Sitecore Takes on the Competition with Version 8 SYMNA
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Sitecore Takes on the Competition with Version 8 #SYMNA

3 minute read
Tom Murphy avatar

With about 1,000 digital marketing vendors competing in an armsrace, Sitecore's CEO made it clear today that he intends to be among thesuperpowers.

Michael Seifert complained at the start of the SitecoreSymposium that the current chaos among vendors isn't serving marketers.

"Frankly, I think it's getting absurd," he told the throng ofcustomers who've come to Las Vegas for the show. "Marketing technology isstarting to fail the marketer ... Each digital marketing tool is limited to thechannel on which it operates."

New Features

Sitecore's answer isn't likely to slow down that race. Seifert andother company executives previewed Sitecore 8, a unified platform that usesanalytics to create a personalized, cross-channel marketing machine withautomated testing. He said the upgraded technology will be available later thisyear.

Version 8 sports a simplified user interface, but more importantly, takes steps toward creating the type of highly targeted, real timemarketing technology seen in the film MinorityReport, where digital billboards pitch directly to Tom Cruise as he walksthrough a mall.

"While this is still science fiction, it is starting to happen," said Seifert. He noted Sitecore is working closely with Microsoftto apply machine learning with the goal of sending just the right ad to theright person at the right time.

In an interview with CMSWire afterward, Seifert said he expects Sitecore to beamong the superpowers of digital marketing, along with Adobeand Oracle."Yes. That's our primary space," he added.

He said the other large marketing clouds still fall short of where they needto be. "Essentially it's no different from buying different digitalmarketing tools today," said Seifert. "It's being marketed as a platform, but it's not yet a platform. That's two, three, four, five years down the road. Butthat's essentially the space that everybody is racing for."

Sitecore Fans

Although much of Seifert's speech echoed the data and visions of the otherdigital marketing giants, it generally resonated well with the Sitecoreloyalists in the house.

Learning Opportunities

"I think it will add a significant value to our clients and to the needsof the industry," said Adam Hofheimer, managing director for governmentsolutions at Cap TechConsulting. "When you look at the industry, it's one of the only .Netplatforms to accomplish this goal."

Hofheimer said Sitecore 8 compares well with the marketing clouds from Adobeor Oracle. "I think it's on par or will be better in the future," hesaid.

Targeted Content

Kris Bailey, a content production specialist from the MayoClinic, said her organization is still upgrading to Sitecore 7, but nowshe's thinking it should wait for version 8.

"Our content is for physicians to use at the point of care," shesaid. "To be able to track what content is being hit the most would maketheir experience better and make it easier to find the content they're lookingfor."

John Conover, an implementation consultant with AmericanEagle, liked the user friendly interface, but said the biggest hurdle willrest in training the end user how to take advantage of all the features.

"While they've streamlined things to make it a little simpler, I stillthink it's (a challenge) to understand the power they have," he said. Untilthat happens, he predicted most of his customers are likely to continue usingmultiple solutions to solve specific needs.

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