10 Years of Alley: Technology, media, and success

This post is part of our 10-year retrospective, sharing thoughts and musings from our partners and others in the company. We’re excited to share this anniversary year with you, and hope you enjoy! Up this week – Alley President Matt Johnson, answering the questions “What does Alley mean to you?” and “What are you excited about for the next 10 years of Alley?”

Austin and I founded Alley because there was a clear and urgent need to improve the technology behind the distribution of media and journalism on the internet. The technology landscape 10 years ago was rife with overpriced and underperforming proprietary systems for managing content, presenting it to audiences, and building engagement.

As I see it, Alley is about delivering a better way to do technology for media. We focus holistically on helping our customers succeed as a business. We’ve always questioned the conventional wisdom about how things are done; in the last decade, we played an important role in bringing open source technology to some of the largest enterprise media brands on the internet, as well as to major foundations and research institutions with very complex communications needs. Our work has freed our customers from oppressive licensing costs and allowed them to be nimble, experiment often, and respond quickly to the rapidly evolving technology and business landscape around them.

We started our careers as software engineers, but software is just one of many integral components to success in internet media. Alley is about asking foundational questions about our customers’ needs and thinking through the entire strategy behind what they’re doing on the internet. Our work transcends disciplines, from content strategy to visual design to user experience to software engineering to performance tuning and hosting.

When I think about the next 10 years, I know the only real constant in our industry is change. We’ve always pushed ourselves to address the newest trends and challenges, and I’m personally excited about tackling a lot of new challenges ahead of us.

I’m particularly interested in the next generation of media revenue models. We’ve seen lots of stories about how legacy media has struggled to adjust to the new parameters of the internet, and I believe we have a ton to offer that constituency, helping them update their business and technology practices and really thrive in the future. At the same time, I’m also really excited about the work we’re doing to help new and emerging media operations get off the ground.

Finally, I’m also excited about new technology advancements that we’ll be part of. That includes some that we already know about, like machine learning analysis of content, headless frameworks for media sites, and many others. But it also includes some that we surely don’t know about yet, which is why this is such a fun place to be! At Alley, we have the opportunity to be at the forefront of so many of these innovations, and I can’t wait to get there with the team.

Thank you to our partners, clients, employees, and friends for making the last ten years possible. Find out more about our 10th anniversary celebrations here.