My take: With 3i investment, Magnitude takes center stage

With 3i investment, Magnitude takes center stageIt’s a testimony to the strength of and prospects for Magnitude Software that the FTSE 100 investment company,  3i has made a significant investment.

For a company formed just 5 years ago that tripled profits in 3 years, and now has secured the 3i investment ($340m enterprise value, $179m equity), Magnitude Software is surprisingly under the radar. I can almost guarantee that few have heard of us when I’m out at parties – with the exception of our Christmas (staff) party. Yet Magnitude Software boasts 50% of the Fortune 100 as customers and all of Gartner’s MQ BI leaders are relying on products from the Magnitude solution portfolio. Read more

Adobe Summit 2019: Spring into PIM and other Adobe integrated products from Magnitude

The ability to integrate the growing and fragmented data sources including product and customer information is a pre-requisite for competing in today’s experience-led digital economy.  At Magnitude Software, we’re uniquely positioned to address the increasingly complex data, content management and connectivity needs of Adobe Marketing Cloud users with three distinct solutions.

Agility PIM’s connector with Adobe Experience Manager

For retailers and global brand manufacturers, our flagship Agility PIM provides the tightest integration with the Adobe products of any of the leading Product Information Management solutions in the market.

With Agility PIM and Adobe Experience Manager it’s done once, in the right place. We also have a fantastic feature to allow users to have a live view of the actual Adobe Experience Manager page through Agility PIM. So you can edit content in the PIM and see real time what it will look like on the web site – bringing back the old print based adage WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get).

Talking of print and creative pages, we’ve always been proud of our roots as the pioneer in Adobe InDesign development for catalog producers and recognized by the industry as having the best support for Adobe Creative Cloud (CC) within PIM solution. For true multichannel retailers and global brand manufacturers, our newly released InDesign CC2019 native connector for Agility PIM makes light work of helping you create beautifully designed pages for iPads as well as traditional brochures and catalogs.

Master Data Management (MDM) and Data Warehousing platform

For Adobe Marketing Cloud’s Financial Services, Healthcare, Energy, Telecom, Media and CPG customers, our Master Data Management (MDM) and Data Warehousing platform solves a critical enterprise pain point: we make it easy to automate and govern data intensive business processes through application data management. We’re helping many of the world’s largest and renowned brands including Visa, Electronic Arts, US Bank, Abbott, Virgin, BP and Unilever to manage and analyze multiple domains, including Customer, Financial, Materials and Human Resources.

Magnitude Simba connector for Adobe Marketing Cloud

Data connectivity is becoming much more of a strategic business initiative as the need for integrating data across the enterprise is now a requirement for businesses to execute successfully. As such, we are excited to announce our development plans for a Magnitude Simba connector for Adobe Marketing Cloud later this year. This connector will make it easy to connect your applications and analytics tools to the Adobe Marketing Cloud using industry standard SQL instead of needing to know the specific Adobe API’s. The Simba Adobe Marketing Cloud connector will join a stable of over 50 existing connectors including Salesforce, Facebook, Google Analytics, Google AdWords, Twitter Ads, Eloqua, SurveyMonkey, LinkedIn, PayPal and YouTube. Magnitude Simba also provide connectors to Adobe’s recently acquired Marketo and Magento products.

Our Adobe Marketing Cloud connector will be available for purchase individually and for Magnitude Gateway. As with our other connectors, you can expected to find it embedded in products and cloud services from our blue chip OEM partners.

Magnitude Software has solutions for all Adobe’s customer data management and connectivity needs. Visit us at showcase kiosk 671-A on the exhibit hall floor where we will be showing customized demos while offering prizes and giveaways that you won’t want to miss! Schedule a Meeting with Agility at the Adobe Summit.

Adobe Summit 2019 Preview: Agility® PIM Connector for Adobe® InDesign

Agility® PIM Connector for Adobe® InDesign

As we prepare to attend the 2019 Adobe Summit, we are thrilled to announce the availability of the native Agility PIM Connector for InDesign CC2019.

Adobe InDesign CC has been the industry-leading page design software for years. In late 2018, Adobe launched the latest version of InDesign with exciting new functionality designed to make creating easier. We’ve long offered a native integration between our product information management platform, Agility PIM and Adobe InDesign, allowing for the seamless flow of product content and assets from the Agility PIM to the page.

Our updated Connector for Adobe InDesign will allow Agility PIM customers to take advantage of all the new features of InDesign CC2019, like Content-Aware Fit, Layout Adjust, the Properties Panel and visual font browsing.

For companies who still rely heavily on traditional catalogs/direct mail but recognize that they need a product information management system to manage product content for publishing to multiple channels, Agility PIM provides the ability to feed product data to any eCommerce platform, CMS or marketplace alongside our seamless integration with InDesign.

Agility PIM’s native connection eliminates the need to toggle back and forth between the PIM and InDesign. Unlike a conventional plug-in that breaks the PIM/InDesign connection, the native connection maintains the link between the two softwares, ensuring a real-time updated data flow from Agility PIM to InDesign.

The keyword is usability, according to our Richard Hunt, Vice President of Agility, MDM and DIW: “Usability has been our central objective since we first launched Agility PIM. We strive to offer a tool that is not only powerful and versatile, but also intuitive for creative users.”

Our Dawn Zassick, Vice President of Customer Success explains:

“Printed catalogs are still an important piece of the marketing mix for both retailers and distributors, especially as more companies face a reduced brick-and-mortar footprint. They still carry a lot of brand equity as a key part of the marketing mix to drive sales.”

“The Connector for Adobe InDesign enables our customers to derive more practical value from their Agility PIM investment. The ability to collaborate and update pages in seconds is an advantage that can save significant time over the life of a publishing project. And, as long as print catalogs are around, customers will look for cost-effective ways to produce them.”

How it works:

  • Through the Agility PIM Connector for Adobe InDesign, a user opens an Agility PIM menu within InDesign. From here, Agility PIM functions like a program within InDesign, allowing users to flow fully designed content to the page directly from the PIM. From within InDesign, users have seamless access to Agility PIM features such as batch pagination, automated index generation, last-minute pricing updates, lightboxes to view images and icons associated with products, and workflow to control content approval and process management.
  • Thanks to the Agility PIM Connector for Adobe InDesign, the InDesign user can view changes made in the PIM in real time. Content developers, editors and page reviewers can work in Agility PIM concurrently while designers flow and build pages in InDesign. Designers can see redline changes on pages with a simple screen refresh. This efficiency can significantly shorten turnaround time for a review cycle.
  • The Agility PIM Connector for Adobe InDesign’s flexibility helps both print and web channels. For example, index entries allow designers to easily create an alphabetical or supplier index for a catalog. The same methodology allows tags to be created to support SEO on the web. Agility’s APIs and automation tools provide seamless integration with pre-existing merchandising solutions and automated syndication to web and mobile commerce. Its configurable web interface creates a single, role-based environment for authoring and enriching promotional marketing information and digital assets. Agility PIM gives users the ability to preview their product information in web, email, iPad and print promotions, all through one interface.

Agility 7.2 supports Adobe InDesign CC versions from 2006 through 2019. Pre-schedule a meeting with us at Adobe Summit 2019 or stop by booth 671-A on the showcase floor a demo of the Agility PIM Connector for Adobe InDesign 2019.

Not attending the Adobe Summit this year? Schedule a virtual demo here.

Make Product Content Excellence a Priority

PIM Data Quality

The Importance of Being Earnest (About the Quality of Your Content)

Previously we identified the most common problems with enterprise data management. We talked about the inherent problems of lax rules, unrestricted users and the risks of sloppy or incomplete data in an ecommerce age when data precision matters more than ever. In Part Two we will explore how your company can conquer these challenges with Agility’s Product Information Management solution.

To recap, here are the eight most widespread data demons:

  • Incomplete attribution
  • Inconsistent attribute values
  • Inconsistent date/number formatting
  • Uncontrolled choices
  • Missing images
  • Missing relations
  • Missing translations/updates
  • Need to localize units of measure

For our purposes, let’s assume your company either lacks a content management system or your system is outdated and inadequate for your present needs. So you’re investigating a new solution that can do the job.

Tackling any one of these content headaches takes commitment, people and time. Fortunately, Agility has a full arsenal of tools to help you set up, organize, traffic, curate and manage your product data and resolve your legacy data problems.

Visualization

One of Agility’s greatest strengths is its ability to let you view your data at every stage, including previews in customer-facing contexts. Agility’s rich, graphical interfaces are designed with users in mind; our developers have done the hard work so you get the information you need, fast, without any manual coding.

You can auto-create items and quarantine problem data upon import. Set up smart attributes, in-field filters and data validation rules using wizards. An attribute history feature gives you an audit trail of every time a value is changed.

Data Cleansing and Consistency

With Agility you can onboard data with confidence. Agility ships with a DI/BA module powered by Hitachi Pentaho for data integration and business analytics. You determine the workflow steps. Whether you have a continuous feed from your ERP or PLM or do one-off loads from outside sources, the DI/BA module automatically validates and corrects the data based on quality rules you establish.

Agility’s principal data management tools help you to ensure uniform, accurate and consistent content according to your business rules. They include:

  • In-field quality filters allow you to define attributes, how they can be used and their permissible values
  • Quarantine to identify content gaps, missing images and other anomalies
  • Smart attributes set expressions that pull to form uniform descriptions with variable data (such as for shoes of the same brand and style but in different colors and/or sizes).
  • Embedded attribute references in descriptions update content when attribute values are changed
  • In-context previews allow you to see content in a web, mobile or print format
  • A datasheet view is convenient for bulk data audits, review and editing

Reporting — the 360° View

Agility BA gives you the most advanced, intuitive reporting, analysis, dashboard, data mining and workflow capabilities at your fingertips. This comprehensive functionality includes interactive, self-service reporting for casual users and high-volume, highly formatted enterprise reporting. You can create customer reports and track key performance indicators (KPIs) with easy-to-configure visual interfaces and dashboards.

You can build virtually any report you can imagine. For example:

  • A high-level dashboard for a real-time look at overall product statuses, onboarding and editing status or translation work
  • A data completeness report to track work on a specific taxonomy category or onboarding task
  • A workflow report to assess the progress of a catalog
  • Missing Attribute and Missing Asset reports to aid in filling product data or photo gaps
  • Workflow exceptions report to indicate inactive or expired products

No competing product can match Agility’s reporting package, which delivers the analytics you need, right to your device.

One key point to remember is that data excellence requires careful planning and constant attention. At Agility Multichannel, we have the expertise to guide you through the process, from assessing your data to data modeling to access rights, governance rules and user training.  We’re all-in with you.

Are you in the market for a powerful, scalable and intuitive tool to master and monetize your enterprise content? We hope you’ll consider Agility. Contact us today and let’s start the conversation.

Independent Research Firm Positions Magnitude Software as a Strong Performer in Evaluation of Master Data Management Solutions, Q1 2019 Report

AUSTIN, Texas – March 12, 2019 – Magnitude Software, Inc., a leader in delivering unified application data management to global organizations, today announced that Forrester Research, Inc., a leading independent technology and market research company, has positioned the Company’s Master Data Management (MDM) as a “Strong Performer” in The Forrester Wave™: Master Data Management Solutions, Q1 2019.

Forrester states that Magnitude Software provides a classical on-premises and cloud MDM solution. The report states that reference customers appreciate the ease of use, ease of implementation, and ease of deployment — as well as  Magnitude’s customer service.

“We are delighted to be recognized both as a strong performer in The Forrester Wave™: Product Information Management Solutions, Q2 2018 and now in the new Forrester MDM Wave. We provide best of breed solutions for these critical business applications,” said Richard Hunt, VP Agility PIM and Magnitude DIW and MDM solutions.

Magnitude MDM received the highest score possible in the evaluation criteria of  data quality, dynamic data governance, data context and integration. Magnitude was also one of the vendors with the highest score possible in the time-to-value criteria, which is defined as “best-in-class capabilities for time-to-value, as seen in the demo scenarios, plus best customer reference results”.

“We are gratified by Forrester’s recognition of what we believe to be the value we bring to validation and governance of our customers’ use of information,” said Diana Collins, Senior Solution Architect and Product Manager of MDM and DIW solutions for Magnitude Software. “Our customers are our most valuable asset – we’ve built an unmatched portfolio to help them unify access to all enterprise data sources and simplify the governance and management of master data so they can gain real-time insights to drive operational efficiencies.”

A complimentary copy of the report is available from the Magnitude Software website here.

About Magnitude Software
Magnitude’s transformative approach to unified application data management delivers vast operational efficiencies to business application data access, management, analytics and reporting for the modern enterprise. Magnitude’s portfolio of products includes: simplified application data access to any data source; product information management (PIM); data management solutions for the SAP and commerce verticals; simplified master data harmonization and governance; and packaged application analytics and reporting solutions for SAP and Oracle. The company helps thousands of business users simplify management of their data and deliver on the substantial productivity gains these applications originally promised. For more information, please visit www.magnitude.com

 

 

Advellence and Magnitude Software Partner to Deliver Intelligence-based Product Information Management

From left to right: Graham Cook (Agility Multichannel), Jason Simpson (Agility Multichannel), Thomas Eusterholz (Advellence), Richard Hunt (Agility Multichannel), Otakar Tomes (Advellence), Roger Pate (Agility Multichannel), Tobias Moser (Advellence).

ZURICH, Switzerland and York, United Kingdom – March 7, 2019 – Advellence Solutions AG, a leading Swiss IT company that specializes in strategic and operational IT solutions and Magnitude Software, Inc., a leader in delivering unified application data management to global organizations, today announced a partnership agreement to market and support Agility PIM, a leading Production Information Management solution.

Furthermore, the partnership will enable Advellence to take advantage of Magnitude’s closely aligned Master Data Management (MDM) and Data Warehouse DIW solutions. In addition, Advellence’s SAP expertise lends themselves to provide a fully integrated solution using Magnitude’s market-leading source connectors to SAP. Magnitude Software will benefit from Advellence’s deep expertise and track record of success in PIM and knowledge of the DACH (D – Deutschland (German), A – Österreich (Austria), CH – Schweiz (Switzerland) region and other European markets.

Advellence’s DAM (digital asset management) solution is highly complementary to Agility PIM’s new version 8. With proven success at using artificial intelligence (AI) to help fast track the creation of rich content and help buying decisions, Advellence can be harnessed by Agility PIM users.

Wrapping up the first 2-day strategy meeting in York, UK, Richard Hunt, VP Agility, MDM and DIW solutions for Magnitude Software said: “It’s rare to find such a highly successful system integrator in the PIM space that’s also delivering true innovations in the areas of AI, DAM and with SAP. We look forward to teaming with Advellence to further our mission of enabling retailers, distributors and global brand manufacturers to drive competitive advantage through intelligence-based product information management.

“Beyond the advanced capabilities of the business-friendly Agility PIM solution, our customers will further benefit from Magnitude’s industry-leading Data Analytics and MDM and unique SAP product connectors to solve the mounting application and data challenges facing today’s digital enterprise,” said Otakar Tomes, CEO of Advellence Solutions AG. “With Magnitude’s unified application management portfolio, we’re able to implement an unmatched offering that encompasses connectors to SAP, other ERP solutions, data analytics, MDM, DAM and PIM.”

About Advellence Solutions AG

Advellence Solutions AG is a Zurich-based leading Swiss IT-company that specializes in strategic and operational IT-solutions. We place our focus on both our own solutions and solutions from external providers in the areas of enterprise content management ECM, master data management MDM/product information management PIM and media asset management MAM/digital asset management DAM.

With our expertise in providing complete solutions, we offer a solid unit of services and technologies, which fit seamlessly together – from the consulting, conception and development to the integration and implementation.

Advellence Solutions AG data management experts serve clients of all sizes, from medium-sized businesses to leading enterprises. Master Data Management is an important part of their solutions portfolio. For more information about Advellence Solutions AG, please visit www.advellence.com.

About Magnitude Software

Magnitude’s transformative approach to unified application data management delivers vast operational efficiencies to business application data access, management, analytics and reporting for the modern enterprise. Magnitude’s portfolio of products includes: simplified application data access to any data source; data management solutions for the SAP and commerce verticals; product information management (PIM); simplified master data harmonization and governance; and packaged application analytics and reporting solutions for SAP and Oracle. The company helps thousands of business users simplify management of their data and deliver on the substantial productivity gains these applications originally promised. For more information, please visit www.magnitude.com

About Agility Multichannel

Magnitude Software’s Agility® is a simple-to-use but highly sophisticated Product Information Management (PIM) solution that puts your most valuable product data at the stable core of a go-anywhere, sell-everywhere commerce strategy. Agility Multichannel is the only major PIM vendor focused on fully integrating Product Management, Experience Management and Commerce. Agility services customers both directly and through integration and reseller partners around the world. Visit www.agilitymultichannel.com for access to screenshots, research, videos, customer use cases and more.

You Have (Data Quality) Issues

PIM Data Quality

The Importance of Being Earnest (About the Quality of Your Content)

This two-part series examines the challenges of enterprise data management, the most common content pitfalls, and how Agility Multichannel can help you overcome them.

Part One: You Have (Data Quality) Issues

You are an eCommerce or Marcomm manager in charge of your company’s ocean of product data —tens of thousands, perhaps millions of SKUs and their attributes and descriptions. Whether you realize it or not, you likely have data quality issues today that are impacting your customers’ ability to easily interact with you.

The short list of probable trouble spots includes:

  • Incomplete attribution
  • Inconsistent attribute values
  • Inconsistent date/number formatting
  • Uncontrolled choices
  • Missing images
  • Missing relations
  • Missing translations/updates
  • Need to localize units of measure

Too Many Hands in the Pie

Why is your data less than optimal? The answer could be lax data governance, with too many people having unfettered access rights to create content, and not enough structure, limits and guidelines to ensure consistency and accuracy. Or you have a consolidation of data from different acquisitions over time, with information added as-is without any standardization. Maybe data quality has never been a priority. Or perhaps your data quality has been reasonably good for print, but it’s not in step with the evolving demands of eCommerce across mobile platforms.

The Visible Impact: Judged by Appearance

Data quality issues impact customer and product experience and may affect sales and customer confidence. Perception matters. Sloppy content stands out.

At the start of this millennium, eCommerce was in its infancy. Relatively few companies had dynamic websites, and even rudimentary eCommerce capabilities were rare. Before refinement filters, product comparisons and shopping carts, a customer typically placed a telephone or fax order after viewing a static electronic catalog page. Data errors were inevitable and could be explained as the byproduct of manual data entry or technological limitations. And nobody was perfect.

Fast forward to today. Every B2B or B2C marketer who is serious about eCommerce has a transactional website with all the functionality customers have come to expect. In today’s uber competitive markets, dirty data will cripple the effectiveness of the best-looking website.

Attributes that are incomplete or inconsistently populated make search refinements clunky or ineffective. Data that can be entered as free text runs the risk of inconsistent formatting (i.e., 20 mL, 20mL, 20ml or 20 milliliters). And a product without an image makes a web page look unfinished.

The Verbal Impact: Precision Matters

According to Gartner, by 2020, 5% of digital commerce transactions will come from a smart machine. According to ComScore, 50% of all searches will be voice searches by 2020. Your data must be precise, clear and unerring to support these new smart channels.

Verbal devices must be supported by a repository of clean data that can easily maps to human commands. There is no visual presentation of options for the user to refine, so the data must be robust enough to do the refinement without intervention.

With more and more customers engaged with the Internet of Things (IoT), missing and inconsistent data has a far greater impact than it did in traditional print publications and eCommerce sites. In fact, the margin for error shrinks with every new device introduced. As eCommerce matures and expands to new platforms, the question won’t be simply what products you sell, but how fast do you them to market, and how effortless the customer shopping experience is. The importance of data quality and consistency will only accelerate. Data optimization is crucial.

Next: In Part Two (coming soon), we’ll discuss how Agility helps you to lock down the quality of your data with an array of tools for creation, transfer, governance and deployment across omni-channel platforms.

Three Takeaways from NRF’s Big Show 2019

This year, the National Retail Federation’s Retail’s Big Show was buzzing with new technologies. From analytics and AI services, intelligent supply chain services, to IoT platforms and robots, the future of retail was on full display — one that promises to deliver greater personalization, enhanced customer experiences, and engagement.

Underpinning all of this is good data. As retailers continue to transform digitally, the ability to access and leverage the wealth of customer and product data is the foundation to their successful future. This will allow retailers to move quickly, be more agile and highly responsive to customer demands, and achieve greater efficiencies in their operations.

Here are three takeaways from my observations and discussions with customers, partners and industry peers at this year’s show:

China and the U.S.: A tale of two divergent shopping markets

Together, China and the U.S. represent the world’s largest retail and e-commerce markets, but the shopping landscape of each could not be more different. In China, two online retailers, Alibaba and JD.com, dominate the market and account for more than 85% of China’s e-commerce market. Chinese shoppers rely on these two platforms to buy virtually everything from their mobile devices. In fact, more than three-quarters (76%) of all e-commerce in China occurs via mobile devices and mobile payments remains the most popular choice for online purchases, according to Forrester.

In contrast, the U.S. is incredibly fragmented and becoming increasingly more complex. For search and discovery, there’s the obvious options of Amazon and Google, in addition to marketplaces such as eBay and Etsy, to name a few. We’re also witnessing the emergence and influence of social commerce with shoppable posts on Instagram, Pinterest and others. Beyond that, consider the thousands of retailers that each have their own direct-to-consumer shopping sites from high end retailers like Barneys and Nordstrom to mass appeal retailers like Target and H&M. And the fragmentation is only getting worse.

So how do brands meet consumer demand? If you’re a global brand, you need to be everywhere as quickly as your products are ready for market. As such, the need to syndicate the right product content to the right retailer and marketplace instantly is mission-critical.

The retail bright spot: Image and video shopping

Content is king and this is even more important when it comes to shoppable content, whereby consumers can shop directly from a piece of content, generally via a photo or video. Shopping by images and video is becoming the preferred way for consumers to search, discover and compare products online. In fact, as many as 78% of retailers in the apparel, big box and specialty sectors — and 41% of 400+ brands — have shoppable Instagram accounts, according to the 2018 Gartner L2 Social Platforms and Influencers Intelligence Report.

This year, videos will make up for 80% of internet traffic worldwide and 85% in the U.S., according to Cisco. For images and videos to be made easily searchable, it requires having granular attributes and classification information for each, known as metadata. For any multichannel commerce site, this would include brand information on specific products and images (size, keywords, rights etc.), as well as brochure data (descriptions, cover images, etc.).

Furthermore, brands must consider the ability to store information about similar and alternative products, as well as products for cross-selling and even competitive products. And it requires marketing and rich selling information to complement the imagery to entice the consumer to buy. Add in the requirements for personalization of content and you are talking about an explosion of product content that’s needed to be built and managed by marketing and merchandising departments.

Online and In-store: Creating a consistent, seamless experience

While there’s plenty of talk about omnichannel retailing, most retailers have yet to perfect this vision. Retailers are still seeking better and more innovative way to connect and create a seamless online and in-store experience for the consumer.

The use of IoT, sensors and data offer tremendous potential for improving the retail supply chain and customer experience innovation. A prime example at this year’s show is the Kroger and Microsoft partnership, showcasing the connected store experience with app-assisted pilot stores.

This latest innovation points to the need for retailers to up their game in serving up better product information, as well as pricing information on the competition in real time. Clearly, having consistent and complementary data and content for both in-store and online is crucial for this frictionless, seamless reality to ring true.

The common theme across all three of these developments is the imperative for an effective strategy for aggregating and managing all product data. And its why product information management (PIM) is becoming a priority technology investment for digital commerce. By leveraging a PIM system to feed commerce with accurate, granular and rich product content, brands and retailers are empowered to deliver personalization services and facilitate individualized digital experiences that today’s consumer demands.

This article originally appeared in MarTech Advisor

Five Key Takeaways from London B2B Commerce Meetup

Last month, we partnered with Lingo24 to host the first London B2B Commerce Meetup on the theme of successful digital transformation. We had a tremendous turnout of eCommerce professionals from companies that span from startups to mid-sized companies to global brands.

Hot topics for discussion included: how to best compete and beat Amazon in the B2B space; moving into new countries; the importance of localization (or localization for my US friends) and, the realization of the importance of delivering consistent and engaging product experiences not just to retail customers but to industrial buyers as well.

I came up with 5 key, slightly tongue-in-cheek takeaways for ensuring successful digital transformation:

  1. Know your starting point: Let’s face it, achieving a complete and total digital transformation is a bit like reaching the top of Mount Everest. Most of us – even the boldest and most daring of us — will never get there. One surefooted step at time, however, will get you a lot farther than you think. Digital transformation isn’t merely about having a great-looking website. It’s about core vision, conviction and leadership, and it starts with a clear and honest assessment of where you’re starting from and where you want to go, in terms of organization and structure (for instance, how managers are rewarded for hitting goals) and your product content (its granularity and richness, as well as your processes for on-boarding and digital delivery). It’s a risk worth taking.

  2. Don’t boil the ocean: Technology vendors will throw everything and the kitchen sink at you to justify a project. While there may be more than 25 valid reasons for building a product information management (PIM) system, attempting everything on the list will be unattainable. Instead, set realistic expectations of what can be accomplished. Prioritizing the big wins is just as important as deciding which to leave out.

  3. “If you look for perfection, you’ll never be content”. A great quote from Leo Tolstoy, which can be readily applied to today’s B2B company’s dilemma. When your directive is to take on 5-10 times more SKUs while radically reducing product introduction times, you have to pick your battles. Some SKUS will have to go straight to market; others will need to be held back so that you can develop richer product content. Distributors need to get suppliers to do the work and to employ machine learning and AI to help automate as much of the enrichment process as possible. While you’re taking the time to make every bit of product content perfect, someone else Is selling those products to your customers.

  4. It’s the boss’s idea: In order to transform digitally, the right stakeholders have to believe that a digital strategy is critical. It takes getting buy-in early from the top and the right leadership to set a clear vision for the roadmap ahead. Digital transformation for product-centric B2B companies is critical for survival and future prosperity. Therefore, the boss has to be centrally involved, and preferably it’s their idea

  5. Watch out for the fake news:  When companies invest in new technologies, they usually undergo a thoughtful evaluation process. Once purchased, the buyer’s reputation is on the line, and they’re the ones who are usually the most committed to its long-term success. They’re also the most knowledgeable. There are plenty of opinions and reviews of technology solutions, just a click or two away, but it’s the end-users who are the most reliable sources for honest evaluations. Customer conferences and meet ups are a great ways to avoid the fake news and accurately benchmark your approach to digital transformation.

7 Reasons Why PIM Should be the Next Step in Your Digital Commerce Journey

Aggregating and managing all product data is cornerstone for any digital commerce strategy. In the many years since we saw a need to better manage product information and developed the first version of the Agility software, PIM has become a critical technology investment for both IT and business executives. A solid PIM solution helps you to dramatically improve data quality and govern data access and usage. It enables portfolio expansion as your business grows. And, effective product information management provides the flexibility to respond to changing market conditions. Read more