Videos to Help You Install BizConnector and Get Started

It has taken some time, but at last, here are some videos that you may find helpful. We’ll be adding videos to the list, so check back in when you need some help or inspiration.



Installing BizConnector
Getting Started with BizConnector
Building Your First BizConnector Rule (to Nurture Leads)
Testing a BizConnector Rule

Raising Your Automation-Interaction Intelligence

Much has been written about the diminishing success of mass emails and how to develop new strategies that engage your prospects and customers. If you are up-to-date on this then you have probably recognized that it is no small task, not without its own challenges and pitfalls.

From its inception, BizConnector / Lead Follow-Up was built with bi-directional communication in mind. It incorporates the notion that communication is a series of ongoing ‘conversations’ with prospects and customers, and that each conversation is potentially different, just as much as each prospect or customer is potentially different. This is antithetical to the ‘one size fits all’ approach fundamental to the mass emailing model.

A conversation is an interaction between two parties. The term ‘interaction intelligence’ includes, among other things, how relevant one party’s messages are to the other. The more relevant a message, the more likely it will be taken into account by the other party.

Now bring automation into the picture. Automation-interaction intelligence measures how well you do all this automatically.

To be able to send relevant messages using an automated application requires that the application is sensitive not only to differences between its stored prospect and customer profiles, but that it is also sensitive to changes – in real time – in these profiles, and can react accordingly.

Not too many products do this successfully, and the reason for this may lie in their core architecture.

BizConnector / Lead Follow-Up does do this successfully. The main reason for this stems from its core architecture – manifested by (near) real time business rules (see What Is A Business Rule). The other is the Instant Feedback feature (see Getting Instant Feedback) that updates recipient responses in real-time.

These two mechanisms work symbiotically to respond sensitively to the profiles and stated needs of the target population, effectively raising its interaction intelligence through automation.

An Example:

If all this sounds too theoretical, then the following simple example may help to illustrate.

Let’s assume prospect records contain a field called ‘Product Interest’. This (required) field is populated initially by a prospect submitting a form on your website. Let’s say that for one prospect the field value starts off as ‘Product A’.

Let’s say you have two rules; Rule A firing and sending relevant emails over a period for ‘Product A’ prospects and another, Rule B, sending relevant emails over a period for ‘Product B’ prospects.

The above describes an ongoing ‘triggered email’ marketing environment in which prospects are receiving information (drip emails) relevant to their stated needs.

But in one or more of these emails you have an embedded ‘Instant Feedback’ question, and a prospect who initially requested ‘Product A’ information has changed her mind – now she wants ‘Product B’ information. She clicks ‘Tell me about Product B’ in the email.

Rule A immediately stops, and Rule B starts, for this prospect. The effect of this is that emails describing Product A are suppressed, and emails describing Product B start arriving in the recipient’s inbox.

Now wouldn’t you call that automated-interaction intelligence?





Handling the Long Tail – Rules Working Together

BizConnector rules are autonomous. Ostensibly, they are not aware of each other.

But through rule actions that update fields, they can be made to work together in a seamless symbiosis!

Handling ‘the long tail’ is one example of how this can be implemented effortlessly in BizConnector. Let’s take a simple example:

  • Let’s say you have a web form on your site inviting people to learn more about a specific product or service.
  • And you have a rating system for leads – say hot, warm, and cool.
  • When anyone indicates their interest by submitting name and email address, you want to send a sequence of seven weekly emails.
  • You think the weekly frequency is appropriate for people who are interested in what you have to say.
  • You set up systems for those who respond quickly.
  • But what about those who don’t respond in the seven weeks?


Here’s the BizConnector solution:

  • In addition to the email content for the seven weekly emails, decide on email content that will be sent at a slower pace – for those leads who are not quick to respond.
  • Let’s say you will re-use some email templates, and create a few new ones as well.
  • The solution involves two rules – one for warm leads and one for cool leads. (Hot leads are those that responded within the first seven weeks.)
  • The warm rule will send seven weekly emails, and in the eighth week will update the Rating field to ‘cool’.
  • The cool rule will fire, and send ten monthly emails (note the slower pace…)
  • That’s all you need to do!

The effect of this is:

  • Everyone will start receiving the seven weekly emails.
  • But those who respond will only receive the weekly emails up to the point that they respond. They are not sent ‘irrelevant’ emails because of the ‘Check Before Send’ feature basic to the tool.
  • After the seventh week, those still on the drip will have their Rating field changed to ‘cool’.
  • This kicks off the cool rule, which starts sending the monthly emails.
  • You remain ‘top of mind’ for these non-responders.
  • Think of this as the ‘long tail’, about which plenty has been written – on the internet and elsewhere.

Now that was easy, wasn’t it?

What is a Business Rule?

The operation of BizConnector / Lead Follow-Up is based entirely on business rules. This means that one or more business rules have to be defined in order for the tool to function. The business rules in an account are evaluated and run – in real-time around the clock – by a Rule Engine.

What is a business rule?

The BizConnector definition of a business rule is broader than others available on the internet. For example, in Wikipedia we find ‘Business rules provide detailed guidance about how a strategy can be translated to action’.

We go further than this. Instead of a rule ‘providing guidance’, it executes actions if the rule conditions are met. BizConnector rules are actionable.

A BizConnector rule can be expressed as:
‘When this condition is met, execute this action’.

Or more generally:
‘When these conditions are met, execute these actions’.

A typical condition is the arrival of a new, matching record in the leads database.

A typical action is to schedule a sequence of emails to be sent to a prospect or customer (as in ‘drip marketing’).

Notice the use of the word ‘when’, rather than ‘if’. The time element is vital to the operation of the Rule Engine, which is running around the clock, watching for conditions to arise in order to attempt to ‘fire’. It is not invoked manually, and can be considered a ‘live agent’ operating in real time (or near real time).

A business rule can be thought of as an implementation of a strategy – ie. how the strategy can be translated into action. There is a direct alignment between the strategy and the rule.

The purpose of a rule is to cater to a specific scenario, or ‘use case’. For example, a new lead requesting a copy of a white paper on a web form may be a typical use case, and a rule could be written to fire when that new lead record is added. The rule can be considered to have a relationship with that lead for the period of time that, say, emails are being sent. When the last email has been sent, the relationship between the rule and the lead comes to an end.

Rules are autonomous, and have no explicit dependence on other rules. This makes rules easy to manage, because they can be created and deleted independently.

Sometimes there are implied dependencies, which can be used to great effect. For example, a group of rules can cater separately to ‘hot’, ‘warm’, or ‘cool’ prospects, where prospects can ‘switch over’ to another rule if and when their rating changes from one to another.

Well-designed business rules are powerful tools that can automate the tedious, repetitive tasks that would otherwise slip through the cracks. All the while doing this in strict accordance with the organization’s underlying strategies. They are powerful things, not to be underestimated.