The journey towards omnichannel: Update from Oracle Marketing Cloud

October 22, 2021 Chuck Leddy

Oracle Marketing Cloud and Eloqua have been extending their campaign canvas to make it easier for marketers to reach the right customer via the right channel and ensure that customers have connected, personalized experiences. Both Sojourn’s Karin Pindle (Senior Marketing Automation Consultant) and Oracle Marketing Cloud’s Alexa Kalapaca (Product Director) described what’s been happening recently with Oracle’s journey to omnichannel marketing during a recent webinar (full, on-demand video). Below are the key highlights from that update.

Insights from Sojourn’s Karin Pindle, Senior Marketing Automation Consultant

We’re not there yet. Pindle notes that “multi-channel marketing is where we see most marketers today. In fact, less than 10% of them are doing omni-channel marketing right now.” It’s hard to reach that omnichannel destination, says Pindle, “because you need to have the technological infrastructure such as Eloqua and other Oracle Marketing Cloud tools like Maxymizer and Infinity (more on those later) that work with Eloqua to help you reach that omnichannel experience.”

Defining multichannel v. omnichannel. Pindle offered a clear distinction between multichannel and omnichannel marketing. “Multichannel means you offer more than one channel to interact with your customers, but those channels are disjointed” and in silos. The disjointed approach of multi-channel marketing can make for a horrible customer experience. The right hand (for example, SMS) doesn’t know what the left hand (email marketing via Mailchimp) is doing -- something customers notice and dislike. 

Beginning the journey. Pindle offers two suggestions for shifting from multichannel to omnichannel: (1) “ask your customers which channels they want you to communicate with them on, such as by using a preference center. Ask customers if they want to be sent text messages, automated voice messages, print, etc., and (2) ensure that you’re optimized on each channel. So if you're going to do conversational marketing with Drift or a website chat tool,” says Pindle, “make sure you do that well. Same thing with SMS -- make sure you're optimizing for an iPhone versus Android because SMS looks different on each device, just like with email.”

A great example of omnichannel. Both Pindle and OMC’s Kalapaca cited Anne Marie Prince and the San Antonio Spurs recently spotlighted success story in effective omnichannel marketing. “The Spurs are omnichannel, integrating and optimizing email, SMS, their website chat tools and more,” says Pindle. “All these channels are talking to each other, making sure that the recipient actually opted in to receive a text message or an email. All the messaging is orchestrated through Eloqua - it's pulling in customer data and serving as a single source of truth for omnichannel engagement.

Updates from Alexa Kalapaca, Product Director, Oracle Marketing Cloud

Introducing SMS messaging natively within Eloqua. SMS is increasingly becoming a tool and channel for B2B marketers to build meaningful one-on-one relationships between their brand and their customers. As Kalapaca says: “With the SMS launch, it'll be easy to build out your SMS campaign and messages, manage your keywords and short posts within Eloqua. And you'll be able to measure that SMS performance right alongside your other natively-built assets and activities.”

Integrating with Infinity to automate actions in real time. Infinity is OMC’s high-scale web and mobile analytics platform that collects digital behaviors in real time and allows marketers to act upon them. “We’ve introduced an integration with Infinity so that you can connect your Eloqua campaigns with your track web properties and interact with customers based on that incoming real-time data,” says Kalapaca. “Infinity enables you to track down to a granular level of details and interactions of a visitor on a page. What exactly did they look at? How far did they scroll? How far along in a video did they get and how far along were they filling out a form before abandoning it? You can now pull all that info into Eloqua and trigger out your campaign, so you can continue to interact with that visitor.”

Integrating website testing and optimization. OMC has also built out a connection with Maxymiser, its website testing and optimization platform that helps marketers optimize the online customer experience using testing, predictive insights, personalization, and even mobile app optimization. “That integration makes it easy for marketers to build out experiences for their web experience leveraging an easy-to-use interface,” says Kalapaca. “We've also introduced an integration with Infinity whereby you can connect your web and email journeys directly from the campaign.”

Send time optimization for omnichannel. Email marketing remains the most important, impactful channel of all, but it's increasingly hard to get into a customer’s inbox. “Our send time optimization feature makes sure that an email’s send time and day are relevant to the buyer receiving it. This relevancy can help increase opens and email engagement,” explains Kalapaca.

Subject line optimization. This Eloqua feature can help marketers evaluate email subject lines, which is a driver for opens. It uses machine learning to predict the performance of the subject line, whether it's going to be above or below average compared to your own data and your previously performing emails. “Since email remains essential for attracting customers and developing relationships,” says Kalapaca, “using these data insights to help drive your email campaigns will help increase customer engagement for omnichannel marketing.”

Email fatigue analysis. According to one study, 45% of emails are unwanted and considered to be spam. There are serious repercussions for emailing fatigued customers,” says Kalapaca, “you could end up being blacklisted or being blocked and having a very negative impact on your deliverability numbers. That's why it's important to adapt your campaigns before subscribers take those actions. With our fatigue analysis, we're using data science to understand the optimal level of email engagement for contacts, a powerful data point you can leverage across campaigns and personalization.” 

Interested in learning even more about Oracle Marketing Cloud and omnichannel marketing? Reach out to us today!

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