North American DAM vendors Beat European Vendors on Service, But Lag on Innovation

Perhaps it's because I've spent so much of my own life hopping between North America and Europe that I like to see how different groups of vendors stack up against one another when put into geographic segments.

Innovation in Europe

I'd noted as early as mid-2014 that the evolution of the newer DAM products coming out of Europe was more rapid and broadly focused beyond just DAM — with an emphasis on cloud and marketing / content hubs — before North American vendors caught the same wave. When I recently went on a road trip to visit vendor offices with an RSG subscriber CEO and COO who were out to license a leading-edge marketing technology product, it became all the more clear to me why we ended up in Europe for this journey rather than the USA.

My initial conclusions were backed up by the data analysis we conducted as part of the just-released Version 8.0 of our Digital & Marketing Asset Management research. As a group, European vendor DAM products are more technically modern, and evolving more rapidly.

However, North American vendors are still ahead on delivering service at a global level. This is largely due to their longer track record developing global services partners and training programs for their products.

Here's a slice of the data.

Data comparing NA and European vendors

Where Should You Look?

I get asked a lot by both North American and European enterprise buyers what cautions they should exercise when going with a vendor from the other continent.

In this case, the data tells some of the story: while North American vendors are stronger in customer service, they are by no means great or perfect. They are slightly above average, whereas the European vendors are slightly below average. European vendors' smaller teams and shorter track records are a key factor here.

But coming later to the game means European vendors can typically boast more modern architectures and codebases, including tighter alignment with modern cloud infrastructures.

As with any selection, no choice is perfect, and there are trade-offs. And of course there are exceptions to these generalizations in every geographic region.

The important thing is to know your risks going in, and mitigate appropriately. Our research shares these sorts of insights across 40+ criteria, which can help you select the right tool, or decided to stay with your incumbent system....or not.

If you're not yet a subscriber, download a report excerpt here.

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