Skip to main content

Need an expert POV? Call us...


In the News

| CMS Wire | Marketing Technology: Has WCM Been Commodified?

Woe to any digital leader that treats WCM capabilities as a commodity.

The Gist

  • Marketing technology. Web content management technology (WCM) remains nuanced and essential, not a commodity.
  • Martech stack diversity. The martech stack has evolved, with WCM being just one of many dynamic components.
  • WCM platform options. Content marketing platforms continue to innovate, offering a range of choices for modern businesses.

"Commodity" is a dreaded term in technology. It implies something so simplistic, so standardized, and so cheap, you don’t even need to compare suppliers based on the product itself. The word brings to mind something you trade in bulk, like pork bellies or orange juice.

No tech vendor wants to sell something commoditized, and even technology buyers and consultants will shy away. After all, where’s the challenge and innovation? Read More. I hear with some regularity that web content & experience management (WCM) technology has become commoditized. As someone who’s followed the market for a couple decades now, that term certainly pricks up my ears. But it’s simply not true, and woe to any digital leader that treats WCM capabilities as a commodity. Read More.




| CMS Wire | Real Story Group launches free martech assessment tool | MarTech

Built on the firm's Real Score platform, the tool is a 15 minute survey about operations, content, data, decisioning and technology.

One thing every marketer wants to know is how effective their marketing is. A new, free tool from independent analyst firm Real Story Group is designed to show them just that.

Tony Byrne, president of RSG (and a MarTech contributor), said the tool came about because marketing executives reported getting an increasing number of questions about effectiveness.

Read more.

| CMS Wire | How Effective Are Marketers at Using Martech Tools?

Marketers spend a lot on martech tools, but just how effective are they and their friends at using these martech tools?

The Gist

  • Are we good at martech? Marketers are significantly investing in martech tools to enhance their email, content campaigns and digital experiences, but is it worth it?
  • Measuring martech effectiveness. Real Story Group has introduced an online benchmarking service aimed at helping marketers assess the effectiveness of their martech stacks, particularly beyond just marketing attribution and return on ad spend.
  • Navigating challenges for optimal martech outcomes. The evolving martech landscape brings challenges like achieving internal alignment across tech, data, IT and marketing operations, managing customer data privacy and contending with data and content deficiencies.

Marketers need martech tools to produce their emails, content campaigns and web and digital experiences. They spend a lot of money to do so, too. Martech tool spending in the United States is forecast to increase further over this year and next, reaching $27.11 billion in 2024.

That spending has to make sense, though, and one martech advisory and analyst firm wants to show marketers how they're doing with their martech tools and stacks against their peers. Real Story Group today released an online benchmarking service. It's a freemium service with a paid upgrade for special access and services.

Martech Tools Effectiveness: What's Your Score? Read to find out.



| MarTech | 3 prevailing themes pointing to a martech reset

I recently taught some martech workshops (in person!) and received numerous fascinating questions from stack leaders. Clearly, 2023 represents another year of great change as omnichannel aspirations take on higher priority and leaders continue to revisit their platform choices amid growing hype around artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Here’s my take on three clusters of questions and topics that arose:

  • CDP programs as stalking horses for customer data modernization.
  • Rethinking your engagement tier.
  • Adtech-martech integration.

Each topic has its own value and some cases, urgency. But together, the answers reflect a broader reset occurring across enterprise martech stacks. Read more.

| MarTech | The future of outbound marketing in an omnichannel stack

Enterprises want key services to operate omnichannel, yet outbound marketing platforms are becoming outdated. Here's how it might change.

The growing importance of omnichannel consumer engagement impacts all levels of the enterprise martech stack. Greater composability clarifies useful service boundaries, enabling enterprises to right-size their martech investments in nearly every domain. Outbound marketing has probably evolved the least in these respects.

Understood today as campaign and messaging management tech, outbound marketing represents a holdout against the broader evolutionary trend. Yet, vendors are not immune to structural changes taking place in martech — and this part of your stack may well become the least recognizable by the end of this decade.

Read More.

| MarTech | Should you use your data warehouse as your CDP?

There's a case for and against using your data warehouse as a customer data platform. Here are three ways to make it work.

The advent of cloud-based data warehouses (DWHs) has brought simpler deployment, greater scale and better performance to a growing set of data-driven use cases. DWHs have become more prevalent in enterprise tech stacks, including martech stacks.

Inevitably, this begs the question: should you employ your existing DWH as a customer data platform (CDP)? After all, when you re-use an existing component in your stack, you can save resources and avoid new risks.

But the story isn’t so simple, and multiple potential design patterns await. Ultimately, there’s a case for and against using your DWH as a CDP. Let’s dig deeper. Read More.


| Resume | The best and most useful overview of Martech I have ever seen

One of those who have come the furthest in their work to actually create clear, practically applicable tips and support regarding work with martech is American Tony Byrne and the company Real Story Group. The name of his own consulting firm came when, for many years, Tony challenged Gartner and Forrester's more sponsor-supported and commercially produced ways of designating the digitization industry's best actors in various product and service areas in graphs (Quadrants). The underlying model was not end-customer friendly enough, from which he developed his own, straighter and more honest evaluation methods. Even his latest overview of martech is straightforward, realistic and very good. Read More.

| MarTech | Why marketers are replacing foundational martech

With engagement technologies in place, marketers are now turning to the foundational layer for replacements.

Enterprises have been in kind of a replacement mood,” said Tony Byrne, founder of Real Story Group,  at The MarTech Conference.

The changes in customer behavior during the pandemic forced organizations to improve and update their engagement technology. That’s what our latest MarTech Replacement Survey showed.

Now, marketers are looking below the engagement layer in their stack, evaluating and replacing the foundational technology that powers the other layers.

The foundational layer 
More and more enterprises are investing in what we call ‘enterprise foundation’ services,” said Byrne. “These are systems that are not channel-specific. They live below your engagement platforms, and they help deliver a more omnichannel experience.”

Read More.


| CMS Wire | Apporv Durga on how to filter the right CDP short list
Exploring the lenses with which to filter Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) and eliminate vendors that don't meet business needs.

Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) are rapidly becoming a foundational technology piece in omnichannel martech stacks. They can also serve as a key component in broader digital transformation and customer experience (CX) initiatives.

Unfortunately for you the technology buyer, scores of products call themselves a “CDP,” and perhaps as many platforms in other categories have CDP-like capabilities. Naturally, almost every vendor claims to be a leader, challenger, largest, first, leading, global or some combination of these.

With this much noise in the marketplace, several issues arise, including:

  • Many prospective customers have the impression that most of these products are similar and there is not much to differentiate between them.
  • When evaluating CDPs for your requirements, it becomes difficult to create an initial shortlist of tools relevant for your requirements. Read More.





| MarTech | The future of headless web content management

A modern enterprise, particularly a large one, needs headless and coupled publishing capabilities.
Tony Byrne

Old-timers (like me!) in web content & experience management (WCM) will remember an early entrant called RedDot. Founded in Germany during the mid-1990’s, the platform originally had the somewhat prosaic label of “InfoOffice CMS.” Yet the plucky upstart boasted an important innovation: an in-context editorial interface showing the published page with the editable blocks marked off by a red dot 🔴that you would click to get a pop-up editorial window. Read More.



Recent Press Releases