Monthly Archives: April 2014

Modern Marketing Tour – Oracle Marketing Cloud

MA_Logo_actionandgraphsAmplify: Age of the Customer, Digital Body Language, and post-Digital disruption

The Modern Marketing Tour (the Oracle Marketing Cloud, formerly Eloqua, conference) amplified the “Age of the Customer,” “Digital Body Language,” and “post-Digital disruption”. These are key phrases describing the changes in marketing that focus on finding better ways to reach customers and measure the real impact of marketing. The changes attempt to more closely map marketing efforts to corporate top line (net sales) and bottom line (profit/loss) results.

By using the Oracle Marketing Cloud (Marketing Automation) you get more accurate, more confident, faster decisions, per Nicholas Petersen, Performance Analytics Practice Lead, Relationship One. MA beyond anecdotal information and Excel spreadsheets. One can track trends, measure, and draw insights from the “Digital Body language” of the customer (the customer, who is center of all interactions, beyond just one funnel approach), per Mili Patel and Adrian Chang, both from the Oracle Marketing Cloud Team.

What is the result? You can get increased profits, revenue, valuations, and more. Perhaps even move into better predictive modeling to help the CMO and CFO. For example in terms of marketing spending, this can mean shifting more money from content broadcasting (with limited or no good data tracking) into areas that can provide more useful information for the customer and company, per Laura Ramos, VP, Principal Analyst at Forester Research, Inc.

Covidien has a top down team approach to focusing on the customer with a combination of many different platforms—this is not easy but worth doing. To fully benefit from this way of thinking requires the mindset, expertise, and thoughtful use of complex toolsets – of course Eloqua was featured but as one part of a systems thinking approach. This higher-level thinking requires breaking through isolated silos to integrate tools for customer data, tools such as (CRM), Content Marketing Systems, Tableau (aggregate data), Bizo, and many more, per Vince Rainsford, VP of Marketing Operations, Covidien.

Although there were value-added analysts, consulting firms, and partners, presenting at the Tour it was an Oracle show and a good one. It was also great to meet and mingle with the terrific (Eloqua) community too.

Marketing Automation: What is the Big Deal?

flat_Logo_actionandgraphsMarketing Automation (MA) is a hot topic.  Numerous powerhouse companies are doing strategic mergers, expanding product-lines, and having conferences on the subject. So what is it and why is there all this activity now?

I am a contributor and advisor to an “Amazon Best Seller,” eBook, The Big Book of Content Marketing, by Andreas Ramos.  The eBook is about proven, real-world strategies and tactics, with practical advice on how to measure and get results in marketing.  I was curious about how MA may fit into our thinking, so I recently attended the “Modern Marketing Tour” conference sponsored by Oracle Marketing Cloud (formerly Eloqua) in Denver, Colorado.  So to to answer my questions, I’m writing a two-part blog story on MA, including:

  • Part 1: What is Marketing Automation?
  • Part 2: The Modern Marketing Tour – Oracle Marketing Cloud

What is Marketing Automation?
What is the big deal about Marketing Automation (MA)? We already have decent business intelligence software, enterprise software, email automation, CRM software and numerous types of marketing software; these tend to be complex, more IT-centric, and map to existing corporate structures.

The key difference of MA over other types of software is that it has a razor sharp Customer-Focus that gives the C-levels (Chief Marketing Officer or CMO, CFO, CEO) much more visibility into the Customer Relationship.   The Customer is the center of attention, not the company web site.  The goal is having the ability to better control, make sense of and drive revenue using big data insights tracking wherever the customer goes.  In other words, it is a better way for sales and marketing to watch interactions with potential and current customers, to sort them, and directly target & nurture their needs to increase profits and other business goals.

There are several MA products on the market, the key ones are Oracle Marketing Cloud (Eloqua), Marketo, and Loopfuse, but there are others popping up also.

Marketers know that in order to understand the value of, say, a campaign, they must identify, track, evaluate and then refine the metrics that provide the most insight and then decide what action to take, if any. This is especially important with the explosive growth in new and diverse social channels/platforms (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google +, Pinterest, Instagram, and so on) , MA tries to address the need to target and interact with customers on their  most active channels, in addition to traditional shopping carts, email, or ad campaigns.  Hence, the traditional the “buying funnel” or the multiple Excel spreadsheets cobbled together, though useful, can be jet propelled by more sophisticated and integrated MA tools.

It all sounds commendable and worth investigating.  However, MA is a systematic mindset, a methodology and a set of tools–it also needs top-down exec support to bypass political hurtles, expert teams with can figure out the business and technical setup strategy, goals and tactics and implement it and ongoing monitoring and accountability, just to name a few areas.

So let’s delve into one major MA vendor approach.  Stay tuned for Part 2:The Modern Marketing Tour – Oracle Marketing Cloud.