Providing rich, optimized and personalized content

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Marketers struggle with the challenge of creating content that drives meaningful engagement with their prospects and customers. Established approaches often fall short because they do not recognize the individual preferences, contextual clues and inferences that their customers leave in the digital domain. In this world, content is still king, but relevance is fast becoming queen. Delivering the right content to the right user at the right time drives engagement and business success. There is no approach available today that does this more dramatically, cost-effectively and efficiently than unified information access. An advanced unified information access platform can aggregate and analyze all relevant information, regardless of source or format. Here are some recommendations for an information-access platform that addresses digital marketer media needs today:
  • Your platform should seamlessly integrate disparate content and data sources (including databases, digital asset archives and user profile data) and content management systems.
  • It ideally should provide a secure, high-performance data environment that scales incrementally as your requirements grow.
  • Your platform should provide enhanced search with features like predictive type-ahead and disambiguation (to avoid mixing up similar terms; for example, did you mean Paris Hilton or the Hilton Hotel in Paris?). You'll also want to guard against user frustration from getting null or inaccurate results.
  • You'll want to offer advanced content analytic capabilities and sentiment analysis, to be able to understand both positive and negative responses to your content.
  • Such behavioral data as purchase history, user activity and popularity are key to making relevant recommendations about additional content that might be of interest, as well as to compare textual descriptions between content. You might want to include recommendation options, such as offering similar content to what the user has already viewed or what similar users or what a person's social network has liked.
  • Your platform may also enable creation of custom site sections and targeted microsites for every user in real time. This is about creating infinite channel opportunities across infinite topics, using your readers' data. This could be useful if a specific topic is dominating the news but isn't on a particular reader's front page, for example.
  • Including easy-to-use business rules is important, letting users choose to save their custom content pages or setup alerts by registering on the site. Perhaps you might offer dynamic microsites and research pages only to paying readers.
  • A good feature is "content spotlighting," highlighting content for specific queries in the form of promotions. For example, this feature can override organic search results with documents promoting special features; can remove external documents or social blogs; can display "best bets" links for a certain search query; display an ad relevant to a particular query; and support a range of appropriate languages.
  • Finally, you'll want to enable quick, accurate, affordable and flexible content migration from legacy and archive systems automatically, reducing the fear of innovation by unlocking all your content and information assets, unifying them in new intelligent and active indexes.
Alex Withers is general manager-e-business at Attivio Inc. ( He can be reached at
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