Last Thursday I had a busy day in Warsaw. After a couple of meetings with colleagues, with whom I had the pleasure to work with on several projects in digital marketing and automation, I realized that we often make things much more sophisticated than they need to be, leaving the customer in the dark and letting them make choices they cannot effectively evaluate.

Dear Customer, Please don’t worry. The online marketing tool story is extremely simple at heart. As simple as one of my favourite games as a youth. Do you know pinball? I’m sure you do!

Pinball is a simple arcade game designed to help you relax and spend all your pocket money. With only a couple of steel ball bearings to help you, the goal is to collect as many points as you can by using your ‘flippers’ to bump your ball around obstacles. If you were any good at it, all your friends would refer to you as the ‘combo king or queen’.

The elements on the table are your products and conversion goals. The flippers are your ECM system you’re going to use to engage customers and persuade them to keep coming back to look at products on your website.  The ball? Well, the ball is your customer’s attention.

The more time you’re able to keep your ball on the table, the more engaged your customer will be. In your game, your score is your overall revenue which you are able to generate by having your customer engaged at all times.

Simple isn’t? So how does it work?

When you play the first ball and it hits an obstacle on the way, but you miss the ball with flippers on its way down or do nothing to push it back up the table, you will not engage that customer further and there is a big chance that they will never come back.

However, if you play actively, using your flippers to hit the ball, you can engage the customer for longer and convert his attention into revenue. Do this again and again to increase your score, or profit, in the real world.

If you have two balls on the table and actively play them, it may happen that they collide with each other at some point. Similarly, you can expose your customers to information about the activities of others to promote products they may also find interesting. What does this result in? Your website driving more engagement, more revenue and. Yes, you guessed it; more profit.

You wouldn’t build your own pinball game, would you?

The process of creating a pinball game is a kind of craftsmanship which requires knowledge about mechanics, electronics and design, in order to bring as much hassle-free fun as possible. It’s always better to leave the task to the professionals who know EXACTLY the best ways you can improve your score by using different targets or touch points.

At the end of the day it doesn’t really matter what platform you use: Sitecore, Adobe AEM or other engaging tools will do the job for you, as long as your flippers stay solid enough to resist interaction with hundreds of steel balls during your play. Make sure your table is full of targets, where you can continue increasing that profit score.

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