Betfair selects Unica to improve marketing capabilities

By Sooraj Shah
25 May 2012 View Comments

Online betting company Betfair is to deploy Unica's marketing campaign management software to improve its marketing capabilities.

Stewart Dickson, head of marketing data and operations, told Computing that Betfair had to move away from its current IT system as it restricted the company's efforts to promote offers to its customers.

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"We have systems in place that can do the job but they cannot take us to the next level as we grow as a company," he explained.

Dickson said that the company had several issues with its current system.

"We're coming across technical limitations from our current system. It has issues around connectivity and bandwidth – it is as if the system was developed without being integrated properly. It has gone through acquisition rather than development," he said.

Betfair assessed various rival systems from the likes of SAP and Aprimo, but decided to go with IBM's Unica suite partly because its IT services provider Transactis had an existing relationship with IBM.

"Transactis introduced us to Unica. When we looked at the viability of all the different options, the system we preferred was the one they had introduced us to," Dickson explained.

After testing the Unica system to ensure that it could cope with the types of campaigns Betfair produced, Dickson said he was impressed by its ease of use.

He added that another key attraction was the system's ability to automatically co-ordinate cross-channel campaigns.

"We needed a system that could enable us to go through multiple channels and build campaign programmes. At the moment, we have five systems that cover five channels and they are all isolated and discrete.

"Unica will allow us to bring this under one roof so we can get a visual representation of how a campaign flows and works with different systems and channels," he said.

The channels that the betting website currently covers are email, SMS, telemarketing, direct mail and a system for web messaging.

"At the moment we are constrained with the amount of campaigns we can do [because of the incumbent system]. When we move into automation with Unica it will enable us to increase the volume of campaigns and get them out more swiftly.

"It also has a visual representation to show what is happening, as oppose to a coded interface which can lead to risks and quality defects," Dickson explained.

Dickson said that BetFair will deploy the Unica Campaign module first and then look to roll out its its other modules such as customer retention.

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