Cleve Gibbon

content management, content modelling, digital ecosystems, technology evangelist.

What happened in 2011?

This year has been a little bit crazy. It’s mid November and I’ve called time on 2011. I need to slow down on the conference and seminar scene and try to digest some of the amazing things I’ve learnt listening, reading and watching great people in action.

It’s amazing to see different schools of thoughts appearing in content strategy, clients figuring out what mobile means for them, brand managers trying centralise and re-use digital assets, content producers proactively seeking better authoring experiences to make campaign management low(er) effort, and companies becoming more like publishers online. Times are definitely changing.

However, the real 2011 eye opener for me is that fact that consumers are digitally smarter than the companies trying to engage with them. I mean way ahead.

Meet Tom. He’s a 6th grade mobile app developer. He’s smarter than you and I, and his TED talk video has gone viral. So when trying to engage with folks like Tom online, the digital savvy consumer, to convince him we’re worthy of his time and (soon to be countless) digital dollars, companies are continually being caught with their pants down. Failing to understand social media. Delivering sub-standard customer experiences. Creating disconnected and impersonal user journeys. Exhibiting poor listening skills. The fact is you can’t hide from these digital disasters online. But when the likes of Dell, Burberry and John Lewis, to name a few, demonstrate that they are stepping up to the challenge, 2012 can’t come fast enough.

Consumers have definitely raised the experience bar and they expect all companies they do business with to get with the programme.

But it’s hard


Not being able to effectively track consumers, or meet their expectations on their chosen device, or hold relevant and meaningful conversations in their favourite social hangouts, does not win you friends (recognise the cafe that Apprentice losers visit before facing Lord Sugar in the board room?). These strategic gaps, leads to questions like:

  • Where does the customer journey start?
  • Who owns the customer data and how do we make it available to everyone?
  • Who manages all those customer segments that span CRM, CMS, eCommerce, email?
  • What does a multi-channel targeting strategy look like and how do we get there?
  • How do we attribute ROI for specific campaign efforts?
  • Where does content fit into all of this and how to I leverage it to the fullest?

This is where I typically see the technology part begin to stall. And where companies step back to answer the deeper questions around why do they exist, what they are trying to achieve as a business digitally, and what value do they offer their customers. Important stuff. Undeniably so. But without the right folks in the room to address them, to help clients through them, these questions become the most potent form of project poison. And to be clear, failing fast is way better than silently failing.

Moving Home

new_kitchen3But that fun stuff is going to have to wait. For the last 9 months we have been undertaking, yet another, property development. It’s going to plan (sort of). We move in next week and what you can see on the left is my new kitchen!

Safe to say that it needs a little bit of work. That big great gaping hole at the back is where the doors will go, which are currently in transit from Poland. The place my other half refers to as the land of real engineers and content (building materials).

Well back to packing…how was your 2011?

Category: news


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About Cleve Gibbon

I'm a technologist passionate about enabling consumers, employees, and clients do more with less, whilst having fun at the same time.

My sort of up-to-date cv tells you my past, linked in shows you my professional network and on twitter you can find out what I'm currently doing.