Virtualization Technology News and Information
Keynote and Cedexis 2015 Predictions: The Changing Nature of Digital Asset Management


Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2015.  Read them in this series exclusive.

Contributed article by Rachel Obstler, vice president of product management at Keynote and Pete Mastin, product evangelist at Cedexis

2015: The Changing Nature of Digital Asset Management

Thirty percent of the real estate on a typical Web page is not under the control of the website owner [1]. The use of third-party ads, search boxes, social media widgets (such as "Like us on Facebook"), and analytics tools that act behind the scenes tracking users and performance is commonplace, and all of this content has an impact on site performance.  The same is true of mobile apps. And, as the use of third-party content increases, so too are end-user expectations; users typically expect response times of three seconds or less.

IT and operations teams who are responsible for the performance of digital assets thus find themselves in a challenging position. When third-party services have a significant impact on performance or even fail, such as the recent DoubleClick outage, operations has no server to reboot or developer to call. Instead there is an external vendor relationship, and, in some cases, a relationship that the IT or operations team does not even own.

This gap between what IT is accountable for (a high-performing website) and what they are responsible for (decisions about content and third-party performance), coupled with the increasing expectations of users, will lead to changes in how IT must manage their web and mobile digital assets in 2015.

Prediction 1: Performance is a feature. This means performance becomes a core requirement of the site or app, not an afterthought. There is a growing recognition of the causal relationship between performance and business outcomes (i.e. revenue, new customers, customer engagement, churn).   The forward thinking IT and operations teams understand this and are working on quantifying the ROI for excellent performance, or the converse, the cost of poor performance. In practice, this means putting in place controls that include meeting performance goals for both the core websites and applications, and also the third-party content used within them. Some companies to whom we have spoken are, in fact, already implementing development, testing, and monitoring processes that support this requirement.

Prediction 2: In 2015, digital owners demand service level agreements (SLAs) from third-party vendors providing content and services.  SLAs drive behavior, and are commonly used to measure IT performance-and, in some cases, even salary incentives. Especially where IT does not own the vendor relationship, existing SLA definitions and resulting metrics often exclude third-party content, to the detriment of customer experience. With an increasing focus on the relationship between performance and business outcomes, digital asset owners must bring third-party vendor performance out of the shadows so that the right decisions can be made for the good of the customer.  

Prediction 3:  Operations will look to make monitoring data actionable through real time automation.  It's great to know when something is broken. It's even better to be able to fix it in real time - so that outages and performance bottlenecks never happen from your users' perspective. This means having systems that can alert you of issues in real time (sub second), tell you what is causing the issue (which object, whether it is third party or core application), and react appropriately to that information.

Making monitoring actionable can happen in a variety of ways.  In the cloud you can spin up and spin down servers. When availability drops or latency increases to intolerable levels, you can route traffic away from the offending infrastructure. You can even dynamically alter content delivered to a user or set of users to optimize performance.  These and other techniques enable a new real-time digital optimization engine that ensures the best customer experience.

Bill Clinton famously said, "The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change." In 2015, the companies that understand the value of high performing digital assets will be able to reap the benefits of their investment and processes for years to come. The ones that don't will, simply, lose customers.

About the Authors

Rachel Obstler, Vice President of Products, Keynote

Rachel Obstler is the vice president of products for Keynote. Rachel has more than fifteen years of experience in the wireless industry, working for companies ranging in size from startups to multinational corporations. Before Keynote she was head of products at DeviceAnywhere, which was purchased by Keynote in 2011. Prior to that, she managed the wireless data quality products at Telephia Inc. and has experience managing the products of various wireless technology companies, including Metawave Communications (smart antenna technology) and Enuvis (location technology). Rachel spent three years at Lucent Technologies, where she managed a product team and launched a billion-dollar product line of cellular base stations.


Pete Mastin, Product Evangelist, Cedexis

Pete Mastin is Product Evangelist at Cedexis.  Pete has over 25 years of experience in business strategy, product management, software development practices, operations and strategic partnership development. He has deep knowledge of content delivery networks (CDN), IP services, Internet and cloud technologies, streaming and caching technologies, product positioning, software architecture and iterative design/development. Pete speaks at conferences such as NAB (National Association of Broadcasters), Streaming Media East, Digital Hollywood and Interop (amongst others). 

[1] Based on a survey of domains across 15 large internet retailers 

Published Tuesday, December 30, 2014 6:22 AM by David Marshall
@VMblog - (Author's Link) - February 10, 2015 6:56 AM

Once again, how great is it to be a part of the virtualization and cloud industries? 2014 was another banner year, and we witnessed a number of fantastic technologies take shape and skyrocket. And I, along with many industry experts and executives, media

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