Professional Services

The ROAD to Global Digital Estate Management

30 November 2015Cleve Gibbon

Do you remember back in the early nineties when corporates raced to register their domain names?  Now, every global brand has a web presence made up of corporate sites, landing pages, microsites, campaign pages, blogs, community sites, product pages, and so on.  Collectively, we refer to all these destinations across both owned and earned media as the Web Estate. 

However, the web is not the only channel today.  Now brands must look beyond the web to broaden their customer relations by on-boarding new channels to market: mobile apps, wearables, Internet of Things, point of sale.  Digital touch points are everywhere and all represent key decision making milestones in the wider connected customer journey. 

We define this all-encompassing presence as the Global Digital Estate.  A superset of the Web Estate that incorporates both web and non-web digital channels.

Global Digital Estate

What are the problems brands face today operating their Global Digital Estate?

We asked a few global brands to tell us what their challenges were trying to better engage with their consumers across their Digital Estate.  The issues varied but were all related:

  • Existing platforms are inflexible and difficult to use preventing our brands, agencies and partners from owning and developing their digital properties on their terms.  
  • It’s difficult to plan, create, build, and support digital properties at speed and at scale across a wide spectrum of creative experiences within the Digital Estate.
  • It’s difficult to align diverse country and region specific websites to a consistent customer experience, no matter where they are.
  • It’s simply NOT possible for non-IT personnel to make multi-language, multi-territory content changes across their multi-channel Digital Estate.
  • The existing WCMS platform is not able to support the future vision of a digital newsroom, hence impeding the digital production, management and publishing needs for the business to grow.

What does this mean?

If you unpack these challenges, you see that the Digital Estate is not being considered holistically.  Instead, the rapid growth of a brand’s global presence to satisfy increasing customer demands for more meaningful engagement has led to greater fragmentation and poor management of the Digital Estate.  Whether that’s by region, territory, market, or language differences, fragmentation is the result.  This has resulted in a marked drop in a brand’s ability to deliver rich, relevant, consistent and seamless customer experiences, at scale and at speed, and most importantly, globally.  This is neither sustainable nor competitive as a global digital strategy for future business success.  

What needs to be done?

We know digital transformation is critical to future business success. We know we need to manage change resulting from the application of digital technology on existing and new business models, and in parallel manage the resulting transition from the status quo to the future ways of working.  

However, for most organisations this requires a significant mind set and organisational shift that can present insurmountable barriers.  Our ROAD to success helps to break down these barriers and map out a clear strategy for the effective management of the Global Digital Estate.


1. Relationships

Organisations must own their Digital Estate technology stack and orchestrate through a few critical, trusted partners.

2. Operate

Shift Digital Estate thinking from short term technology gain (develop and deploy) to long term business success (operate and optimise).

3. Align

Provide full value traceability of the business benefits of an engaging digital presence provided by the planned and managed operation of a Global Digital Estate.

4. Decouple

Separate creative production (marketing) from technical production (IT) to enable risk tolerant and risk averse parties to thrive within the Digital Estate.

What does your ROAD to digital success look like?

To learn more about the Global Digital Estate and the solutions and services that we offer, get in touch at

Author: Cleve Gibbon
Published: 30 November 2015
digital transformationoperating modelcustomer experiencedigital marketingtechnology

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