5 killer features in Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform | Lars Birkholm Petersen

5 killer features in Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform

At dreamcore North America, Sitecore CEO Michael Seifert revealed Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform, which will be released June 8th.

First some lingo, next version of Sitecore Online Marketing Suite, which has been on the market for nearly 2 years, is called Sitecore Digital Marketing System, together with Sitecore Web Content Management System it gives Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform.

Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform

The upcoming release is available as a Technical Preview, giving developers and partners access to get familiar with this exciting release.

I have played around in Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform for a while and here are my Top 5 killer features, which purely will rock the world of Sitecore Customers and partners.

Profile Cards
In Online Marketing Suite, profiling content was done by setting values (using sliders) on content. Now you can create predefined Profile Cards, where values are set using a radar diagram, the predefined profile cards could be personas, where the values on the radar diagram shows interests of that persona.

Persona Profile Card

Editors can use Profile Cards to write better and more relevant content, they can easily choose Profile Cards and write content, based on the settings in those presets. Meaning they don’t have to manually set values, using sliders.
Editors can select one or more Profiles Cards, the profiling of the content, are then set using one of these settings:

  • Use values from one Profile Card
  • Use average values from multiple Cards
  • Use a sum of values from multiple Cards
  • So much easier to profile content and editors will know who they write for, making it easier to create better and more relevant content.

    So now you have content profiled, whats next?

    Real-time personalization, based on the visitor profile (my next post will cover this).

    Engagement Analytics
    I have used analytics for many years, talked with a lot of customers using analytics, it just takes time to analyze data, getting the insights you base your recommendations on.

    If you, as a customer, don’t have the time or resources for this, your KPI’s will be around traffic, page views etc.. You are measuring quantity, which doesn’t tell you anything! Traffic is easy to get, if you have high enough budget for traffic acquisition. What is interesting is where the valuable traffic comes from, the ones that have high engagement (like conversions).

    With Engagement Analytics Dashboard, it’s easy to get valuable insights, you can use for recommendations.
    You are able to measure quality, see where the engaged visitors comes from and drill down into the specifics.

    Sitecore Engagement Analytics Dashboard

    Now you can see exactly which channels and campaigns bringing most value, and which doesn’t! Making it easier to save money and optimize your marketing spend effectiveness. And best of it all, you can do it yourself with just a couple of minutes!

    Take the picture above, traffic (grey line) is falling but quality (green boxes) is increasing, and direct and organic Search being the one with highest Value per Visits.

    Engagement Automation
    So you got the visitors attention, he signed up for a whitepaper, also giving you the permission to send e-mails to him.

    Congratulations!

    Unfortunately many companies are using this permission to send mass mails, which (unless you have a niche business) aren’t relevant for many of the recipients. So you keep sending them mails, result are low open and click rates, your sales are unhappy, claiming you are bringing them low quality leads and so forth.

    With Engagement Automation, you are able to define flows, that listens to you visitors activity, for instance a sign-up for a Whitepaper, puts the visitor in the Whitepaper Engagement Flow, that automatically triggers e-mail lead nurturing and sends out relevant content, based on the visitors profile (implicit and explicit data).

    If a visitor change behavior, you can trigger another flow or perhaps an alert to sales (if it’s a B2B scenario). Engagement flows can also be used for events, making sure you send reminders and follow-ups, which are scheduled in the flow.

    Sitecore Engagement Automation

    The picture above show an event flow, triggering reminder e-mails.

    Inline Conditional personalization
    Woo it’s just got really really easy to do personalization, no need to be in several applications to define content, conditions and applying the rule. Now you, as a Marketer, can use inline editing, which basically is navigate to the page, section, spot, etc. that you want to personalize, click on the personalization icon and create the personalized content based on conditions.

    Inline Conditional Personalization in Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform

    The arrows on the picture above, shows the icon to create personalized content and secondly, the content has 2 personalized versions (based on location), with content for US visitors being showed. You can change these by clicking the arrows (not mine) and edit the content inline.

    Sitecore Customer Engagement Platform ships with a lot of conditions Out-of-the-Box, these could of course be extended by the API. Examples of conditions are:

  • Based on Keywords
  • Based on location (Country, Region, City)
  • Based on Campaigns
  • Based on Goals
  • I think we will begin to see a lot of Sitecore Customers adopting this feature, they will properly start with the little big things, like personalized content based on top 10 keywords, personalized content based on top 10 campaigns, etc. and scale, once the value of delivering personalized experiences begins to show.

    Integrating it all
    The best of it all, it’s integrated!
    Take a visitor who comes from Search, use Inline Conditional personalization and target that visitor with content relevant to the searched keywords, which can reveal intent and which phase of the buying cycle, he’s in.
    Combine that with Geo information and make the content local to the City or Country the he’s from.

    Using Profile Cards on content and you are able to see which interest the visitor have – and you can personalize content from that knowledge (implicit personalization).

    If you get a transaction, like a permission to newsletter, you can store all previous behavior with that. Depending on behavior, you can assign the visitor to a specific Engagement flow, using Engagement Automation – which will nurture the visitor, according to behavior.

    This could be a personalized e-mail (using Sitecore E-mail Campaign Manager), open and click rates are stored together with any new behavior, that the visitor has on your site, or perhaps through the mobile channel. That new behavior can be stored and depending on what it shows, the flow can send out trigger mails or move the visitor to another flow.

    If you add CRM Integration, it gives some great possibilities in storing data in CRM and integrate online with offline behavior and have your Engagement flows, triggering personalized e-mail according to change in behavior.

    Using Engagement Analytics, you are able to measure the quality, such as, are the personalization adding value (more engagement), does your trigger based e-mail dialogue move the visitor to more engagement – and if not, you have the tools to optimize and go further…

    That’s my list – feel free to comment and share your list as well, there are so many exciting things – if I had a bigger list, I would also have added the new enhanced Multivariate testing, which leaves no excuse for not be testing which content leads to highest Engagement.

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    Category: Customer Engagement Platform, Digital Marketing System, Online Marketing, Sitecore Comment »


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