Tuesday, February 10, 2009

MeadWestvaco - Thriving Through Foreign Market Expansion

As part of our Survive and Thrive series, we had MeadWestvaco, and their consulting partner Ironworks, present today on how they are using Oracle Content Management to manage their main site, and a number of microsites.

Molly Wenzler of MeadWestvaco talked about how the website had been a series of unrelated, unmanaged sites, and how if you would search for their best-selling product it wouldn’t even show up in the search results. David Roe of Ironworks talked about how they spent more time planning the underlying architecture of the site than implementing it. The time spent in the architecture phase really paid off - they stood up the first site in 3-4 months, and now they are able to stand up sites almost instantly. Molly set up a job site in Russian in just a few days, for instance.

Besides the main site, they showed the China site, and the Branding site. The branding site is for employees to find PowerPoint templates, images, logos, etc. They store one copy of the images, but users have the ability to select what rendering parameters they would like the image in (size, resolution, file type) and the Digital Asset Management module of Universal Content Management dynamically renders the image for them.

Now they are able to track site visitors, and their path through the content, to the point where they request a contact or a sample. Molly is really focused on site loyalty – how many pages people view per visit, and returning visitors. And through workflow they are beginning to track those visits all the way through to sales. Molly is using that data to track the ROI of the site. Molly has also put a lot of focus on Search Engine Optimization (SEO). She points to one $3 million sale that started as a Google search, which led the prospect to their site.

Besides the framework setup, David has pushed really hard on having useful content attributes. The attributes, or metadata values, when combined with the Service Oriented Architecture of Universal Content Management, makes it easy to recast data in many ways. This really shows well in the product site, where products are presented by category, by industry, and by material properties. And by using Dependent Choice Lists, David makes it very easy for people to drill down to specific content types.

David has been blown away by the performance. He said that they have never had the site go over their target response time of 1.5 seconds, and they average sub-second response. To us, this is what we have come to expect from Oracle Content Management, and this type of response indicates that David understands how to properly architect the product. We’re really impressed with his grasp of the system and his ability to execute.

And Molly’s understanding of content management systems, and website goals and measurements, is making for some great uses of our technology.

David’s blog is here: http://contentoncontentmanagement.com/
You can hear the replay here: www.oracle.com/goto/thrive