Future of content management systems
Web Content Management Systems are around us at least from two decades. What do you think about the future of content management systems? Also, how emerging technologies like AI, robotics, blockchain and data science can benefit a CMS?
As a product manager, the most challenging thing I find time and time again with Content Management Systems is usability. A (good) CMS, by nature is a difficult product to use. That tends to be because a CMS tries to be everything that a potential user might need and a product that tries to do so many things at once tends to be difficult to use.
The fact is, that in most cases, a vast majority of features a CMS provides go unused by a user, but those features are still in the interface. This adds complexity and uncertainty to the interface, making seemingly simple tasks difficult to do.
Content marketing will remain a productive strategy, but it is only effective to the extent that it addresses topics of interest for the target audience. I don't see how robotics or blockchain will have any impact on that.
Data science will play an increasingly important role, however, as we mine bigger and bigger data sets that can give us increasingly accurate understanding of individuals in our target markets. This will be helpful so that we can target our messages more effectively. Note that most publishing projects -- even for large corporations -- tend to have limited budgets, so this is not likely to be an application that will generate a lot of revenue.
There will be a temptation to automate the content creation process using AI, but I think that this may be a dangerous strategy. The whole point of content marketing is to initiate engagement with potential customers, and if you replace the human element entirely, you risk hitting a sour note and turning off the prospect instead of promoting engagement.
Going forward, the key will be low-cost and efficient tools -- including CMS -- to let team members collaborate and communicate about the creation of content. I currently publish an industry newsletter using a suite of unrelated tools. We publish using WordPress, manage stories and workflow using a shared Google Docs worksheet, and share sources for stories using shared Evernote folders. There certainly is room for a more integrated solution, but "appropriate technology" solutions such as what we're using can certainly get the job done.
AI driven website content delivery. The idea is the content is still created by experts, what to deliver & to whom is controlled by an AI engine. The engine takes information like geo-demographic information, time and starting query, location and other information and display most relevant content. AI engine is essentially reducing the hops to covert/find solution user MAY be looking for by predictive models. The UI/UX team will provide the right containers/blocks of content in front-end but for whom what to deliver will be taken care by an AI engine. This might look little distant for some cases, but i have worked on one such assignment for an Insurance company.
Fully agree with Marcin, CMS usability is the main challenge. How user friendly a system is (it means how it is easy to remember the system after a break and how much time it takes to be learned), are systems admins able to manage it, is the content well structured? Usually the system is easier if several persons are using this. Benefits are that trainings need is reduced, more updates are available and maintenance could be performed internally.
The challenge with content management, like most technology applications, is growing data volumes. By 2025, the world will have accumulated 180 Zettabytes (ZB) of data, up from 44 ZBs in 2020 and 10 ZBs in 2015, according to market research firm International Data Corp. Corporations will need help managing that information.
AI offers them a way to automate tedious, repetitive parts of the process. Consequently, the technology will work its way into the content management area. However like all technology, AI is not foolproof. Automating tasks works best with repetitive tasks. AI will not be able to pick up on the nuances that humans see as they sift through content. Also, the results will only be as good as the underlying algorithms. So, businesses will need to be sure that they put checks in place to ensure that the AI results are accurate. In sum, AI will help companies sift through growing reams of data but is not an easy to use, install once and forget about it technology.