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The Modern Marketing Blog covers the latest in marketing strategy, technology, and innovation.

FEATURED POST

Why do Marketers Switch Marketing Automation Solutions?

(It’s Because Their Needs Outgrow System Capabilities) When speaking with leading enterprise marketers who chose to re-platform, many expressed the need to...

Recent Posts

Customer Experience

Is Your Personalization Strategy Missing How To Be Personal?

Imagine your email personalization strategy as your subscribers' personal shopper. Do you delight them with perfect recommendations?

Imagine your email personalization strategy as your subscribers' personal shopper. Do you delight them with perfect recommendations?

Content Marketing

Is Text Messaging the Next Frontier of Content Marketing?

Here are some great tips for using text message marketing as a highly-personalized aspect of your marketing mix.

Here are some great tips for using text message marketing as a highly-personalized aspect of your marketing mix.

Customer Experience

Want to Help Your Customers Succeed? Get Personal

More and more customers expect their vendors to provide a highly personalized approach.

More and more customers expect their vendors to provide a highly personalized approach.

Cross Channel Marketing

Personalization at Scale for B2C Companies

It’s become common knowledge among marketers that personalized marketing provides higher ROI and directly benefits consumers in the form of better engagement and more personal brand relationships. Therefore, smart marketers are constantly investing and pushing to make their marketing more personalized. Yet, these same seemingly smart marketers are making a dumb mistake – forgetting to focus on the underlying fundamentals which are the key enablers of good marketing personalization. In a Harvard Business Review article, Mark Ariker et al. described the importance of integrating three key factors to developing a learning ecosystem for high quality, scalable personalization. They called this the 3Ds – data discovery, decision making, and content distribution. These three must be integrated to deliver on the promise of personalization.  This practical approach is how the Oracle Marketing Cloud helps to bring these capabilities together.  The 3D Approach to Personalization at Scale  Data Discovery covers the process of “sourcing and combining traditional and behavioral data to uncover meaningful insights about customers.” Data discovery is often underutilized due to how challenging it can be to coax meaningful insights from a wide range of disparate data. Oracle’s Data Management Cloud uses the Oracle ID Graph to unify data across multiple online and offline channels to easily develop a singular and holistic view of the customer.  Decision Making can be automated with AI as long as there is a source of high-quality data and the advanced analytic capabilities to recognize and utilize patterns, behaviors, and preferences. Oracle built its reputation on providing easy access to the highest quality data. Oracle’s Data Management Cloud, in conjunction with the analytical models from the Oracle Responsys platform, provides marketers with the data and analytics needed to scale up and deliver high-quality personalization.  Content Distribution is the next concern for a marketer once you’ve sourced the scalable data and powerful analytics required for personalization.  Today, content distribution seems to be only about getting the right piece of content to the right person. Yet this is insufficient to live up to the expectations of today’s consumer. In addition to the right content to the right person, distribution capabilities must also include delivery on the right channel and at the right time. With Responsys’s advanced content distribution capabilities, marketers can create hyper-targeted, consumer-centric, digital orchestrations for any consumer across any device in real-time.  Marketers are facing real challenges today in scaling up their personalization, delivering better, richer experiences for their customers while creating higher ROI for themselves. The 3D framework provided by the HBR can provide a useful approach to understanding how to tackle the key areas which may be limiting your ability to scale personalization today. Oracle’s solutions can help in each of these critical path areas, providing better data inputs, more advanced and automated decision making, and seamless engagement across channels.  To find out how Oracle Responsys can deliver the right experience for you, click here.

It’s become common knowledge among marketers that personalized marketing provides higher ROI and directly benefits consumers in the form of better engagement and more personal brand relationships....

Cross Channel Marketing

What Smartphone Users’ Mobile Mindset Means for Brands

Three takeaways from Clicktale’s research on consumer mobile shopping behavior.

Three takeaways from Clicktale’s research on consumer mobile shopping behavior.

Data-Driven Marketing

The World of Data Management According to Paul Sonderreger

Get the lowdown on the new European data privacy regulations—which by the way reverberate far beyond the European Union—on this edition of the OracleNext podcast. Data expert Paul Sonderegger riffs on how the data handling framework, rolling out this year, could impact consumers—whose information is being collected—and the companies wanting to parse that information. Sonderegger, Oracle’s chief data strategist, who is interviewed by veteran journalists  Michael Hickins and Barbara Darrow, also talks about: How the move to cloud computing is complicating how data is collected, stored, and managed. How the F. Scott Fitzgerald test might be a better gauge of true artificial intelligence (AI) than the more commonly applied Turing test.  And how the aforementioned GDPR regulations, now rolling out in Europe, could shift the balance of power between the people whose behavior is being observed and the companies that are observing that behavior. It’s a great chat, so sit back and enjoy. And please tune back in to hear more from Hickins, Darrow, and their guests on the OracleNext Iconoclasts series. For more from Sonderreger, check out his Quartz story on the F. Scott Fitzgerald test as well as his blog post about common misconceptions about data disruption.

Get the lowdown on the new European data privacy regulations—which by the way reverberate far beyond the European Union—on this edition of the OracleNext podcast. Data expert Paul Sonderegger riffs on...

Customer Experience

Customer Success Leaders: Think & Act, Then Think & Act

Modern business dictates a new view of customer management, one based on the entire customer lifecycle. Stop being reactive, be thoughtful.

Modern business dictates a new view of customer management, one based on the entire customer lifecycle. Stop being reactive, be thoughtful.

Cross Channel Marketing

Let Your Business Stand Out With Instagram Stories

Businesses are now exploring how they can use Instagram Stories to engage with customers and fans. Chris Zilles offers 4 tips.

Businesses are now exploring how they can use Instagram Stories to engage with customers and fans. Chris Zilles offers 4 tips.

Product News

Top 5 Reasons to Attend a Modern Marketing Express Near You

There are many reasons to take a break from the office, but Modern Marketing Express has some your boss is likely to agree with.

There are many reasons to take a break from the office, but Modern Marketing Express has some your boss is likely to agree with.

Email Marketing

‘Tis the Season for Holiday Planning (Now!)

The holiday season is fast approaching. Here are four email marketing tactics you can execute NOW to better position your programs for success.

The holiday season is fast approaching. Here are four email marketing tactics you can execute NOW to better position your programs for success.

Cross Channel Marketing

How CMOs Can Leverage Video Marketing

Gone are the days of creating one big television commercial a year and broadcasting it endlessly. Today’s CMO must be nimble and quick in creating video marketing strategies.

Gone are the days of creating one big television commercial a year and broadcasting it endlessly. Today’s CMO must be nimble and quick in creating video marketing strategies.

Interactive Content Marketing: Taking Personalized Marketing to the Next Level

Dear marketer, let me ask you a simple question: Which CTA would compel you to click? I’m sure you said you’d click on the right side of the page, just like we would. If so, why does your webpage still look like the image on the left? Nearly 74 percent of online consumers get frustrated with websites when the content (e.g., offers, ads, promotions) has nothing to do with their interests. Even if the content adds value, it lacks a personal touch and gets lost in the vast arena of content available on the internet. You surely understand personalization, but don’t know how to correctly leverage it and stand out from the competition. Well, you’re not alone. Sixty percent of marketers struggle to personalize content in real time, yet 77 percent believe real-time personalization is crucial. The solution? Inbound marketing coupled with personalization is the way to go. Why? We'll elaborate. To begin with let’s talk about something that everyone does. A consumer visits an ecommerce website, searches for a product, and looks at the options. Based on their shopping history, the site automatically serves up highly personalized product recommendations. But, do they click? And do they buy more products than they would have if they’d been left to their own devices? Yes. According to the data, ecommerce websites that have a product recommendation feature saw a 4.6x increase in conversion rate, 24 percent add-to-cart rate increase, a 26 percent lift in revenue share and average order value increase of 10.3 percent. That’s the power of personalized marketing. Now imagine another scenario. Your visitors come to your site and see a quick quiz that asks, “Which Jeans are the Best Match for your Personality?” or one that says, “Which Quirky Shirt Should you Buy Today?” In under 90 seconds, the quiz will recommend a product from your website – it’s like talking to your visitors about their needs without actually having to talk to them. Now, that’s the power of interactive content marketing. And why does this work, you may ask? Well, interactive content takes personalization to the next level as it asks visitors to self-identify relevant information. This makes them believe your brand cares and makes them less reluctant to part with their email address. Thus, interactive content also makes for a great lead generation tool. In fact, some brands have generated upwards of 50K leads through a single interactive marketing campaign! What’s more? Since interactive experiences present the shoppers with a definitive answer and instant gratification, they’re more likely to come back and do business with you. This increases brand loyalty. Use Cases Let’s understand the various forms of interactive content you can use to make your marketing campaigns more personalized. Quizzes — Imagine there are two real estate firms - A and B. Firm A’s website talks about their services, offers customer testimonials, and provides contact details. Firm B’s website has an embedded quiz.   This quiz seems highly personalized as it asks visitors the most relevant questions (e.g., how important is it that you live in a specific neighborhood? etc) while engaging them and saving them the trouble of doing lengthy research work. Based on the responses, it recommends whether they should buy a house or rent one. Which real estate firm do you think will get more leads? We say, Firm B. Quizzes are known to get you up to 4X more leads. Brooklyn Bicycle Co.’s quiz “Which bike is right for me?” asks shoppers three simple questions, has a lead generation form right before the results, and gives its own product recommendations as outcomes. With the outcome, it adds a CTA to shop that product. Pro Tip: You can create effective quizzes for any industry or product line. Travel agency – What exotic destinations are top bucket-list locales for you (i.e. newlyweds, young professionals, Virgos, etc.)? Fitness trainer or gym – Yoga or extreme fitness: What exercise format will get you in top form? Low carbs or low fat: What diet best suits your lifestyle? University or educational institution – What major will have the greatest impact on your financial health? This idea spreadsheet can help you get started with generating quiz ideas for your business. Calculators — Just like they did with the quiz, Firm B could also embed a calculator on their website.    Their calculator gives detailed estimates backed by logic and shows a graphical representation of the results. Calculators are a great way to crunch numbers for your clients and add a quantitative value to generic questions. When you do that, we’ve seen click through rates go up to 66 percent.  Pro tip: Again, you can make a calculator for any industry and any purpose. For instance, create a calculator to help prospective students budget for college; help digital marketers plan spend levels for advertising; or help businesses estimate the cost of legal services. Polls and Surveys — Polls and surveys make participants feel like their opinions matter. If you can capture this psychological hack, you can pave the way to a goldmine of leads. They also help you get insights into the demographics of your prospects. Pro tip: Make a poll that connects your brand to trending topics. This results in higher engagement rates. For instance, this poll was one of The New York Times’ most successful stories in 2016. Make a survey for getting a product feedback or create one before launching a new product line or feature to find out more about the requirements of your audience. Getting the Drift? Interactive content is like talking to your visitors about their needs. Ask yourself. When you visit a website, would you like something like this or would you like to be slapped with random offers? I rest my case. 

Dear marketer, let me ask you a simple question: Which CTA would compel you to click? I’m sure you said you’d click on the right side of the page, just like we would. If so, why does your webpage still...

Customer Experience

Go Wild, Indulge or Kickback by the Pool: The Bracelet that’s Key to Vacation Cool

Imagine a vacation getaway where cash, IDs, credit cards, and keys are a memory as distant as the world you left behind. Innovations in data-driven customer experience make it possible.

Imagine a vacation getaway where cash, IDs, credit cards, and keys are a memory as distant as the world you left behind. Innovations in data-driven customer experience make it possible.

Cross Channel Marketing

To Successfully Personalize Marketing Communications Across Mobile Devices, Brands Need To Do This

Today, more than 2 billion smartphones are in use globally and continue to become an integral part of people’s daily life. The proliferation of mobile devices that consumers use on a daily basis creates an enormous challenge for marketers trying to orchestrate a seamless cross-channel customer experience. When consumers reach out, marketers need to be adaptive and create the best possible experience. Winning and retaining the customer is a challenging puzzle that brands are trying to solve. In a perfect world, marketers could have a 360-degree profile that accounts for a full spectrum of customer behaviors and data. Conversations with customers would be influenced by the context of all previous conversations, allowing for the best possible customer experience.   However, to accomplish this type of high-value customer relationship from a technology perspective, brands need to marry anonymous with known customer profiles and make sure they are consistent across each touch point.  Connect Identities Across Disparate Marketing Channels Mobile can fit seamlessly within the broader overall marketing strategy through a connected approach.  In order to successfully personalize marketing communications across mobile devices, brands need to target the customer and device through device identifiers and a large data network.  Marketers have valuable data inside of their CRM, email marketing and marketing automation tools from their proprietary marketing platform that they can pull together to connect identities across disparate marketing channels and devices to one customer. This is done by seamlessly pulling together the many IDs across marketing channels and devices that comprise of a given person, enabling marketers to tie their interactions to an actionable customer profile.   Get Better Cross-Channel Orchestration Mobile can no longer be considered as a separate platform, but rather as the glue that ties other parts of the customer experience together. Mobile marketing needs to have a foundation in unified data and behavior. By having a consolidated view of their customers, marketers can access all of their marketing data to build and refine key target audiences for numerous campaign scenarios. Through integrations with media providers, marketers can deliver paid media, search, social and display advertising to those customers that’s more aligned with the emails sent to those customers. Marketers need an adaptive marketing platform that recognizes customer behavior, preferences and interests that evolves instantly based on those factors. This is done through marketing orchestration.  When done correctly, experiences are not only determined based on binary forks in the road, such as whether someone purchased a product or opened a push notification. The experience adapts based on the totality of behaviors the customer might perform, such as engagement with specific content or activities that happen offline.  Join us at Mobile World Congress to hear about how the Oracle Marketing Cloud powers the customer experience for global brands. Swing by our booth to speak with one of our marketing experts and see how marketers can easily create engagement, connect relevant data, and orchestrate individual experiences with the Oracle Marketing Cloud. 

Today, more than 2 billion smartphones are in use globally and continue to become an integral part of people’s daily life. The proliferation of mobile devices that consumers use on a daily basis...

Customer Experience

8-Month Taxi Ride Ends in Cloud Success: Duel Masters the Customer Experience

Customer behavior is getting harder to predict. Customer experience technologies are evolving more and more quickly. At Oracle, we want to help you stay ahead of these trends.

Customer behavior is getting harder to predict. Customer experience technologies are evolving more and more quickly. At Oracle, we want to help you stay ahead of these trends.

Content Marketing

CMOs Need to Diversify How They Present Products to Improve Online Presence

CMOs shouldn't fear a changing digital landscape. Instead, use a variety of digital marketing platforms to multiply your content and reach.

CMOs shouldn't fear a changing digital landscape. Instead, use a variety of digital marketing platforms to multiply your content and reach.

Customer Experience

Your Customers Can’t Wait Any Longer: They Need You to be Data Literate, Too

Data literacy drives more intelligent decisions. And while they might not be saying it, data literacy is what your customers need you to have.

Data literacy drives more intelligent decisions. And while they might not be saying it, data literacy is what your customers need you to have.

Cross Channel Marketing

3 Tips To Reach More Millennials With Your Social Media Marketing

The social media habits of millennials are constantly changing. Here are 3 tips to reach more millennials with your social media marketing.

The social media habits of millennials are constantly changing. Here are 3 tips to reach more millennials with your social media marketing.

Email Marketing

A Tale of Two Sweaters: Why Segmentation Alone Isn’t Enough

Every retailer knows that customer segmentation makes campaigns more effective. When you classify customers according to their interests and desires, it’s much easier to deliver content that speaks to them personally, creating a connection that builds long-term loyalty. On paper, segmentation looks like a straightforward way to turn subscribers into delighted customers. But segmentation does have its limits. When you’re dealing with one-time purchasers, market segments don’t tell you what customers will purchase next. They don’t make accurate predictions and can’t tell you why customers purchase certain items together. To understand those aspects of your customers’ preferences, you’ve got to look beyond segmentation, and implement advanced techniques. The Sweater Experiment Imagine you’re a clothing retailer and want to promote two new red sweaters this season – a men’s and a women’s. You’ve got an email list of 25,000 men and 25,000 women. Do you segment your next email campaign? If so, how? At first glance, the answer might seem obvious: If you don’t segment your list, and instead send a promo for the women’s sweater to all 50,000 subscribers, hypothetically you might only get about 50 percent opens, 50 percent clicks, and 50 percent purchases. If you send a promo for the women’s sweater only to female subscribers, on the other hand, you’ll get a significant boost: a potential 100 percent opens, clicks, and purchases. While this might look like a major improvement, it comes with risks. Some of your male subscribers might’ve been interested in buying the women’s sweater for their girlfriends and sisters, but you’ve missed your chance to sell to them. And what about your female subscribers who already bought that sweater? You sent an unengaging email to them, when you could’ve shown a new item they might actually have been interested in. For all these reasons, segmentation alone isn’t enough for effective email personalization. Stepping Beyond Segmentation As our sweater scenario demonstrates, the core limitation of segmentation is that its improvements are often just smoke and mirrors. A metric like a “50 percent lift in clicks” sounds concrete and comforting – but it doesn’t tell you anything about missed opportunities for even more lucrative cross-sells and upsells, or about which products your customers might want to buy next. Segmentation has its advantages, of course. It’s helpful for personalizing emails, which protects your emails from getting sent to spam. Email content aligned with each subscriber’s interests also helps safeguard against unsubscribes, reducing subscriber churn. But to really connect with your customers, you’ve got to look beyond segments. Even within a given customer segment, each customer is on their own personal journey, interacting with your brand across a unique sequence of touchpoints — email included. That means to really connect with your customers where they are, you’ve got to start mapping those journeys and addressing each stage with tailored content. When you understand where each customer is on their individual journey, and which products will meet them where they are, you’ll be able to predict what a customer wants even before they know it themselves. And by guiding customers through a personalized series of product discoveries, you can lead them to new areas of interest that can significantly raise your margins, while driving stronger customer loyalty.

Every retailer knows that customer segmentation makes campaigns more effective. When you classify customers according to their interests and desires, it’s much easier to deliver content that speaks to...

Customer Experience

Customer Experience and the Rise of the Micro-Stressor

Streamlining your website or shortening the path to checkout isn't enough. Look at the finer details to upgrade your customers' experience.

Streamlining your website or shortening the path to checkout isn't enough. Look at the finer details to upgrade your customers' experience.

Social Marketing

Why Social Media Is Vital To Corporate Social Responsibility

Social media is more than just a new form of PR to message an audience – it’s about activating a core base of fans, customers, and employees to bring real change to the world.

Social media is more than just a new form of PR to message an audience – it’s about activating a core base of fans, customers, and employees to bring real change to the world.

Customer Experience

Choice and Respect Don’t Have to Be Mutually Exclusive

Too many choices can sometimes mean you have no choice at all. Are you getting the right customer experience option?

Too many choices can sometimes mean you have no choice at all. Are you getting the right customer experience option?

CMO Corner

Getting Down to Earth in Cannes: Intelligent Tires & Bottom-Up Creativity

Senior executives from Oracle, Johnson & Johnson, Lego, PepsiCo, and Pirelli met to debate two topics that have a significant impact on marketing: technology and talent.

Senior executives from Oracle, Johnson & Johnson, Lego, PepsiCo, and Pirelli met to debate two topics that have a significant impact on marketing: technology and talent.

Email Marketing

Christmas in July: Consistency is the Key to Email Success

To ensure you get into the holiday inbox, plan now and show ISPs that you are consistent and trustworthy.

To ensure you get into the holiday inbox, plan now and show ISPs that you are consistent and trustworthy.

Customer Experience

It Takes a Village: Why Self-Service Learning is So Effective

Nearly 70 percent of consumers surveyed said they prefer finding the answers themselves to speaking with a customer service agent. We're making that easier.

Nearly 70 percent of consumers surveyed said they prefer finding the answers themselves to speaking with a customer service agent. We're making that easier.

Data-Driven Marketing

The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018: Do you know where your personal data is?

The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018, the most sweeping consumer privacy legislation ever passed in the US, gives consumers broad control over personal information collected by businesses.

The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018, the most sweeping consumer privacy legislation ever passed in the US, gives consumers broad control over personal information collected by businesses.

Data-Driven Marketing

3 Ways CMOs Are Putting Artificial Intelligence To Work

It will take time for AI to seep into every business area, but CMOs are smart to embrace it quickly, as customers are more vocal and demanding than ever before.

It will take time for AI to seep into every business area, but CMOs are smart to embrace it quickly, as customers are more vocal and demanding than ever before.

Cross Channel Marketing

Is Cold Calling Dead In The Digital Age?

The conventional wisdom in today’s digital marketing circles is that the cold call is outdated as a method of finding new customers. So, what's the next medium?

The conventional wisdom in today’s digital marketing circles is that the cold call is outdated as a method of finding new customers. So, what's the next medium?

Customer Experience

Customer Success: An Instrument for Change

In the era of the cloud, the customer success function should be seen as a company’s most vital instrument for transformative change.

In the era of the cloud, the customer success function should be seen as a company’s most vital instrument for transformative change.

Cross Channel Marketing

4 Things To Look For In A Marketing Automation Platform

Marketers are now being held accountable for revenue targets as their top most priority. To accomplish that, you need more sophisticated marketing tools.

Marketers are now being held accountable for revenue targets as their top most priority. To accomplish that, you need more sophisticated marketing tools.

Cross Channel Marketing

How Marketers Can Be Successful with Blockchain Technology

Blockchain technology has started to show up in marketing, specifically in the advertising space, but it's poised to go farther.

Blockchain technology has started to show up in marketing, specifically in the advertising space, but it's poised to go farther.

Cross Channel Marketing

Customer Journey Mapping: The Cornerstone of Cross-Channel Marketing

Ultimately, customer journey mapping puts the customer in the bull’s eye of a marketer’s thinking and demonstrates the need for the entire brand to adapt.

Ultimately, customer journey mapping puts the customer in the bull’s eye of a marketer’s thinking and demonstrates the need for the entire brand to adapt.

Product News

I’ll Meet You Any Channel, Any Time, With Only One Price

Oracle is making changes to simplify pricing and create greater spending flexibility for marketers while providing a more transparent view of costs.

Oracle is making changes to simplify pricing and create greater spending flexibility for marketers while providing a more transparent view of costs.

Customer Experience

A Small Glitch or Evidence of Impending CX Disaster

Knowing the difference between what a customer says (or doesn't say) and what they do is key to creating valuable customer experiences.

Knowing the difference between what a customer says (or doesn't say) and what they do is key to creating valuable customer experiences.

Customer Experience

Engagement: The Key to an Effective ABM Strategy

As ABM marketers, we need to support buyers and customers as they travel their journey. It can be a long road, and you need to pay attention to all stages - especially engagement mid-funnel.

As ABM marketers, we need to support buyers and customers as they travel their journey. It can be a long road, and you need to pay attention to all stages - especially engagement mid-funnel.

Customer Experience

How Self-Service Help Can Provide Great Customer Service

Zendesk Research found that “As many as 67 percent of consumers prefer helping themselves to speaking with a customer service agent." Regardless of your preferred style, we've got you covered.

Zendesk Research found that “As many as 67 percent of consumers prefer helping themselves to speaking with a customer service agent." Regardless of your preferred style, we've got you covered.

Marketing Automation

Modern Marketing Benchmark Survey: 6 Surprising Findings

Marketers are under pressure to rely on data to improve marketing results. But, that doesn't mean creativity has taken a back seat.

Marketers are under pressure to rely on data to improve marketing results. But, that doesn't mean creativity has taken a back seat.

Customer Experience

Why Learning is Now The Hot Word in Customer Enablement

As with so many other aspects of modern business, the cloud has upended software vendors' approach to learning and customer enablement.

As with so many other aspects of modern business, the cloud has upended software vendors' approach to learning and customer enablement.

Cross Channel Marketing

Two Questions that Lay the Foundation for Effective Cross-Channel Marketing

Setting up cross-channel marketing isn’t easy. Is your team prepared? Are you set up for success? Ask yourself these two questions to see if you will succeed.

Setting up cross-channel marketing isn’t easy. Is your team prepared? Are you set up for success? Ask yourself these two questions to see if you will succeed.

Customer Experience

What’s the Key to Improving ROI on Advertising?

Paid media is a powerful tool with plenty of metrics to present. But which ones should marketers pay attention to?

Paid media is a powerful tool with plenty of metrics to present. But which ones should marketers pay attention to?

Content Marketing

The Difference Between Wide and Deep Content Explained

Most businesses find that their content marketing strategy needs a mix of both deep and wide content to satisfy their content needs. Adam Torkildson offers advice on when to use each type.

Most businesses find that their content marketing strategy needs a mix of both deep and wide content to satisfy their content needs. Adam Torkildson offers advice on when to use each type.

Customer Experience

High Touch or Low Touch? Maybe That’s Not the Right Question

There's a debate arguing the merits of a high-touch strategy (people) versus low-touch (technology). The answer boils down to doing what makes your customer happy.

There's a debate arguing the merits of a high-touch strategy (people) versus low-touch (technology). The answer boils down to doing what makes your customer happy.

Product News

Oracle Named a Leader in The Forrester Wave™: Email Marketing Service Providers, Q2 2018

“Email Marketing: Old salt of your toolkit, and still the most cost-effective promotional channel.” So begins the preamble to this year’s Forrester Wave for Email Marketing Solutions, Q218.

“Email Marketing: Old salt of your toolkit, and still the most cost-effective promotional channel.” So begins the preamble to this year’s Forrester Wave for Email Marketing Solutions, Q218.

Customer Experience

Customer Loyalty: Why the Game's Changing & How You Can Win It

Customer loyalty programs are starting to lose their shine. Or are they? Check out these innovative ideas for giving your loyalty program a facelift.

Customer loyalty programs are starting to lose their shine. Or are they? Check out these innovative ideas for giving your loyalty program a facelift.

Email Marketing

Mailing to New Customers and Managing Deliverability Risk

Once lost, mailing reputation requires weeks of pristine sending to correct. Ask yourself: Is it worth it? Here are best practices for sending to new subscribers.

Once lost, mailing reputation requires weeks of pristine sending to correct. Ask yourself: Is it worth it? Here are best practices for sending to new subscribers.

Customer Experience

Self-Serve is a Great Model for Vendors – and Customers

Smart companies know that a great customer experience revolves around understanding what customers need and to answer that, self-serve removes a lot of the guesswork by opening a window and letting the customers in.

Smart companies know that a great customer experience revolves around understanding what customers need and to answer that, self-serve removes a lot of the guesswork by opening a window and letting...

Data-Driven Marketing

Campaigns Don’t End When You Hit Send: The Importance of Feedback Loops

Feedback loops connect messages with the outcomes they create, allowing greater segmentation and optimization on the fly. For many marketers, feedback loops are a significant step up in the quest for better performance.

Feedback loops connect messages with the outcomes they create, allowing greater segmentation and optimization on the fly. For many marketers, feedback loops are a significant step up in the quest for...

Cross Channel Marketing

Have Consumers Bought Into Bots? A Look At The Current State Of Chatbots

It might be too early to proclaim the rise of the global chatbot economy, but the chatbots are something to keep your eye on.

It might be too early to proclaim the rise of the global chatbot economy, but the chatbots are something to keep your eye on.

Customer Experience

3 Ways Retailers Can Heat Up Their Summer Email Campaigns

A customer-centric, data-driven approach to email marketing will add sizzle to your summer email campaigns, while generating the highest ROI and lifetime value.

A customer-centric, data-driven approach to email marketing will add sizzle to your summer email campaigns, while generating the highest ROI and lifetime value.

Customer Experience

Can Data be Exciting?

Curiosity about how we can improve the ability for our customers to achieve success is a driving force behind Oracle’s efforts to pay close attention to how our customers consume information from our new portal.

Curiosity about how we can improve the ability for our customers to achieve success is a driving force behind Oracle’s efforts to pay close attention to how our customers consume information from...

Cross Channel Marketing

Why Inconsistent Messaging is Undermining Customer Experience

Delivering a great customer experience isn't rocket science, so why does it still trip up so many marketers? Disconnected data systems and data access – marketers simply don't have a single view of the customer.

Delivering a great customer experience isn't rocket science, so why does it still trip up so many marketers? Disconnected data systems and data access – marketers simply don't have a single view of...

Customer Experience

The Music of Great Design

Sara Shuman shares the secret to how her team, much like good musicians, change and adapt the Oracle brand to keep up with tastes while maintaining our unique hallmarks.

Sara Shuman shares the secret to how her team, much like good musicians, change and adapt the Oracle brand to keep up with tastes while maintaining our unique hallmarks.

CMO Corner

Talking Talent, Creativity, and AI at Cannes Advertising Festival

Can't go to Cannes Lions this year? Follow along as Amanda Jobbins keeps us updated what Oracle and other modern marketers are doing this year.

Can't go to Cannes Lions this year? Follow along as Amanda Jobbins keeps us updated what Oracle and other modern marketers are doing this year.

Data-Driven Marketing

Putting Dynamic Back into Email Design

You don’t have to compromise on email design to send a relevant, data-driven email when data drives the design.

You don’t have to compromise on email design to send a relevant, data-driven email when data drives the design.

CMO Corner

GDPR: Why CEOs Need to Lead from the Top Down

The fines for GDPR non-compliance can be significant, but there are less obvious consequences, including reputational cost. Who is responsible for getting it right?

The fines for GDPR non-compliance can be significant, but there are less obvious consequences, including reputational cost. Who is responsible for getting it right?

Email Marketing

The Cost of Free: Subject Lines and Email Deliverability

Can using traditionally spammy words like free and money in a subject line sink the performance of a sender otherwise adhering to best practices?

Can using traditionally spammy words like free and money in a subject line sink the performance of a sender otherwise adhering to best practices?

Customer Experience

Identify and Rejuvenate Your Inactive Customers

Here are two things you can do to understand your inactive customers and increase the chance that they will reengage with your brand.

Here are two things you can do to understand your inactive customers and increase the chance that they will reengage with your brand.

Data-Driven Marketing

When Did Data Become So Valuable?

GDPR brings some long-overdue structure to today’s data economy, and the public is clearly eager for greater transparency into how their information is being used.

GDPR brings some long-overdue structure to today’s data economy, and the public is clearly eager for greater transparency into how their information is being used.

Cross Channel Marketing

4 Ways Chatbots Can Increase Engagement and Improve the Customer Experience

How can you employ chatbots to get consumers more engaged with relevant and personalized marketing messages?

How can you employ chatbots to get consumers more engaged with relevant and personalized marketing messages?

Cross Channel Marketing

Experience, Not Conversion, is the Key to the Switching Economy

Only by getting to know your customers across all of your various channels can you future-proof your brand in the switching economy.

Only by getting to know your customers across all of your various channels can you future-proof your brand in the switching economy.

Content Marketing

Whatever Happened to Copyright Laws in Social Media?

The sharing and re-mixing mentality of social media has made it socially acceptable to use someone else’s work without permission. Or has it?

The sharing and re-mixing mentality of social media has made it socially acceptable to use someone else’s work without permission. Or has it?

Customer Experience

How Can Marketers Achieve Personalization in 2018?

Why is personalization so hard? In a nutshell, it's because we think like marketers not customers.

Why is personalization so hard? In a nutshell, it's because we think like marketers not customers.

Customer Experience

Millennials Are Taking Over, And It’s All Right

Millennials want flexibility, simplification, speed, involvement, transparency - the same things our Voice of the Customer program revealed that all customers want.

Millennials want flexibility, simplification, speed, involvement, transparency - the same things our Voice of the Customer program revealed that all customers want.

Cross Channel Marketing

Silo Busting is Essential to Delivering Personalized Experiences

Customers’ expectations have accelerated, fueled by the improvements digital technologies provide. But marketers still struggle.

Customers’ expectations have accelerated, fueled by the improvements digital technologies provide. But marketers still struggle.

Cross Channel Marketing

How 1:1 Email Experiences Help Retail Marketers Drive Results

Achieving next-level personalization is a challenge for resource-poor marketers. Consumers expect it, though. What can you do?

Achieving next-level personalization is a challenge for resource-poor marketers. Consumers expect it, though. What can you do?

Data-Driven Marketing

Segmentation Must Be Connected to the Data and Technology Stack

With an integrated data and technology stack, you will gain customer knowledge to use in segmentation and data-driven marketing.

With an integrated data and technology stack, you will gain customer knowledge to use in segmentation and data-driven marketing.

Content Marketing

3 Storytelling Tips for Marketers in the Age of Social

Here are three steps marketers can take to connect with their audience in a credible and interesting way.

Here are three steps marketers can take to connect with their audience in a credible and interesting way.

Product News

Oracle Marketing Cloud Named a Leader in Gartner's Multichannel Marketing Hub Magic Quadrant

Oracle is honored to be named a Leader in Gartner’s first Magic Quadrant for Multichannel Marketing Hubs. Being a leader, of the 'Leaders' is particularly flattering considering how important this emerging category is to our customers, partners and employees.

Oracle is honored to be named a Leader in Gartner’s first Magic Quadrant for Multichannel Marketing Hubs. Being a leader, of the 'Leaders' is particularly flattering considering how important...

CMO Corner

What GDPR Means for CMOs: Is All the Hype Justified?

In this Q&A, Oracle’s Marie Escaro and Kim Barlow discuss how GDPR affects marketing teams.

In this Q&A, Oracle’s Marie Escaro and Kim Barlow discuss how GDPR affects marketing teams.

Cross Channel Marketing

How to Speed up Your Cart Recovery, Increase Sales & Revenue

Getting a visitor to add a product to their shopping cart isn’t enough. Statistically, 77 percent of online shopping carts are abandoned before the sale is completed. Savvy marketers don’t count those sales as an immediate loss because they know it is now possible to recoup 10 percent to 30 percent of those sales. But why are carts abandoned? Are there common practices for re-engaging those customers? How can you improve your current practices and increase sales and ROI? Reasons for Abandonment Respondents to a recent survey shared their reasons for abandoning a transaction before purchase: Shipping and handling costs were too high (54%). I was not ready to purchase the product (40%). I wanted to compare prices on other sites (38%). No free shipping (39%). Slow shipping (26%). Long checkout process (21%). Bad site navigation (16%). All these sales could have been saved if the companies visited were using re-engagement campaigns, also known as retargeting or remarketing. Remarketing takes several forms, such as internal remarketing ads, external ads, and triggered follow-up email from systems, such as Oracle Eloqua or Oracle Responsys. Why Speed Matters Typically, data integrations sync every four to 24 hours. Waiting hours to send a cart recovery email is less effective than taking immediate action. Also, when a prospect is on your website, and you can’t leverage the data within your analytics and marketing automation solutions to make a better experience, you’re missing out on an opportunity to connect with your prospect. In a recent A/B test, two groups were sent identical cart or application recovery emails. One group received the email immediately upon abandonment, while the other was sent 24 hours later. The results were overwhelmingly in favor of immediate action. The email sent right away saw a 46 percent increase in open rates and a 30 percent increase in recovered cart sales. A Better and Faster Way After five years of working on Adobe Analytics, Eloqua and Responsys integrations (formerly Omniture Genesis) that synced data every 24 hours, Enautics was approached by Oracle to build the official replacement for their slower integrations. The first thing we addressed with the Adobe and Oracle engineering teams was speed. To solve the problem of cart abandonment, we created SegmentSync, a web application that bi-directionally syncs data between Adobe Analytics and Eloqua or Responsys as often as every 30 minutes. That means that abandoned cart reminder emails will land in the abandoner inbox within 30 minutes of an incomplete application or shopping cart purchase, greatly increasing the chances of recovering the sale. Let’s Look at the Math If a B2B online purchase has an average order size of $1,000 and 10 people start a purchase per day, your company could expect at least seven cart abandonments a day (remembering that 77 percent abandonment statistic). That’s about 210 abandoners per month. By emailing them 24 hours after they abandon, you can expect up to 20 percent to be recovered. 210 x 20% = 42 x $1,000 will generate $42,000 in recovered orders. Sending a recovery email to the prospects within 30 minutes could mean saving 30% of the 210 abandoners. This will increase overall sales to $63,000 per month (210 x 30% = 63 x $1,000). You would be generating an additional $21,000 per month by sending the recovery email much faster. Speed = Sales It’s clear from the data that the key to recovered sales from cart or application abandonment is speed. Without doubt, prospects in the solution comparison or product consideration stage are more likely to purchase when reminded of their abandonment within 30 minutes. Click here to learn more about integrating Adobe Analytics and Eloqua or Responsys. And read this guide to discover Five Ways Marketing Can Drive Higher Online Commerce Revenue.  

Getting a visitor to add a product to their shopping cart isn’t enough. Statistically, 77 percent of online shopping carts are abandoned before the sale is completed. Savvy marketers don’t count...

Marketing Automation

From Direct Mail to Predictive Intelligence: Riding the Technology Wave

This week we got to chat with Bence Gazdag about the many shifts he's witnessed in data-driven methodology and customer-centric marketing.

This week we got to chat with Bence Gazdag about the many shifts he's witnessed in data-driven methodology and customer-centric marketing.

Customer Experience

Picking Up the Pieces: How Companies Rebuild Brands Post-Crisis

Every company makes mistakes every now and then. It’s inevitable. Whether it’s a marketing campaign that falls flat and generates backlash, a serious collapse in services or a faulty product, it’s bound to happen sometime. Careful vigilance will prevent many of these disasters before they explode, but eventually one will get through and everything will go wrong. And once crisis strikes, no matter how you’ve defined and cultivated your image over time, confidence in the brand is going to take a hit. It doesn’t last forever, however, and it’s certainly possible for a brand to fully recover from such a crisis. Being able to recover from a brand crisis or a public relations disaster requires distinct actions in three phases. It helps to have an active reputation management system working before the crisis itself, it requires a measured response in the immediate aftermath of a crisis, and it depends on a longer-term strategy afterward for the recovery. You should take the crisis seriously and make an effort to honestly and transparently listen to customers and respond. For the long-term strategy after the crisis you need to be patient and careful about going back to marketing-as-usual, and you need to take real action in the long-term to prevent similar crises. Some companies even consider re-branding entirely, although this may look suspicious to consumers if it attracts attention, and it has the potential to backfire.  It might help to look at a few examples of how companies have handled this recovery for better or for worse. Takata Airbags and Automakers When something serious goes wrong with one brand, it can have dramatic effects not just on confidence in that brand but on all brands that are linked to it. The Takata airbag recall is the biggest car recall in U.S. history, and it involves airbags in vehicles from 19 different automakers. These airbags have the potential to malfunction in the event of a collision and explode upon inflation, shooting deadly shrapnel around the inside of the vehicle. In the United States at least 15 deaths have been linked to Takata airbags as well as hundreds of injuries. The recall is still ongoing, meaning that many of these cars are still on the road. The problem is that there are so many airbags that Takata and automakers are not able to rapidly provide fixes. For car companies including GM, Mazda, Toyota, Fiat Chrysler and more, however, this is a dangerous brand crisis that came about through no obvious fault of their own. But compared to these auto-makers, Takata is a relatively unknown brand that consumers will rarely interact with directly. Takata may have a long way to go to win back confidence from car manufacturers, but those car manufacturers will also have their hands full rebuilding their brands with upset consumers. In a crisis like an automotive recall, the recovery from the brand crisis depends a lot on the immediate response. Some automakers are getting little to no press attention on their brand and have had few or no reported accidents so far that can be linked to them. For them, dealing quietly and effectively with the recall and then waiting for the media coverage to pass is the best thing they can do. For the car companies getting more attention, however, their image depends on the quality and speed of the recall and their service to affected customers. This isn’t going well so far for many of the car companies, which may make for a long recovery and a drop in sales and loyalty, at least among affected customers. Chipotle and the E. Coli Outbreak Popular Tex-Mex restaurant chain was hit by a serious string of E. coli and norovirus outbreaks in 2015 in locations across the United States, producing a serious drop in confidence in the brand. After many locations closed and customers in seven states reported getting sick after eating Chipotle, Chipotle’s sales dropped 14.6 percent and its income dropped 44 percent in the final quarter of 2015. This outbreak became a serious issue for the Chipotle brand because of how widespread media coverage of the issue was, and because the problem seemed to clash so directly with Chipotle’s existing brand identity. The quality and integrity of the ingredients of their food has always been one of the core values in Chipotle’s marketing, from the ethical sourcing to the way the food is prepared. This led to an even greater drop in consumer confidence after the crisis, and it created more media interest and thus widespread coverage. In the wake of the crisis, Chipotle temporarily closed many restaurants and put some operations on hold. They returned to business as usual by December 2015, but largely kept their heads down in marketing and public statements. Several months after it was over, they closed Chipotles across the country for a morning of training and planning. That event, plus an open letter to the public from the CEO, marked Chipotle’s attempt to begin moving forward and leaving the crisis behind them. Not only did the letter accept responsibility for the food safety failure, but it promised a wide range of specific measures they were taking to improve food safety. After these statements and actions addressing the crisis, Chipotle almost immediately started a new marketing blitz to encourage customers to return to Chipotle, including promotions for free entrees. Several years after the crisis, Chipotle has now fully recovered and restored their brand to what it was before without falling into another disaster since. Restoring brand reputation starts with rebuilding trust. There is nothing more important than creating exceptional customer experience to help rebuild trust and build a strong brand reputation. Download Customer Experience Simplified: Deliver The Experience Your Customers Want to learn how to craft an outstanding experience for your customers​.  

Every company makes mistakes every now and then. It’s inevitable. Whether it’s a marketing campaign that falls flat and generates backlash, a serious collapse in services or a faulty product, it’s...

Customer Experience

Great Customer Experiences Rely on Robust Identity Management

This is article is part of our series on customer experience where we focus on topics relating to connecting data, intelligence and experiences. Further reading: Segmentation Must Be Connected to the Data and Technology Stack. With an ever-growing demand from consumers for personalized engagement, it is becoming increasingly important that marketers and customer experience professionals appreciate the importance of identity management as a piece of bedrock infrastructure. Knowing who your customers are is an essential part of ensuring they are provided with highly personalized and appropriate messaging in a way that works best for them. Put simply, without effective identity management, there is no people-based marketing. In fact identity management is the foundational component of concepts like cross-device identification, multi and omnichannel marketing, and the all-important single customer view. These days customer management, marketing and advertising technologies rely on successful identity management to enable application integration and power segmentation. But What is Identity Management? It is a descriptive term that means the ability to link identifiers to a single person or household. Those identifiers could be a customer ID, marketing channel, a database key or a device ID such as mobile phone or web browser. For brands to execute a consistent customer experience strategy, they need technology that understands and measures how consumers interact with their messaging. For instance, they need to identify that a customer has visited their website, opened an email, had a service incident or gone into the store. And to deliver personalized experiences across any channel, brands need technology that can uniquely identify each user and their personal profile. In these use cases, professionals will be well served if they have some technical understanding of the issues. Targeting and Suppression There are two key improvements for a brand when they implement effective identity and access: better targeting and better suppression. Better targeting increases the ability to convert prospects because the brand can communicate with the person in more channels, such as connected digital direct channels including email and display retargeting. This ability to reach a person across more channels with the same brand message increases the opportunity to convert and capture a greater share of wallet. Conversely, the ability to suppress customers from acquisition strategies is a premise on which data management platform return on investment cases are built. Implementation of identity and access in paid media channels allows a brand to stop messaging to loyal customers or hot leads. So what might create identity and access management concerns at a technical level? Start With Your Technology Infrastructure Software-as-a-Service based marketing and advertising technology has revolutionized customer experience. However, often companies have multiple suppliers providing technology on-premise as well as in the cloud. Identities and access needs to be federated across all these environments within a trust fabric or you risk creating data ghettos housed inside isolated silos. Siddhartha Agarwal Vice President, Product Management & Strategy at Oracle, says, “Applications come with their own identities. It needs to be seamless and a very fast integration from one application to another (SaaS on on-premise).” To address this problem, Oracle created an integrated portfolio that provides the ability to drag and drop without coding. “This means companies can do things like build federated integrations between a CRM and a marketing application," says Agarwal. "This makes it very easy to do these integrations so that now you have your identities and access, federated in a consistent manner across the on-premise and cloud divide.” The problem - in terms of the customer's experience is that as each of these applications comes with their own identity, brand and risk offering, resulting in a disjointed experience as they do not have the full picture of the client relationship.  “Getting insight into user behavior is an important consideration and also needs to be connected to security systems. So if I see an inappropriate behavior I can step up authentication or turn off access via Multi Factor Authentication and User Entity Behavior Analytics. The outcome is a reduction in the time to detect and time to respond.” The reality is that information systems are complex. For the customer, this needs to be quick, easy and seamless. Therefore brands would have to manage identities across applications from multiple and often competing suppliers within a Unified Identity Trust Fabric. Want more? Download our free Guide to Advertising Accountability to learn how consistent identity management can help you improve marketing accountability, cut costs by reducing waste, and dramatically improve your ROI.

This is article is part of our series on customer experience where we focus on topics relating to connecting data, intelligence and experiences. Further reading: Segmentation Must Be Connected to the...

Content Marketing

Is Content Marketing Still Relevant In Today’s Marketing World?

Over the past 24 months, content marketing has swept over the digital marketing world. Brands have been encouraged to think and act like media companies, pushing out content at a prodigious pace. Content marketing has become the new marketing paradigm, pushing aside former marketing favorites such as search engine optimization (SEO). Understanding paradigm shifts in the marketing world In many ways, the success of content marketing was based on it being able to prove that “inbound marketing” was better than “outbound marketing.” In other words, posting new blog content, creating new podcast content, and developing new video content was a more cost-effective way to attract potential customers than simply covering the Internet with ads. Content marketing offered a fundamental choice of “pull” vs. “push.” Content marketers made the argument that it was more effective to “pull” a customer towards you than to “push” him or her into your arms with a bunch of ads. But something interesting has been going on recently. We may be witnessing another paradigm shift. That’s because the type of content that marketers are creating has shifted almost exclusively to video. Check out what any of the big social media platforms are up to these days, and it almost always involves video. Check out what types of branded content is showing up in your social feeds these days, and it’s usually video content. Of course, you could make the argument that this is still content marketing — it’s just that all the content is video content. From this perspective, it’s not so much that a new paradigm shift is going on, it’s more of an evolutionary step. Video content is better than visual content (i.e. photos), and visual content is better than text content (i.e. blog posts). In the Darwinian jungle of digital marketing, video marketing won the evolutionary battle for survival. Ideas on what comes next for digital marketing So which is it: Is content marketing and “inbound marketing” still relevant in today’s marketing world, or are there signs it is fading and changing in response to the new content environment in social media? One possible answer is that the role of brands in today’s digital world is shifting and evolving in very profound ways. Take the phenomenal success of the Amazon Echo, which is a new way to interact with consumers. First of all, instead of using a keyboard or mobile phone keypad, you’re using your voice. That’s new, right? And secondly, brands are racing to create “skills” for the Amazon Echo, like the ability to order a pizza while watching a baseball game. So maybe this is the new paradigm – brands are more like invisible tools that remain in the background of your daily digital life, waiting to be activated at the sound of your voice. Or, here’s another idea: maybe brands are evolving into a way to enhance your everyday “reality” using virtual reality, augmented reality and other forms of mixed reality. All of the activity around augmented reality would seem to suggest that the most forward-looking brands should be looking for ways to help people live better in reality. For example, shouldn’t big automakers be looking for ways to overlay augmented reality screens on windshields of cars? Shouldn’t big consumer brands be looking to create fun, mind-bending experiences using augmented or virtual reality? (Oh look, honey, there’s a big chocolate tree growing in our backyard! Let’s go buy some candy bars!) One thing is certain – it’s important for digital marketers to keep at least one eye on new trends that are bubbling up in the technology sector. Nothing stays the same for long. Just as adopting a “mobile-first” mentality took some getting used to, so will whatever comes next in the digital marketing world. Oracle’s Content Marketing has solutions to simplify the process of creating, distributing and promoting your content. Visit our website for more information.Also, make sure to read Larry Myler's, How Content Marketing is Evolving Heading into 2018 for top trends in content marketing and tips on how to stay ahead of the curve.  *This article originally appeared on Social Media HQ. 

Over the past 24 months, content marketing has swept over the digital marketing world. Brands have been encouraged to think and act like media companies, pushing out content at a prodigious...

Data-Driven Marketing

Do Marketers Really Want to be Data Scientists?

It is a challenging time to be a marketer. Consumers demand more personalised experiences than ever, and for marketers if feels like the customer's expectations just keep on rising. In such a complex business environment a sophisticated approach to data is the key to success. Increasingly, however, CMOs hear from software vendors, analysts, and the business press that it is not enough to be a great marketer these days. In an era of data-driven marketing, they now need to be a data scientist as well. It is worth asking, whether that is really true or even practical. Look around you at your peers in the marketing department. The reality is that your creative director needs more freedom to create. They don’t really need to program in Python or R. Likewise your field marketers do not need a technical specialist’s deep grasp of algorithmic concepts in order to put a qualified lead into the hands of the sales team. Swings and round-abouts We have been down this road before. Think back a few years when marketing technology really broke into mainstream business conversations. Marketers were told then they needed to be technologists who understood IT almost as well as they understood their own core disciplines. It didn’t happen because marketers and IT specialists started working in a collaborative fashion, each bringing their own unique expertise to the conversation. The IT department provides a robust infrastructure while marketers use the tools to ensure the right messages reach the right customers. And data scientists? They ask questions of the company’s data and run experiments to help Marketing maximise the effectiveness of their campaigns and understand the responsiveness of their audience. Marketers have always known that the better they understood their customers, the more tailored the experience and messaging they could provide. So what is compelling the closer relationship between marketing and data science? Changes in consumer behavior and the competitive landscape demand and technology have enabled, a shift from a waterfall approach to marketing where one campaign starts as another one ends, to a more agile campaigning. These always-on campaigns driven by programmatic technologies let brands adjust on the fly as the data informs them what is working and what is not. (These are the kinds of questions real data scientists are great at asking!). In this new method of marketing, brands look for the data they need to make a difference. That is the only data that should inform their marketing campaigns. Take an everyday example. Think about your favourite barista who sells you your coffee each morning. They may have read studies on the conversion rates with men over women, compared who has an IOS or Android phone, and they may even know your geolocation, your sex, and an estimate your age. But all of that is less relevant than the two most salient data points required to satisfy your needs as a customer -“What’s your name and what type of coffee do they drink!!”. In the rush to prove their data-driven credentials too many CMOs are actually making their own lives harder. Research last year by Capgemini and the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy called “From UX to CX: Rethinking the Digital User Experience as a Collaborative Exchange” clearly suggests that many brands are still trying to hoover up every piece of information they can gather without any regard for how it is used. Capgemini’s Senior Vice President & Global Practice Leader Digital Transformation, Didier Bonnet suggests too many brands are missing an essential point - consumers want simple value exchange - a good product (associated with nice, easy experience) in return for their custom. Marketers today can collect so much data on their audiences but the key is to focus on getting access to data you need. For instance, if you are in retail you don’t need all the transactional data, you may only need the last 5 transactions under 90 days old. Similarly, in financial services you don’t need all the call center data or branch data, you just need the last 3 activities over the past 60 days. So how might this play out in the real world? A financial services institution might, for instance, implement a simple approach with both new and returning customers where they inform them of their last five conversations across all channels.  That way the customer can see the last thing they did on the website, or a call they made to the call center, or what they did on their most recent visit to a branch. If the company can deliver that information in near real-time into the campaign platform for next interaction, or back to the call center or branch staff they will be better placed to meet the customer needs. Likewise, imagine the value to a salesperson in a retail store if they could see the last five interactions the shopper in front of them had with the brand. Marketing is made better and more effective when great data is sensibly applied to meet the needs of consumers. That doesn’t mean the CMO needs to be a data scientist. It just means they need to understand which data help them best understand what really matters to the customer. Download the Data Driven CMO to skillfully learn how to decipher, understand, and leverage the abundance of available data to engage with customers:

It is a challenging time to be a marketer. Consumers demand more personalised experiences than ever, and for marketers if feels like the customer's expectations just keep on rising. In such a complex...

Marketing Automation

Congratulations to the 2018 Markie Award Winners!

Celebrating a Magical Night Honoring Old and New Marketing and Commerce Legends Last week at Modern Customer Experience, we celebrated our 12th Annual Markie Awards. This year marked a significant turn in our awards ceremony, as we welcomed our Oracle Commerce customers to participate in the Markie Awards submissions and celebrate the successes of their peers across both commerce and marketing. It was a night to remember. Magician and performer Nigel Mead hosted the evening with fun and entertaining magical tricks and even turned our audience members into legendary magicians! Past Markie Award winners were also brought on stage to present awards along with Oracle executives.  And now…congratulations to our 2018 Markie Award winners: Account Based Marketing Team of the Year These teams have embraced an end-to-end view across the entire buyer journey and across all channels. They know their buyer profile, have created targeted campaigns that drive engagement and ROI and have created visibility into which accounts have the greatest propensity to buy and have implemented Account-Based Marketing (ABM) to target the right individuals and accounts to deliver personally relevant and well-timed messaging.   Best B2B Commerce Experience These data-driven Modern Commerce or Marketing professionals have proven ways to deliver personalized buying experiences for every B2B customer. They have provided their customers with relevant content, merchandising, personalized search, customized marketing programs, and tailored websites across all channels. At the same time, they enable self-service with custom catalogs, custom pricing and account-specific experiences. Best B2C Commerce Experience These data-driven Modern Commerce or Marketing professionals are delivering personalized buying experiences for every B2C customer, connecting the online experience to the in-store experience by exposing inventory availability and offering click and collect. This award recognizes the supremely enlightened organization that truly gets the power of personally engaging consistently delightful, and seamlessly integrated experiences where the customer runs the show. Best Digital Marketing Ecosystem These organizations are taking advantage of digital marketing integration to enhance processes or improve analytics. They have created an integrated ecosystem with CRM, third-party cloud apps, or other applications to automate, streamline, and enhance your marketing efforts and are often using APIs in interesting ways.   Best Email Marketing Campaign Email can be extraordinary. In fact, there are some email communications that are so well written, so masterfully designed, that it's only a question of when people will respond, not if. Achieving extraordinary response rates isn't luck – it's the result of great targeting, content, personalization and timing.     Best Emerging Company Marketing Campaign Doing more with less? These fast-growing, emerging companies of $100M in revenue or less have lean, mean, marketing teams that have executed masterful marketing campaigns using marketing automation to do the work of ten people. Best Integrated Mobile Experience For these organizations, mobile is the platform of choice for the majority of their ideal customers. As such they have created personalized experiences with messages and promotions optimized for mobile.     Best International Campaign The Best International Campaign award goes to a company with a successful marketing campaign outside the United States - in multiple countries in multiple languages, modification of a program originally created in the U.S. and re-launched in another country, or any variation in between.     Best Lead Management Program Winners in this category have a sophisticated lead management program that delivered measurable results. They demonstrate the use of lead scoring and deliver compelling results. In this award, people, process and technology all come into play.     Best Omni-Channel Marketing Program Winners in this category create personalized experiences with messages and promotions across web, social, mobile, email, display, or other digital channels to attract or retain their ideal customers.     Best Overall Customer Experience Every company says they are customer focused. But few actually deliver. This winner has created a customer retention or loyalty program that has successfully transformed their customers into fiercely loyal brand advocates. They have shifted their culture from consumer transactions to customer relationships to drive loyalty.     Best Social Campaign In this category, Social Media is more than just a buzz word. Winners have found creative ways to utilize both new and traditional social mediums in order to build sustained dialogs with customers and prospects, and have seized the opportunities available through social media to generate proven results.     Best Testing and Optimization These Marketers have optimized the online customer experience with testing, insights, and personalization. They have maximized revenue potential across web, mobile, social, apps, and other digital channels as a result and have taken the leap to multivariate sophistication. Nominees for this award have incorporated testing and optimization of their campaigns and programs to mitigate risk, drive better decisions, increase revenue, and improve the customer experience.     Best Use of Data The data-driven Modern Marketer targets and engages their ideal audience for specific business initiatives These finalists are successfully using data to target, personalize, measure and win. They are using data in innovative and strategic ways, and have seen their efforts pay off with improved customer experiences and ROI.     Best Use of Insights and ROI These Marketers are interpreting data for actionable recommendations that improve business results and customer experience. This award recognizes an organization that has moved beyond reporting (old methods of organizing data into informational summaries to monitor performance) towards analysis (new data and meaningful insights that improve performance).     Modern Marketing Leader of the Year Just as great people are the foundation for successful businesses, innovators are often the driving force behind exceptional marketing. These nominees are the passionate senior people that push their teams to succeed, lead decisive change, set the vision for the entire marketing organization and introduce innovative concepts.     Most Creative Marketing Campaign Sometimes all of the pieces align to create a fantastic marketing campaign – the perfect idea, the right target, the memorable artwork, the personalized follow-up, and of course, the measurable results.     Rapid Transformation Enabling a high-performance marketing culture isn’t always easy. For most organizations, it can take time to master the intricate blend of messaging, segmentation, data orchestration, organizational alignment and other disciplines. The Rapid Transformation award honors those who have successfully implemented any Oracle Marketing Cloud technology in the past year, for their superb planning, execution, and results.       People's Choice - Best Video This award honors the best video submission with a people’s choice award voted on by your peers. Winners in this category showed exceptional videos enhanced by creativity, humor or human-interest touches.   Congratulations to all our finalists, winners and thank you to everyone who submitted. Here is a highlight video capturing the magical night: We look forward to seeing you next year!

Celebrating a Magical Night Honoring Old and New Marketing and Commerce Legends Last week at Modern Customer Experience, we celebrated our 12th Annual Markie Awards. This year marked a significant turn...

Day Three From Oracle Modern Customer Experience

The final Day of Modern Customer Experience has come to a close, but not without an energy all its own. On this day, the keynotes focused on what happens when customer experience works: customer advocacy. “What are you going to do to turn them into raving fans?”- Catherine Blackmore First, Shashi Seth sat down with the CEO of Duel, Paul Archer, who talked about how trying to break world records with his friends turned into a lesson in customer advocacy and brand loyalty. Archer literally drove a cab from London to Australia (and further) to break the record for the longest taxi ride (of course). Along the journey, he picked up friends, fans, and sponsorship, that inspired him to create a company that mobilizes customer loyalty as a marketing engine. “Our dream is to reframe the way the people think about their customer and for every CMO to create a customer advocacy budget in every brand,” says Archer with an infectious passion for marketing and customer advocacy. Next, Oracle’s GVP of Customer Success, Catherine Blackmore, took to the stage to discuss the psychology of fandom and how that relates to customer advocacy. She brought up Fanatics’ VP of Fan Experience, Carolyne Matseshe-Crawford, who addressed how rethinking their brand and their customer experience has made fans out of fans. Since coming to the company in the summer of 2017, Matseshe-Crawford has driven a massive effort in creating brand loyalty and customer service that is something to talk about. “Fans are passionate about our brand, fans become a part of our team,” said Matseche-Crawford of Fanatics loyal customers.    To close the final keynotes, journalist and author of How to Make a Spaceship: A Band of Renegades, an Epic Race, and the Birth of a Private Spaceflight, Julian Guthrie, took to the stage to share the story of a few men and women that laughed in the face of “impossible”. These brave trailblazers did “what you can’t” and built the first reusable rocket ship, pioneering the path to galactic tourism. Guthrie instilled a sense of possibility that marketers could take with them on the final day of Modern CX. Final sessions Oracle’s Austin Miller and Tony Castiglione hosted a B2C general session that focused on what AI technologies will allow marketers to master in this sector. “The goal at Oracle is to create data-driven, individualized CX,” said Castiglione, emphasizing that better data fuels improved CX in a cyclical manner. Ryan Deutsch from Oracle’s partner, Persado, discussed how his company is using machine learning to derive content that befits the individual customer. Deutsch then introduced, Justin Kurt and Sandra Taylor from Sears to chat about how they have implemented Oracle solutions at the company to activate “data-driven emotional responses”. Back in the Smarter CX theater in the Exhibition Hall, influencer and self-proclaimed millennial, Brian Fanzo hosted a session that touched on the “Millennial Mindset” and how generational collaboration will pave the path to future success. “It is not about the year you were born, but your ability to embrace change,” says Fanzo. An apt way to end a conference that has whole-heartedly delved into the evolving role of the marketer in the age of technology and exponentially rising customer expectations. We want to thank all the attendees, partners, sponsors, and Oracle employees who helped make this conference a #ModernCX to remember, we could not have done it without you. Can’t wait to see you all again next year! Day three keynote session is now available for you to view at your leisure. 

The final Day of Modern Customer Experience has come to a close, but not without an energy all its own. On this day, the keynotes focused on what happens when customer experience works:...

Product News

Oracle Eloqua and LinkedIn Deliver Unified Buyer Insight Through New Sales Tools Integrations

We’re excited to share that our highly anticipated new integration between Oracle Eloqua Sales Tools and LinkedIn Sales Navigator is now available for joint Oracle Eloqua and LinkedIn customers.

We’re excited to share that our highly anticipated new integration between Oracle Eloqua Sales Tools and LinkedIn Sales Navigator is now available for joint Oracle Eloqua and LinkedIn customers.

Day Two From Oracle Modern Customer Experience

Highlights from Day 2 at Modern Customer Experience 2018.

Highlights from Day 2 at Modern Customer Experience 2018.

Day One from Oracle Modern Customer Experience 2018

Modern Customer Experience 2018 is officially underway in the great city of Chicago, home to the Cubs, deep-dish pizza and chilling winds sweeping across the Great Lakes (even in April!). Luckily for ModernCX attendees, the conference is taking place inside the expansive McCormick Place event center, so no down-jackets necessary. Day One of the conference was marked with a sense of determination and possibility. Starting with Head of CX Evangelism, Des Cahill’s keynote speech, which brought us a refreshingly candid take on the challenges marketers face, “We’re on a quest to break through the customer experience wall,” highlighting potential obstacles as chances for innovation. The keynote host, ever-charismatic influencer, Jay Baer, sat down with Comcast’s Charlie Herrin to discuss how he reimagined the telecommunication company’s experience environment positioning the customer at the center. Finally, YouTube sensation, Casey Neistat shared his unique journey that, dappled with its various obstacles and failures, taught him how to create his own success even in the face of “can’t”. His unorthodox marketing techniques can be summed up as such, “It was about selling the idea, not the product,” Each speaker brought their own brand of excitement, invention and forward-thinking to the stage. Following a well-attended opening reception, the Exhibit Experience space buzzed with energy as partner and sponsor booths came alive with opportunities for networking, product demos, prizes and fun. Everywhere one looked people were interacting with brands, from getting their photo taken with a Mack Truck to trying on VR goggles to connecting with representatives about their products. While the education sessions actually began yesterday, the widely attended General Sessions began today with The Evolving Role of B2B Marketing and The Transformation of Roles for CX Sales. The B2B Marketing session featured speakers from Cisco, Certain, LookbookHQ and Lattice, along with Oracle’s David Johnson and Pierre Custeau. The session focused on what technology and tactics B2B marketers can use to boost SQL’s, improve engagement and create health sales and marketing alignment. They also touched on how the proper and respectful use of data will create a closer bond with a customer. As the day’s hustle and bustle drew to a close, marketers from around the world and across industries dawned their red carpet attire for an evening of glitz and glam at the 12th Annual Markie Awards Ceremony. Over a decade old, the Markies were created to celebrate those whom have blazed a trail of excellence in data-driven marketing using Oracle solutions. Hosted by world-renowned magician, Nigel Mead, the evening glimmered with the astonishing and the miraculous both in marketing and slight-of-hand. The race for the coveted, golden Markie was tougher than ever this year, out of 266 outstanding submissions, 19 spectacularly, innovative stand-outs had to be painstakingly selected for Markie Awards. With Davide Alemani of Pirelli taking the top prize of Marketing Leader of the Year, other winners included: Morningstar, Covance and Cisco. Check out all the winners here. Congratulations to all the winners and finalists, your drive to push the boundaries of digital marketing is truly inspirational. And that was just Day One! Check back tomorrow for more exciting updates on this year’s Modern Customer Experience!  Day one keynote session is now available for you to view at your leisure.

Modern Customer Experience 2018 is officially underway in the great city of Chicago, home to the Cubs, deep-dish pizza and chilling winds sweeping across the Great Lakes (even in April!). Luckily for...

Product News

Oracle Eloqua Delivers Unified Buyer Intelligence Through New Sales Tools Integrations

Oracle Eloqua is excited to announce ‘Extensions’ for Oracle Eloqua Sales Tools, bringing brand new partner integrations to Oracle Eloqua’s Sales Tools portfolio as part of it’s broader Appcloud Partner Strategy.

Oracle Eloqua is excited to announce ‘Extensions’ for Oracle Eloqua Sales Tools, bringing brand new partner integrations to Oracle Eloqua’s Sales Tools portfolio as part of it’s broader...

Product News

Tomorrow’s Marketing Analytics Today - Oracle Infinity™

Oracle InfinityTM is Oracle Marketing Cloud’s new data analytics platform for capturing, processing, storing and interrogating unlimited datasets for companies that want actionable customer intelligence to fuel their marketing programs.

Oracle InfinityTM is Oracle Marketing Cloud’s new data analytics platform for capturing, processing, storing and interrogating unlimited datasets for companies that want actionable...

Data-Driven Marketing

Apply Big Data to Create Irresistible Customer Experiences

In 2013, research by Walker predicted that by 2020 customer experience will overtake price and product as the main differentiator. While most organizations and marketers have prioritized customer experience as top business priority for a few years now, they don’t always know how to get customer experience right. Marketers who are delivering optimal customer experience know that data is king. To truly understand your customer requires collecting, analyzing, understanding and using customer data to help deliver that personalized experiences to win customer loyalty. While big data and data analytics are a part of almost everything we as marketers do today, both are still overhyped and misunderstood. In our hyper-connected world, it’s amazing how disconnected our approaches to serving our customers has become. Many organizations have still not figured out how to create clean, powerful linked data assets. But big data alone does not solve problems. Rather, you need to have a problem to solve first. That is why so much data goes unused. You can’t just pick up the phone and buy big data analytics. That’s just not how it works. At Oracle, we’re leveraging big data technologies to enable marketers to use data more effectively to solve the challenges they have with improving the customer experience. We’ve leveraged the Hadoop ecosystem and built a platform specifically for the purposes of digital analytics and optimization. We call this marketing analytics platform Oracle Infinity™. Our new eBook, “Irresistible Customer Experiences” digs into how Oracle Infinity™ helps digital marketers leverage data to optimize customer experience in terms of these six key areas: Real time, All the Time: To satisfy the agile needs of the business, all data must be available in real time by default. Unlimited Scale and Flexibility: An analytics solution must be built from the ground up with big data technologies to handle the inevitable scale that Internet of Things (IoT) will demand. Individual Level intelligence: Oracle Infinity provides a unified and intuitive user experience to support completely different tasks, roles and people – making it easy to learn and manage. Accuracy at Scale: Analytics data must advance beyond approximate trends to an accurate source of digital performance that is trusted by the business for decision making Cross-Channel Insights: Collect and connect all customer brand engagement regardless of any connected device.  The ability to collect and connect all customer engagement data is key in transforming your marketing from a series of independent interactions with a “visitor” to a single conversation with an “individual.” Data activation and Openness: Analytics data should be open and available for easy extraction and integration into your marketing ecosystem. The eBook explains each of the above 6 areas in detail, providing relevant use cases for marketers and analysts, the current challenges with today’s technologies and how Oracle Infinity™ solves them. We’ve also outlined a set of questions that you may want to consider when researching digital analytics vendors. Click here to download your copy of the eBook “Irresistible Customer Experiences.” Want to learn more about how Oracle Infinity works? Join us at Modern Customer Experience 2018. Hear from Steve Earl and other Oracle executives and thought leaders at ModernCX. Here are all the Infinity Breakout Sessions at ModernCX: Optimizing Oracle Responsys Campaigns with Oracle Infinity Connect B2B Customer Experiences with Oracle Eloqua and Oracle Infinity An Introduction to Oracle Infinity: The Next-Gen Digital Analytics Solution Oracle Infinity In Action: How to Measure Your Marketing Performance The Top Questions every Marketer should ask their Analytics Team Oracle Infinity Live in Action Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018 here.

In 2013, research by Walker predicted that by 2020 customer experience will overtake price and product as the main differentiator. While most organizations and marketers have prioritized customer...

Marketing Automation

How To Win The Markie Award

Honoring excellence in marketing since 2007, Oracle’s Markie Award is a recognized global pillar of success. Companies of all sizes share their most innovative and successful campaigns in Omni-Channel Marketing, Content Marketing, Social Marketing, Data Management & Advertising, Web Optimization, Marketing Innovation and Analytics. With over 600 entries each year, becoming a Markie finalist or winner isn’t easy. The Markie Awards recognize only the most innovative and successful marketing campaigns. Submissions take time and focus to prepare and competition is fierce. Each of the past 10 years, at least one of our clients consistently advance to the finals of the Markie Awards, and many have gone on to win. How do these award-winning companies design their Markie caliber projects? Here is the four step process we use to help our clients architect Markie award winning projects. 1. Defining Challenging Goals First, we spend time understanding exactly what our clients are striving for. We do this with the mutual understanding that a “challenger mindset” must be used to allow the team to come up with new innovations. We have found that in order to become a finalist and a winner, you have to go over and beyond the basics to be considered innovative and to get the judge’s attention. Basic or easy-to-achieve goals will not accomplish that. Setting a measurable, challenging goal is key to marketing success, which leads to an innovative Markie submission. Some of the challenging goals we’ve used recently are: Increasing mobile engagement by 5x Increasing new account acquisition by 50% Reducing unknown to known visitor ratios 500% Reducing customer effort Our Markie-winning client campaigns all start with a specific challenging goal that’s well beyond a simple sales increase, which can be clearly documented as genuinely innovative. 2. Defining Key Data Points Next, we help our clients define the data points needed to support the project and help achieve the goals established in step 1. We define the key data points. Then we ask, are these data points accessible within Eloqua or Responsys? Or do we need to conduct an integration within the customer’s TechStack to sync the data? In order to achieve challenging goals, we have found the need to sync data with the web analytics platform and Eloqua or Responsys. Doing so, properly, will open opportunities to build Markie caliber campaigns much easier. For example, we used our insights with Oracle and Adobe to share a data point that’s in Adobe but wasn’t in Eloqua. This now allows our customers to support a challenging goal of real-time, 1-to-1 website personalization that compliments an Eloqua email campaign. Knowing what data is available isn’t enough. Knowing how it supports the project is key. 3. Experience Making - Knock Their Socks Off! Now that the client has key data points to support their goals, the next step we use is a concept called “Experience Making”. Experience Making is the ability to design customer experiences in a predictable manner by leveraging a harmonious integration between Oracle Marketing Cloud, the web analytics solution, and the tag manager. We have seen customer experiences go from needs improvement to exceptional. Having the right data gives clients the ability to craft better experiences and becoming Experience Makers. Our approach is to help the client put themselves in the prospect or customer’s shoes and look for Deal Breakers. Deal Breakers are experiences that slow down or kill engagement and ultimately, deals. This is an essential step in effective Experience Making. Markie finalist and winners seek to build campaigns that are making things easier for the prospect or customer. 4. Measuring Impact - Before and After Documenting the results for a Markie submission is key. One example of this is how we helped a client reduce cart abandonment, increase campaign performance clarity and mobile engagement. We take a snapshot of the baselines of how things performed before the project. We include metrics such as, opens, clicks, emails sent, downloads, video engagement, webinar engagement, leads, orders, average order size, KPI conversion rates, etc. This is so we can clearly show, in the Markie submission, what impact the new project has had by doing a Before and After side-by-side comparison. Our successful Markie submissions have come from companies that set challenging goals, identify key data points, become experience makers, and clearly measure the impact of their efforts. Follow this proven model and maybe you too will win a Markie. Good luck! ---- Dion Jones, is VP, Consulting & Multi-Solution Architect at Enautics, and knows exactly what it takes. Enautics is a specialist integration partner with Oracle Marketing Cloud and Adobe Experience Cloud. They have developed a suite of solutions to harness and expand the “Experience Maker” capability of Oracle and Adobe Marketing Cloud. Along with their products, Enautics provides consulting solutions for marketers striving for innovative success.   The Markie Awards will take place on Tuesday April 10th at the Modern Customer Experience event. Make sure to check out the complete list of finalists for this year’s Markie Awards on the Markie website and also on this blog. Still have not registered for ModernCX? There is still time. Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018 here.

Honoring excellence in marketing since 2007, Oracle’s Markie Award is a recognized global pillar of success. Companies of all sizes share their most innovative and successful campaigns in Omni-Channel...

Email Marketing

How to Convert Consumers into Loyal Customers

Customers are a business’ most valuable asset, which is why they spend a lot of money to acquire new ones and work hard to retain the ones they have. This is especially true in the saturated retail industry where there is lots of competition to capture consumer’s attention. Here is where email marketing comes into play. This marketing tactic has an ROI of 3800 percent, making it a top method for retailers to improve customer conversion. Retailers work relentlessly for that initial purchase, with carefully timed emails, curated content and maintaining the right frequency of communication, but what happens after the retailer succeeds and that customer makes that long-awaited first purchase? How are retailers working to retain customers and maintain a loyal customer base? With these questions in mind, we decided to find out how top retailers are performing when it comes to email, and start mapping out industry best practices. Our new “2018 Email Marketing Study: How 100 of the Top Retailers Engage Shoppers in the First 45 Days and Beyond” study evaluated 100 retailers from the Internet Retailer Top 500 list and acquired every email each of these retailers sent to email subscribers who have never purchased a product from July to December 2017. For this study, purchases were made from every retailer and every email sent was collected, as first-time buyers, for the first 45 days after a purchase was made, from November to December 2017. The resulting report analyzes communication tactics between a “purchaser” and a “non-purchaser” email received during this time to determine how retailers interacted with the two audiences. The report also looked at how retailers were performing in other key areas such as Email Frequency, Content and Catalog Exposure. Below are a few key insights from our report: 62 percent of the time, retailers sent the exact same email on the same day to the purchaser and non-purchaser, and only 26 percent of all emails were unique to the purchaser, despite having clickstream and purchase data to leverage. Wayfair scored highest among all retailers because they personalized a majority of their email, with 71 percent of the emails sent to the purchaser being unique to them. When it comes to the Purchaser Experience, Levi’s was the exception, with more than 75 percent of the emails sent to the purchaser being unique. Only 8 percent of the emails matched a non-purchaser email sent on the same day. Of the 100 retailers evaluated, Williams-Sonoma had the highest average email sends per day at 3.14. Pottery Barn, The Shopping Channel and Victoria's Secret sent two emails a day more than 90 percent of the time. With more than 60 percent of respondents sending the same exact email to a purchaser and non-purchaser, it’s clear that retailers are not engaging customers through throughout their journey, but instead, providing a generic, one-size-fits-all experience. In order to not only acquire, but retain a loyalty customer base, brands need to offer personalized content in their emails, whether it’s the first time or the tenth time they’ve engaged with your brand. To learn more about personalization trends in the retail industry, check out Get Personal and Keep Them Coming Back guide to find out why 68 percent of retailers agree that investment in driving personalized experiences is a priority. 

Customers are a business’ most valuable asset, which is why they spend a lot of money to acquire new ones and work hard to retain the ones they have. This is especially true in the saturated...

Marketing Automation

Forget The Hype And Really Understand What AI Can Do For You

  Technology is transforming marketing faster than ever before. Add AI to the mix and marketers experience another layer of complexity. But according to the latest research, marketers who successfully adopt and adapt artificial intelligence into their digital marketing strategy will most certainly rise above the rest. eMarketer recently published a report, Artificial Intelligence for Marketers in 2018: Finding Value Beyond the Hype. Their research highlights benefits of brands who have already implemented AI. But before looking at the data, let's look at what falls under the umbrella of artificial intelligence. Consulting firm McKinsey & Company defines AI under eight categories: Natural Language Processing (NLP) Natural Language Generation (NLG) Speech Recognition Machine Learning Decision Management Virtual Agents (chatbots, etc.) Robotics Process Automation Computer Vision So what kind of advantages have organizations experienced since implementing AI? eMarketer reports: The overall benefits are encouraging. To dive even further into real-world applications of AI, eMarketer found that retail marketers are using this technology to craft a better customer experience across the board. While this data is promising for organizations to see, the question some grapple with is, where do we start? eMarketer shares some solid advice to those looking to incorporate AI into their business efforts. I think the best advice the research revealed is to forget the "hype" and really understand what AI can do for your brand. Allen Nance, Global CMO of Emarsys, suggests asking questions like: What data sets can we use to inform AI systems? Who will develop the algorithm? Will we have on-staff data scientists? Show me how it will change my role and my organization? While AI is in a growth stage, it is clear to see it will be one of the most important investments marketers can make for the future. And as you can see from the data, many have already started down that path. Is your organization ready? For practical tips on how to bring AI into your marketing, don't miss Adaptive Intelligence: Practical Tips for Bringing AI into Your Marketing from David Gutelius, CEO of Motiva AI, a machine learning company dedicated to adaptive customer experience and an Oracle partner. Also, don't miss Bloomberg Daybreak Asia's podcast: AI Can be Harnessed to Change World of Marketing featuring Shashi Seth, our Senior VP of Products, Oracle Marketing Cloud.  

  Technology is transforming marketing faster than ever before. Add AI to the mix and marketers experience another layer of complexity. But according to the latest research, marketers who successfully...

Modern Marketing Resources

Tips for the Right Marketer Mindset in 2018

The new media environment is here. Or really, it’s been here long enough already that we should be used to it by now. The one constant in the marketing world of the 21st century, however, is change. In this rapidly changing technological and social environment there are new pitfalls and problems appearing every day to challenge us and force us to rethink the way we do marketing. If you’re not careful you can slip into a certain way of thinking that will lead you into some serious misstep. Follow these keys for your marketing plan and approach this year and make a difference for your brand. Learn to be Objective, Listen to Others As you cultivate your marketing mindset this year and start to brainstorm ideas for your 2018 plan, hold yourself accountable and make sure you listen to others around you. We all like to think we’re objective and that we know best how to deal with our field, our product and our audience. The truth is that everyone is fallible, and often our irrational love for our own ideas doesn’t necessarily prove the quality of those ideas. In this constantly changing media environment, a little bit of humility and careful consideration before moving forward with an idea goes a long way. Every week or two another ad campaign majorly flops or inspires significant negative publicity, and in hindsight, the problems are so clear! One example from last year was the Pepsi ad that tried to comment on political divisions and Black Lives Matter protests. Failures like these could be avoided by simply making time to vet projects more extensively, opening them up to criticism before they’re aired to the public. The brainchild project you’re so proud of isn’t always going to be perfect – but you won’t know that unless you listen to people around you. And in what some call the “post-truth” era, there’s more and more distrust and questioning of statements and claims out there. Think twice before you stretch the truth, and set yourself apart as a brand by seeking objectivity. Invest in Training and Skill Development “Every day there’s something new that changes the whole field,” says Rich Newsome, attorney and co-founder of Newsome Melton Law. “If you don’t have someone already working on figuring out how to use it, you’re behind.” New technologies and practices are being developed every day to match the proliferation of new media platforms and avenues for marketing. It’s your job as a marketer to stay on top of these developments, to be a “change manager.” That means not only being aware of latest advances in the field, but investing the time and staff to be able to take advantage of them. A Capgemini Consulting study in 2017 revealed that 70% of companies in the U.S. and 55% worldwide observed a widening talent gap when it comes to new digital technologies and the ability to take advantage of them. Continuing education for you and your staff to close that gap has to be a priority. Make time for developing new skills. Your brand will suffer if you don’t. Let Your Brand Be Genuine Customers buying into brands today need their brand to have a personality, to represent something. One large study in 2015 showed that 91% of consumers internationally expect businesses to act responsibly and keep external interests in mind. A full 84% say they choose products from responsible, pro-social companies when possible. Gone is the era where brands could stay out of all public conversations and get by with nothing but silly, gimmicky ads. People have values and beliefs and they want to see that your company has those too. It doesn’t need to be anything controversial, and it’s safer if it’s not, but you have to somehow humanize your brand. The most important thing to keep in mind here, however, is the importance of sincerity. If your attempt to show some sort of value or corporate responsibility is just empty posturing, audiences will see right through it and it will backfire. Let the social values of your brand come from the brand and the company itself. Smart consumers will pick up on that authenticity, and that will draw them in to your brand better than anything else. Time to Multi-Task If you really want to connect to your customers in 2018, you need to engage them at multiple levels. Effective marketing now means you have no choice but to work across many platforms at once. Don’t neglect your social media presence, but also don’t forget the value of video advertising across platforms like YouTube and Netflix. And that doesn’t mean you can ignore more traditional advertising media either. The most important thing is to know your audience. Know who your potential customers are and be able to effectively target them. Follow their lead and go where they go. You have to be consistent and disciplined in your multi-platform approach so that customers don’t drop through the cracks. For more tips, tools, and hacks to make your life as a marketer easier- join us at Modern Customer Experience 2018. ModernCX’s Modern Marketing track offers more than 200 expert-led sessions geared to equip you with new skills you can immediately apply to your work. Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018 here.

The new media environment is here. Or really, it’s been here long enough already that we should be used to it by now. The one constant in the marketing world of the 21st century, however, is change....

Marketing Automation

Building the Foundation of Digital Marketing Success

Welcome to the first installment of Makers of Modern Marketing at Oracle! A brand new blog series featuring interviews with the creators, architects and risk-takers behind marketing at Oracle. This series gives readers a peek into how marketers inside Oracle are applying our own products (“drinking our own champagne” as some might say) to drive innovation and build the future of digital marketing. We are starting off with a bang as we sit down with Patrick McGavock, Senior Director- Marketing Systems of Global Marketing Operations to chat about the constantly evolving sphere of marketing automation, the current and future states of data and what it takes to be a powerful modern marketer. McGavock came to Oracle about 14 years ago with the PeopleSoft acquisition in 2004 (though it doesn’t seem so long, he admits). Since then, he has been instrumental in building out the infrastructure and very foundation upon which much of Oracle Marketing Cloud operates. McGavock spends his days managing business analysts and marketing ops specialists around the world to maintain, advance and improve the capabilities that allow his team to oversee the systems that support thousands of events and tens of thousands of digital campaigns globally each year. And, on top of all that, this lifelong drummer (and former member of the PeopleSoft house band The Raving Daves) is teaching his two young daughters to play the drums like his favorite drummer John Bonham, or at least, as well as Dad. Convenient Acquisitions In late fall of 2012, McGavock and his team were looking into third-party marketing automation and began evaluating Eloqua and Marketo as prime candidates. “Eloqua came out way ahead for our use cases and for our set-up,” says McGavock, but then, “right in the middle of that was when they announced the acquisition!” With the tricky negotiations out of the way, McGavock and team immediately set about the construction of an entirely new marketing automation ecosystem, laying the foundational infrastructure for the tool we know today. The team worked at remarkable speed and pushed out the first campaign in just three months, unheard of in a corporation the size of Oracle. In the following years this foundation was intricately fleshed out, “it works well today and it allows us to do what we need to do…We're always tweaking it and there's always room for improvement,” says McGavock.    Garbage In, Garbage Out Data is at the root of everything we do, but not all data is created equal. At Oracle, we like to say that “data is in our DNA,” but what does that really mean? For McGavock, it means creating a well thought-out marketing automation ecosystem that has been optimally designed to support set business goals, “making sure you have the processes in place to be able to collect and manage the data efficiently and effectively.” He cites an age old marketing adage, “garbage in, garbage out”, that rings just as true today when applied to machine learning as it did in the early days of direct marketing. Machines will only learn what we provide for them, so marketers must set up an environment of success from the start or else what gets processed will never yield quality results, “if you feed the machine garbage, the result is more garbage,” says McGavock. Marketers must be cognizant of the quality of the data that they use, “It’s understanding the right KPI’s to focus on, with so much data available, sometimes people lose sight of the basics.” In the end, no matter how much fancy, new technology you have access to, nor how many incredibly minute data points you can measure, the success of your technology investment hinges on foundational marketing automation that is directed, digestible and actionable.    This is ever more relevant with the rise of real-time decision making and dynamic lead scoring across channels. From the internal data warehouse to 3rd party providers, there are a number of different real-time data sources to digest/manage, “we want to make sure we are able to understand and act, as people are researching or looking into particular subjects or solutions, that we want to take advantage of and make sure that the prospects have the information they need.” At the same time, however, Oracle adheres to strict data privacy and security protocols that vary across globe, going above and beyond to treat customers with the utmost respect when it comes to how their data is leveraged. “If you're worried about losing your job because of machine learning, then you're just not thinking about it right.” Machine Learning and Job Security AI and machine learning are at the forefront of every marketer’s mind these days. On one hand, it opens up an array of possibilities and offers a glimpse into what the future holds, but on the other hand, many of us are left with the creeping feeling that our jobs might be filled by computers. Perhaps McGavock can offer us some piece of mind with his admittedly “jaded” perspective on the robotic take-over: “If you're worried about losing your job because of machine learning, then you're just not thinking about it right…there should be plenty of other things that you need to be participating in or could be driving around the systems, processes and data necessary to support machine learning programs… There's still a lot of heavy lifting that has to happen.” This does not discredit the importance of machine learning, however. McGavock explains that nearly all Oracle lead scoring these days is being run by machine learning globally. And many more use cases are being built as we speak, “I think it's probably going to become more of a commodity where people will be able to use machine learning tactics without having a super deep knowledge of statistics.” There are seemingly boundless possibilities, so prioritization is crucial to investing time and capital into the technologies that will prove most beneficial to ROI. McGavock again emphasizes the need for data scientists, there needs to be someone who can look at data critically and on an individualized basis to pull the story from data, that is where the bottom line lies.    Be Inquisitive, Tenacious and Accountable Despite his many accomplishments as a marketer within and without Oracle, McGavock remains humble in his knowledge of the marketing space, “I kind of get a little nervous if somebody comes in and they are like, ‘I've got all the answers,’ because I have been doing this for a while and I learn something new every day.” In any organization, but especially one the size of Oracle, one must be self-driven and go after the solutions oneself, “It's a big company, trying to get something accomplished. Nobody is going to really care about it if you don't care about it.” And finally, harkening back to his own humble nature, McGavock says, “It's hard sometimes to say ‘oh we screwed up’ or ‘we could have done that better,’ but it's also kind of empowering because you don't get a lot of that.” The ability to own up to one’s mistakes, then to turn around and begin the search for the right solution on one’s own, is what brings all these qualities together to create an honest, effective, driven digital marketer.  “We don't lack for tools, essentially, so that makes it exciting!” Drinking Our Own Champagne Other than being able to ride his bike to work every day, one of McGavock’s favorite aspects about working with Oracle is that his marketing team actually gets to utilize “all the great tools we have in our toolbox”. From Oracle Marketing Cloud products, as well as, Oracle Data Cloud and everything else under the Oracle umbrella, marketers at Oracle are not constrained in terms of “access to that software, hardware technology… we don't lack for tools, essentially, so that makes it kind of exciting!” This means that Oracle marketers know the technology inside and out—they know how to wield it for unique needs, maximize on all capabilities, predict challenges and solve issues with greater agility. On a personal level, this means McGavock gets to work with products, like Oracle Eloqua, that he helped cultivate from its earliest stages at Oracle. He gets the unique joy of watching the fruits of his labor grow and challenge him in new ways—sipping on a healthy draught of his own champagne. Looking to structure your digital marketing environment?  Download our free eGuide Transforming Marketing Technology. We partnered with Digital Doughnut to bring you a new framework to guide you through a successful deployment of your marketing technology.  

Welcome to the first installment of Makers of Modern Marketing at Oracle! A brand new blog series featuring interviews with the creators, architects and risk-takers behind marketing at Oracle. This...

Customer Experience

What is a Reputation Management System & Do You Need One?

Most Marketers today are looking at new ways to improve brand advocacy through online crowd sourcing platforms. These platforms can be classified under one of the following: 1.    Online Review Communities: With the growth of ecommerce platforms, reviews from other buyers/users today plays a big part in a prospect’s buy decision. Prospects are expected to buy on platforms with a larger volume of reliable reviews. The credibility of the most successful ecommerce platforms today can be attributed to the availability of reliable and impartial volumes of reviews on their sites. 2.    Idea Contribution Communities: Such communities crowd source new ideas related to products/services of the company. By allowing customers to contribute ideas, you not only expand the pool of available ideas exponentially but also induce a sense of ownership among customers for your brand. 3.    Peer to Peer Collaboration Communities: Such communities are aimed at enabling users to help each other. Common examples of such forums are product developer/user forums where members help each other with using products. While the organization owning the product actively contributes, the success of such communities lies in creating a sense of ownership among users. So why should you consider an online crowdsourcing platform for your organization? These communities can act as a generator of brand advocates for your products. It may also be used to reduce product support costs and make it widely acceptable depending on what your priorities are. Above all, online communities are the most cost-effective and self-sustaining way to promote your brand. The question, however, is how can you ensure that a platform like this is successful and thriving? The answer is simple – Use the power of Reputation At the heart of a community is an individual who engages and provides relevant contributions to the community. The success of the community depends purely on the ability of the platform to attract and retain such individuals. But why will these individuals spend their valuable time engaging with your community? What do they get in return? Successful community owners know that the answer is reputation. In exchange for their contribution, you reward your community members by helping them build their reputation. Member activity details, rank/scores, testimonials, likes, awards, titles for their contribution to the community- all serve as reputation builders. Participants work hard to achieve these awards, titles, likes etc. and this motivates them to stay active in the community. Below are two examples of successful Reputation Management Systems: Harley Davidson has over many years, through a carefully orchestrated campaign maintained its image of “Exclusive – Not for all”. Harley Owner’s online community has immensely contributed to the growth of the brand and its business by perfectly complementing a voraciously active offline community. It has successfully brought together many smaller groups and broadened community interactions many folds. Does reputation play a role here? Of course, it does. Being part of an exclusive community in itself is prestigious to a Harley fan. Members of this community not only help the brand, they own it and it becomes a part of their life. The second example I would like to share is the Oracle Community. The challenge for an organization such as Oracle is the range of products and the variety of audience. Each product line has a developer community, a user group, and a partner ecosystem with different objectives but could have a shared audience pool.  The moment you bring in product lines, there are infinite permutations and combinations of forums that a user could likely participate in. Despite these challenges, Oracle community today is a single source of support and knowledge for all Oracle developers, customers, and partners. While a sophisticated and rigorous moderation strategy is key to the success of a vast community like this, at the core of the community are again, individuals. The people listed on the global leaderboard on the home page of the Oracle community are proud to be there. This is evident in their testimonial videos found posted in the community. Complexities around the structure of systems will always exist and may need constant monitoring and tweaking. However, this does not take away from the fact that Reputation Management Systems are a powerful yet cost-effective way to increase brand advocacy, online word of mouth, and reduce support costs. If you are looking to build your own Reputation Management System, take a look at what the Oracle Service Cloud Community Self Service provides. It is a powerful and flexible underlying structure for organizations to design and build their own Reputation Management Systems. Along with Oracle Knowledge of Service Cloud that allows organizations to share knowledge articles with the larger community, the Self Service Communities can be a formidable platform to enable your user communities.

Most Marketers today are looking at new ways to improve brand advocacy through online crowd sourcing platforms. These platforms can be classified under one of the following: 1.    Online Review...

Modern Marketing Resources

Here are the 2018 Markie Award Finalists

We are excited to announce the Markie Award finalists for 2018! This year marks the 12th year that we have celebrated the best in Modern Marketing. We were pleased to invite Oracle Commerce customers to submit for a Markie Award and they proved that great marketing can be done with Oracle Commerce products, too! A lot goes into great marketing - from leveraging data for insights, to creating personalized messages and reaching target audiences through multiple channels. The Markies submissions reflect the changing nature of marketing and the fact that our customers are demanding better customer experiences in exchange for brand advocacy and loyalty. Thank you to everyone who submitted and shared their inspiring stories with us. Our judges enjoyed reading through them all. The caliber of the submissions showed just how savvy our Oracle Marketing Cloud and Oracle Commerce customers are when it comes to Modern Marketing.  Congratulations to our finalists! Winners will be announced at the Markie Awards dinner ceremony at Modern Customer Experience in Chicago on April 10th at 8 PM. All attendees to the event are welcome to attend and celebrate with us. And now…the finalists! Account-Based Marketing Team of the Year These teams have embraced an end-to-end view across the entire buyer journey and across all channels. They know their buyer profile, have created targeted campaigns that drive engagement and ROI and have created visibility into which accounts have the greatest propensity to buy. This year’s finalists achieved phenomenal results with their account-based marketing strategies. With focused, methodical and well-executed campaigns, these organizations were able to increase open rates, build pipeline and tightened the overall experience, providing seamless touchpoints for their target audiences. At the same time, they were also able to create cross-functional relationships within their organizations. Cisco Clarivate Analytics DX Marketing NEC NTT Communications Corporation Best B2B Commerce Experience These data-driven Modern Commerce or Marketing professionals have proven ways to deliver personalized buying experiences for every B2B customer. They have provided their customers with relevant content, merchandising, personalized search, customized marketing programs, and tailored websites across all channels. At the same time, they enable self-service with custom catalogs, custom pricing and account-specific experiences. The finalists below are delivering integrated experiences, streamlining processes and providing seamless commerce experiences for their B2B customers. Some have even mastered B2C-like experiences for their B2B audience and increased their conversion rate in the process. Calix Dubai World Trade Center Integra Life Sciences The Chefs Warehouse WestRock   Best B2C Commerce Experience These data-driven Modern Commerce or Marketing professionals are delivering personalized buying experiences for every B2C customer, connecting the online experience to the in-store experience by exposing inventory availability and offering click and collect. This award recognizes the supremely enlightened organization that truly gets the power of personally engaging consistently delightful, and seamlessly integrated experiences where the customer runs the show. These finalists have created strategies to align and unify their brands, designed beautiful visual selling websites, leveraged mobile in engaging and easy-to-use ways and provide a variety of their users with targeted experiences. Ascena Retail Group Moleskine PureFormulas Public Broadcasting Service Distribution Vermont Country Store Best Digital Marketing Ecosystem These organizations are taking advantage of digital marketing integration to enhance processes or improve analytics. They have created an integrated ecosystem with CRM, third-party cloud apps, or other applications to automate, streamline, and enhance your marketing efforts and are often using APIs in interesting ways. This year’s finalists show how integrating with either multiple Oracle products or other third party products to build their marketing stack can help improve efficiencies and significantly increase revenue, sales opportunities and customer interactions. ADP Atea Infosys Jetstar Vodafone Group Enterprise Best Email Marketing Campaign Email can be extraordinary. In fact, there are some email communications that are so well written, so masterfully designed, that it's only a question of when people will respond, not if. Achieving extraordinary response rates isn't luck – it's the result of great targeting, content, personalization and timing. These finalists show just how extraordinary email can be. They were able to personalize emails for their target market, adopt A/B testing, analyzed their data to make customer experience the forefront of the campaigns that ultimately, drove revenue contribution. Aer Lingus Certiport Olav Thon Gruppen Tech Mahindra Limited Wine (Dia da Saudade) Best Emerging Company Marketing Campaign Doing more with less? These fast-growing, emerging companies of $100M in revenue or less have lean, mean, marketing teams that have executed masterful marketing campaigns using marketing automation to do the work of ten people. This year’s nominees proved that size doesn’t matter. They were able to create targeted customer experiences with clear objectives, organizational alignment and collaboration across different departments. E-commerce Enablers Pte ltd /Shopback Mist Systems Second City Works TurnKey Vacation Rentals   Best Integrated Mobile Experience For these organizations, mobile is the platform of choice for the majority of their ideal customers. As such they have created personalized experiences with messages and promotions optimized for mobile. These finalists have adopted a customer centric approach to their mobile experience, developed creative and modern looking responsive designs and designed mobile apps to connect online and offline data for complete end-to-end experiences. Moleskine Mountain America Credit Union Public Broadcasting Service Distribution The Vitamin Shoppe Vermont Country Store   Best International Campaign The Best International Campaign award will go to a company with a successful marketing campaign outside the United States - in multiple countries in multiple languages, modification of a program originally created in the U.S. and re-launched in another country, or any variation in between. The finalists this year truly built international campaigns by incorporating multiple campaign canvases designed for multiple languages across multiple countries, resulting in impressive ROI and pipeline revenue. HCL Technologies Ltd LATAM Airlines Morningstar Philips Lighting Best Lead Management Program Finalists in this category have a sophisticated lead management program that delivered measurable results. They demonstrate the use of lead scoring and deliver compelling results. In this award, people, process and technology all come into play. The 2018 Finalists in this category managed to coordinate leads across complex enterprises and multiple campaigns, creating alignment between sales and marketing and increasing revenue and pipeline at the same time. Basware OYJ Covance Inc HCL Technologies Ltd Saison Information Systems Co., Ltd Samsung Electronics France Best Omni-Channel Marketing Program Finalists in this category create personalized experiences with messages and promotions across web, social, mobile, email, display, or other digital channels to attract or retain their ideal customers? This year’s finalists are leveraging multiple Oracle products, leveraging all channels to build complex marketing programs that result in uplift rates, cost savings and improved customer experience. Aon Lojas Renner Medtronic National Roads and Motorists' Association Limited Best Overall Customer Experience Every company says they are customer focused. But few actually deliver. These finalists have created a customer retention or loyalty program that has successfully transformed their customers into fiercely loyal brand advocates. They have shifted their culture from consumer transactions to customer relationships to drive loyalty. The following finalists are making the digital shift and personalized their customer journeys using various technologies and integrated data, often connecting their customers offline and online resulting in increased customer retention, sales and conversion rates. Axcess Financial (Check n Go) Cisco Schibsted Media Vermont Country Store Visma Software Oy -  Tutka Best Social Campaign For finalists in this category, Social Media is more than just a buzz word. They have found creative ways to utilize both new and traditional social mediums in order to build sustained dialogs with customers and prospects, and have seized the opportunities available through social media to generate proven results. These finalists incorporated social media in innovative ways to promote their product, generate leads and drive results. They used visually appealing creative, leveraged influencers and put customer experience at the forefront of their campaigns. Axcess Financial (Check n Go) Bajaj Finserv Sage Technos Texas Instruments Best Testing and Optimization These Marketers have optimized the online customer experience with testing, insights, and personalization. They have maximized revenue potential across web, mobile, social, apps, and other digital channels as a result and have taken the leap to multivariate sophistication. Nominees for this award have incorporated testing and optimization of their campaigns and programs to mitigate risk, drive better decisions, increase revenue, and improve the customer experience.   The finalists in this category took testing to a whole other level by starting out with testing theories before implementing, as well as testing across different country sites. They analyzed and optimized personalized content on the web, resulting in significant revenue increases. Etihad Airways Hilton HTC Signet Jewelers Best Use of Data The data-driven Modern Marketer targets and engages their ideal audience for specific business initiatives These finalists are successfully using data to target, personalize, measure and win. They are using data in innovative and strategic ways, and have seen their efforts pay off with improved customer experiences and ROI. This year’s finalists used data science and predictive modeling to uncover segments and opportunity with a great realization and achievements. They used different data sources to lower costs of acquisition and created highly targeted campaigns using a strong mix of implicit and explicit data points. Jones Lang LaSalle Property Consultant Pte Ltd LTI (Larson Tourbro Infotech) Passarela REA Group Samsung Business America Best Use of Insights and ROI These Marketers are interpreting data for actionable recommendations that improve business results and customer experience. This award recognizes an organization that has moved beyond reporting (old methods of organizing data into informational summaries to monitor performance) towards analysis (new data and meaningful insights that improve performance).   These finalists used analytics and data science to proactively engage customers throughout the entire relationship lifecycle with personalized and optimized communications; establish enterprise-wide reporting strategies to create complete and actionable stories and determine ROI from campaigns to justify additional development of campaigns within their organizations. Cisco Covance Inc. Hitachi Consulting La-Z-Boy Morningstar Modern Marketing Leader of the Year Just as great people are the foundation for successful businesses, innovators are often the driving force behind exceptional marketing. These nominees are the passionate senior people that push their teams to succeed, lead decisive change, set the vision for the entire marketing organization and introduce innovative concepts.     This year’s submissions demonstrated impressive and inspiring leaders who are taking their marketing to the next level by aligning changing business environments with consumer behavior and bringing a “digital-first” vision into the organization. They have broken down silos and implemented ground-breaking marketing and testing new technologies. Brightcove - Chris Bondhus FIS - Alisa Barber Pirelli - David Alemani Sage - Kevin Cassidy Stein IAS - Marc Keating Most Creative Marketing Campaign Sometimes all of the pieces align to create a fantastic marketing campaign – the perfect idea, the right target, the memorable artwork, the personalized follow-up, and of course, the measurable results. These finalists have innovatively used segmentation and gamification to both educate and nurture their customers, increase interest in their product and leveraged celebrity to increase activity across multiple channels. Cisco Desert Financial Credit Union Eaton FIS Texas Instruments Rapid Transformation Enabling a high-performance marketing culture isn’t always easy. For most organizations, it can take time to master the intricate blend of messaging, segmentation, data orchestration, organizational alignment and other disciplines. The Rapid Transformation award honors those who have successfully implemented any Oracle Marketing Cloud technology in the past year, for their superb planning, execution, and results.   Within their first year, these finalists were able to both rapidly transformed their marketing and their corporate culture, successfully implement more than one marketing technology and use data analytics to drive their campaigns. Banco Votorantim BMW New Zealand Carlson Wagonlit Travel Movember Pirelli People's Choice Award: Best Video Submission This award honors the best video submission with a people’s choice award voted on by your peers. Finalists in this category submitted exceptional videos enhanced by creativity, humor or human interest touches. BMW New Zealand DX Marketing Hilton PETStock Samsung Electronics France Voting will be open soon! Check Topliners to watch the videos submitted by our finalists and cast your vote for Best Video Submission! Note: Voting requires registration to Topliners. New to Topliners? Click here to get started. Congratulations to our finalists! Watch the replays of the Markies Finalist announcements by visiting the Markies website.

We are excited to announce the Markie Award finalists for 2018! This year marks the 12th year that we have celebrated the best in Modern Marketing. We were pleased to invite Oracle Commerce customers...

Customer Experience

3 Digital Trends Driving Improved Customer Experience in 2018

Customer Experience (CX) is not just a buzz word. Businesses are operating in a saturated market where brand loyalty is decreasing, price competition is rising and consumers are distracted and exposed to several media, devices and a lot of information. In this complex ecosystem, CX is becoming crucial for companies in order to differentiate themselves, improve customer satisfaction, foster loyalty, reduce churn and ultimately increase revenue.   Just to provide few examples, according to a KPMG study (2017) there is a positive correlation between CX and financial results. A report by McKinsey (2014) found that companies focusing on maximising satisfaction of the entire customer journey can potentially increase customer satisfaction by 20%. And again, Forrester (2016) showed that superior CX drives superior revenue growth. When they compared the total growth rate of all CX leaders to that of all CX laggards they noticed that the leaders collectively had a 14-percentage point advantage. So CX is not just the latest trend, but what is it exactly and what makes a CX outstanding? There are different opinions on what the key elements of a good CX are. In my view, a good CX must be Consistent, Useful, Personalised and Delightful. I like to think that it’s not a coincidence that if you play with those words, you get CUPiD, the Latin God of attraction and love who would strike you with an arrow and make you fall in love with someone…or in our case with a brand! So, if in the eyes of the consumers, CX is trumping price and products, what are the areas where companies are investing to make their CX unique and respond effectively to consumers’ needs? According to a recent survey by eConsultancy (2017), over one-fifth of client respondents ranked 'optimising CX' as the single most exciting opportunity for the year ahead. In order to deliver differentiated CX, brands are looking at: engaging audiences through virtual or augmented reality, using artificial intelligence/ bots to drive campaigns and experiences, enhanced payment technologies and finally internet of things. In fact, the industry agrees that there are at least three prominent trends that are driving CX to the next level: VR/AR, AI/Bots, Mobile/IoT. 1. VR/AR VR and AR will play an important role in connecting the online and in-store experience. For example, it will enable customers to try before they buy. Amazon has just patented a mirror that dresses you in virtual clothes. Ikea has recently launched Ikea Place, which allows users to place virtual Ikea furniture into their own home to see how everything might look once assembled. Another home interiors-related app, Dulux Visualiser uses AR to see what your walls will look like when painted a different colour. AR can also be utilised to improve the experience in-store. Home Depot, for example, has launched an app that allows customers to find products inside a shop using real-time inventory and visual search. The Home Depot App has the ability to sense when the customer enters one of the stores and it activates the in-store mode, allowing them to find any item where they are. You can even use your camera to take a picture of an unfamiliar item and the app will show you a list of similar products and where to locate them. 2.  AI/Bots AI is taking the personalisation to the next level. Chatbots, for example, are making every one-to-one interaction completely tailored, allowing customers to engage 24/7 with a “virtual” representative that mimics the way a customer support representative would talk. Levi’s, for example, has announced a chatbot on Facebook Messenger, Levi’s Virtual Stylist, which will help customers find the perfect pair of jeans, providing shoppers with fit, rise and stretch recommendations in order to increase satisfaction and reduce returns. Another example of how AI will change CX is through an improved ad-relevance and on-site experience. In the last Shoptalk Europe, Topman explained how they are optimising conversion rates by serving different messages to shoppers when they are at risk of leaving the website. The notifications use machine learning to address issues that will help retain the consumers. For example, letting them know an item is low in stock is providing an uplift of 3-5%. 3. Mobile & IoT Mobiles, wearables and smart devices will help provide a consistent and seamless experience for customers.  Let’s just think about how mobile payment has impacted our lives and how easy it is today to browse, choose and pay all within the same app. In the UK alone, mobile payments spending tripled in the first half of 2017. In China Mobile payments totaled 81 trillion yuan ($16.7 trillion) for the first 10 months of 2017, nearly 40 per cent more than the whole of the previous year. As smartphones became ubiquitous, they became the perfect device to act as the hub of CX. But mobiles are just the beginning. According to Intel, there will be 200 billion connected devices by 2020. A market that will reach $1.29 trillion. Future IoT-enabled devices have the potential to allow marketers to uncover new innovative ways to understand and influence customer activity, behaviour, and consuming trends. Some great examples of how IoT is driving truly connected and omni-channel experiences is Amazon go, where customers place items in their baskets and simply walk out of the store when they have finished shopping. OfferMoments has developed dynamic billboards that change as you walk by. They turn digital screens into an interactive experience with adverts customised to you. Another great example of IoT in action is Rebecca Minkoff’s dressing room with smart mirrors enabled to read information from RFID tags placed on items brought into the cubicles. Summary CX is not the latest buzz word. It’s determining customer loyalty, influencing churn and ultimately has an impact on revenue and profits. To be successful, CX should be Consistent, Useful, Personalised and Delightful. Companies see optimising CX as the main opportunity for the years ahead. They are investing in new technologies to transform their CX and make it unique. Virtual reality, augmented reality, artificial intelligence and Internet of things are at the forefront of these investments and are increasingly playing a key role in defining the future of CX. Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018 here.  ModernCX is the only conference where you get to see end-to-end solutions from marketing to sales, service and commerce. Your Marketing Community Pass will give you access to all 4 tracks. Join other marketing professionals, industry influencers, product experts and Oracle executives to learn how you can use the entire marketing ecosystem to impact customer experience. See you in Chicago:  

Customer Experience (CX) is not just a buzz word. Businesses are operating in a saturated market where brand loyalty is decreasing, price competition is rising and consumers are distracted and exposed...

Cross Channel Marketing

Why Putting the Business Focus on Experience Pays Off

Despite numerous articles and opinion pieces promoting the need for brands to adopt customer-centric commerce, the business realities and commercial pressures placed on retailers still mean that many are taking a purely conversion-centric approach. As more brands make the shift into the digital space, it’s important to prevent tunnel vision when it comes to customer conversion and instead, find a balance between outcomes and customer experiences and help business to recognise that their conversion-centric approach is detrimental to their success. According to recent research by Aberdeen Group, delivering a good digital experience can result in as much as a 15% uplift in customer retention rates, up to 7x improvement in annual company revenue and 6x improvement in customer satisfaction rates. Such stats have helped to convince marketers that – when used correctly - customer experience can be a powerful marketing tool, both helping to drive growth and bolster customer loyalty. In order to gain these benefits however, brands must first become more self-aware and more willing to embrace digital transformation. One way to welcome this change and drive success in all areas is to think of experience as a transactional currency, from which both the brand and the customer can benefit. As competition blooms, brands need to understand that user experience is often a more powerful differentiator than price, as consumers gravitate to brands that adapt to their needs  . This loyalty, which in turn drives engagement, can be harnessed – using the right technology - for maximum benefit to both brands and customers. This will become even more apparent once brands begin to harness their customers’ data, turning gained knowledge into tangible business outcomes. There is never a lack of data to garner; customer experience data is rich and almost limitless – often gaining even more value over long periods of time. Brands can use this information to consistently tweak and improve their path to purchase and move toward their goal of meeting a customer’s needs. By using this data to build personas of their customers, marketers can become experts in the customer groups that frequently interact with their brands. Many of the brands embarking on the customer experience shift have already started to see positive outcomes. A company that has been successful in getting digital customer experience right, to transform its success, is the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). The company set itself the challenging task of trying to redefine its brand in the market, transforming from being a financial services provider to being an ‘experience business’ which works within the financial sector. This change in focus, away from products and towards customer experiences, has helped RBS provide a higher quality of service to its customers, ultimately building trust and loyalty in the long run. In the first week of using this technology, RBS saw a significant increase in click-through rate, and the agreement in principle completion went up by 10%. RBS has since been able to improve over one million journeys. Success like this is not limited to any particular sector and can be achieved by any brand that is willing to modernise and understand how customers purchase within the digital realm. All businesses – regardless of the products they sell or the services they deliver – ultimately strive to modernise their practices and identify areas that can be optimised and improved. Optimisation allows brands to overcome difficult business challenges that stem from a lack of interaction with customers. This holistic approach takes into account all the aspects of online behaviour that may have previously been missed. Focusing on experience allows brands to gain an edge over their competition, using sophisticated metrics and complex data sets to reach their targets and drive success for many years to come. Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018: Whether you are looking for better ways to manage the full lifecycle of your B2C customers or you want to nurture B2B clients from first impression to customer advocacy, you won’t want to miss what Modern Customer Experience 2018 (ModernCX) has to offer. Join other marketing professionals, industry influencers, product experts and Oracle executives to learn how you can use the entire marketing ecosystem to impact the customer experience.  Register for the event here. Looking forward 

Despite numerous articles and opinion pieces promoting the need for brands to adopt customer-centric commerce, the business realities and commercial pressures placed on retailers still mean that many...

Modern Marketing Resources

Five Pre-Conference Sessions You Can’t Miss at Modern Customer Experience (ModernCX)

Modern Customer Experience (ModernCX) 2018 once again offers registered attendees the opportunity to arrive early for a high-value, free pre-conference training event across multiple Oracle Customer Experience (CX) platforms. The Pre-Conference Education event takes place on Monday, April 9 and Tuesday, April 10, prior to the conference opening keynote. Marketing cloud sessions, including courses on Eloqua, Responsys, DMP and Content Marketing, will span both days, presented by some of the best Oracle University instructors, like Rafael Rodriguez and Adrienne Albregts. Meet these and other favorite experts and network with your peers and Oracle pros from Oracle Marketing Cloud. Beyond the photo ops and business card exchanges, the education is the hero of this event! Get the latest product knowledge, tips, tricks and best practices to apply in your marketing strategy. The event session catalog is live on the ModernCX 2018 website, but here’s a sneak peek and an insider’s take on some sessions you won’t want to miss: 1.     Reporting 911: Using Robust Data Insight to Avoid Marketing Emergencies Platform Focus: Oracle Eloqua Presenter: Nikki Vaughn, Oracle Overview: You'll learn how to best structure your organization's reporting in Insight to gain a more thorough understanding of your Eloqua marketing efforts. Learn more about how basic reports provide critical information and pull together your data in an easy-to-consume way. Meaningful insight and discussion are planned in this strategic session. 2.     Mobile App Messaging for Smarties! Platform Focus: Oracle Responsys Presenter: Rafael Rodriguez, Oracle University Overview: You may know what a "Profile List" is, but do you know what an "App Channel List" is? Get answers to this and other questions in this intermediate-level session. Join this interactive session with one of our most experienced Marketing Cloud instructors to take a close look at how Responsys handles Mobile Apps to work with your data. 3.     B2B: Oracle Eloqua App Cloud Platform Focus: Oracle Eloqua Presenter: Adrienne Albregts, Oracle University Overview: Attend this advanced Eloqua session to learn how to install popular apps in Eloqua and explore topics such as social sign-ons and sharing apps to foster engagement and increase conversion rates. 4.     Facing Content Marketing Challenges Head-On Platform Focus: Oracle Content Marketing Presenter: Michael Kirsner, Oracle University Overview: Content marketers face many challenges, but you’re not alone! In this session, we’ll take a look at some of the most common challenges facing content marketers, and explore the features of the tool that can help address these challenges. 5.     Modern Learning for the Modern Customer Experience (CX) Organization Platform Focus: All CX Presenter: Susan Korbey, Oracle University Overview: Your CX cloud training needs to keep pace with evolving cloud technology. In this insightful session, explore next-generation education options and get a first-hand look at how Oracle University has developed and enhanced training to drive user adoption and success. Pre-conference education is the perfect chance to start or continue a training journey to marketing mastery! You can find more information about pre-conference education in the Topliners Community. PRE-CONFERENCE EDUCATION SCHEDULE Monday, April 9: ·       Time: 12:00pm - 5:00pm ·       Sessions: Three 90-minute training blocks, across multiple rooms ·       Topics: Marketing Cloud (B2B, B2C, DMP, OCM) -- presented by Oracle University instructors Tuesday, April 10 ·       Time: 9:30am - 1:30pm ·       Sessions: Two 90-minute training blocks, across multiple rooms; lunch break included ·       Topics: Marketing Cloud, Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Commerce Cloud -- presented by Oracle University instructors and CX product experts HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN PRE-CONFERENCE SESSIONS It's easy to take advantage of pre-conference education sessions. ·       Register for MCX 2018  ·       Plan your sessions in the session catalog ·       Arrive early to attend ·       Learn, network and enjoy! Pre-conference education sessions are free and open to any registered, full conference attendee, but space is limited, so be sure to plan your sessions early. The Education Help Desk can assist with any questions about pre-conference education. See you in Chicago!    

Modern Customer Experience (ModernCX) 2018 once again offers registered attendees the opportunity to arrive early for a high-value, free pre-conference training event across multiple Oracle Customer...

Content Marketing

Are You Tracking Your Content Marketing’s Effectiveness Yet?

In my recent blog post I shared with B2B marketers 5 Steps to Content Marketing Success in 2018 and the ultimate key to success: a documented strategy. But would you be surprised if I tell you that only 35% of organizations measure the return on investment (ROI) of its content marketing efforts? This is according to Content Marketing Institute’s (CIM’s) 2018 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends research (North America). That’s pretty shocking, wouldn’t you say? When asked, “Why doesn’t your organization measure the ROI of its content marketing efforts”, B2B marketers in the same research gave the following top three reasons: No formal justifi­cation required (38%) We need an easier way to do this (38%) We don’t know how to do this (27%) With B2B marketers continuing to produce more content each year, I wonder how long we’ll continue to get away without measuring the effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) of our content. But even when no formal justifi­cation is required from our organization, shouldn’t we be curious to understand the impact content has on our customers and the business? One would hope so. While 55% of the most successful B2B content marketers measure content marketing ROI, according to CIM’s research, I understand when marketers say that they “don’t know how to do this”. It is difficult to consistently and accurately tie revenue to marketing efforts. Consider looking at the other metrics that matter to your organization. Start with the business objectives your content marketing strategy needs to support. While all content marketing programs should assist in driving prospective customers through the buyers’ journey, not all content can be tied back to revenue. For different stages of the buyer’s journey – e.g. Interest, Learn, Evaluate, Justify, Purchase, and Advocate – you will need to identify different content performance indicators. Those indicators may be further influenced by geographic or demographic factors. Here are five categories that can help you measure your content marketing success: Consumption metrics measure how engaged your audience is with your content and gives you insight into your brand awareness (e.g. page views, click-through rates, and downloads). Sharing metrics indicate how much your readers or followers like your content, how funny, insightful or unique they have found it (e.g. likes, shares, tweets, and pins). Lead Generation metrics tie your content back to leads and help you optimize your top-of-the-funnel performance (e.g. form submits, downloads, and lead conversion rates). Sales metrics link your content to revenue and are required to calculate your ROI (e.g. online and offline sales, contract renewals, and retention rates). Reach metrics inform you of the size of your audience as well as the geographic and demographic spread (e.g. visitors per region, demographic split, and mobile readership). The metrics you identify should give you the insight to make informed decisions, which lead to optimization of your content marketing efforts. Once you have defined the metrics that will help you measure your content’s effectiveness, document the data sources and owners. We’ve developed a simple Metrics Data Tracker to help you keep track. Visit our Metrics Do-It-Yourself Marketing Success page today to find an action plan and more resources to help you implement the content marketing metrics that matter to you. For more tips, tools, and hacks to make your life as a marketer easier- join us at Modern Customer Experience 2018. ModernCX’s Modern Marketing track offers more than 200 expert-led sessions geared to equip you with new skills you can immediately apply to your work. Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018 here. 

In my recent blog post I shared with B2B marketers 5 Steps to Content Marketing Success in 2018and the ultimate key to success: a documented strategy. But would you be surprised if I tell you that...

Data-Driven Marketing

Making the Case for a Chief Data Officer to Leverage Your Most Valuable Business Asset

Our approaches to serving customers have become so disconnected that it’s stunning. There’s a real opportunity for companies to gain a competitive advantage by providing superior customer experiences.  They can do this by taking a more strategic approach to how they manage their data assets.  Failure to do this risks damaged reputations, revenues and hinders the ability to succeed in new markets. The role of data within organizations must change from being departmentally siloed, to being centrally managed. Breaking down these siloes is more of an organizational challenge than a technical one, requiring a data strategy, the correct level of ownership, and corporate governance. This means having a C-level supported, organization-wide understanding of the customer, broad executive level ownership, and a well-managed change control process to ensure ongoing data quality and trust in the data across the organization. Your teams may analyze website trends and tweak marketing programs to lure back shopping cart abandoners.  These are certainly important use cases.  But, the notion of capitalizing on your data requires you to re-orient the whole organization around the customer, and likewise, how your customer interacts with your brand throughout the entire customer journey.  CX = The Case for a Chief Data Officer Data-centric use cases mainly focus on customer acquisition, whether increased website visitors, optimized purchase funnels, targeted remarketing programs or personalized advertising. This only scratches the surface. Data can be used to impact every touchpoint for the customer beyond sales and marketing, including customer support, service and loyalty. Once data is connected to form deep meaningful customer intelligence, you connect that intelligence to provide connected, seamless customer experiences (CX). These are the opportunities waiting for companies that think more broadly about their data assets. Companies that provide CX leadership are creating a new position called the Chief Data Officer. I consider it more of a persona than a job title. However you define it, this person is responsible for breaking down data siloes and figuring out what it means to turn data into a competitive, proprietary business asset. Dynamics Driving Change – Get on or Get Out of the Way! Data as a business asset is hardly new.  So, what’s the urgency to accelerate this?  Customers demand highly relevant, contextual experiences: Consumers are savvy, well informed, and demand top-notch, relevant brand experiences. This challenges brands to better understand the discreet needs of individuals and to use that intelligence to deliver the most personalized experiences possible. Enterprises that embrace a data-driven culture by harnessing all data at every opportunity in order to differentiate itself across the complete customer experience will be rewarded by their customers. Channel proliferation and the Internet of Things (IoT): The volume of digital interactions and their complexity keeps growing. The way customers engage with your brand almost always involves a variety of channels and devices. IoT expands the definition of a digital touchpoint beyond a human to any network-enabled object. Companies must rethink how to leverage all this new data to drive real-time decisions and avoid the creation of more data siloes. Data security concerns: A data breach can immediately destroy a brand’s reputation. As software is increasingly delivered as a service over the cloud, and behavioral data volumes grow and fragment, data security rises to the top of executives’ priorities. Companies must re-consider how they manage their customer intelligence with the clear recognition that the data chain is only as strong as its weakest link. When data is considered a business asset, it has the power to create competitive business advantages for your organization. It will require a cultural shift for many organizations, but now is the time to start. The alternative is to be left behind and lose your most valuable customers to your competitors. Join us at Modern Customer Experience 2018. Hear from Steve Earl and other Oracle executives and thought leaders at ModernCX. The Marketing track offers more than 200 expert-led sessions with over 50 data and analytics related sessions. Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018 here.  *This article originally appeared on the Oracle Customer Experience blog

Our approaches to serving customers have become so disconnected that it’s stunning. There’s a real opportunity for companies to gain a competitive advantage by providing superior customer experiences. ...

CMO Corner

CMOs Should Leverage Identity Confirmation Tools to Validate Stakeholder Sign-Off

As an outside marketing consultant working in the corporate arena, much of my day is spent chasing down approvals for campaigns, ad schemes and promotions. Even career, in-house marketing gurus struggle at times with the many sign-offs that are needed to move a project forward. Allow me to offer a brief word of advice to companies looking to leverage the fresh perspective of an outside consultant: Please, streamline the approval process as much as possible. Most outside consultants have chosen this path because they enjoy the freedom of performing their craft outside of the traditional corporate hierarchy. Creative spontaneity is what gives a new ad campaign wings. And nothing makes me regret taking on a new client more than being subject to the whims of fifteen different stakeholders and their endless, asynchronous requests for revisions. The First Challenge is Confirming that Sign-Off Has Been Granted One of my more frustrating experiences came during my birth by fire into the corporate arena. Our team created a powerful brand refresh; complete with concepts for YouTube videos, new social media pages, reactive animation ads and landing pages. The only thing that was missing was a VR campaign – something that Mack managed to dominate with their Mack Anthem rollout. During individual conversations with each stakeholder, I gained their verbal approval to move forward. And, of course, there were requests for minor tweaks along the way. Once these tweaks were incorporated, I asked for a meeting to present our concept to the entire leadership team. Half-way through the meeting, as I hit play on our YouTube video concepts, I started to hear some grumbling from the back of the room. For the remainder of the presentation, this low conversational buzz continued. Finally, it was time for input – something I had hoped would come in the form of a quick thumbs up. Boy, was I wrong. Nearly every member of the c-suite started in with their concerns. It was a disaster. I had to try and rebuild the entire campaign from scratch. There were just too many objections, and each one pulled the project in a different direction. Reconciling everything would be a challenge, and it was just easier to hit restart. I’ve since learned my lesson. Getting verified sign-off from each member of the c-suite requires a lot more than a verbal commitment from each decision-maker. Use Third-Party Verification to Confirm Sign-Off There are many ways to authenticate an e-signature. The main things that I look for in an e-signature solution are: Does it allow for stakeholders to sign-off from anywhere? Does it require some sort of challenge, to confirm that the stakeholder is signing-off, and not one of their executive assistants? Can I easily access the executed document from any device? If a revision is made, can I easily highlight the changes and gain an electronic sign-off for those changes from each stakeholder? This may sound extreme, but you’ll find that when you’re working with a diverse team of decision-makers, you need them to execute their sign-off privileges responsibly. This tool, which is legally the same as a handwritten signature, grabs the attention of decision-makers. They take an extra moment to look things over and ensure that they really are happy with what they’re signing off on – something that dramatically reduces last minute objections to things they previously overlooked. Everyone on the team, whether a stakeholder or an outside consultant, has an endless list of fires to put out – demanding immediate attention and distracting from the organizational goals. As an outsider coming into the fray, it’s best to carefully document interactions with each key decision-maker. This not only ensures that their input is taken into consideration, but helps you to earn their attention at critical moments. For more tips, tools, and hacks to make your life as a marketer easier- join us at Modern Customer Experience 2018. ModernCX’s Modern Marketing track offers more than 200 expert-led sessions geared to equip you with new skills you can immediately apply to your work. Register for Modern Customer Experience 2018 here.   

As an outside marketing consultant working in the corporate arena, much of my day is spent chasing down approvals for campaigns, ad schemes and promotions. Even career, in-house marketing gurus...

Email Marketing

What we think about Google’s AMP for Email

Heard about Google’s recently announced AMP for Email project? Currently being tested by Pinterest, Doodle and Booking.com, it’s being used to include dynamic content and real-time pricing and availability, all within email.

Heard about Google’s recently announced AMP for Email project? Currently being tested by Pinterest, Doodle and Booking.com, it’s being used to include dynamic content and real-time pricing...

Product News

Digital Ad Optimization with Oracle Maxymiser

The customer journey in today’s digital age is anything but straightforward. The marketing funnel is no longer a linear path from generating leads to conversions. In the always-connected world of smartphones and social media where it is difficult to stay focused for long periods of time, the consumer journey can start and stop multiple times within each funnel layer from acquisition to retention.

The customer journey in today’s digital age is anything but straightforward. The marketing funnel is no longer a linear path from generating leads to conversions. In the always-connected world of...

Email Marketing

7 Practical Building Blocks of a Strong Email Deliverability Strategy

Email marketing is a powerful way to connect with people with many marketers still counting it as their primary channel for lead generation. In fact, there are 658 billion emails sent worldwide a day and 7.6 million emails sent every second. However, how many of these emails are engaging, relevant and drive a CTA? The latest Responsys customer User Forum tackled this very subject hearing from Oracle Marketing Cloud experts on email marketing in today’s environment. Kim Barlow, Director of Strategic & Analytical Services EMEA at Oracle opened the day by stating life is getting harder for the marketer as they strive to remain a legitimate brand that provides compelling content and a CTA, rather than settling for irrelevant bulk emails that hit the spam filter. Creating email marketing content that successfully engages your audience is no mean feat. Especially when you consider one of the biggest challenges is deliverability. The process from launching a message to getting a customer’s inbox has significantly evolved over the past 10 years from batch and blast to hyper-personalisation. “What is important is that over this time a marketer’s ability to reach prospects’ inboxes has become tied to reputation and engagement,” as Kevin Senne, Senior Director, Global Deliverability and Justin Crivelli, Senior Manager, Global Deliverability at Oracle shared. And ISPs now play a crucial role in reputation. They are working hard to make the inbox a great experience and have an active role in protecting their customers from receiving unwanted or unsolicited emails. What is interesting is that each ISP has their own way of calculating what reputation means to them. However, if there is doubt about a brands reputation, this results in deliverability problems where ISPs can temporarily block emails. And this can take 2 – 3 weeks to resolve. ISPs use a variety of tools to process and track all inbound emails – both on an IP and domain level. However, there are key factors ISPs look for when it comes to reputation and deliverability in the inbox: They now look at a brand as a whole. So while your department may be doing the right job, another department may not and this will still damage your reputation Key reputation indicators are spam traps, volume, complaints, bounces and engagement When it comes calculating reputation, each IP address receives its own reputation and new IPs are treated with higher scrutiny due to lack of history and deliverability Consistency is key as ISPs measure reputation over time ISP’s factor in an individual recipient’s interactions like opens, clicks, scrolls, and filtering While there is still no way to know what a brand’s specific reputation is at any ISP, we know that reputation measurement will continue to evolve. ISP’s like Google will put more and more data together including traffic from your website, SMS messages and social presence - Gmail recently allowed users to setup non-Google email addresses using IMAP. So how do marketers achieve a good reputation and what are the practical building blocks of a strong deliverability strategy? Implement a rigorous and ongoing regimen of reviewing the quality of lists and databases. The biggest single contributor to deliverability success for this is the opt-in process which will exclude invalid email addresses and spam traps, qualifying new subscribers. Offer customers a preference centre to manage subscriptions to fine tune content of messages and prevent churn and email fatigue by offering frequency control options. Consistently review send patterns as a sudden increase in email volume could be an indicator that your mail server has been compromised by a spammer.  Focus on email design and structure. Always above the fold, every recipient should be able to answer the following three questions whether or not images are blocked - Who are you? What do you want me to do? Why should I do that? Less content, less size – more focus, more relevance. Keep your subject line between 35 to 50 characters long, avoid spam keywords and include 2 - 3 CTA’s in the email. Regularly monitor deliverability and audience engagement. Do not ignore engagement patterns in your base and monitor unique open rate by ISP, hard bounce rate, soft bounce rate, spam compliant rate and inbox placement rate. Test, test, test – the mantra of user-centric marketing. In todays’ environment, marketers understand that they have 2 – 5 seconds before a customer decides if the email is relevant. As Markus Frank, Head of Strategic Services, DACH at Oracle concluded at the User Forum “Deliverability is all about whether you are a modern customer-centric marketer.” Download this Email Deliverability Guide for Modern Marketers for more pro tips on orchestrating and delivering marketing messages that are relevant to individual preferences and behavior.

Email marketing is a powerful way to connect with people with many marketers still counting it as their primary channel for lead generation. In fact, there are 658 billion emails sent worldwide a day...

Oracle

Integrated Cloud Applications & Platform Services