Category: Sitecore

Why I attended Sitecore Symposium

Why I attended Sitecore Symposium

Sitecore Symposium in Las Vegas was a good experience. There was about 2,900 individuals in attendance.  The vibe around the conference center was electric. I heard the term Sitecorian for the first time.  I believe a Sitecorian is a Sitecore practitioner.  Developers and marketers were both in attendance uniquely providing different perspectives.

My Symposium Presentation

I was nervous; my first major presentation. Telling myself to be brave, I knew I had to go through with it. I didn’t sleep well the night before and butterflies were in my stomach.  Opening day at 1:45pm I had to deliver my presentation. Once I was up on stage everything clicked, I was in the zone.

Challenging the audience to be brave in their companies. They must be teachers; setting the stage for new concepts that in due time will transition their companies.

One of my life’s goals is to be a presenter and a teacher to current and future marketers.  Sitecore Symposium gave me a chance to challenge myself hence gaining confidence.

Sitecore Symposium

Preparing for my Sitecore presentation

Please follow and like us:
Preparing for my Sitecore presentation 

Preparing for my Sitecore presentation 

It feels good to be in Las Vegas and getting ready for my presentation at Sitecore Symposium tomorrow.

I challenged myself to do something that I never have. My answer was to give a presentation at a conference. I’m a little nervous and definitely uncomfortable. This is the only way for me to become better and grow. #SitecoreSym

Please follow and like us:
Sitecore Components Are Containers

Sitecore Components Are Containers

Sitecore components can be somewhat confusing to understand. When talking about components I like to explain them as being containers. The containers hold different items and allow you to substitute items in the containers on the fly.

Developing Components

To be truly effective developers must make sure they build components correctly.  There should never be only one large component holding all the website code in a page (Image 1).  When a page is put together correctly you will be able to see multiple components listed inside the web page (Image 2).

Incorrect Sitecore Components PlacementCorrect Sitecore Components Placement

Working With Components

Components allow marketers to go from being static websites to marketing billboards.  The component allows the marketer to target individuals.  Any component within the page has the ability to be changed at any moment.

While the visitor of the website is casually browsing they are unaware the component is switching in and out. The component appears to be the same for each visitor but it’s not.

While working with Sitecore components keep track of them.  If you are using any type of component personalization track them in your excel document as recommend by Sitecore training.

Please follow and like us:
How can you test if a website pattern is working?

How can you test if a website pattern is working?

The best way to test patterns is to perform the same actions that you want web visitors to take. Click on the same pages and download the same brochures.  If you have content personalization tied to these patterns verify that the personalization is working when you match the pattern.

Content management systems have testing features that allow you to simulate what will happen if you match a pattern.  This allows you to test multiple patterns on one computer.  I don’t like to do this kind of testing, I like to use multiple computers.  I’ll use my home computer for one type of pattern testing and use my work computer for a different test.  I can test multiple scenarios by using different browsers on the same computer.

To a website if you are using different browsers you aren’t the same person.  The reason for this is a browser uses a cookie to keep track of information the pattern is looking at.  So each browser has its own set of cookies that it uses on a computer.

Please follow and like us:
Patterns are the difference makers

Patterns are the difference makers

When you have the use of patterns your website is no longer an ordinary static website.  Patterns allow you to take your website beyond the old ways of early websites.  This is what allows digital marketing to be at its best and assists web visitors on their desired paths.

If you aren’t using patterns you are putting your company and it’s website at a true disadvantage.  Think beyond your current situation and start to think further into the future.  Patterns give an option for a new strategy that didn’t exist before.

Marketers have the ability to target users with patterns.  This is what makes marketers and websites truly valuable in a time where companies are putting more demand on marketing teams.  Patterns allow marketers to be marketers, they are not sales people (blog post for another time).  But when the magic of patterns start to take action the website becomes the sales person.

Please follow and like us:
Influence Computer Buyers With Your Patterns

Influence Computer Buyers With Your Patterns

You can come up with multiple computer patterns to match computer buyers.  There are varieties of users of computers who use them in different ways.  The patterns can help you with segmenting these computer users into buckets.

Some example computer buyer patterns that you can make are college student, small business owner, graphic designer, engineer, and computer programmer.  Each one of these users of computers have certain things that are important to them when it comes to a computer.  To make these patterns work you could do what most people would do and try to figure out the specifications each user may want out of a computer.  There’s a different approach that is simpler and it comes at it from a marketing perspective.

Focus on how the user will use the computers to perform their functions.  We live in a time where marketing has already defined some of the target audiences of products.  So in our computer audiences the graphic designer has probably already had some influence by Apple commercials.  When making the graphic designer pattern you could tie all Apple devices towards this type of user.  Use the graphic designer’s prior influence by Apple to your advantage to easily convert them into a buyer on your website.

Please follow and like us:
Drag Racing Pattern Cards

Drag Racing Pattern Cards

Who doesn’t like a good drag race?  Nothing like the smell of gas and cars going way over 100 mph.  Drag racing pattern cards for a drag racing site would probably be one of the easiest to make.  You could split the drag racing pattern cards into funny cars, pro stock, top fuel dragster, and pro stock motorcycles.

With so many different racing classes it’s easy to see how patterns would be effective on a drag racing site. A web visitor most likely wouldn’t want to see everything about each class.  They would stick with one or two classes and follow the information throughout the season.  The patterns would collect information over time giving the best website experience.

One way to give the best website experience would be to display race drivers based on their drag racing pattern matches.  If a web visitor matches a pro stock pattern show the drivers on the home page that represent the pro stock class.  You could have another web visitor pattern that matches the funny car pattern.  This web visitor would get a list of funny car drivers.

Please follow and like us:
Slot Car Pattern Cards

Slot Car Pattern Cards

Let’s say we want to take the slot car hobby store pattern matching further than brands.  We can make slot car pattern cards to understand the models a user is matched to.  So we can make a slot car pattern for Challenger, Viper, Corvette and Camaro.

The reason that we would do this is because we can use the slot car patterns to target a certain web visitor.  Let’s say the hobby store wants to run a special for Christmas on some new Camaro slot cars they received.  They want to offer a discounted price of 10% on the Camaro slot cars.  To try and make sure the promotion is successful they will use slot car pattern cards to target web visitors who match the brand pattern Chevy and the model pattern Camaro.

The users who match both the Chevy and Camaro slot car patterns will see the promotion below.  If a user doesn’t match both the patterns they won’t see the promotion.

slot car pattern Camaro Slot Car Promotion
Camaro Promotion
Please follow and like us:
Slot Car Brand Buyer Pattern Cards

Slot Car Brand Buyer Pattern Cards

Pattern cards can be used on all types of websites.  Here we will use an example of a hobby store that sales slot cars.  The hobby store carries a variety of cars but the brands are Ford, Chevrolet, and Dodge.  The first thing the hobby store will do is build patterns for the brands.  The brands will help the website understand which brand the web visitor prefers.

Slot Car Pattern Automotive Brands

To help the website any slot car page such as a Mustang slot car would have the Ford pattern attached to it.  So if there were ten different Mustang pages the Ford pattern card would be attached to all ten of the pages.  The hobby store would also attach the Chevy pattern card to pages about Camaro and Corvette.  To finish out the brands they would attach the Dodge pattern card to any page regarding the Challenger or Viper slot cars they sell.

To go further and make sure that you understand how a web visitor is assigned a pattern think about it like this.  The web visitor comes to the site on Monday and they look at two Corvette web pages and leave the site.  At that point the website knows they are classified as Chevy. The web visitor returns on Wednesday and looks at the Challenger and Viper.  So now they are considered to be both the Chevy and the Dodge pattern.  On Friday the web visitor comes back and they return to the Viper page and now the website believes that Dodge is the true pattern.

Please follow and like us:
Pattern matching for a football website

Pattern matching for a football website

Let’s say you run a football news website, you create content for both the NFL and college football. One of the first types of patterns you may want to create are patterns to determine if the person is more interested in college or the NFL. That will help you decide on possibly what types of imagery you may want to show.  For example if the person matches the college pattern your home page may have a big college team banner on the front.  If the person matches the NFL pattern you will show an image banner of the top story of the NFL.

NFL Pattern Card
NFL Pattern Card

 

Once the web visitor matches a pattern such as the “NFL Pattern” you could determine the division they seem to like best.  You could make pages specifically about teams in certain divisions. The team pages would have a division pattern card attached to them to represent which division a team is in.  So to start you could have a pattern for AFC and NFC. To go deeper you could match all the way down to divisions of certain teams.  For example I like the Denver Broncos and the Kansas City Chiefs.  So there would be a web page specifically talking about the Broncos and the Chiefs with the pattern card being AFC West attached to it.

NFL Division Pattern Card
NFL Division Pattern Cards
Please follow and like us: