Optimizely One Debuted at Opticon 2023
When Opticon in San Diego ended, I could not help leaving with the understanding that Optimizely has a clear vision about how it is going to help companies navigate the creative side of content creation and publication with a flexible architecture to meet future business needs. Optimizely debuted a new offering called Optimizely One, meant to serve as a Marketing Operating System for organizations across verticals. Many will describe it as a rebranding, but I would add that it marks a point in time when Optimizely has integrated several of its past acquisitions, added key technology, and given a SaaS option to companies looking to move to a composable architecture.
Optimizely One: Enabling the Creative Side Through AI
Through the understanding of how content creation flows through a company and then out to its customers and prospects, they recognized an opportunity to help those who create the content. With Optimizely One, Optimizely comprehensively manages the content journey, seamlessly transitioning from ideation and creation to publishing, performance monitoring, and monetization. It bridges the creation-to-monetization gap for marketers regardless of where the content is published. Furthermore, Optimizely uses AI via a partnership with Writer to help content authors along the journey with ideas and content writing.
Optimizely also announced the integration of its Content Marketing Platform (CMP), a previous acquisition of Welcome, with its world-class Content Cloud, a component of Optimizely’s DXP. Now, authors can pull up the layouts found in the Content Cloud and use content to publish to its Content Cloud, a social media channel, or both. Optimizely did not stop there with changes to their Content Cloud. Building upon the latest releases of .NET, Optimizely has configured its Content Cloud offering to be SaaS.
Composable using a SaaS Architecture
Historically, Optimizely’s cloud offerings for Content Cloud and Commerce Cloud have been Platform as a Service (PaaS). This allowed companies to take advantage of Optimizely’s and Microsoft’s powerful UI rendering features in the cloud. It is important to note that many of the features and functionality are in a bundle in the PaaS scenario.
This approach has a couple of key challenges, with the first being maintenance time and cost of upgrading a large application on a platform. The time to upgrade everything at once typically runs longer. Businesses will not see a return until the entire project has been completed. Often, companies see the larger single bill, and it discourages them.
The second challenge is the bundle offering itself. Often, you must accept the good with the bad in a bundle. In the case of Optimizely Content Cloud, their PaaS offering, aka the bundle, needs to make sense for you. Otherwise, you may find yourself fighting a feature, creating frustration for your team and impacting the bottom line.
This is why Optimizely is now offering the choice of a Software as a Service (SaaS) model. The content and commerce cloud offerings now have the option of being SaaS. Personalization, experimentation, content marketing, and data platforms were already only offered as a SaaS option. SaaS is one of the key ingredients to a composable architecture.
So now let us get to the question of what is a composable architecture and why does it matter? Composable architecture is like building with Lego blocks. Imagine you have different Lego pieces, each serving a unique purpose.
In a composable system, software, and technology work similarly. Various modules or components are created, like Lego pieces, and they can be easily assembled and reassembled to build custom solutions. It is all about flexibility and adaptability, allowing businesses to mix and match these components to create different applications or systems without having to start from scratch each time. This approach saves time, resources, and effort, making technology more versatile and efficient for diverse needs.
Another piece of technology that Optimizely has added that enables SaaS is GraphQL. GraphQL is a powerful tool that revolutionizes how data is accessed and used. Think of it as a language that bridges the gap between your applications, APIs, and databases, enabling seamless communication. Unlike traditional methods, GraphQL allows the request of data needed and nothing more.
From the direction Optimizely is going, I believe they will use GraphQL and their data platform to enable marketers to fetch personalized data for each user. This would allow you to create highly personalized marketing campaigns by fetching individual customer preferences, purchase history, or behavior patterns, allowing you to target specific audience segments effectively.
A New Optimizely Era
It is clear that Optimizely's innovative strides, such as Optimizely One, GraphQL integration, and the adoption of a composable SaaS architecture, signify a transformative era in content marketing. This evolution empowers businesses to create highly personalized, adaptable campaigns. By bridging gaps in technology and offering flexible solutions akin to Lego blocks, Optimizely paves the way for a future where content creation is seamlessly tailored to individual customer needs.