Long gone are the days when marketing operated in a silo from the rest of the business. As the enterprise has moved online with customers, companies need to ensure their marketing automation platform (MAP) is fully integrated with their web content management (WCM) system so that consumers can have immediate access to the marketing content and information they need to inform their purchases.

To aid businesses in their quest to adequately integrate MAP and WCM technology, CMSWire decided to provide brief overviews of how six leading WCM vendors -- Adobe, Ektron, eZ Systems, Hippo, SDL and Sitecore -- approach integrating MAP with WCM. In several instances, WCM vendors actually embed MAP capabilities within their WCM solution.

1. Adobe

The Adobe CQ Web Content Management platform is a solution in the larger Adobe CQ digital content suite, which in turn serves as the foundation for the Adobe Experience Manager solution. As an Adobe CQ application, Web Content Management features out-of-the-box integration with solutions in the Adobe Marketing Cloud. These include applications for social marketing, media optimization, digital analytics, testing/targeting and Web experience management, accessible by a real-time dashboard.

In addition, the Adobe CQ suite includes a marketing campaign management module that enables the creation and delivery of content targeted to specific user profiles. Thus Adobe’s WCM platform essentially offers native integration with advanced marketing automation technology such as Eloqua and email marketing with ExactTarget and Silverpop.

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2. Ektron

By linking its Ektron 8.6 WCM platform to its Digital Experience Hub solution that performs marketing automation as well as CRM and Web analytics processes, Ektron offers what it calls “digital experience management.” Ektron 8.6 enables basic WCM activities such as content authorizing and synchronization, as well as mobile support, integration with Microsoft search functionality and URL redirect support.

Meanwhile, Digital Experience Hub offers a number of enterprise connectors to external software which support digital marketing initiatives. This includes CRM systems such as Salesforce.com and Microsoft Dynamics. There are also integrations with Marketo and Eloqua and a deep partnership with HubSpot for marketing automation  As a result, the siloing of customer profiles and other marketing data is eliminated and Web content can be directly linked to automated marketing activities.

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3. eZ Systems

eZ Systems offers a solution called eZ Marketing Automation which eZ Systems says integrates marketing automation with multichannel WCM. This extension is done through a partnership with Marketing automation provider NetResults. The application works as a certified extension of the eZ Publish content platform. The native integration enables users to directly create marketing content such as emails and landing pages from the WCM dashboard. In addition, installing eZ Marketing Automation automatically installs trackers on the user’s website, which are also automatically linked to web forms. Thus, site content and development of marketing communications are automatically aligned.

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4. Hippo

Hippo employs a WCM strategy it calls open integration, which leverages an open, Apache- and Java-based architecture to allow the development and management of marketing content directly from the Hippo WCM. Content can be re-purposed across internal and third-party sites and channels. A JCR-compliant content repository allows content to be delivered in any format and flexibly configured without predefined types. Users can also directly manage and deliver Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn content from the WCM, as well as configure targeting rules and directly map customer personas into the WCM. Essentially, the WCM itself serves as a MAP engine.

In addition to all these built-in capabilities, Hippo does offer connectors with a number of MAP providers including: SilverPop, Woopra, Leadlander and Eloqua, and to other digital marketing tools such as Google Analytics, WebTrends and Demandbase.

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5. SDL

SDL promotes its Tridion WCM application as a single intuitive interface for customer engagement. Proprietary SDL technology called Blueprint allows users to automatically localize and target cross-channel site content, and Tridion modules manage marketing activities such as mobile site management, video editing, distribution and interaction and email marketing.

In addition, a Tridion tool called SmartTarget tracks users and enables automatic targeting and optimization of landing pages based on user data. SDL also has Email Manager for email marketing, SDL FredHopper for real-time targeting, SM2 for social intelligence and SDL Customer Analytics for deeper customer analysis.

On the back end, MAP functionality is integrated to the WCM via a Business Connector that links internal business data to customer-facing websites and a SharePoint Connector.

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6. Sitecore

Sitecore provides a Customer Engagement Platform which integrates an enterprise-class .NET-based WCM with a number of other modules, including a MA solution called the Digital Marketing System. This solution includes Sitecore AIDA technology that enables real-time analytics as well as campaign optimization, email marketing, lead nurturing, automated sequential multichannel customer interactions and delivery of marketing lead data to sales department members. In addition to native integration between WCM and MAP solutions, the Sitecore WCM platform includes automated social media engagement.

In terms of integration with marketing automation providers, although Sitecore has no specific integrations, its solution has been integrated with Marketo and Eloqua through partner field integrations.

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