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Integrated-MarketingA few weeks back, I attended the Integrated Marketing Summit in Minneapolis for a few days of workshops, networking, and lots of learning. Local marketing and advertising professionals came together to hear from industry experts to learn how to take their marketing to next level. During the conference, a panelist discussion about integrated marketing strategies presented a term that I had seen in industry content but that I didn’t fully understand. Given the number of session attendees, who, like me were feverishly writing notes and taking photos of the slides in between sips of coffee, I came to the realization that I was not alone.

Do you know what “Integrated Marketing” means? Do you know how it applies to you or your industry? You may be practicing it and not even realize it! Or, perhaps you’ll learn what it is by reading this article, and it will revolutionize your marketing plans. Let’s find out.

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New-to-eloquaIf you’re new to Oracle Eloqua, be assured you are in good company. The process of moving to a new system, especially one as robust as Eloqua, can be overwhelming at first, but it gets easier. Marketing automation platforms like Eloqua were developed to increase marketing productivity, create a better customer experience and evaluate your marketing activities. I have been in your particular situation before, and if you like a challenge, you will thrive. Based on my experience, I’ve created a checklist for new users that will help you get on the road to success straight away.

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code-like-a-bossCan you keep a secret? Lean in. It’s pretty juicy.

Like many developers, I started out in a non-related field. Sure, some developers get on the fast track—hacking and coding in high school, then going to technical or four-year colleges for degrees in computer science or web development. Me? I took a roundabout way and started with a bachelor’s degree in English.

During one particularly stressful semester, I was slogging through some classic German literature, and nothing was clicking. The paper deadline was tight, I was overwhelmed and I got desperate. In a moment of weakness, I did the unthinkable: I reached for the CliffsNotes.

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PersonalizationYes, I’m guilty. I’m one of “those” people that purchased a bottle of Diet Coke because it had my name on it. That’s right. I spent good money on something I rarely drink simply because it had my name on it. And yes, I thought it was the coolest thing ever. And yes, I posted a picture of it on social media. And yes, it got lots of likes.BottlePic

I tell you this not out of pride, but to make a point. I am a self-proclaimed marketing geek, and therefore, I should have known better. I should have known that Coca-Cola® was simply using personalization to their advantage. They were hoping for people like me to see their name, or a friend’s name, and feel excited to purchase a soda they wouldn’t have bought otherwise (and creating lots of social media buzz in the process). It makes me wonder how much extra money (and publicity) this tactic has made for them, by simply using something as simple as personalization. It may seem silly, but it is also eye-opening.

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Hidden-TreasuresHidden treasures are marketing opportunities that are waiting for you to find, develop or execute. It may shock you, but YOU have created hidden treasures in your database. Every marketing plan you have ever created and executed ultimately developed these opportunities! These opportunities will require your time for content development and execution, but usually have minimal external cost associated with them. Sounds great, right? Congratulations. You’ve earned them! Now, you just have to find them.

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Twin Cities Oracle Marketing Cloud User GroupTwin Cities-based Oracle Marketing Cloud customers met at the Relationship One Minneapolis office this week for the bi-monthly user group.

Attendees shared updates and announcements including job opportunities at their respective companies. The user group event continues to be a great opportunity for networking within this tight community. Also discussed were upcoming Oracle Marketing Cloud events including the Modern Marketing Mashup in Minneapolis (we’ll be there!) and the Modern Marketing Experience customer conference in London (we’ll be there, too!).

Carol Mendenhall of Thomson Reuters presented her experience with selecting a solution for optimizing lead capture at events. The Tax and Accounting division at TR does 800+ events annually! Attendees learned how the division’s previous state of anecdotal event attribution will be improved with the roll-out of Relationship One’s Lead Capture App, a free app that submits business card captured data into Eloqua quickly and easily. We look forward to hearing the results, Carol!

Erin Rowles of Relationship One presented tips and tricks for deploying event campaigns in Eloqua. We covered the gamut of executional options including the Campaign Canvas and the Event Module, learning gotchas and inside secrets along the way! Also presented were options for organizing and tracking event attendee data with a demo of External Activities. Activities that are not natively seen by Eloqua (like a contact that attended a demo) can be tracked for use in Eloqua campaign reporting using the External Activities function. In addition, this activity can be passed to CRM as campaign-related data.

The feedback we received on the presenters and content was all positive. We love to hear that! For many, it seemed that the focus on event campaigns was very timely.

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public-sectorA couple of weeks ago, I was catching up with an old friend who works in a completely different field than I do, so I was trying to explain what it is that I actually “do” for my job.

After several minutes of me trying to explain some of the complexities of working with a robust software platform like Oracle Eloqua, I could tell he wasn’t totally getting it. I finally said, “We help companies get the most out of the software marketers use to create business opportunities.” Even though he still has no clue about the nuances of using all the functionality of what’s available with a platform like the Oracle Marketing Cloud, I think that explanation made sense to him. One of our consultants does a good job explaining it here.

He let my description set in for a second and asked, “How do you go from working for the government to consulting with businesses on marketing software?” I went on to explain my meandering career path of working in the government, to the non-profit world, and finally on to marketing for tech companies. My story made sense to him, and we moved on.

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Social-PolicyIt is no secret that we are in an era where social media has become a communication mainstream in our culture. Today, you can know who is dating who, who just changed jobs, who traveled to Europe, and exactly what your great aunt did this weekend with a simple scroll of a social media feed. While social media allows us to express ourselves and communicate with others easily and quickly, it’s important to keep in mind that you are representing more than yourself with every post.

There’s no shortage of social media horror stories on the web. From executives who lost their jobs for political rants, to teachers who post photos with non-kid-friendly beverages, or this employee who got a little too up close and personal with the taco shells. Taco Bell wasn’t amused.

Taco Bell Guy
Source: CBS News

It’s sad, but true. We forget that even after we leave the office (or apparently when we are still at the office in the case of Taco Bell guy), we still serve as a representative of our employers. According to an article on Mashable, 8% of large companies report firing an employee over social media posts.

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data-storageStraight out of the gate, I’m going to admit to you that I’m a data nerd. I live and breathe data all day, every day. Like my 8-meal-a-day food regimen, it keeps me fueled! Fortunately for me, my passion, experience and skills have provided me the opportunity to be exposed to the best marketers in the industry as I work with them on their analytics efforts.

Every day, I see and hear that marketing and sales organizations are just scratching the surface of analytics using Excel, pivot tables, and lots of manual data pulls to refresh their reports. They’re ready for a better way! Less time consuming, more efficiency, better accuracy — all of these requests lead me to write this blog on the benefits of storing your data for your reporting needs.

So, why should anyone spend the time, money and effort to take their marketing data out of their various SaaS and on-premise databases just to put it in another spot? You might be surprised to find that there are many compelling reasons.

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TheBestPlaceToWorkYesterday, for the second consecutive year, Relationship One won a Best Places to Work award from the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal. The honor couldn’t be more deserving. Sitting around the table at the ceremony with my colleagues (who are also some of my closest friends) caused me to reflect on my last three years of working at Relationship One.

My position at Relationship One was my first “real job” out of college. Sure, at that point I was grateful to have any job, but as I walked through the doors on a Tuesday morning in July, I didn’t know how truly lucky I was. Since then, the company has nearly quadrupled in size. It’s been an incredible journey to be apart of. Amazingly, it still feels the same as it did from that first day. The integrity, culture and values have remained constants, which can be incredibly challenging for companies that have experienced the type of growth that we have.

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