In words of Phil Fernandez, CEO of Marketo, “Before this new innovation from Marketo, every marketing automation and campaign management system on the market – frankly, including our own – required marketers to create complex logic to coordinate the flow of rich and relevant content to each individual customer. We have invented a completely new solution to this vexing challenge.”
With Smart Streams, you can create content campaigns that never run out of steam. It is part of Marketo’s Engagement Engine and was launched in June, 2013 to enable marketers to focus on creating better content and letting the system worry about the distribution.
Content fuels your engagement program. But, to do so, you have to currently create multiple programs! Smart Streams reduces this. Smart Streams makes content distribution easy by introducing Cadence. It lets you decide the frequency of serving content to your leads. And, that is just one of the reasons, why you are going to love it.
What are Smart Streams?
With Marketo Smart Streams, you can organize content assets, schedule and track engagement for a part of the customer journey or sales funnel. A stream of content is created and the order in which emails are placed within the stream defines which content is sent next. It looks something like this:
What’s what in Smart Streams?
- Stream is a pool of prioritized content that the engagement program uses to nurture leads
- Cadence is the schedule of the content that goes out.
- Transition Rules bring up the Smart List and Flow Tool.
- Members are the target audience and it is defined at the global level for the program.
- Engagement Level tracks how effective are your content assets by taking into account Opens, Clicks, Unsubscribes and more.
- Casts refers to the email send.
- Archive enables you to remove an email while it is being sent, while retaining the data.
- Content Availability enables you to schedule content during a time sensitive even such as a Webinar or an event invitation.
By controlling the order and frequency of content, you can make sure that the content for a Webinar or other time relevant event do not go out after a certain date. Additionally, you can specify the maximum number of emails that will be sent to a contact in a time period. It is driven by first-come, first-serve approach, though you can override the settings and send an email, if it is required.
Previously in Marketo’s “lead nurture track” method, there was no way you could set up cadence. It is quite easy to set it up. All you need to do is set up a stream, select the days of the week you want the content to go out and you are done. For a different schedule, you need to setup a new stream with new cadence.
Smart Streams keeps a track of which email any contact is receiving, making sure that there is no duplicity. In addition, you can pull a content asset into the stream and specify the email that you want to use. Doing so allows the email to be sent even if the contact has not engaged with the content asset, or bypassed if the contact has previously consumed it.
You can even track if your leads have missed a content asset that is relevant to them. For example, Jane has already downloaded “Marketing Secrets” eBook but that is in her nurturing track for week 3. Now, together with the Transition Rules, you can make sure that Jane does not get the same content twice. Alternatively, if you deliberately want to send it again to work as a reminder, you have flexibility to do that.
With Smart Streams, you can add the new content asset into the Stream to enable it to reach to the right audience, no matter where they are in the nurture track. This way you can make sure that all your great content gets delivered to the right person at the time when it is most relevant!
Instead of sifting through many metrics across different modules, you can look up the “Engagement Score”. It gives you a comprehensive view on the content assets’ performance. This is a way for understanding the factors that influence overall campaign performance. Content engagement is scored (from 0 to 100) and stack ranked according to an algorithm that compares content effectiveness based on the two dimensions of the Marketo user community and your own content distribution history.
Engagement Score provides a standard metric for comparing the relative effectiveness of all the content. This is done by looking at email opens, clicks, unsubscribes, and the achievement of each program’s success metrics – e.g. number of contacts that converted, took an action, and more (as defined by the marketer).
Clearly, Smart Streams make your content efforts clearer, more streamlined that ultimately result in a more engaged audience. Content tracking, scheduling, and maintenance becomes so easy with Smart Streams and with its in-built features your leads will engage better and your content’s ROI will see significant improvement!