Clickability is keeping their eye on the marketplace. Even in a time of economic instability, companies are not going to turn their websites off. Which is good news for the SaaS-based Web CMS provider. Today they offer a new solution to their large base of media clients.
The Clickability Media Solution is a consolidation of features, functionality and partnerships in the media space, tailored to the needs of the publishing industry and designed to make publishing even easier.
A Look at the Publishing Industry in General
Does this diagram look familar?
It should, we've been eluding to it for a while now. Things are changing for the media industry. Some stats from Clickability:
* % of people getting their news from the Internet has tripled in the last 10 years (Pew Internet Research)
* Radio and newspaper news audience down 14% - television news audience down 9% (Pew Internet Research)
* Internet users consumed 10 billion videos online in Feb 2008 - 66% increase over 2007 (comScore)
* Internet usage will usurp television as biggest advertising medium in Britain by end of 2009 (IAB, PWC, World Advertising Research Centre)
* By 2010, 20% of publishing revenues will come from print, 80% from other channels
This is all good news for those who have embraced the Internet and are moving to take advantage of it. Much of the media industry is still struggling though:
* NY Times reports 51% decline in income – credit rating downgraded to junk status, layoffs announced
* Major Media Conglomerates and Newspapers announce major layoffs (e.g. Time Inc. - 600 people, LA Times - 700 people)
* AP cuts revenue estimates by $30M - major publishers jump ship
* News Corp. announces 30% decline in net income
* Christian Science Monitor eliminates print edition – online publisher only
Clickability Media Solution
Clickability has been watching what's been happening within the media industry. They have paid attention to the things their own media customers have been doing and have come up with a solution that makes things even easier.
“In order to overcome immediate market challenges, media companies need to explore new business models and technology options right now,” said John Girard, Clickability’s CEO. “Those who aren’t bold enough to move aggressively and transform their businesses are unlikely to survive. The constantly evolving Clickability Media Solution gives media companies the platform they need to prosper financially.” Clickability Media Solution platform
The Media Solution starts with a central content repository that is used to share content across the entire organization and publish it across any device or web channel required.
Key aspects of this new solution include the ability to publish across multiple channels and devices and the formalization of the solution partner ecosystem.
Web CMS Enhancements
The Clickability platform is an ever evolving solution. In the last nine months over two dozen features and/or tools have been added to the platform. Some of the more recent, larger enhancements include:
* FeedLoader: This content importing and exporting feature now has business logic built in. The ability to know what content has already been imported is an example.
* Photo Galleries: A popular driver of traffic, photo galleries can now be created on the fly with any number of images, can be publish quickly and images can be easily remixed based on rules to create new galleries.
* Blogging: A URL has been set-up that opens a page to create blog entries without having to go to the publishing admin site.
* Breaking News: Driven by a need from NBC, a new feature has been added that enables publishers to creating a breaking news entry and update it as it evolves. This includes timestamping and tagging updates giving the story a chronology.
Multi-channel, Multi-device Publishing
Media companies need to constantly experiment -- well every industry does actually. People are getting their news from an ever evolving number of devices and web channels and media companies need to stay on top of what these are, ensuring their content can be accessed easily.
Clickability continues to evolve their platform to ensure content can be made accessible through a wide variety of devices. Having a central repository from which to pull content ensures this is possible.
It's still that old adage of "write once, publish anywhere". The difference now is that it's not just many places on a website, but also many websites and many devices.
Formalizing the Solution Partner Ecosystem
Clickability has a number of partners providing add-on solutions to their Web CMS platform. Prior to this new Media Solution, it was a loose confederation of services. Now it's become more formalized. Clickability has become the hub which supports out-of-the-box connections to a number of additional services -- check a box type integration.
Ad serving via DoubleClick, communities via Jive, social media using Kickapps and Pluck, monitoring using Gomez, video via Twisted, tagging with Inform, Content Delivery through Akamai -- these are just some of the partnerships that have been more tightly pulled into the Clickability platform.
Clickability Media Board of Advisors
To help Clickability continue to be successful in the media space, they have assembled a group of people who know a little bit about what's happening in the media industry. This new Media Board of Advisors includes members from the Wall Street Journal, IDG Communications, American City Business Journals, NBC, Time, Harvard Business Review and a few more.
The purpose of this Board of Advisors is to provide Clickability with first hand knowledge of what's happening in the media industry helping identify trends, alternative business model and new customer revenue opportunities. All this to help align the Clickability Web CMS platform and drive innovation.
John Girard says that the results of these discussions will be made public. Calling it "Digital Escape Velocity", he says they need to determine at what point will online revenues replace offline revenues. The group will focus on multi-platform, multi-device strategies. Girard believes technology is core to these businesses. Media companies need to decide if they are in the content or content/technology business and how does this influence what they do.
“These are challenging economic times that demand innovative thinking, both from a technology and customer revenue-creation perspective,” said John Girard, CEO of Clickability. “We are honored to bring together major thought leaders who are actively defining the future of the media industry.”
Offering a SaaS Web CMS Solution
Clickability's sales pipeline is strong: revenues have more than doubled over last year and the pipeline has grown 3x. According to Clickability CEO John Girard -- and a number of industry analysts -- SaaS is looking pretty good in this economic downturn.
In an interview with John Girard, he told us that companies are not going to turn their websites off. But they need a solution that is cheaper than purchasing and installing an-house solution. Couple with the need to be constantly experimenting to find the best approaches to reach their customers, media companies are looking more to solutions like those offered by Clickability.
They put out a new version every six weeks or so, but don't make regular announcements -- it would be overkill. With over two dozen new features in the last nine months, Clickability clearly shows off their new agile development methodology. They expect to release at least one new feature every day in the next year. That's a lot of changes.
With a platform that supports over 300 million page views, Clickability has defined a new way of working -- that of packings features into releases -- like the Media Solution. These releases will offer a number of features, functions and services.
They will also continue to track customer success closely. Clickability now actively tracks and contributes to their customer's success on the financial side. Their goal is to get close to the business and help as much as possible.
Do they have the right approach? Are the days of the in-house platform really falling to the wayside? Unlikely they'll completely disappear. The market for SaaS is definitely growing -- but it's not the only market.
As always, CMSWire will be watching closely to see where the future of content management takes us all. And we'll keep an eye on Clickability to see how their model of solutions takes them.