Commentary

User Intent And Content Are The New Stars

For the last nine months, Cisco has been testing a pilot called Intelligent Content. As Diane Sidden, Audience Platform Program Manager, Cisco, explained at our Search & Performance Insider Summit on Thursday, it is "content that makes sense for the viewer based on their needs at the moment they receive it." 

Pieces of content are tagged with audience attributes like Buying Stage or Account Segment. When a customer visits Cisco.com, machine learning determines a personalized call to action. 

"It gives Cisco the ability to get that offer in front of the customer, in the channels where they are engaging with us. For one thing, the recipe is consistent across all channels." 

Did she say recipe? Yes, and it's not chocolate chip cookies.

Cisco has standardized its global audience across search, programmatic, and social. "It is having each channel use the same traits to ensure consistent audience targeting," said Sidden. "The methodology uses a combination of account, intent and buying stage data." The key, she added, is making sure to have content for each area or audience alignment with the content journey.  

The buying process can take a long time, as Sidden noted. Consumers get a first impression at the website. Cisco can track the information they seek, their past research, and their buying signals. It is the brand's response to those behavior signals that "truly matter," she said.

Finally, she said that doing personalization right requires the integration of content and marketing technology. 

"Everybody wants that Amazon experience, but it's hard to do that right."

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