Microsoft has announced its Dynamics 365 Marketing Release Wave 2 plan, and three improvements have HCL’s Microsoft Business Applications Practice especially intrigued. In today’s post, we’ll identify these enhancements and explain why they make us so excited.
#1: The Frequency Cap Feature
One of the challenges marketers sometimes face is not so much what is being communicated as how often communication is happening. Too little communication between a brand and its end users can leave the customer uninformed, frustrated, and looking elsewhere. On the other hand, too much communication, especially in the form of emails, can result in end users simply ignoring the messages, viewing them as irrelevant SPAM.
In the past, Microsoft has attempted to resolve the issue of too much communication by introducing Subscription Lists to Dynamics 365 Marketing, which empower contacts to opt in and out of communications and manage their own communication preferences via the subscription centre. However, contacts sometimes qualify for multiple segments and communication journeys, particularly if they opt into several lists, thereby creating a scenario in which they are bombarded with too many emails.
The 2022 Release Wave 2 will introduce the Frequency Cap Feature that intends to optimise engagement by controlling how many communications are sent across multiple channels during a defined span of time. Beginning January 2023, marketers will be able to define a specific cap per channel and indicate to which journeys the cap applies, as shown below. Microsoft believes (and we agree!) that this will prevent customer fatigue, improve engagement, and help avoid customers from hitting that unsubscribe button.
#2: Action-oriented Customer Journeys
Within Dynamics 365 Marketing, Customer Journeys have enabled marketers to automate their campaigns, use A/B testing to determine the optimal channels, and ensure personalised messages are sent at the most appropriate time for each contact. In these campaigns – particularly around event messaging and shopping cart communications – marketers typically send reminder communications that result in cascading customer journey branches that check for a qualifying action after each step or specify conditions with more than two possibilities.
Beginning November 2022, marketers will be able to create more action-oriented journeys with automatic reminders, either until the customer completes the call to action or based on a certain date or time. For example, a customer that has started registering to attend an event can be reminded to complete their registration until either they finish it or the registration window closes.
#3: Out-of-the-Box B2B Analytics Dashboard
It’s no secret that without relevant data at our fingertips, it can be hard for marketing teams to accurately assess campaign and messaging success. After all, it’s data that allows the business to identify areas of opportunity and growth, and marketers must understand how their marketing mix efforts are impacting their business pipelines.
In December 2022, marketing departments will be able to collaborate effectively with sales teams due to the introduction of the new out-of-the-box B2B analytics dashboard, which will enable the different departments to understand and have visibility into common goals by leveraging shared pipeline views. Moreover, marketers will not only have visibility into this pipeline development but be able to analyse on a more granular level how different customer journeys, marketing assets, and channels are performing to drive engagement, as well.
We hope you’re as excited as we are for these releases in January, November, and December, respectively. In the meantime, happy Dynamics 365 Marketing!