AI-Powered Analytics: A Look at Sitecore Cortex

May 15 2019
Closeup of person with glasses staring at a screen.

It’s never been a better time to be a marketer than today. Back in the days when print reigned supreme, a marketer had no way of knowing exactly how many people saw a given ad or what actions they took afterward. Thanks to modern technologies, you have a much deeper insight into how people are interacting with your marketing messages. 

It’s only going to get better, thanks to Sitecore Cortex. Sitecore Cortex is the AI-powered analytics engine that’s built into Sitecore. Sitecore Cortex analytics enables you to target your marketing efforts even further to better reach your customers. 

Personalisation 

Think about how you would respond to the following scenario. You’re a vegetarian who frequents a particular local restaurant; waiters even know that you have a favourite dish. One day, you receive a coupon for your favourite restaurant for its newest menu option, a Kobe beef burger. You would feel as though the restaurant didn’t value you as a customer, right?

This is just one example of how companies fail at personalisation. In Segment’s 2017 State of Personalisation Report, just 22 percent of shoppers reported being satisfied with the level of personalisation they receive from brands. That means that over three-quarters of brands are failing to tailor their messaging to attract customers. 

“Over three-quarters of brands fail to tailor their messages to attract customers.”

That’s where Sitecore Cortex analytics come in; they help you avoid being part of that majority. One way in which Sitecore Cortex allows you to improve your personalisation efforts is through testing hundreds of variables to optimise crucial engagements. Over time, they’ll become better and better. 

How is Sitecore Cortex able to do that? The technology utilises machine learning, which means that a computer learns how to do something without being explicitly taught how to do so. As time goes by, machine learning becomes even more sophisticated; eventually, it can even provide recommendations for users based on their previous interactions with your brand. 

Person pointing to a laptop screen

Intelligent Lead Scoring 

How do you determine which leads are valuable, and which simply aren’t? The answer lies in lead scoring. Lead scoring involves assigning a score to leads, and thus determining which ones are worth pursuing and which aren’t worth your attention. When a lead has a high score, that means you should follow up with it. 

Lead scoring isn’t just marketing jargon; it allows you to access the best possible opportunities. According to Gartner, 70 percent of leads are lost from poor follow-up, which isn’t surprising. Sales representatives receive so many leads, they’re unsure of which are highly qualified, so they don’t wind up pursuing the ones that are the right fit. 

“Without lead scoring, sales representatives don’t know which leads to pursue, so they wind up following the wrong ones.”

In addition, you’ll see a high ROI on your investment in lead scoring. Research from Marketing Sherpa reveals that companies which used lead scoring had a 77 percent boost in lead generation over those who did not.  

One of the capabilities of Sitecore Cortex analytics is lead scoring. When you engage with a lead, Sitecore Cortex runs an algorithm to determine how likely it is that the person will complete a conversion activity or make a purchase. Once it calculates that information, it provides a score for you so you can see in moments whether this lead is worth your time and effort. 

“Sitecore Cortex analytics provides you with a lead score to see whether this lead is worth your time and effort.”

With lead scoring, your sales team can stop wasting its time with leads that won’t pan out. Instead, they’ll have the confidence to pursue the right leads and convert them into purchasers, thanks to Sitecore Cortex analytics. 

Engagement Scoring

Lead scoring isn’t the only type of scoring Sitecore Cortex analytics can provide you. It can also determine engagement scoring

As the name implies, engagement scoring determines how engaged your customers. Engagement scoring is based on customer activity and usage of your product. The more a customer uses your products, the more engaged that customer is. 

“Sitecore Cortex analytics can also provide you with engagement scoring.”

Why does customer engagement matter to the point that it should be measured? If you don’t have engagement, you don’t have retention. Retention is good from a financial standpoint; research shows that customers with an emotional connection to a brand have a 306 percent higher lifetime value than those who don’t. They also stay with a brand for an average of over five years and recommend brands at a rate of 71 percent. For comparison, people without such a connection stay with a brand for a little over three years and recommend a brand at a rate of 45 percent. 

Moreover, retention can also lead to customers making larger and more frequent purchases. According to research from InMoment, 60 percent of engaged customers will make more frequent purchases. That number jumps to 70 percent in the case of Millennials. The research goes on to state that 50 percent of engaged customers will purchase more than those who are disengaged. 

“Fifty percent of engaged customers will purchase more than those who aren’t engaged.”

From a business standpoint, measuring customer engagement is worth it. Sitecore Cortex Analytics helps you do that. Over time, its machine learning capabilities will learn what characteristics engaged customers exhibit. With that knowledge, it can begin to score current customers and calculate how active they are. 

Take a second and think about how you could use this information. If you offer a “freemium” option, engagement scoring tells you which customers are most likely to buy, and that’s where you should focus your efforts. Additionally, your sales team can expand into accounts that are already highly engaged based on engagement scoring. Engagement scoring saves valuable time and effort so your sales team can do more of what they do best. 

Why Choose Enlighten to Help You Implement Sitecore Cortex Analytics? 

Enlighten has over twenty of helping our clients satisfy their own customers with simple, seamless, personalised digital experiences. Our customised tools for Sitecore make the solution even more valuable and has led to us being named one of Sitecore’s Gold partners. To learn more, contact us today.