Table of contents

Table of contents

Quick insight

Nurture relationships by using marketing automation to adapt your communications according to the content, channels, and media you choose for each interaction.

Chapter 1

How to automate your marketing using Sitecore

In a nutshell, marketing automation is just what it sounds like — a system that applies a set of rules to automatically determine when and how to serve a customer a specifically chosen piece of content.

Packaged in a user-friendly, drag-and-drop interface, Sitecore’s marketing automation feature has a set of tools that enables you to:

  • Create an automated marketing campaign
  • Enroll contacts in automated campaigns
  • Evaluate contacts based on defined rules
  • Perform various marketing actions for individual contacts

You can initiate marketing actions for your contacts based on a wide variety of data. Some examples of data you can leverage are demographics, contact attributes such as device detection or list membership, or online behaviors such as campaign or goal triggers.

Collect information about how a contact moves through an automated campaign, then use that data to create more-personalized online experiences and build detailed contact profiles.

Chapter 2

Preparing and launching a campaign

Before you get started

Automated campaign success depends on three key elements:

  1. The content you want to deliver
  2. Profiles or other data on the contacts you want to deliver the content to
  3. A plan or scenario you want to implement

With these elements in place, you can then design an automated campaign that implements your scenario and makes specific actions take place when contacts meet the conditions you specify.

To create an automated marketing campaign in Sitecore, simply drag and drop elements from the Toolbox pane onto your canvas. You can specify when your contacts should automatically be enrolled in the campaign, the rules they should be evaluated against, and the marketing actions that will happen to the contacts depending on their individual actions.

For example, you can create a campaign to welcome and engage with new customers, or one that sends them an email when they trigger a goal, such as downloading a white paper.

Types of automated campaign elements

Sitecore’s marketing automation solution features a comprehensive range of elements you can leverage:

Default elements: These are “start” and “end” elements that indicate when contacts are enrolled in the automation campaign and when the campaign ends. One example of a “start” could be when a customer signs up for your newsletter. One example of an ”end” might be when a customer completes a purchase.

Marketing actions: Use these elements to make changes to a contact in the system; for example, to add or subtract points from a contact's Engagement Value.

Listeners: These elements let you track specific actions made by a contact in a specific period, to identify how the contact should move through the automation campaign.

Decision points: These elements specify a rule to identify how a contact should proceed through the automation campaign. You can, for example, use these elements to filter contacts in real time because they are evaluated against the specified rule immediately.

Other elements: Use these elements to either delay a contact's movement through the campaign or move a contact to the beginning of the campaign or to another campaign.

Editing campaigns

Sitecore’s campaign automation feature lets you edit a campaign at any time. However, keep in mind that an active campaign might have contacts already moving through it, and editing it risks changing their experience mid-stream. Not only does it make it more challenging to ensure a contact has the experience you had intended for them, but it could also hinder your ability to gather accurate data on a campaign’s success.

If you decide to edit an active campaign that already has contacts enrolled, we recommend copying the campaign and creating a new one with the changes you wish to implement.

Chapter 3

Campaign results at a glance

Sitecore has a feature called Report View that gives you an overview of how many contacts are interacting with your automated campaign. In Report View, the appearance of each element changes to show the number of contacts that are currently in that stage of the automation campaign. If there’s no reporting information available for a campaign — for example, when there are no contacts enrolled in it — Report View is not accessible.

Chapter 4

Leverage machine learning

Richer customer profiles, automatically

Here’s where things get really interesting. As actions and automated interactions take place, Sitecore XP (through its Sitecore® Experience Database) adds to the customer profile data it collects.

This makes each subsequent step of the conversation that much more relevant. It even connects data coming from unknown visitors to data about “known” prospects once the visitor provides contact details — so anonymous and known data is combined into one profile.

Save time with automated tagging

Automate tagging to capture critical metadata on content using Sitecore Cortex, Sitecore’s machine learning feature. This saves the marketer time, while also optimizing SEO and internal search results. You can also receive suggestions of new customer segments to personalize to, giving your organization more revenue opportunities and market advantages.

An open development platform, Sitecore Cortex supports a “bring your own machine learning” model that allows you to create machine learning insights based on your specific industry analytics and trends. Sitecore Cortex can integrate with other machine learning engines, algorithms, and platforms to leverage your preferred data strategy and existing machine learning investments.