Bespoke software systems built BY media companies FOR media companies have proven successful and profitable for a select few.
If you’ve worked at a media company, you have had the “pleasure” of using a content management system or ad management tool, and you know it is, in fact, rarely a pleasure.
In the last five years, a few media companies decided to do what everyone else was thinking: WE could do a better job at this!
And why not? Who knows the needs of the editorial and advertising departments better than those departments themselves?
The frustration boiled over first at the Washington Post back in 2014. Over the following few years, Vox Media, New York Magazine, and Hearst all got into the Software as a Service (SaaS) business.
The Washington Post’s Arc system
Even before Amazon chief Jeff Bezos bought The Washington Post, the company was moving in the direction of solving its tech problems by itself.
While the company was scrambling to keep up with the lightning speed of digital change, they, like most other media companies, discovered that their CMS and ad management systems were holding them back.
“As a business, we asked more of our newsroom,” Jeremy Gilbert, the company’s Director of Strategic Initiatives, told Fast Company. “What we noticed was: 1) We didn’t have the tools to be more productive and, 2) The CMS was a fairly monolithic platform. Adding any features to it, making any changes to it, or getting support from vendors was just very difficult.”