much easier to do so consistently, across an ever-growing range of touchpoints and channels.
Improved methodology and time-efficiency
The development of PaaS and cloud-first via WCM has allowed for more software simplicity, meaning marketers can exchange and make the best use of information across their systems and software in a quick, methodological and time-efficient manner.
Information is key to successful marketing techniques, and PaaS systems will prove simpler due to the smaller, more identifiable pieces of information that can be accessed and (re)used. Here at SDL, we anticipated this trend, acknowledging that by building a platform around the necessary tools for successful marketing processes to take place, this would prove beneficial long term. Fully separated content, structure, design, and application logic are all benefits for today’s marketing professionals, providing both content and context in a channel-agnostic way.
We cannot underestimate the importance attached to global, multi-lingual marketing. The universal demand for brand messaging – identity relation for customers combined with strategies for promotion – involves a wide variety of staff, skills, insights, and expertise to deliver value across the globe.
To get this right is not easy – especially when launching campaigns on a global stage. Organisations with global ambitions need a platform that offers true agility. A content management system that offers, for example, a headless and decoupled architecture, makes life easier for marketers who want to rapidly publish content across multiple channels and devices.
Pricing is a critical part of the marketing mix for any international firm, ultimately creating revenue and increasing client retention levels.
Translating marketing content and subsequent global content syndication across many different channels in various languages is costly. However, building on a cloud-oriented approach, the following is possible; individual marketing material and components can be translated, exposed through PaaS services, and repurposed by a variety of content consuming applications. This provides unprecedented cost savings, workplace efficiency and marketing content consistency.
The rise of the API economy means that PaaS and cloud-first tools will become increasingly more essential to executing successful global marketing strategies. And the benefits of introducing such tools are significant for marketers – from reducing overall costs, increasing efficiency and ultimately enabling marketers to join up relevant digital experiences seamlessly, PaaS and cloud-first are the winners for WCM.