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Customer Experience and Design

Sitecore Symposium 2018 Opening Session

Today at the Sitecore Symposium Opening Session we were treated to several amazing customer stories and even some great information about Sitecore! First, let’s talk about the Symposium itself.  We are in Orlando, Florida hoping that Hurricane Michael bypasses the city where 3,000 attendees from 53 countries are attending over 100 sessions.
The theme this year is Elevate the Experience.  As the Sitecore CEO Mark Frost said, Experience is what customers are buying, not the product.  So, Experience is the product.  Well, we still need great products, but we will give him a break on focusing only on the experience, since that’s what Sitecore is all about.  In one study, 88% of customers said they will pay more for a better experience, but only 1% of those customers feel their expectations are met when it comes to Chief Strategist badgeexperience.

Now on to Sitecore itself.

Sitecore made some announcements today with regard to products and alliances. First, JavaScript Services (JSS) is now available.  This new technology gives marketers the ability to generate content and information faster, making it possible to get to market faster.
Sitecore announced Sitecore Cortex last year and it is now available for Personalization automation.  The new features include automatic tagging and predictive outcomes.  This enables Sitecore to automatically find customers you didn’t even know were out there.
Another announcement was their expansion of the Sitecore-Salesforce alliance.  This summer they delivered Marketing Cloud integration.  Now behavioral data can be shared with the SalesForce Marketing Cloud.  This allows greater use of interaction data across both platforms.
Finally, Sitecore announced their acquisition of Style Labs.  Styles Labs has innovative products for digital asset management, content creation, marketing operations and more.  When combined, Sitecore will have one repository for all content and assets and an end-to-end solution starting with planning and going out to omni-channel delivery. Stylelabs is cloud-based on Microsoft Azure and has robust APIs.

Paige O’Neill – Sitecore CMO presented three customer stories.

First is Volvo Cars. Despite disruption in the global automobile market, they’ve seen tremendous growth due to their experience.  They have 96 country sites.  Volvo is about providing 1-1 customer experiences. Instead of just getting a lead and passing it to a dealer, they now maintain a more direct relationship with customers.  Volvo has also reorganized to make a Car as a Service model, where customers can subscribe to a car.  This is not renting a car, but is completely changing the model away from ownership to having a car on demand.  Volvo expects to have 1/3 of revenue from this subscription model.
Next is Cannondale which is a manufacturing of bicycles and all things related to performance cycling.  Cannondale is about $30m and use independent dealers to sell their high-end bikes. The market is very crowded with lots of choice, low barrier to entry and a confusing purchase path.  Cannondale is using personal data from the rider and IOT devices that track rides.  This data is used to recommend a personalized bike to purchase.
Third is non-profit charity, SickKids Foundation.  Three years ago, SickKids Foundation was a typical charity, begging for funds.  They needed a new hospital to replace a crumbling one and decided to re-imagine the brand and now focus on technology to help with donations. They designed a mobile-first experience using Sitecore where donations are made immediately.  Year two was the announcement to build a hospital for $1.3 billion dollars.  Their campaign was three steps: Seed the Need, SickKids vs Limits, and then SickKids vs 5000.   The steps led to rallying people to becoming one of 5,000 monthly donors, instead of just one-time donors.  In six weeks, they acquired 6,500 donors.  After acquiring these donors, SickKids had to change the experience for these donors to keep them engaged.  The campaign was completely omni-channel.  Lessons learned:

  • Consistency of message really pays off
  • Business strategy and technology have to be tightly woven
  • Keep the proven and test the unknown

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Mark Polly

Mark Polly is Perficient's Chief Strategist for Customer Experience Platforms. He works to create great customer, partner, and employee experiences. Mark specializes in web content management, portal, search, CRM, marketing automation, customer service, collaboration, social networks, and more.

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