An outcome is the business significant result of a dialog between a contact and a brand. Through a contact's path to becoming a customer, you can track the events they have triggered and the goals they have converted on their journey. This provides you with an insight into how contacts interact with your website, as well as the relative financial value they have for your organization.
Some examples of outcomes are acquiring a contact's information, the contact becoming a customer, or a customer joining a customer loyalty program.
With outcomes, you can quantify your contacts based on the financial value they bring to your organization rather than by engagement value. Financial value can be based on monetary value, but you can also define financial value more broadly in terms of the value the customer brings to your organization.
For example, a contact could visit a car dealership website and sign up for a newsletter. The contact visits the dealership, buys the car, and becomes a customer. Three years after buying the car, the customer signs up for an extended warranty plan, demonstrating loyalty to the brand based on the financial value of the purchase. This indicates that the contact may buy other cars from the dealership in the future, providing higher financial value to the organization.
In this example, you can use outcomes to track the financial value of the vehicle sale, as well as identifying the steps in the contact's journey from visitor to lead, and then from lead to customer.
Outcomes and personalization
You can use outcomes to create and implement personalization rules, to provide your contacts with targeted, relevant content. By setting personalization rules that check for defined outcomes, you can ensure that the right content reaches the right visitors in real-time by showing, hiding, or adjusting specific content.
You can also create marketing automation plans that use outcome types as triggers. Marketing automation plans help you nurture relationships with your contacts by adapting communication to use the content, channels, and media that are appropriate for each individual interaction.
In the car dealership example, the company could enroll the contact in an automation plan after signing up for a newsletter. Buying a car would be a trigger that would send them into another automation plan state for customers. The company could use the Email Experience Manager to send the customer periodic, personalized messages that are relevant to that particular customer. Maintaining a good relationship with customers helps companies retain them, increasing brand loyalty and winning customers for life.
Creating custom outcomes
In the Marketing Control Panel, marketers can create outcome groups and outcomes. Developers can create and register outcomes programmatically.
In the Marketing Control Panel, outcomes are structured in the following way:
Outcome groups - Category containing outcome definition items. For example, Purchase.
Outcome - A specific outcome item. For example, Product Purchase is an outcome in the Purchase type.
Once you have created an outcome group or an outcome definition item, if you want the outcome to be triggered, it must be registered by a developer. Outcomes are not registered automatically. All outcomes, whether custom or predefined, must be registered programmatically.
An outcome could occur when a contact visits a specific page on a website or it could be triggered in an external system. When an outcome is triggered it is attached to a contact and saved to the xDB collection database.
In the Marketing Control Panel there are three default outcome groups. Within each outcome group, there are several predefined outcome definitions:
Identification – identifies contact acquisition
Purchase – indicates that a product has been purchased
Lead Management Funnel – enables you to identify contacts as they progress through your lead management funnel. There are several outcome definitions within the lead management funnel. These are located in the Marketing Control Panel under Outcomes. They are:
A marketing qualified lead (MQL) who has performed certain actions, such as downloading a white paper or attending a webinar, but is not yet a customer.
A sales qualified lead (SQL) who is an interested lead and has the ability to make purchasing decisions. These contacts are typically forwarded to a sales team.
A qualified lead who plans on becoming a customer.
A closed lead who became a customer.
A closed lead who did not become a customer.
A closed lead who was a customer but has cancelled their contract.
A new contact that has been acquired
The contact purchased a product