Friday Jul 13, 2012

Oracle Customer Experience Summit @ OpenWorld

The Customer Experience Revolution is here. Are you ready?

Organizations operate in a new era of the “empowered consumer” where customers are more in charge of their relationships with brands than ever before. In this new era, customer experience has become the most important and defensible differentiator and driver of business value.

To help you succeed in this new era, Oracle is launching a new conference within a conference: Oracle Customer Experience Summit @ OpenWorld. This event is being held October 3 to 5, 2012 at the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco.

This unique summit will bring together leading brands and experts to share their insights, success stories and lessons learned to help you and your organization succeed in the Experience Revolution. You will learn about Oracle’s vision, strategy and complete solutions for customer experience and have access to interactive workshops and extensive networking opportunities.

The Oracle Customer Experience Summit @ OpenWorld offers more than 40 sessions for you to choose from and combines general sessions, roundtables, working group sessions, and networking opportunities designed to help attendees get maximum value from their participation.

Expert-led sessions cover topics such as:

•    Identifying trends and innovations for succeeding with a customer experience–driven business strategy
•    Delivering great experiences throughout the customer lifecycle
•    Delivering real value through acquisition, retention, and efficiency
•    Demonstrating ROI for customer experience investments
•    Increasing revenue and referrals and reducing churn through better customer experience

Whether you are looking for ideas on how to identify the most pressing problems to solve, how to align your organization around your experience initiatives, or how to take your customer experience initiative to the next level, this summit is a must for business and IT executives charged with succeeding in the Experience Revolution. Learn more.

Friday Jun 29, 2012

The Customer Experience Revolution is Now

To conclude this week’s focus on customer experience, I’ll end by recapping how my week began in New York City at The Experience RevolutionWe all know that customers increasingly call the shots, and that winning or losing depends on how well we manage to meet their expectations. Today’s customers have a multitude of choices and are quick to jump ship following a poor experience. As a result, delivering an experience that is relevant, interactive, engaging, and consistent across channels and fostering rewarding relationships are increasingly important to business success.  It is only through exceptional customer experiences that companies can expect to acquire new customers and maintain their loyalty. 

Over 400 of us gathered at Gotham Hall on Monday night to hear Oracle President Mark Hurd introduce Oracle Customer Experience, a cross-stack suite of customer experience products that include Oracle RightNow CX Cloud ServiceOracle EndecaOracle ATG Web CommerceOracle WebCenter,Oracle Siebel CRMOracle Fusion CRMOracle Social Network, and Oracle Knowledge Management. I'd encourage you check out this video to hear Mark explain why having a good product isn't good enough in the wake of the customer experience revolution.

The Experience Revolution event itself was designed to deliver the kind of rich experience that sticks with you, using an interactive gallery of customer experience to deliver an individualized experience to each attendee through a combination of touch screens and near field communication technology.  Over the coming weeks we’ll share some of these customer experience vignettes with you. In the interim, you can learn more about Oracle Customer Experience solutions here.


Tuesday Jun 26, 2012

Catch Oracle Today and Tomorrow at Forrester’s Customer Experience Forum 2012 East

Continuing our coverage of the customer experience revolution this week, don’t miss a chance to catch up with Oracle at Forrester’s Customer Experience Forum 2012 East today and tomorrow in New York City. The theme for this year’s Forum is “Outside In: The Power Of Putting Customers At The Center Of Your Business” and will take a look at important questions surrounding how to transform your company in order to take best advantage of the customer experience revolution:

  • Why is customer experience the greatest untapped source of cost savings and increased revenue today?
  • What is the key to understanding and taking control of your customer experience ecosystem?
  • What are the six essential customer experience disciplines?
  • Which companies have adopted best-in-class customer experience practices?
  • How do customer experience strategies drive differentiating activities and processes at top companies?
  • Which organizations appoint a chief customer officer to lead their customer experience efforts?
  • What is the future of customer experience?
  • How can you design an enterprise wide customer experience?
  • How can you measure the results of your customer experience efforts?


As a gold sponsor of the event, there will be a numbers of ways to interact with Oracle while you’re attending the Forum.  Here are some of the highlights:

Oracle Speaking Session
Tuesday, June 26, 2:10pm – 2:40pm
The Customer And YOU — Today’s Winners Are Defined By Customer Experience
Anthony Lye, Senior Vice President of Customer Relationship Management, Oracle

Come hear Anthony Lye, Senior Vice President of Customer Relationship Management at Oracle, explain how leading companies are investing in customer experience solutions to enrich all interactions between a customer and their company. He will discuss Oracle's vision for transforming your customer engagement, insight, and execution into a connected, personalized, and rewarding experience across all touchpoints and interactions. He will demonstrate how great customer experiences generate real business results by attracting more customers, retaining more customers, and generating more sales while improving operational efficiency.

Solution Showcase
Tuesday, June 26th
9:45am - 10:30am - Morning Networking Break in the Solutions Showcase
11:45am – 1:15pm - Networking Lunch an Dessert in the Solutions Showcase
2:40pm – 3:25pm - Afternoon Break in the Solutions Showcase
5:30pm – 7:00pm - Networking Reception in the Solutions Showcase

Wednesday, June 27th
9:45am - 10:30am - Morning Networking Break in the Solutions Showcase
12:20pm -1:20pm - Networking Lunch and Dessert in the Solutions Showcase

We hope to see you there!


Webcast: Learn How Ancestry.com Delivers Exceptional Online Customer Experience with Oracle WebCenter
Date: Thursday, June 28, 2012
Time: 10:00 AM PDT/ 1:00 PM EDT

Ancestry.com is the world’s largest online family history resource, providing an engaging customer experience to more than 1.7 million members. With a wealth of learning resources and a worldwide community of family history enthusiasts, Ancestry.com helps people discover their roots and tell their family stories. Key to Ancestry.com’s success has been the delivery of an online customer experience that converts site visitors into paying subscribers and keeps them coming back. Register now to learn how Ancestry.com delivers an exception customer experience using Oracle WebCenter Sites.



Monday Jun 25, 2012

You Say You Want a (Customer Experience) Revolution

rev-o-lu-tion [rev-uh-loo-shuhn]

noun

1. a sudden, radical or complete change

2. fundamental change in the way of thinking about or visualizing something; a change of paradigm

3. a changeover in use or preference especially in technology <the computer revolution>

Lately, I've been hearing an awful lot about the customer experience revolution.  Tonight Oracle will be hosting The Experience Revolution, an evening of exploration and networking with customer experience executives in New York City where Oracle President Mark Hurd will introduce Oracle Customer Experience, a cross-stack suite of customer experience products that includes Oracle WebCenter and a number of other Oracle technologies. Then, on Tuesday and Wednesday, the Forrester Customer Experience Forum East also kicks off in New York City where they'll examine how businesses can "reap the full business benefits of the customer experience revolution."


So, are we in the midst of a customer experience revolution? As a consumer, I can answer that question with a definitive “yes.” When I bought my very first car, I had a lot of questions. How do I know if I’m paying a fair price? How do I know if this dealer is honest? Why do I have to sit through these good cop, bad cop shenanigans between sales and sales management at the dealership? In the end the whole experience left me feeling deeply unsatisfied. I didn’t feel that I held all that much power over the experience and the only real negotiating trick I had was to walk out, which I did, many times before actually making a purchase.

Fast forward to a year ago and I found myself back in the market for a new car. The very first car that I bought had finally kicked the bucket after many years, many repair bills, and much wear and tear. Man, I had loved that car. It was time to move on, but I had a knot in my stomach when I reflected back on my last car purchase experience and dreaded the thought of going through that again. Could that have been the reason why I drove my old car for so long? But as I started the process of researching new cars, I started to feel really confident. I had a wealth of online information that helped me in my search. I went to Edmunds and plugged in some information on my preferences and left with a short list of vehicles. After an afternoon spent test driving the cars my short list, I had determined my favorite – it was a model I didn’t even know about until my research on Edmunds! But I didn’t want to go back to the dealership where I test drove it. They were clearly old school and wanted me to buy the way that they wanted to sell. No thanks!

After that I went back online. I figured out exactly what people had paid for this car in my area. I found out what kind of discount others were able to negotiate from an online community forum dedicated to the make and model. I found out how the sales people were being incentivized by the manufacturer that month. I learned which dealers had the best ratings and reviews. This was actually getting exciting. I was feeling really empowered. My next step was to request online quotes from the some of the highest rated dealers but I already knew exactly how much I was going to pay. This was really a test for the dealers. My new mantra was “let he who delivers the best customer experience win.”

An inside sales rep from one dealer responded to my quote request within a couple of hours. I told him I had already decided on the make and model and it was just a matter of figuring out who I would buy it from. I also told him that I was really busy and wouldn’t set foot in the dealership unless we had come to terms beforehand. Lastly, I let him know that I’d prefer to work out the details via email. He promised to get back to me shortly with a detailed quote.

Over the next few days I received calls from other dealers. One asked me a host of questions that I had already answered in their lengthy online form. Another blamed their website performance issues for their delay in responding to my request. But by then it didn’t really matter because I’d already bought the car days before from the dealer who responded to me first and who was willing to adjust their sales process to accommodate my buying one.

So, yes, I really do believe we are in the midst of a customer experience revolution. And every revolution leaves some victorious and others vanquished. Which side do you want to be on when it comes to the customer experience revolution?

Friday Jun 22, 2012

Learn How Ancestry.com Helps Families Uncover Their History with Oracle WebCenter

Oracle Corporation
Delivering Exceptional Online Customer Experiences
Delivering Exceptional Online Customer Experiences

Ancestry.com is the world’s largest online family history resource, providing an engaging and interactive customer experience to more than 1.7 million members. With smart search technology, a wealth of learning resources, and a worldwide community of family history enthusiasts, Ancestry.com helps people discover their roots and tell their unique family stories. Key to Ancestry.com’s success has been the delivery of an online customer experience that converts site visitors into paying subscribers and keeps them coming back. To help achieve this goal, Ancestry.com turned to Oracle’s Web experience management solution, Oracle WebCenter Sites.

Join us as executives from Ancestry.com and Oracle discuss how Oracle’s Web experience management solution is helping them deliver engaging online experiences. Learn how:
  • Ancestry.com selected Oracle WebCenter Sites to meet their demanding Web experience management requirements
  • The company was able to get up and running quickly despite a complex technology stack and challenging integration requirements with legacy systems
  • Ancestry.com empowered business users to manage the online experience and significantly reduce time to market for their online campaigns and initiatives
Register now for the Webcast.
Oracle Fusino Middleware Webcenter
REGISTER NOW
Thursday,
June 28, 2012
10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET
Presented by:

Blane Nelson
Chief Architect–Applications,
Ancestry.com

Christie Flanagan
Director of Product Marketing, Oracle WebCenter Sites,
Oracle

Thursday Jun 07, 2012

Creating Engaging Online Experiences is Easy and Intuitive for Marketers with Oracle WebCenter Sites 11g

Last month, we announced the availability of Oracle WebCenter Sites 11g, the latest release of our web experience management solution. This new release is really geared toward enabling marketers and business users to drive customer acquisition and brand loyalty by simplifying the whole process of creating, managing and optimizing engaging online experiences.  To show you just how this works, we’ve created the video below which takes you through the tasks a typical marketer might execute using Oracle WebCenter Sites to manage their online presence -- everything from page editing to page creation, right on through to optimizing the mobile experience and moderating user-generated comments and reviews is covered here.

I hope this video has give you a flavor for just how easy and intuitive it is for marketers and other business users to manage engaging and interactive online experiences using Oracle WebCenter Sites.  To see more about the new release, please check out the recording of our launch webcast.


On Demand Webcast - Introducing Oracle WebCenter Sites: Transforming the Online Experience

Enabling marketers and business users is a key requirement for creating and managing contextually relevant, social, and interactive online experiences. Oracle WebCenter Sites transforms the online experience into one that is simple and intuitive to manage as a content contributor, encourages interaction between site visitors and their social networks, and provides marketers with automated targeting options for optimizing online engagement. View this webcast now to learn more.

Monday May 14, 2012

Webcast - Do More with Oracle WebCenter: Expand Beyond Web Experience Management

Oracle Corporation

Engage Customers and Empower Your Business with Oracle

Are you providing your customers with engaging online experiences using Oracle WebCenter? If so, you probably realize that there's more to exceptional customer engagement than just Web experience management. You must also empower your business by engaging and enabling employees and partners to deliver on customers' expectations. Join us for this Webcast and learn how to meet your engagement goals by doing more with Oracle WebCenter. This proven, powerful Oracle solution can help:

  • Drive sales and loyalty with engaging, cross-channel online experiences
  • Enable self-service extranets, intranets, and custom application dashboards
  • Enhance productivity with social collaboration
  • Optimize information access with content management
Register now for this Webcast.

Oracle Fusion Middleware Webcenter

REGISTER NOW

Thursday, May 17, 2012
10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET

Presented by:

Stephen Schleifer
Senior Principal Product Manager, Oracle WebCenter Sites, Oracle
Christie Flanagan
Product Marketing Director, Oracle WebCenter Sites, Oracle

Friday May 04, 2012

The Power of Automated Targeting

Mariam Tariq, Senior Director of Product Management, Oracle WebCenter SitesToday's guest blog post is from Mariam Tariq, Senior Director of Product Management  for Oracle WebCenter Sites. Mariam has worked in the technology space for over 15 years with a focus in web content management, social marketing, and mobility. She has also held roles in product management, strategy and engineering at Zenprise, Interwoven, and Scientific Atlanta. Mariam holds BS and MS degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and an MBA from the University of California at Berkeley.

In this day and age, consumers are bombarded with high volumes of information coming from multiple channels. Therefore, to keep online visitors engaged, it is important for businesses to understand their users and to choose the most relevant content to show each of them. Oracle WebCenter Sites provides targeting capabilities that enable business users to define customer segments from a variety of user behavioral and profile data and then create content recommendations for those segments. This results in a much higher degree of site stickiness and can maximize conversion rates.

In situations with large volumes of content and/or unknown user segments, automation can help business users make decisions about recommended content.  Oracle Real-Time Decisions uses powerful statistical models to continuously learn from visitor interactions. Real-Time Decisions correlates visitor attributes to displayed content and determines recommended content to show subsequent users.

The Decision-Making Process of Oracle Real-Time Decisions
The Decision-Making Process of Oracle Real-Time Decisions


Together, Real-Time Decisions and WebCenter Sites can enable marketing users to create highly effective targeting strategies. There are various possibilities of how to leverage Real-Time Decisions in WebCenter Sites. Marketers could create segments in WebCenter Sites and have Real-Time Decisions select a recommendation for a set of content that marketing has selected for each segment. Alternatively, marketers can choose to have Real-Time Decisions segment users and then select a recommendation from a list of potential marketing specified content.

Oracle WebCenter Sites & Oracle Real-Time Decisions

Oracle WebCenter Sites and Oracle Real-Time Decisions (RTD)

A typical use case would look like this: A marketer first creates a recommendation in WebCenter Sites. This entails first selecting a course set level of content (‘choices’)  for Real-Time Decisions to select from. These choices can be chosen via a query (e.g. ‘show all content tagged ‘ holiday’, created  between 11/1 and present, less than $100.) The content could also be a specific list selected by the marketer.  At runtime, WebCenter Sites will send Real-Time Decisions the attributes for the particular visitor (such as location, age, gender, and preferences). Real-Time Decisions will then determine the best content and send the recommendation to WebCenter Sites at runtime. WebCenter Sites will send feedback back to Real-Time Decisions on the customer decision (clicked, viewed, etc). Real-Time Decisions will incorporate this information to refine its data models for future decisions.

 The following statistics reflect actual results from Oracle customers implementing targeting strategies:

  • Up to 150% improvements in click-through rates for eCommerce Self-Service website
  • 5% increase in average transaction amount for eCommerce customer acquisition
  • 6% improvement in sales conversion rates for eCommerce website
  • 60% lift in self-service registration

Oracle WebCenter Sites and Oracle Real-Time Decisions offers marketers a powerful combination of tools for the automatic optimization of online experiences.   To learn more about automated targeting with these products, download the white paper or register to view the webcast, Introducing Oracle WebCenter 11gR1: Transforming the Online Experience.


Wednesday May 02, 2012

Webcast - Introducing Oracle WebCenter Sites 11gR1: Transforming the Online Experience

Introducing Oracle WebCenter Sites 11gR1


Simply Engaging - Optimized Customer Experiences

Enabling marketers and business users is a key requirement for creating and managing contextually relevant, social, and interactive online experiences. Oracle WebCenter Sites transforms the online experience into one that is simple and intuitive to manage as a content contributor, encourages interaction between site visitors and their social networks, and provides marketers with automated targeting options for optimizing online engagement.

Join us for this Webcast and learn how Oracle WebCenter Sites:

  • Enables business users with a new, visual contributor interface for in-context site authoring
  • Encourages social participation among site visitors with social login, social sharing, and other user-generated content enhancements
  • Empowers marketers with powerful and flexible tools for automated targeting and optimization of the online experience



Oracle WebCenter


Day & Time

Thursday, May 3, 2012
10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET


Register Now






Register to attend this webcast today.

Tuesday May 01, 2012

Extra! Extra! Read All About It! Oracle Unveils New Release of Oracle WebCenter Sites

This just in folks, enhancements to the best-in-class web experience management solution, Oracle WebCenter Sites, were revealed today.  According to a reliable source, this new release helps organizations drive customer acquisition and brand loyalty by simplifying the creation, management and optimization of interactive and social online experiences.

So what’s the scoop? The new release of Oracle WebCenter Sites includes brand new features that help organizations optimize online customer engagement.  The release includes a new user website authoring environment that provides a modern what-you-see-is-what-you-get interface with intuitive drag-and-drop capabilities that fit the way marketers and line-of-business teams work today.  The new tabbed interface enables site authors to open and close tabs and switch between tasks with ease. Additionally, rich search functionality and visual search results simplify the authoring experience by making it easier than ever before for users to locate the content they wish to use and place it within the context of a webpage.
Oracle WebCenter Sites Authoring User Interface

Modern authoring environment with a "what-you-see-is-what–you-get" interface.

Here’s what else our intrepid reporters were able to uncover.  Today’s customers increasingly look to interact with brands socially and to share their experiences with their extended social networks.  To address this need, Oracle WebCenter Sites now offers capabilities for social login, social sharing and a number of enhancements to the platform’s already robust user-generated content capabilities.

These new offerings include out-of-the-box integration with Facebook and Twitter, and more than twenty other social networks including LinkedIn, Google and Flickr. Social login removes barriers to site visitor registration and facilitates social interaction by enabling site visitors to authenticate on an organization’s website based on social network credentials, while social sharing capabilities help organizations extend the reach of their brands and promote engagement by making it easy for site visitors to automatically disseminate site content they like to their extended social networks. With social login and social sharing, site visitors’ on site experience is seamlessly integrated with the rest of their online interactions and networks, driving relevance, engagement, and ultimately customer loyalty.

Oracle WebCenter Sites Social Login

 Enable visitors to use their social network credentials for login and social sharing.

New user-generated content (UGC) capabilities that make it quick and easy for marketers to create and deploy polls on their websites or add new ratings widgets such as Thumbs Up/Down, Like It or Recommend, and more. These additions complement Oracle WebCenter Sites’ existing UGC capabilities for comments, ratings, reviews, and blogs, all with leading enterprise moderation capabilities.

“Acquiring new customers and sustaining their loyalty over the long term is increasingly dependent upon an organization’s ability to deliver rich and engaging online customer experiences,” said Kumar Vora, senior vice president, Product Development, Oracle WebCenter who was willing to go on record. “With the new release of Oracle WebCenter Sites, Oracle is putting powerful tools in the hands of business users and marketers for creating online experiences that are relevant, social and interactive for site visitors. Oracle WebCenter continues to lead the way in helping organizations to engage customers and empower their business through its combination of web experience management, enterprise content management, portal and collaboration technologies.”

Those interested in learning more about Oracle WebCenter Sites’s new capabilities are encouraged to return to the Oracle WebCenter blog over the coming days and to register to attend the webcast, Introducing Oracle WebCenter Sites 11gR1: Transforming the Online Experience. And that’s the way it is.

Monday Apr 30, 2012

Two Web Experience Management Trends to Watch

Happy Monday! Welcome to the Oracle WebCenter Blog.  Putting out a list of trends to watch is typically a year end endeavor as analysts, bloggers and other experts put forth their best guesses as to what to expect in the coming year.  And while we’re certainly not nearing the end of the year, we are, in fact, nearing the end of April, so I’ll use the month end as my excuse to take a closer look at a couple of trends in web experience management.

The On Site Experience Will Become More Like the Social Networking Experience
The experience on corporate websites will emulate the experience on social networking sites more and more.  Visitors to corporate websites will increasingly expect to engage, interact and participate in a brand experience, in much the same way that they engage, interact and participate on social networking sites like Facebook and LinkedIn. In order to do so, the dialogue between consumers and brands on corporate sites will need to evolve beyond the bidirectional to a multidirectional one as the corporate web presence evolves into a hub for community and brand engagement.  As a result, enabling user-generated content such as comments, ratings, reviews and polls will become must have features instead of nice to have capabilities on corporate websites.   At the same time, organizations will need to remove barriers to social interaction on their websites by making it easy for site visitors to contribute user-generated content.  One way of doing this, would be to enable site visitors to authenticate on corporate websites and contribute UGC using their familiar social networking IDs, thus eliminating the need for customers to register and remember another set of website user credentials. Organizations that successfully foster community engagement on their websites can reap added benefits by enabling social sharing on their websites.  With social sharing, site visitors can easily share content and information that they like with their social networks, thereby extending the reach of their brand to a new audience, with the added power and influence of a social endorsement.

Targeting Methodologies Will Focus Less On Descriptive Attributes and More on Predictive Ones
Much of today’s online targeting and segmentation efforts today are marketer-managed and focused on grouping like customers together based on descriptive attributes such as a user-profile, referring search term, or demographics.  And while targeting and segmenting in this manner is valuable, the burden is on marketers to define segments and make their best guesses as to what site content or offers are most likely to elicit a desired response in a given segment of site visitors.  This becomes trickier to manage and optimize as the volume of visitors, segments, attributes and targeted content options increase.  You might imagine needing an army of marketers furiously segmenting, recommending and optimizing in a room somewhere to make this a reality depending on how ambitious and expansive your optimization goals are. Overcoming these challenges will require moving from targeting methodologies that focus on the common descriptive attributes of segments of visitors, to a learning model whereby visitors are segmented according to attributes that predict desired behaviors and optimize performance of the website automatically, based on specific objectives such as maximum click-throughs, conversions or revenue.

Do you agree or disagree with these trends to watch?  What other web experience management trends should we keep our eyes on? Tell us what you think and join us all week as we focus in on the web experience management capabilities organizations need today to create engaging online experiences that drive sales and loyalty.

Tuesday Mar 27, 2012

Oracle at The Forrester Customer Intelligence and Marketing Leadership Forums

Forrester Research

The Forrester Customer Intelligence Forum and the Forrester Marketing Leadership Forums will soon be here.  This year’s events will be co-located on April 18-19 at the J.W. Marriott at the L.A. Live entertainment complex in downtown Los Angeles.  Last year’s Marketing Forum was quite memorable for me.  You see, while Forrester analysts and business marketers were busy mingling over at the Marriott, another marketing powerhouse was taking up residence a few feet away at The Staples Center.  That’s right folks. Lada Gaga was coming to town.  And, as I came to learn, it made perfect sense for Lady Gaga and her legions of fans to be sharing a small patch of downtown L.A. with marketing leaders from all over the world.  After all, whether you like Lady Gaga or not, what pop star in recent memory has done more to build herself into a brand and to create an engaging, social and interactive customer experience for her Little Monsters?  While Lady Gaga won’t be back in town for this year’s Forrester events, there are still plenty of compelling reasons to make the trip out to Los Angeles.  

The theme for The Forrester Customer Intelligence and Marketing Leadership Forums this year is “From Cool To Critical: Creating Engagement In The Age Of The Customer” and will tackle the important questions about how marketers can survive and thrive in the age of the empowered customer:

Forrester Research


•    How can you assess consumer uptake of new innovations?
•    How do you build deep customer knowledge to drive competitive advantage?
•    How do you drive deep, personalized customer engagement?
•    What is more valuable — eyeballs or engagement?
•    How do business customers engage in new media types?
•    How can you tie social data to corporate data?
•    Who should lead the movement to customer obsession?
•    How should you shift your planning and measurement approaches to accommodate more data and a higher signal-to-noise ratio?
•    What role does technology play in customizing and synchronizing marketing efforts across channels?

As a platinum sponsor of the event, there will be a numbers of ways to interact with Oracle while you’re attending the Forums.  Here are some of the highlights:

Oracle Speaking Session
Thursday, April 19, 9:15am – 9:55am
Maximize Customer Engagement and Retention with Integrated Marketing & Loyalty
Melissa Boxer, Vice President, Oracle CRM Marketing & Loyalty

Customers expect to interact with your company, brand and products in more ways than ever before.   New devices and channels, such as mobile, social and web, are creating radical shifts in the customer buying process and the ways your company can reach and communicate with existing and potential customers. While Marketing's objectives (attract, convert, retain) remain fundamentally the same, your approach and tools must adapt quickly to succeed in this more complex, cross-channel world. Hear how leading brands are using Oracle's integrated marketing and loyalty solutions to maximize customer engagement and retention through better planning, execution, and measurement of synchronized cross-channel marketing initiatives.

Solution Showcase
Wednesday, April 18
10:20am – 11:50am
12:30pm – 1:30pm
2:55pm – 3:40pm

Thursday, April 19
9:55am – 10:40am
12:00pm – 1:00pm

Solution Showcase & Networking Reception
Wednesday, April 18
5:10pm – 6:20pm

Be sure to follow the #webcenter hashtag for updates on these events.  And for a more considered perspective on what Lady Gaga can teach businesses about branding and customer experience, check out Denise Lee Yohn’s post, Lessons from Lady Gaga from the Brand as Business Bites blog.

Monday Mar 26, 2012

The Numbers of Customer Experience

This week, we’ll be continuing our conversations about Customer Experience (CX) on the Oracle WebCenter blog.  While we all know that customer experience is critically important for acquiring new customers and engendering long term brand loyalty, I thought we could kick this week off by taking a look at the numbers of customer experience.   I’m sure you’ll agree that nothing quite puts things into perspective like numbers and figures.


86%
A whopping 86% of consumers say that they are willing to pay more for a better customer experience.  But many companies are failing to step up to the challenge.  And when companies fail deliver on customer experience expectations, they leave money on the table.


89%
A huge percentage of customers, 89%, begin doing business with a competitor following a poor customer experience. Breaking up isn’t hard to do and today’s empowered customers have no qualms about taking their business elsewhere when their expectations for customer experience are not met.



26%
Over a quarter of consumers, 26%, posted a negative comment on a social networking site like Facebook or Twitter following a poor customer experience. Today, individual customer service failures have the ability to easily snowball.  An unsatisfied customer has the ability to easily share their rancor with their entire social network and chip away at your brand’s reputation.



79%
A large number of consumers, 79%,  who shared complaints about poor customer experience online had their complaints ignored.  Companies ignore customer complaints at their own peril.  And unsatisfied customers, when handled effectively, have the potential to become advocates for your brand.  Of the 21% of consumers who did get responses to complaints, more than half had positive reactions to the same company about which they were previously complaining.



50%
Half of consumers will give a brand only a week to respond to a question before they stop doing business with them.  The clock is ticking when customers have questions about your brand and a week is an eternity in the realm of customer experience.  

The source for these stats is the 2011 Customer Experience Impact (CEI) Report, which explores the relationship between consumers and brands.  The report is based on a survey commissioned by RightNow (acquired by Oracle in 2012) and conducted by Harris Interactive. If you’re interested in seeing more facts and figures about customer experience, download the full report.

Friday Mar 23, 2012

Do MORE with WebCenter - Webcast Overview & TIES Tour

Today's post is from Michelle Huff, Senior Director, Product Management, Oracle WebCenter

````````````````` 

In case you missed it, I presented on a webcast yesterday focused on how you can “Do More with Oracle WebCenter – Expand Beyond Content Management.” As you may remember, we rebranded Oracle’s Enterprise Content Management (ECM) Suite, which some people knew by the wonderfully techie three-letter acronyms -- UCM, URM & IPM -- to Oracle WebCenter Content last year. Since it’s a unified ECM platform, I’ve seen many customers over the years continue to expand the number of content-centric solutions and application integrations powered by WebCenter throughout their organizations.

But, did you know WebCenter also provides portal, collaboration and web experience management capabilities as well? This enables you to leverage your existing investment in the WebCenter platform as well as the information you’re managing to create engaging sites, collaborative spaces, or self-service portals and composite applications. In the webcast I walked through six different ways that you can do more with WebCenter:

    • Collaborative content contribution and sharing environment
    • Share content across intranets and extranets
    • Combine content in composite applications
    • Create targeted online experiences
    • Manage interactive social experiences
    • Optimize multi-channel customer experiences

Joining me on the call was Greg Utecht with TIES. TIES is a joint powers cooperative owned by 46 Minnesota school districts, represents 514 schools – and provides software applications, hardware and software, internet service and professional development designed by educators for education. I was having a lot of fun over the past few days talking with Greg about the TIES implementation and future plans with WebCenter. He joined me on the call for a little Q&A to explain how he’s using WebCenter today for their iContent implementation for document management, records management and archiving. And also covered how they have expanded their implementation to create a collaborative space called their HRPay System with WebCenter to facilitate collaboration and to better engage their users within the school districts. During our conversation a few questions came from the audience about their implementation. They were curious to see how the system looked – so let’s take a peak.

This screen shows the screen that a human resources or payroll worker in one of our member districts would see upon logging in, based on their credentials and role in their district

This first screenshot shows the screen that a human resources or payroll worker in one of our member districts would see upon logging in, based on their credentials and role in their district.

This screen shows the result of clicking on the SUBSCRIBE link on the main page. It allows the user to subscribe to parts of the portal which will e-mail him/her when those are updated in any way

This shows the result of clicking on the SUBSCRIBE link on the main page.
It allows the user to subscribe to parts of the portal which will e-mail him/her when those are updated in any way.

the screen that a human resources or payroll worker in one of our member districts would see upon clicking on the Resources link

This shows the screen that a human resources or payroll worker in one of our member districts would see upon clicking on the Resources link.

The screen that a human resources or payroll worker in one of our member districts would see upon clicking on the Finance Advisory link. It shows the discussion threads and document sharing areas.

This shows the screen that a human resources or payroll worker in one of our member districts would see upon clicking on the Finance Advisory link.
It shows the discussion threads and document sharing areas.

The screen that appears when the forum topic on the preceding screen is clicked.

This shows the screen that appears when the forum topic on the preceding screen is clicked.

The screen portlet up close with shared documents

This shows the screen portlet up close with shared documents.

The screen that appears when a shared document is clicked on. Note that there is also a download button and an update button, meaning people can work on these collaboratively

This shows the screen that appears when a shared document is clicked on.
Note that there is also a download button and an update button, meaning people can work on these collaboratively.

If you'd like to see these screenshots as a pdf - you can download this here.
Do More with Oracle WebCenter-Customer Profile -TIES 

We also listed some great offers from our Oracle Partners to help you evaluate your current implementations and plan for future initiatives. You can find the partner slides shown on the webcast here: Oracle WebCenter - Do More with WebCenter Partners.

If you missed the webcast, check it out! You can watch the replay OnDemand HERE. If you attended the webcast, thanks for joining - I hoped you learned a little from the session. I learned that kids are getting digital report cards today! Wow, have times changed with technology. Uh oh, is this when I start saying “You know, back in my days…?”



Tuesday Mar 13, 2012

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow: Engage Your Customers or Lose Them!

A couple of weeks ago I was urging those of you in chilly climates to head south for fairer skies while taking in the latest thinking on customer engagement at Gartner’s conferences in Orlando this week.  How was I to know that the Gartner Portals, Content and Collaboration Summit and Garner Customer 360 Summit would both coincide with a week of unseasonably warm and spring-like weather across the northeastern United States?

At any rate, those of you who made it down to Florida for Gartner’s event this week, may have had the opportunity to catch Oracle WebCenter’s Vice President of Product Management and Strategy, Loren Weinberg, present on the topic of customer engagement in her session, "Here Today, Gone Tomorrow: Engage Your Customers Or Lose Them."  For those of you who were unable to attend the session yesterday, I’ll highlight some of the salient points.

Engagement

Engaging Customers Isn’t As Simple As It Used to Be
Engaging your customers is a lot more complicated now that everyone is connected through the online channel. The number of mobile device types and the number of people using them have increased exponentially.  Information is now readily accessible to most anyone, at any time, on any device, in increasingly varied digital formats. At the same time, social computing has made the online channel a hub for participation, sharing, interaction and community. As a result, providing an engaging experience across the customer journey is an increasingly complex endeavor.

Today’s Customers Have High Expectations
Today’s customers expect you to know who they are.  They expect you to recall the details they’ve provided to you on your website, on your Facebook page and to your sales people or CSR’s.  They expect every interaction with an organization to be personalized and highly relevant.  They expect anywhere anytime access to information and transactions, and they expect to be able to interact socially in all that they do.

Unmet Customer Expectations Can Have High Consequences
When customer expectations are not met, brands get dumped for their competition. And with only a small percentage of customers feeling that their expectations for a good customer experience are always met, it is easy to see why the relationship between brands and customers often flame out. And today, individual customer service failures have the ability to snowball.  An unsatisfied customer has the ability to easily share their rancor with their entire social network and chip away at your brand’s reputation. 
 
Engagement is the Key to Gaining and Retaining Today’s Customers
Engagement has really become the key to gaining and retaining customers. Today’s empowered customer is in the driver’s seat.  And the only way to attract their attention and keep it, the only way to cultivate and maintain relationships with them, is to engage them in meaningful ways along the customer journey.

Delivering contextually relevant, interactive and multichannel online experiences is now essential for converting prospects into customers and for engendering long term loyalty.  A one-size-fits-all online customer experience is the way of the past.  Companies today must deliver personalized and contextual experiences to their customers, with information that is specifically tailored to their needs and interests, anytime and anywhere, whether on the desktop at the office, the laptop at home, or on any of the thousands of different mobile device types customers carry when they are on the go. Additionally, companies must foster a social and interactive online experience by enabling customers to contribute, participate and share their experiences.

Optimization is Essential to Successful Customer Experience Initiatives
And finally, optimizing engagement across this increasingly complex environment is critical to effective marketing and customer experience management initiatives. However, successfully using the web to drive these initiatives is more challenging than ever before. In order to succeed in optimizing online engagement, organizations require the help of technologies that can offer a means to manage a multi-channel online presence with ease, including targeting, multiple geographies, social elements and much more, and this must be integrated with their systems for managing customer data.  Then a layer of analytics and optimization must be applied to understand the customers’ journey and what will help them successfully accomplish their goals and be delighted by the service they receive.

While the Gartner Portals, Content & Collaboration Summit draws to a close today, there is still the opportunity hear more about customer experience from Oracle at Gartner Customer 360 over the following days. Be sure to follow the #gartnercrm and #webcenter hashtags to learn more.

About

Oracle WebCenter is the center of engagement for business—powering exceptional experiences for customers, partners, and employees. It connects people, process, and information with the most complete portfolio of portal, Web experience management, content, imaging and collaboration technologies.

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