There are two things that take key priority in today's fiercely competitive digital landscape; speed and relevance. In a world of Netflix, Amazon and Spotify, where online experience is meticulously tailored to each individual user, customers have come to expect accurate and updated information, specific to them and their needs pretty much immediately. Without these elements, your business will almost certainly fall behind.
To keep up with competitors, engaging and timely content is essential and cost-effective. In fact, according to Neil Patel, "compared to outbound tactics, content marketing costs 62% less but generates 3x as many leads." Which means having a strong and regular content creation system at the heart of your marketing strategy is vital.
Yet as marketers know, hold ups in the content process can often be down not to the creation but the distribution of information. Whilst there may be a number of contributing factors, if you simply don't have the digital ecosystem to create relevant content that is seamlessly aligned across channels as quickly as your customers demand it, you risk leaving a lot of money on the table.
This is often a downfall of an “all in one” solution or monolith which claims to solve it all, but in reality can end up causing far more problems than solutions.
On the one hand, more functionality means the potential capability to do more.
On the flip side, these systems are tightly tied up in developer code, incur huge upgrade costs, and are notoriously difficult to change without affecting the entire system. This is in part down to the interwoven nature of these monoliths, meaning one small tweak in response to a business need can cause issues across the entire system, costing thousands in bug fixes. It is no surprise marketers are looking at other solutions to make managing their digital distribution channels a little less complicated.
Enter the composable stack, sometimes known as Composable Digital Experience Platform or DXP. It is exactly as the name describes, a set of ‘components’ that can be put together in a way that suits your business needs and supports your client's digital experiences. These systems work more like "pay-as-you-go", platforms that specialise in one key marketing function which can then be integrated with your other specialised solutions.
Sounds great right?
It's likely you've heard about or even looked into implementing a more composable system.
But budgets are tight, time is short, and you don’t have the resources to do a full overhaul of your technology. Instead you’re stuck with a system which makes every job 10x harder, with duplicated data all over the place and every step feeling like a mountain.
We understand that it’s daunting to overhaul your entire digital ecosystem (and often hard to get company buy-in), but you don’t have to. Instead, you can slowly chip away and “unpick” parts of your huge monolithic tech solution so that you implement a more flexible, agile and specialist group of systems that work together to deliver your marketing strategy.
So what can you do now?
Our consultancy team helps clients to identify how to move towards a more agile digital solution which is best suited for their business goals. The first stage of this process is discovery, so we’re sharing 3 steps you can implement right now to get started choosing the best tech for your marketing goals:
1. Understand where you want to be
The right technology frees up more time to work on idea innovation and activities which generate revenue to propel the business forward. In order to get to this, it's important to identify an ideal scenario where your technology enables you to work on high ROI activities with ease, and then look at what is currently holding you back from this.
We'd suggest you map out your key business priorities, whether it be to increase website conversions, to streamline communication across platforms or to increase brand awareness throughout your customer journey. From here, you can start to pinpoint where you're being held back by technology.
Once you’ve established these targets and some of the key blockers in your marketing innovation process, you can start to narrow down which services are pivotal to your business success and that you'd like to “unpick” from your monolith first.
2. Identify the technology that works, and where the cracks are showing
Based on our extensive experience with clients across various sectors, it's clear there is no one-size-fits-all digital solution. Every business is unique and requires a specific technology stack to ensure all their needs are met, so it's key to identify where the problems are in your particular operations to help you to decide what to work on first.
In a microservice structure, you can choose not just the "best of breed" suppliers but the "best of need" technology for your business. This creates a marketing solution without totally reinventing your entire ecosystem. If improving email communications is a key priority, focus on finding a strong email service platform with a seamless communication and segmentation strategy to help get relevant content to the right audience at the right time. Or perhaps you're looking at optimising your user personalisation and want to use A/B testing software which helps identify the best content, so that you can easily create the best messaging for your customers.
By implementing these more specialised systems which are chosen for distinct business needs, we’ve seen huge results and spikes in conversion rates with our clients. Taking the time to identify exactly what is right for your business rather than using an out of the box solution and trying to mould your business around the tech is crucial.
3. Lay the foundations, assign the right teams and create a roadmap
You have your goals and you’ve identified your systems. Now you need a roadmap to help bring your ideas into reality.
It's worth considering whether your team may need some training around the longer-term business benefits that come with implementing new systems, especially people who don't have a digital-first mindset. By dedicating resources, training or consultancy to getting company buy-in can help you to demonstrate the value of these additional more specialised systems. You may also need to think about who, internally, will be responsible for each part of your new system, and who will need training for this, especially if you are considering using a platform across multiple teams.
And what about your faithful Digital Agency? Did you ever discover one that could really specialise in every aspect of your technology stack? Yes they said they could during the tender, but really?
The composable architecture doesn’t require these behemoths with three year lock-in contracts. It requires specialists. Just like you select your technology to suit your business, you can match your agency partners to match your technology. Have a look at what can be managed internally, and where you may need support, and identify the correct digital teams or third party agencies to help create your ideas.
Need some help on the next steps?
Why not get in touch? Nemetos Tanasuk is a full service digital agency who have over 10 years of expertise helping clients to realise their goals in a way that totally transforms their user experience. We’re small but mighty, working as your teammate and partner, not just as an anonymous external agency.
We can’t do everything, and we’re honest about where we can help. But we are certain that if you’re locked into a monolith we can help you slowly extract yourself from it in a way that is probably good for your sanity, and certainly better for your business.
From discovery and design to delivery and optimisation, we collaborate with your digital stakeholders to ensure that you can create beautiful, user-focused digital experiences which help you to hit your goals. As a client, you receive a hands on, honest and ambitious approach to strategy, which empowers your team to get results through cutting-edge innovation and technology.
We’d love to invite you in to visit our office, meet our team and ask your digital questions. Coffee and Croissants Consultations are a great way to do this, and you can book a slot any Wednesday or Thursday morning to drop in and say hello (with the best pastries Borough has to offer - in our opinion!) Book here.