What You Need To Know About Sitecore's New Email Cloud Service

Shawn Duncan
April 20, 2017
Sitecore , Context Marketing

If you are a Sitecore customer using the Email Experience Manager (EXM), this may be news that you and your marketing team need to know about. Sitecore recently released EXM 3.4, which replaces the Email Delivery Service (DYN MTA) with a new Email Cloud Service (ECS).

With Sitecore EXM, you have two primary options: subscribe to Sitecore’s service or use a custom SMTP. Many Sitecore users currently employ the pre-existing email delivery method through the Sitecore app center (DYN-MTA). This method will be discontinued on November 1, 2017 and replaced with the email cloud service (ECS) for those who have upgraded EXM to 3.4. The new service comes with built-in reputation management, spam protection and improved reporting features among other enhancements that aim to improve the overall effectiveness of your email marketing efforts. You can read Sitecore’s knowledge base to compare the Sitecore Email Cloud to Custom SMTP.

Reputation management is an ever-growing priority for marketing teams, and Sitecore EXM addresses this focus. Its features help to improve your reputation, strengthen outbound marketing and give you the data you need to make more informed decisions throughout your entire customer journey.

ECM 3.4.1 Reputation Features

One of the biggest challenges with email marketing is landing an email in your recipient’s inbox – not their spam or clutter folders. To make that task more challenging, companies today are faced with malicious marketers (bad guys) who attempt to send mail acting on your behalf, imitating you and potentially damaging your brand equity. With ECS you get a built-in Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM) – new email standards created to protect you from those very real threats.

Many businesses aim to improve the relationship between their customers (or prospective customers) within the digital space. One of biggest advantages of Sitecore is the ability to follow your customer’s journey across multiple devices and to deliver them the most relevant experience based on their intent. The organization that best identifies intent and then presents this customer with a product or solution that solves their problem wins.

Traditionally, many organizations operate with lots of disparate systems with multiple sets of data, which are then translated to ROI. There are a lot of unknowns and potential pitfalls with this approach. The most successful organizations are looking at omni-channel data, which illustrates accurate multi-channel statistics.

Current users of the existing email delivery service have claimed in the past that the DYN-MTA service creates server performance issues. The primary reason for this in most cases is not the fault of the service, but rather the infrastructure. If you are in a non-load balanced environment, and you ask Sitecore to deliver hundreds or thousands of emails, you are at the will of the server resources. Because the new ECS runs in the cloud, the resource load is removed from your environment. This frees up your resources to do what they were intended to do: deliver your website to customers, improving your operational effectiveness.

For Sitecore users who are still using a disparate system, now is the best time to consider bringing this to Sitecore so your marketing efforts can be seamless. Don’t waste time with multiple data sets when you can have it all in one place. Instead, focus on what’s important: ROI optimization.

EXM Dashboard 3.4.1
Fig.1 - Sitecore Email Experience Manager

What should you do next?

The first step is to get in touch with your Sitecore partner or sales rep. If you are a Roundedcube client, or interested in our assistance please contact us for more information.

Because of the additional security measures put in place, the Sitecore ECS team must approve your application to use the cloud service. They need to ensure you are one of the “good guys”. There is a one-page ECS intake form required. Call us today to get started.

With our 15-year history, our team has managed many Sitecore upgrades and is ready to help define the best path forward for your marketing and technology strategy. Call us at 314-692-3823 to get started.

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