DAM Vendors Must Step Up To The Plate

Anjali Yakkundi
Historically, digital asset management (DAM) has been a niche technology compared with other components of enterprise content management (ECM) and digital experience technology. This has changed dramatically over the last few years as many organizations are using DAM solutions to support digital experience and marketing-focused content and processes. 
 
In the wake of this change, most DAM vendors have fallen behind. Our latest 2014 DAM Market Overview found a few key areas in which vendors have particularly lagged behind: 
 
  • Most vendors are selling software technology, not solutions. Most vendors are in a race to support address functionality, scalability, and infrastructure needs. These are the core components of DAM technology, but they don't make it usable to the new marketing and line of business buyers. Usability must improve with features like drag and drop and HTML5 interfaces. Too many vendors have neglected investment in this area or mistake lightweight solutions with little functionality as an "easy to use" option. 
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2014 Digital Experience Delivery Survey

Anjali Yakkundi

Our application development and delivery (AD&D) team has recently launched our survey on digital customer experience initiatives, and we’re looking for information on your digital customer experience strategy and technology investments. Some of the questions we’d like to get answers to include:

  • What projects (if any) you have planned for this year.
  • Details about what those projects look like (e.g. budgets, staffing, and primary decision-makers).
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Getting To Responsive. My Letter To Mobile Hype Peddlers.

Mark Grannan
A colleague of mine here at Forrester lives out in San Francisco now. And given his new proximity to the "wellhead of innovation" that is silicon valley, he took advantage and attended a talk by Luke Wroblewski.  Luke wrote "Mobile First" back in 2011, and he's continued on to be a prominent figure in the mobile design speaking circuit. And Luke is not the only leading RWD and mobile UX author to keep their momentum going and become a talking head.  Ethan Marcotte, author of the orginal "Responsive Web Design" article back in 2010, and Brad Frost have become prominent figures prosletyzing mobile and the next new, bleeding edge aspect of mobile UX design.  While I appreciate their thought leadership, I find it increasingly frustrating to hear about how the mobile technology capabilities and market are moving so fast, and yet the bulk of organizations aren't investing to keep up.  So I want to write an open letter:
 
"Dear Mobile Hype Leaders,
We get it. Mobile is here to stay. Please slow the hype train down.
 
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TechnoPolitics Podcast: If You Love Your Data, Should You Set It Free?

Mike Gualtieri

Living in an increasingly software-mediated world, consumers are more conscious of the value of their data and concerned over its protection and stewardship. At the same time, companies realize that integration of their internal data with external partners is what will elevate personalization, contextualization, predictive apps, and customer service to the level demanded in the age of the customer.

Forrester Senior Analyst Fatemeh Khatibloo urges firms to share some of their data with other firms to drive contextually appropriate knowledge about customers. The result: A more complete view of customers that each sharing firm would not have on their own. In this episode of TechnoPolitics hosted by Rowan Curran, Fatemeh describes the rewards of adaptive intelligence and how firms can use it to gain competitive advantage.

Listen here:

 

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Forrester's Top Trends For Customer Service In 2014

Kate Leggett

In the Age Of The Customer, executives don’t decide how customer-centric their companies are – customers. In an attempt to move the needle on customer service operations, in order to keep customers satisfied and loyal to your brand, these are the top trends that you should be paying attention to. You can get my full report here.

DELIVER PAIN FREE CUSTOMER SERVICE

Trend 1: Customers Demand Omnichannel Service

Customers want to use a breadth of communication channels for customer service. Across all demographics, voice is still the primary communication channel used, but is quickly followed by self-service channels, chat and email. In addition, channel usage rates are quickly changing. Customers want consistent service experiences across these channels. They also expect to be able to start an interaction in one channel and complete it in another. In 2014 and beyond, customer service professionals will work on better understanding the channel preference of their customer base, and guiding customers to the right channel based on their on the complexity and time-sensitivity of their inquiry.

Trend 2: Customer Service Will Adopt a Mobile-First Mindset

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News from NRF

George Lawrie

Application development and delivery (AD&D) professionals in retail must contend with established categories of packaged apps for store operations, eCommerce, supply chain, and loyalty.

But most packages hail from the pre-digital disruption era of mono-channel retail — store or eCommerce. 

AD&D pros must chart an application upgrade and integration course that delivers omni-channel consumer experiences despite the incompatibility of the package data models with new use cases such as click-and-collect or buy online, return in store. 

I've had a preview of the new FUJITSU Retail Solution Market Place and I'm excited because it helps retailers to orchestrate the applications and data they already have to meet consumers' cross-channel expectations.

Microsoft Acquires Parature To Better Position Against Multichannel Customer Service Vendors

Kate Leggett

On January 6, Microsoft announced their intentions to purchase Parature for a reported $100M. This event is a good thing all around. Net, net, it plugs some holes in the  MS Dynamics CRM product, and gives Parature, a 13 year old company, a viable exit strategy.

Microsoft Dynamics is a strong CRM product for customer service. Forrester considers it a leader in our most recent CRM Suites Customer Service solution wave.  Microsoft Dynamics is also doing well. At their recent analyst event, they communicated the following statistics: 12% revenue growth in FY13; Dynamics AX and CRM growing by double digits worldwide and 30% in the Americas and Asia; and CRM Online growing by 80% in FY13, with two out of every three new customers opting for cloud. Microsoft Dynamics has 359,000 customers and 5 million users, while Microsoft Dynamics CRM has 40,000 customers and 3.5 million users. Read more about this event here.

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Verint Acquires KANA And Ushers In The Next Wave Of Consolidation In The Greater Customer Service Space

Kate Leggett

Today's news of  Verint's  intent to acquire KANA ushers a new wave of consolidation in the greater customer service space. Today’s customer service technology ecosystem is complex and comprised of a great number of vendors that provide overlapping and competing capabilities. I’ve previously blogged about what these critical software components are.  In a nutshell, the core capabilities needed for customer service include:

  • Routing and queuing: providing the ability to route and queue an inquiry – whether voice, digital (ex. email, chat), or social to an agent or a group of agents
  • Agent desktop/case management: Allowing cases to be created, workflowed, and resolved.
  • Workforce management and optimization: Allowing agent interactions with customers to be monitored for quality; allowing agent scheduling, forecasting, performance management, coaching, learning etc.
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A Plea For 2014: Focus On Getting The Basics Right When It Comes To Dealing With Your Customers

Martha Bennett

Reflecting on 2013 (as one does on the last the day of the year …), I’m struck by how much I seem to be living in two parallel universes: a promised land of appropriately targeted marketing, personalized offerings, courteous and efficient customer service, timely and accurate information – you get the picture; and the real world, in which the gap between the promise and what’s being delivered seems, if anything, to be widening.

Admittedly, my research focus on business intelligence, analytics and big data no doubt heightens my awareness, as I’m forever looking for signs that the technologies that are available have actually been deployed. Sadly, a lot of the time I find that even companies with flagship projects involving advanced analytics manage to undo much of the good work by falling down on something very basic, such as getting my name right, or knowing which products I’ve actually purchased.

In case my point needs proving, I’ll start by taking a light-hearted look at a few examples of what I’m talking about, before suggesting a few New Year’s resolutions to all those companies whose claims about customer-centricity and superior service are being contradicted by reality:

  • The major UK retailer which keeps addressing me as “Mr”, has repeatedly assured me that the matter has been addressed, and which resorts to offering me flowers when I point out – again – that all my mailings are still addressed to “Mr Bennett”. Almost enough to give me an identity crisis.
  • The global bank whose customer I’ve been since 1997, but which I’ve been unable to convince for a number of years now that there is only one Martha Bennett. Definitely enough to give me an identity crisis!
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Asian Banks Are Embracing Cloud Computing Faster Than You Think

Michael Barnes

As research for my upcoming report on cloud adoption among banks in Asia Pacific (AP), I’ve spent the past several months interviewing senior IT and business decision makers at banks and other financial institutions across the region. I’ve also met with banking regulators and spoken with cloud providers with a strong AP presence. Look for the full report early in the new year. In the meantime, I wanted to share some key findings.

  • Cloud adoption is among the top priorities for most banks in the region. In fact, contrary to popular belief, I’d categorize cloud adoption as nearly mainstream among banks in many parts of Asia Pacific. But adoption drivers vary based on the cloud approach. Private cloud initiatives, for instance, centered on data center transformation to drive improved operational efficiency and cost savings. Public cloud initiatives typically focus on expanding mobile banking capabilities and other customer-facing systems of engagement — the key to customer retention and overall growth.
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