Palo Alto Networks Taps AI to Engage Customers Digitally

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by Adobe Communications Team

posted on 07-15-2020

With more daily tasks shifting online and workers settling into remote setups, cybersecurity is more crucial than ever before. New threats are appearing constantly, and organizations require technology partners to keep their operations safe. Since 2005, Palo Alto Networks has been a trusted name for many of the world’s largest brands. And more than ever before, their work in thwarting cyberattacks is critical.

Over the years, as the company worked to serve its customers, it realized that technology buyers had many of the same expectations as those who used consumer services. People require the same level of finesse and personalization they were used to in areas like eCommerce or media. This pushed the team to rethink the experiences they could deliver to customers and prospects online. By leveraging AI and with help from Adobe Experience Cloud apps, they were able to drive more intuitive personalization and see double digit lifts in key KPIs.

The science of personalization

In 2019, Palo Alto Networks’s marketing team was working to get a better grasp of what customers needed when it engaged the brand online. With a combination of Adobe Experience Manager, Marketo Engage, and the company’s own data scientists, the team created a proprietary process to customize content delivered via the main website and through email.

Built on Adobe Experience Manager, each piece of content on the site is tagged and categorized. The tags span product lines and buyer journeys, to specific languages and regions. This is then combined with signals the team collects with Marketo Engage on website interactions, form fills and sales data, to make a determination on which content will be most engaging to specific audiences. All this is done through predictive algorithms and machine learning.

These insights are also fed into existing customer profiles, so that when it comes to an email campaign for instance, content is pre-populated with unique messages tailored to that individual. As one example, a visitor to Palo Alto Network’s site looking for information on firewalls, may also receive an email suggesting they attend a firewall best practices webinar in their local time zone. ****

According to Kyle McCormick, Senior Marketing Systems Manager: “ Personalized content like emails have evolved beyond just customizing a person’s name. Today, it means you need to have the entire asset personalized based on what the customer expects. The smallest detail, like localizing an image, has a lasting impact on engagement, consumption, and ultimately sales. Without the power of Marketo Engage’s API and velocity scripting and the data housed within Adobe Experience Manager, our ability to personalize the volume of content we serve would be virtually non-existent.”

This focus on personalization has already yielded some great results. In the first three months of implementation, clickthrough rates have jumped 15 to 30 percent on the website, while email unsubscribes have dropped. Visitors on the website are also spending more time engaging with the content that is served to them.

Enabling sales

Palo Alto Networks has also expanded its personalization approach to the content they provide their sales organization. Sales teams are sent a daily email that is tailored for each individual and meant to help them have more meaningful conversations with customers and prospects. The email includes competitor news, product recommendations, and suggestions for which customers to follow up on. The sales teams are also able to easily send customers invites to relevant events directly within Marketo Engage. Event details are automatically populated within the email giving sales teams more ways to share relevant content quickly.

In short order, Palo Alto Networks has become a great example for B2B marketers looking to improve its customer experience management (CXM) strategy. By harnessing the value of data and AI to create more meaningful experiences for users, both internal and external, the company is proof that investments in refining digital engagement is well worth the time.

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Topics: Digital Transformation, Customer Stories, Personalization, Content Management, Enterprise Customers

Products: Experience Manager, Marketo Engage