- What is a Sitecore Campaign?
- How to use Sitecore’s campaign tags
- Creating a campaign taxonomy
- Analyzing campaigns with Experience Analytics
- Understanding behavior with Path Analyzer
- Using campaigns for optimization and personalization
Campaign-specific Path Analyzer maps can be created and used to understand the behavior of visitors from specific campaigns and how their interaction with site content differs from other groups of visitors.
What is a Sitecore Campaign?
In Sitecore Experience Platform™, a campaign activity is used to tag incoming traffic from outside sources, such as paid search, display, social posts, or emails. Tagging incoming traffic in this way allows for campaign-specific analysis, as well as the ability to segment visitors and provide personalized on-site experiences.
A Sitecore Campaign differentiates itself from a campaign in general marketing terminology in that it relates to a specific campaign activity. Creating and applying campaign tags in Sitecore is an easy endeavor for marketers to undertake using out-of-the box Sitecore functionality.
How to use Sitecore’s campaign tags
Marketers can create campaign tags directly in the Sitecore Marketing Control Panel, or from the Campaign Creator tool. Marketers will designate a channel and campaign group for each campaign activity, as well as optional campaign facets for further segmentation.
Once a Sitecore Campaign has been created, a unique identifier is generated, which can be appended to a URL in the same way as a UTM tag, using a ?.
A Sitecore campaign code begins with sc_camp followed by a string of characters. Sc_camp codes do not replace UTMs, and the two can be easily combined by placing a & between them. See the example below.
Creating a campaign taxonomy
In order to fully utilize campaign activities in Sitecore, it is important to create a campaign taxonomy plan. A campaign taxonomy includes three key elements: campaign groups, channels, and facets. While campaign facets are optional, campaign groups and channels are essential for each campaign activity.
- Campaign groups
Campaign groups are used to segment campaign activities at a high level. These can be organized around business areas, seasonal campaigns, recurring activities, or in whichever way suits organizational needs. The campaign group is also the top-level metric in Experience Analytics campaign reporting and can be used to compare all individual activities in a campaign group against one another. Campaign groups are flexible and can be as broad or as specific as needed, and there are no limits on how many campaign groups can be created in the Marketing Control Panel.
- Campaign channels
The other mandatory taxonomy for a campaign is channel, for example paid search, display, social, etc. An extensive list of campaign channels is provided by Sitecore out of the box, though the list can be modified to fit business needs if necessary.
- Campaign facets
Finally, campaign facets are used to classify and organize campaign activities that have similar targets or messaging. Campaign facets are fully customizable to suit the organization’s needs and can be organized into categories such as geography, product, customer type, journey stage, etc. Not all campaign activities will have relevant campaign facets, and assigning facets is optional. These should only be used when appropriate.
Analyzing campaigns with Experience Analytics
Once campaign activities have been created and attached to incoming links, they can be tracked and analyzed using Experience Analytics for real-time visitor information.
Reports about which campaigns are accessed most frequently and which lead to the highest goal conversion rates allow for a deeper understanding of campaign traffic. Metrics available in the Experience Analytics campaign report include visits, bounce rate, page visits, average pages per visit, conversion rate, and average duration.
Campaign facet reports are also available with the same metrics within Experience Analytics. This makes it easy to compare different campaigns with common facets (such as region or target audience) against one another.
Understanding behavior with Path Analyzer
The Path Analyzer tool in Sitecore enables deeper understanding of visitor behavior. While Experience Analytics provides key quantitative metrics, Path Analyzer can be used to deepen understanding of on-site visitor journeys.
The Path Analyzer tool generates customizable maps that display the sequence of paths taken by customers or contacts as they journey through the site. These maps can be filtered down to display the behavior of specific groups or segments of visitors using a rules-based editor.
Campaign-specific Path Analyzer maps in particular can be created and used to understand the behavior of visitors from specific campaigns and how their interaction with site content differs from other groups of visitors. Understanding this behavior allows marketers to determine on what pages, and at what stage of the journey, content should be adjusted to better suit the needs of visitors from specific campaigns.
Using campaigns for optimization and personalization
In addition to enabling marketers to understand behavioral and quantitative metrics, campaign tracking in Sitecore allows for the optimization of on-site experiences. The ability to create personalized experiences based on campaign source is one of the differentiators for Sitecore sc_camp codes.
The Sitecore personalization rules engine includes multiple rules that allow for personalizing content on the site based on campaign information.
For example, when triggered during a visit, the campaigns in list rule will display specific content that matches the campaign a visitor has arrived from. Marketers can also segment visitors based on historic campaign behavior. For example, if the marketing team sends out a monthly newsletter to current members, a personalization rule can be used to identify all users coming from that specific campaign activity as a current member. This information can be used to hide or display relevant content across the site both during the current visit, and for future visits by that member.
For more on Sitecore Campaigns, and specifically creating a taxonomy that is flexible for a multisite implementation, download the guide “Planning and implementing a multisite personalization strategy.”
To see some examples of how personalization can be implemented based on campaign activities and other datapoints, download “10 personalization tactics.”