New Year’s resolutions – let’s be honest – hardly ever work. Research suggests that they are achieved by just 8% of people. New Year’s resolutions are usually over-ambitious and, by their very nature, are unlikely to be achieved instantly.
In reality, change and progress are usually a result of small steps and time. To help your professional year get off to the best possible start, we’ve rounded up our favorite new features from 2018, organized them by hot topic, and listed how you can put them to good use in a ‘stop, start, and continue’ format.
Good data-driven marketing is customer-centric
To be data-driven or customer-driven? The truth is, they should go hand in hand.
2018 saw us take an innovative approach to data that lets us scale our platform in ways we could never have hoped to before. This means we can process data and return segmentation queries at scale and speed. Leveraging vast amounts of (customer) data couldn’t be easier.
- Stop sending communications that are off-brand. Transactional messages triggered by customer actions are often hard-coded and as a result, unrecognisable and damaging to the brand reputation you’ve worked so hard to achieve. This doesn’t have to be the case. Our first release of 2018 (18one) empowered you to take control of your operational messaging – Magento users can design transactional campaigns in EasyEditor, for example.
- Start running your ecommerce and marketing platform better together, and on autopilot. Whichever ecommerce platform you’re on – we offer a range of triggers which let you respond to customer activity with relevant, timely messages. The very latest addition to our toolbox is our Shopify Flow integration. Based on actions (maybe your customer has requested a refund or just placed their second order) you can add them to a marketing program or update their contact record.
- Continue syncing your business systems. Two thirds of companies believe siloed data prevents them from making the most effective use of their marketing (Econsultancy). We couldn’t agree more. Without bias, we are committed to maintaining and improving our core integrations across CRM and ecommerce landscapes.
Engagement is the word
Another addition is our integration with our newly acquired CPaaS team. Using their API technology, we have extended our reach. Today, you can build intelligent marketing programs featuring SMS, Facebook Messenger, Push Notifications, and more. In 2019 we are committed to bringing even more engagement channels into the fold.
- Stop thinking of marketing programs in channel-specific terms. Most marketers are already aware of the value of an email campaign. It gets interesting when you create cross-channel programs which allow you to be in multiple places at once. Customer journeys are increasingly fragmented, so having this flexibility is super-important.
- Start experimenting with new channels. We launched Google Ads and Facebook Audience connectors in 18three. With these, you can automate a program to funnel contacts (based on data or actions) to audiences. In doing so, you’re dynamically improving the quality of your audience and very directly impacting ad relevancy across the Google Ad network, Facebook, and Instagram.
- Continue building programs to your heart’s content. Besides the visible improvements to our program builder, we also continuously make changes under the hood. Program builder today is faster, smarter, and more powerful than ever before.
Doing right by your customers is good for your business
We launched a comprehensive suite of functionality to help you manage consent obligations effectively. It’s so simple to use, but underneath we had to build smart new ways of working with our existing data to ensure everything works smoothly.
- Stop fretting about consent. With ConsentInsight you have an informed view of a contact’s consent and can even segment and target by it. As a responsible data processor, we have state-of-the-art security data centers in place to ensure the data you need to store is available, encrypted, and secure.
- Start capturing marketing preferences. Our recently launched marketing preference feature lets you build preference centers in minutes. Once you know what your subscribers like, you can send them relevant content across campaigns, programs, and more.
- Continue to monitor customer engagement. The popularity of your marketing preferences is tracked in account reports so you know what topics and products should be central to your content marketing strategy.
- Stop waiting by the AI side-lines. It’s here. AI (artificial intelligence) and ML (machine learning) may have joined the realm of over-used buzzwords, but that doesn’t mean we should stop believing in their power. 2018 was the year we officially brought AI to our users. Now that we’re armed with a dedicated data science team, we can promise there is a lot more to come in 2019.
- Start simple. Even though product recommendations are smart bottom-line boosters, they’re not hard to use. If you’re already syncing your product and order data with us – you can get started with bestseller and trending recommendations right away. Ready for something more advanced? Choose from one of our machine-learning models.
- Continue investing time in your data. We’re particularly proud of our data enrichment feature which will help you achieve this. Data enrichment is a simple toggle in your accounts. When activated, our AI can read images, meta data, and more. The output of any AI tactic can only be as good as the data you put in.
Feel like you missed a memo last year?
Here are some quick tips to keep you up to speed in 2019:
- Continue to read our newsletter – if you haven’t already signed up, you can do so here.
- Start keeping an eye on our public roadmap: the first place we talk about upcoming features. You can follow your favorites and will be notified when they are released.
- Stop by our extensive Knowledge Base, where you can access hundreds of articles that will help you get the most out of Engagement Cloud.