The results of recent research into brand content management have sparked some debate and left many questions unanswered. Our author Peter O’Neill answers this discussion and answers the question “Why declare a software category as Brand Content Management?”.
I have received many inquiries about my recent research in the field of brand content management. Not just the vendor scorecards – though they certainly triggered a lot of discussion as well. However, I got more requests because of the name itself. People ask, “Why declare a software category as Brand Content Management?”
Well, firstly, through my research, I do not develop a new software application category. Rather, I try to look at the world from the point of view of user companies and to name their most important business process or perhaps process family. Why? Because just as many companies are planning automation business and looking for suitable software or SaaS providers. So when we conduct our surveys, we always first discuss the process and then talk about the vendors they work with to improve that process in the business.
What does Brand Content Management have to do?
I would say that Brand Content Management is a key process in every marketing department today. In addition to effectively managing and distributing all of their digital content, marketers must also create and protect their brand messages for the entire organization – from the corporate brand to the individual messages around the products. Companies working in a more decentralized marketing environment must even use this process in ecosystems of subsidiaries and external business partners. In a Demand Metric Research Corporation survey of 247 companies in 2016, nearly 90 percent of respondents agreed that it was important to showcase their brands consistently in all places where people could meet them – but less than half is really capable of doing that.
A brand is more than just a logo
In the old days, a brand consisted only of a logo, font and Pantone reference, and marketers helped their business partners use the right brand. Today the brand is a combination of purpose, positioning, message, personality and values: a brand is the promise or impression you want to leave behind. And this is transmitted through every phrase that is published on your behalf – and ultimately by all employees of the company. However, with the use of digital marketing technologies, marketers now have the opportunity to maintain control and compliance.
The survey we conducted on brand content management brought this to light. The most common reason for investing is therefore a “collective management of all content objects,” closely followed by “managing brand messages across the enterprise.”
The best brand content management providers
The German content management provider ‘BrandMaker’ was rated best by users in this global study. This was followed by vendors Censhare (also German), BrandMuscle, BrandSystems (Swedish) and Adobe. MarcomCentral, Bynder (Dutch), OpenText, Pica9 and Code Worldwide also made it into the Top 10 of the Matrix, for the 50 active software and SaaS vendors, which annually generate around $ 2 billion in revenue through software licenses, maintenance and SaaS revenue generate, have been considered. Here it is interesting to see that so many European providers are successful here – this could be due to the special requirements of internationality. The following figure briefly presents the top 10 providers:
More than half of respondents said they will invest in this topic for the first time. These companies are looking for a new content management platform that can handle all existing content types and is easy to use even for casual users. Furthermore, it should be able to integrate with all existing systems and databases and should be able to implement the necessary rules and guidelines for brand control.