I've been a big fan of Digital Clarity Group ever since they formed. There are some amazing people working for DCG and the work they put out is quite frankly spectacular. Last year they put out their 2013 North America Guide to Service Providers for Web Content and Customer Experience Management and I was blown away. Many of the answers to the questions I'm often asked about various agencies and integrators are in this guide. So I'm pretty excited to also see DCG put the same effort toward Europe with their new 2014 Europe Guide to Service Providers for Web Content and Customer Experience Management.
"We developed the Guides to fill a critical information gap,” said Scott Liewehr, DCG’s president and principal analyst. “Based on the dozens of WCM and CEM selection engagements we’ve delivered, we know that buyers struggle to understand the highly fragmented services landscape and to find service partners whose skills and experience align with their business needs.”
The European edition is designed as a resource for organizations that are implementing new WCM (web content management) and CEM solutions and need hard-to-find information about qualified services firms. DCG’s Guide describes the role of the contemporary services partner, maps out a service provider assessment framework, and includes in-depth profiles of 45 Europe-based digital/interactive agencies and systems integrators.
Tiffany Elliot recently wrote that what separates their service provider guides from other similar reports we've seen written by other analyst groups:
Unlike other industry reports, the DCG Guide seeks to provide tailored advice. Since every enterprise is different, a single ranking of service providers would not necessarily fit the needs of each enterprise. We aim to take a different approach.
The #DCGEuro14 Guide does not rank Service Providers. Instead, the Guide grades each service provider’s approach to CEM in what we call the ‘Core Competency Assessment’, which considers how much each service provider’s self-described approach emphasizes eight different competencies that an enterprise needs in order to pursue a holistic CEM strategy. Looking at aspects such as technology fluency, user experience, the ability to connect online and offline worlds, as well as other components, the Guide outlines the 8 key factors. In this way, each enterprise can look for service providers that meet their individual needs. The Guide also helps enterprises ask the right questions and look for the components that are vital to their own digital strategy in the context of CEM.
While the approach to the European edition is similar to the North American edition, there is a recognition of business cultural differences and geography do matter. Jill Finger Gibson, DCG principal analyst and study director for the European Guide, noted the unique characteristics of the European services market compared to North America. “There are certainly global commonalities across the providers based in North America and Europe,” said Gibson, “but today, location still matters. Differences remain in areas such as talent management, regulation, project approach, and business practices. This means that a provider’s roots and physical presence are among the most important decisions in a selection process.”
If you don't know much about Digital Clarity Group, I encourage you to visit their website and get to know them better. They've put together an amazing team and over the past couple years I've had some interesting discussions with many of their people.