Is the Documentum brand dying? After their acquisition of Documentum, EMC pretty much left the brand and organization alone. Everything became EMC Documentum and a new logo, but EMC allowed the Documentum brand to grow and flourish. However, slowly over time the Documentum brand is being pushed aside. First, the executive team disappeared, then portions of the web site was subsumed into the EMC web site.
Now however, try going to the Documentum web site. You are now redirected to the EMC software site and there is practically no mention of any other brand on this site other than EMC. There are generic market categories of Enterprise Content Management, Recovery Management, and "Information Infrastructure Software". Click two levels down to http://software.emc.com/products/content_management/content_management.htm and you can finally see reference to Documentum.
Everything I learned about branding, I learned from Al Ries's books and former Documentum CEO Jeff Miller. Having had the great privilege to choose the Documentum from a list of four from an agency that Xerox hired, I feel we got very lucky to have chosen a name that has worn well. But EMC is now breaking a lot of Ries's "22 Immutable Laws of Branding". Ries says that brands are owned by the customer, not the company. It is up to the company to protect and nuture that brand. The brand equity that has been built up over 15 years is being shelved in some political turf fight. Ries also says you concentrate a brand, not extend it. They are killing off one strong brand and severely weakening another, the EMC brand, through over-extension. The Documentum name is associated with content management in the customer's brain, not the hardware manufacturer EMC.
Time will tell, but indications are that people who would have been attracted to the Documentum or Legato brands are now leaving. Having interviewed many people from Documentum's competitors, they are saying that they are seeing Documentum less and less. Could this be an indication of brand disappearance in marketing. Are the EMC guys even aware of what is happening?