Wednesday Oct 30, 2013

Multichannel Digital Engagement: Find Out How Your Organization Measures Up

This article was originally published in the September 2013 Edition of the
Oracle Information InDepth Newsletter ORACLE WEBCENTER EDITION

Thanks to mobile and social technologies, interactive online experiences are now commonplace. Not only that, they give consumers more choices, influence, and control than ever before. So how can you make your organization stand out?

The key building blocks for delivering exceptional cross-channel digital experiences are outlined below. Also, a new assessment tool is available to help you measure your organization's ability to deliver such experiences.

  • A clearly defined digital strategy. The customer journey is growing increasingly complex, encompassing multiple touchpoints and channels. It used to be easy to map marketing efforts to specific offline channels; for example, a direct mail piece with an offer to visit a store for a discounted purchase. Now it is more difficult to cultivate and track such clear cause-and-effect relationships.

    To deliver an integrated digital experience in this more complex world, organizations need a clearly defined and comprehensive digital marketing strategy that is backed up by an integrated set of software, middleware, and hardware solutions.

  • Strong support for business agility and speed-to-market. As both IT and marketing executives know, speed-to-market and business agility are key to competitive advantage. That means marketers need solutions to support the rapid implementation of online marketing initiatives—plus the flexibility to adapt quickly to a changing marketplace. And IT needs tools with the performance, scalability, and ease of integration to support marketing efforts. Both teams benefit when business users are empowered to implement marketing initiatives on their own, with minimal IT intervention.

  • The ability to deliver relevant, personalized content. Delivering a one-size-fits-all online customer experience is no longer acceptable. Customers expect you to know who they are, including their preferences and past relationship with your brand. That means delivering the most relevant content from the moment a visitor enters your site.

    To make that happen, you need a powerful rules engine so that marketers and business users can easily define site visitor segments and deliver content accordingly. That includes both implicit targeting that is based on the user’s behavior, and explicit targeting that takes a user’s profile information into account. Ideally, the rules engine can also intelligently weight recommendations when multiple segments apply to a specific customer.

  • Support for social interactivity. With the advent of Facebook and LinkedIn, visitors expect to participate in and contribute to your web presence—and share their experience on their own social networks. That requires easy incorporation of user-generated content such as comments, ratings, reviews, polls, and blogs; seamless integration with third-party social networking sites; and support for social login, which helps to remove barriers to social participation.

  • The ability to deliver connected, multichannel experiences that include powerful, flexible mobile capabilities. By 2015, mobile usage is projected to surpass that of PCs and other wired devices. In other words, mobile is an essential element in delivering exceptional online customer experiences. This requires the creation and management of mobile experiences that are optimized for delivery to the thousands of different devices that are in use today. Just as important, organizations must be able to easily extend their traditional web presence to the mobile channel and deliver highly personalized and relevant multichannel marketing initiatives while also managing to minimize the time and effort required to manage mobile sites.

Are you curious to know how your organization measures up when it comes to delivering an engaging, multichannel digital experience? If so, take this brief, 15-question online assessment and see how your organization scores in the areas of digital strategy, digital agility, relevance and personalization, social interactivity, and multichannel experience.

Wednesday Jun 13, 2012

Multi-channel Engagement: Exponential Growth

So… maybe it’s an age thing…. but… just how many more channels of communication do we really need? As many as the market will provide for us seems to be the answer. Our interaction with those channels, both public and private, has evolved over the years to consume a great amount of our business and personal time and effort. Multi-Channel

We all know that time seems to stand still when we’re on Facebook or reading our group posts on LinkedIn; yet when we emerge, hours seem to have passed. I’m sure that this evolution of both social networks as well as the plethora of advertising that follows each new network will eventually grow to meet some form of the
scenarios portrayed in the movie, Minority Report, in our future of eye scanning interactive advertising engagement. The technology to do the eye scanning is already here but luckily not being used yet to greet me from a billboard at the airport suggesting I might need a vacation soon.

From the marketing and communications sides of organizations who seek to improve their engagement across all potential channels – the exponential growth of those channels leaves even the most seasoned marketing veterans over-caffeinated and sleep deprived. And as in many industries, the tools to manage the latest  challenges often develop in reaction or response to the new changing landscape. Multiple tools have been out in the market for a while allowing management of one's presence and participation in multiple social networks from both the consumer user and the message makers.

People are accessing content from all different channels, ranging from desktops and laptops to tablets, smart phones, smart devices and via social channels. The devices are just a carrier or medium for the channel of communication. Just as our communication technology history depicts an evolution from the pony express to email and from the telegraph to the landline phone and fax to the cellular/mobile phone and beyond to the current internet; we’re never satisfied - always seeking more immediate, faster communications with increased visual and audio dimensional clarity. We all forget that dial-up connections as the standard weren't that long ago. Judging from the pile of old modems I finally got rid of a couple of years ago - I remember each year's jump in baud speed standards as a life changing event.

Brian Solis’ “Conversation Prism” puts this explosion of social channels into a visual reference here below. For those of you that can’t really read 6pt type anymore – it would be worth your efforts to click on the image or download the high resolution version here and enlarge to see the vast landscape of potential social channels. I’m sure – like myself – you may have never heard of some of these large and small global social channels and may have enough challenges just keeping up with your current handful.

The Conversation Prism – (Brian Solis)

A few weeks back, we had Forrester analyst, Ted Schadler  as a featured guest on our ongoing Oracle Social Business Thought Leaders Webcast Series where he spoke about Mobile being the “New Face of Engagement” that all organizations need to deal with today. Please make/take the time to watch this stimulating webcast on-demand whenever you’d like.
Watch Ted Schadler Webcast!
“A Billion Mobile Computing Devices Require New Systems of Engagement”
"Mobile is not merely another chapter in the smaller, faster, cheaper device story. And it’s not tiny web or screen-scraped PC applications. Instead, mobile is the flash point for a holistic, far-reaching change. Your app is in your customer’s pocket. Now what are you going to do? The answer is to engage your customers and employees in their immediate context using what Geoffrey Moore has termed “systems of engagement that: Empower customers, partners, and employees with context-rich apps and smart products to help them decide and act immediately in their moments of need.”1

You can find a synopsis of his paper here

What's next?

Organic Business Networks: Doing Business in a Hyper-Connected World

Organic business networks connect people, data, content, and IT systems. Join us for this Webcast and hear examples of how businesses today can effectively utilize the interconnectedness of emerging business information environments, adapt to changing conditions, and leverage assets effectively to thrive in a hyper-connected, globally competitive, information driven world.

Listen as Featured Speaker, Michael Fauscette, GVP, Software Business Solutions, IDC, discusses:
•    Emerging trends in social business that are driving transformative changes today.
•    Dynamic characteristics that make up social, collaborative, and connected enterprises.
•    Effective ways that technology combined with culture and process provide unique competitive advantage through new organic networked business models.

Register now for the fifth Webcast in the Social Business Thought Leaders Series, “Organic Business Networks: Doing Business in a Hyper-Connected World.

1: Mobile is The New Face of engagement: an executive summary
by Ted Schadler and John C. McCarthy
with Matthew Brown, Christopher Mines, Pascal Matzke, and Heather Martyn


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