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6 Posts authored by: jennifer.igartua

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5 Highlights From The Eloqua Fall Release

 

When you log in to Eloqua today, you should notice some differences immediately. Eloqua is a bit fancier, it has new icons and an updated foldering structure. After poking around, you’ll discover that these updates extend way beyond the user interface.

Yesterday, Eloqua released the Fall ‘13 updates to their platform. The update has targeted a better UI experience, deeper reporting, and more flexibility in customizing the platform. Below are the five features I’m most excited about.

  1. Visual click through report
    With nearly 300 votes for this feature on Eloqua’s Support Portal, it’s no wonder this made it to #1. With the visual click through report, you’ll be able to analyze what links in your email led to click throughs. You’ll see a snapshot of your email, overlaid with performance metrics. Those on E9 are already privy to this report, as it was a feature removed when E10 was introduced.

    There are improvements in the release in E10. For example, if you use the same link throughout the email, you’ll be able to see aggregated statistics for that link.
  2. Lead score history
    If you’re using Eloqua’s Lead Scoring capabilities in E10, you will now be able to track a lead’s historical scores. You can see the associated activities that have pushed the lead to a new score.

    A pain point for users around lead score history has been the overwhelming amount of data points that are given in the summary. Every time the lead scoring program runs, the history is there. For many leads, this can mean the same score shown on the screen. Now you no longer see the history every time the scoring runs, but instead when they change.

    The productized lead scoring is being used more and more by clients, as with each release it becomes more powerful. Specifically, the speed of the engine is activity driven, instead of pulling data (like the program builder). It is also much simpler and easy to create and modify. For some clients, the program builder will still be the best option, as it is more robust. It has the capability to be more granular.
  3. The Unique Identifier is not just for emails
    For Eloqua, the Unique Identifier for contacts is email address. This makes sense for most customers as it is how they reach out. For those that are sharing contacts through business units, product lines, or have contacts sharing an email address, such as a couple. This, again, is a feature only release on E10.

    Multiple Identities is a huge change to the data model. Store the same individual by different ID, for example SFDC Lead ID, SFDC Contact ID. This is great for anyone that has an inquiry based model, where an inquiry creates a lead.
  4. First-party cookie support option
    Eloqua has always used third-party cookies. Benefit being that they can track across domains and different properties, giving marketers a holistic view of of their buyers.

    The support for first-party cookies is being driven by growth of third-party cookie rejection. This change is coming from both users blocking or deleting third-party cookies and browsers not supporting them. Apple’s Safari has been defaulting to blocking third-party cookies for some time, and Chrome, Firefox & IE have stated that they will as well.

    With first-party cookies, marketers can continue to track a lead’s digital body language and should see an increase in mobile traffic visibility.
  5. Sandbox to production
    Although a “sandbox” has been available for Eloqua, it was in essence a separate instance with no link to its production counterpart. This was limiting, as keeping the two in synch was a manual effort. With this release, admins and IT users have on-demand replication of production to sandbox for a true testing environment.

    Keep in mind that unlike Salesforce, there are no change sets to push changes from sandbox to production. Meaning that changes to the sandbox have to be recreated in production manually. Hopefully that will be a feature in future releases.

For more details, visit Eloqua Topliners.

See how you can take advantage of Eloqua updates and drive innovation in your Marketing department with the guide, The Three Pillars of Modern Digital Marketing.

With the help of sophisticated marketing automation tools, marketers are using the habits & behaviors of their customers, and turning them into robust segmentation. Marketing automation engines like Eloqua, Marketo, Pardot, and ExactTarget (to name a few), can now send a targeted email based on a lead’s digital persona, location, company, CRM data, or buying patterns. When leveraged properly, this is an incredibly powerful asset to a business—assuring the right message gets to the right person, at the right time. However, despite all this large machinery working for us in the cloud, we may be missing one of the simplest ways of targeting customers; asking them what they want they want to hear.

By implementing a subscription center for preference management, you allow your customers to ‘raise their hand’ and choose how they want to be contacted, the frequency of your messages, and what type of content they want to receive from your business. If this is not a part of your current functionality, a subscription center should be in your immediate roadmap.

 

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Governance is a hot topic at the moment - something I hear as a top initiative for most of my clients. Check out the below written by my coworker Steve Farris.

My own two cents: Governance is key within Eloqua because it doesn't track changes like some systems like SFDC does. It makes a governance strategy & guidelines that much more important.

 

 

 

Cloud Governance ROI

 

 

Regardless of their position on the Salesforce maturity curve, salesforce.com customers are recognizing the benefits of effectively governing their implementations. To achieve the full benefits of the cloud, organizations must re-examine their governance structures, policies, and processes to ensure they address the challenges of cloud-based application development, deployment, and ongoing innovation.

As a yardstick, to optimize cloud applications ROI, the governance framework should support the fastest possible rollout of the newest functionality to the broadest base of users possible, so that the only limiting factor is the ability of users to absorb change. However, in reality, investments in governance must be justified through a solid business case that compares costs to returns and demonstrates a healthy ROI multiple—just like any other proposed business investment.

Bluewolf has developed a Cloud Governance ROI model. The model incorporates the six factors below and customer-specific factors to build a financial case demonstrating ROI. We are able to demonstrate an ROI of anywhere from 3x to 20x within a two or three-year horizon. Could I buy a $20 bill from you with the $1 bill in my wallet? Cloud governance delivers a healthy ROI and can be both modeled to underpin a business case for the investment.
 
The impact of cloud governance investment is seen in the following six ways:

  1. Faster Release Cadence
    The earlier we put new application capabilities into the hands of end users, and train them to utilize them effectively, the earlier they can begin converting those capabilities into incremental revenue. An effective cloud governance framework allows organizations to make decisions faster, clarifies execution responsibilities, and delivers new functionality quickly through optimized and automated development and release processes.
  2. Higher Quality
    New releases of applications which are bug-free, delivered on time, and on budget prevent costly downtime incidents and ensure that end users have access to the full set of application functions to serve your customers. Cloud governance ensures quality releases by instating best practice-based QA policies and processes, and automating key QA functions such as continuous integration and automated unit and functional testing. Go-live events are no longer dramatic: we already know the application we are deploying has passed 100% of tests, and we have practiced deployments many times before an actual production deployment.
  3. Higher Adoption
    Our goal is to achieve 100% adoption of cloud applications in the target user base, and we continuously measure adoption (frequency as well as “breadth” and “depth” of application use) to understand whether and how closely we are achieving that goal. Through effective cloud governance, we build mechanisms for efficient Enhancements and New Feature Request Capture, prioritization, scheduling for (Agile) development, QA/test, and production deployment that put functionality in the users’ hands, as fast as they can absorb it. Increased responsiveness to user requests leads to increased application adoption and a virtuous cycle ensues.
  4. Improved Productivity
    Streamlined and automated development, testing, and deployment functions, boosts the productivity of the teams that produce new application functionality. By implementing user requests for new or enhanced functionality faster, we boost the productivity of end users, allowing them to do more in less time—selling to more customers or servicing more customers.
  5. Better Support
    Traditional on-premise application support organizations are typically centralized and optimized for efficiency and standardization, often at the expense of providing quick resolution of issues. By adopting best practice-based cloud application support structures and processes, we are able to dramatically improve support responsiveness and end-user self-sufficiency, leading to faster and more satisfying support outcomes.
  6. Reduced Risk
    Applications need to be deployed into the cloud in a responsible manner and with full consideration of security, privacy, and integrity of your corporate data and business processes.  Salesforce.com’s cloud platforms—Force.com and Heroku—provide a solid foundation of services to protect corporate information. Cloud governance offers security recommendations to ensure that the applications deployed on these platforms are risk free. The impact is measured in either avoidance of direct financial impact or consequential financial impact arising from impacted customers or reputational harm.

Contact us to schedule a cloud governance discovery session and put ROI numbers next to your efforts.

This is a recent blog post by Kat Aumrin - An incredible SFDC/Business Process consultant on the Beyond team at Bluewolf.

 

Rethink your meetings, post if it worked!

 

Using a primer for simple daily tasks (think tying your shoes, or fastening your seat belt) can seem like an unnecessary step for such rudimentary actions. However, if you take a moment to examine your current processes, you may discover more efficient alternatives that can add value and make your life easier. For example, in the office, the seemingly innocuous task of scheduling and executing team meetings is ripe for optimization. Think of your last meeting—were you frustrated by its inefficiency, redundancy, or aimlessness? Make sure your meeting doesn’t fall flat or waste your colleague’s time with these five tips for getting the most out of your next team meeting:  

  1. Draft out your agenda
    No meeting should ever be scheduled without an agenda or goal-oriented description, otherwise, what are you talking about? Meetings should be used for making key decisions and generating action.
  2. Invite the right people
    Have you ever been on a call with 10 other people, and you weren’t really sure why they were all there? Ever been one of those 10 people, and instead of listening, you spent time putting together your expense report or looking at puppies on Instagram? Focus on involving the main decision makers, and not simply including people just because they are on the same project or team.
  3. Find the right time
    “I love having back-to-back meetings all day,” said nobody, ever. With that in mind, take under consideration whether someone has time to grab a quick bite or take a bio break, or make sure that you’re not catching them in transit. It is a small step you can take to help reduce the stress in someone’s day, especially since you’re already asking for their time.
  4. Add some details
    Remind people about why their input and time are needed by reiterating the goals and agenda in the invite description. Next, get the conference setup details in. This is really alluding to all those times where you put “TBD” in the location description, and thirty seconds past the meeting start time, you’re frantically emailing everyone the dial-in details. It happens! There are times when you don’t always have the conference details in front of you, so the next time you find yourself scheduling a placeholder, add another event well before the call to remind you to finalize the details.
  5. When it’s all said and done, take actual next steps
    One of the most critical things about meetings is the action that takes place afterwards.  Socializing meeting notes is obvious, but even more important is operationalizing them. If your agenda can’t get converted into a to-do list, then it’s just a table of contents. If you send out notes without turning them into tasks, then you’re sharing a diary. Even then, don’t stop at email. Make it easier on yourself and take care to add the actual next steps—be they decisions, goals or tasks—directly to your project management tool. 

Meetings are a great tool for building consensus. They help bring everyone together, enabling collaboration and team building. Unfortunately, when scheduling and executing a meeting it’s easy to fall into old, comfortable ways. Take some time to evaluate your meeting process—are you making the most of your time?

Learn how Bluewolf can partner with your business to help it strategically evolve and seize opportunities for improvement by looking at its everyday processes, operations, and technologies differently.

This is a blog I saw on Bluewolf's site from CRN.

Salesforce.com will standardize on Oracle's database software, Linux operating system, Java middleware and Exadata Database Machine servers under a nine-year agreement unveiled by the two companies Tuesday.

The two software giants also will integrate Salesforce.com's CRM and other cloud applications with Oracle's Fusion HCM (human capital management) and Financial Cloud Software-as-a-Service applications, and Salesforce.com will adopt those Oracle applications to run its own business.

The news comes one day after Oracle and Microsoft unveiled a sweeping alliance under which Oracle will support Microsoft's Windows Azure cloud platform and Hyper-V virtualization technology.

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A new blog post on Bluewolf's website really stood out to me. The topic was so pertinent to what we speak about every day in this community - using the channels and technology available to us to better engage with our customers.

 

Corinee Sklar.jpeg

Corinne Sklar, Bluewolf's CMO, speaks about what it means to be a CMO today and how social media use is shifting.

Chief marketing officers (CMOs) who fail to realise social media's potential for customer interaction and customer retention are being left behind. On Twitter, Facebook and even on Instagram, brands are now being discussed and dissected; companies' stories asocialre being subverted and inverted.

The reality is, you no longer drive company and brand messaging – your customers do.
Consumers and sales prospects are interacting with your company in myriad ways across multiple touch points in this new interactive economy. Today's customers are empowered: they expect companies to give them what they want, how they want it.

In response, progressive CMOs are doing much more than launching a Twitter feed and a LinkedIn group or two to increase reach. And they are doing more than email marketing and simple data capture. These leaders recognise that the role of the CMO is evolving from an emphasis on acquiring new database contacts to building deep intimacy with customers. It's no longer a matter of who you know, but what you know about them. That means CMOs need to be focused on actively listening, engaging and responding to their customers.

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