Case Studies

    CFE Media Automated Its Personalization Efforts with Omeda's CDP

    Project Background

    Personalization is becoming table stakes for media publishers: Your readers expect to receive content recommendations, communications and offers that are relevant for their needs.

    However, many publishers fall short of that goal. That’s not because they want to provide bland, one-size-fits-all content experiences. But in recent years, the proliferation of marketing channels has created exponentially more user data.

    And that’s made it harder for publishers to achieve personalization at scale: When you have so much subscriber data spread across multiple marketing tools, it’s hard to even get a single view of each subscriber, much less figure out what else they need from you.

    And even if you do have that single subscriber view, you need an increasing amount of tools to execute even any outreach campaigns, let alone one that’s personalized to each person’s interests.

    By using an end-to-end audience management platform, you can reduce much of the complexity and data management needs that prevent you from personalizing your outreach — and really connecting with your audience.

    In this case study, we’re highlighting CFE Media and Technology’s use of CDP data to scale and automate their personalization efforts.

    About CFE Media and Technology

    CFE Media and Technology provides engineers in manufacturing, commercial and industrial buildings, and manufacturing control systems with the knowledge they need to improve their operational efficiency. They publish Control Engineering, Consulting-Specifying Engineer, Oil & Gas Engineering, and Plant Engineering magazines and digital products for a global audience of 1.3M+ subscribers.


    CFE Media partnered with Omeda to address a few separate, but related, challenges:

    • Their audience engagement team needed an easy way to identify what topics each individual subscriber was most interested in hearing about.
    • Then they needed to create a process for quickly reaching out to new subscribers and providing additional resources related to those topics.
    • To free up more time for revenue-generating tasks, the CFE Media team needed to automate as much of this process as possible.

    To address these needs, CFE Media used Omeda’s audience engagement suite to create an automated workflow that assigned new subscribers to specific topics of interest, then tailor their communications to those topics of interest.

    Process: The Omeda Solution

    Using Omeda’s Data Loader and Lead Gen Campaign functionalities, the CFE team assigned topics to subscribers based on first-party data they had collected from online forms, as well as behavioral data like page views, content downloads, etc.

    They then personalized their communications to individual subscribers based on these unique topics of interest, using dynamic content to pull in the most relevant content for each individual recipient.

    Here’s how they did it:

    • The CFE team identified 30-plus “core” topics that were most important to their subscribers and customers. From there, they built a “Topic” question to add to a Dragon form subscriber profile.
    • Using Omeda’s CDP and Audience Search database, the CFE team then built audience queries to identify subscribers that were interested in those topics. To determine each subscriber’s  topics of  “interest”, they used demographic information collected on subscription forms, CDP data associated with eBook downloads and webcast registrations, as well as website browsing data pulled from Omeda’s website analytics solution.
    • Once the 30-plus queries were built, the CFE team used Data Loader to assign the topic flags to their entire database. Then, with their Client Success Manager’s help, they built a nightly Lead Generation job that selected anyone who had qualified for the queries within the last 24 hours, then assigned them to the appropriate topics. This process also handled exceptions where a subscriber checked or unchecked the categories on their Dragon form subscriber profile — and the subscriber’s input superseded any automated topical assignments.
    • CFE then used Odyssey, Omeda’s marketing automation solution, to build a welcome/engagement email series. These emails had dynamic content that was shown based on their specific topical affinity, providing content that corresponded with those topics. For example, if CFE sent an email promoting their upcoming webcasts and the subscriber was interested in Artificial Intelligence and Motors & Drives, that person would see webcasts on those two topics in the email, whereas someone interested in other topics would see different webcasts in their message.


    CFE launched their topic assignment campaign in 2023, but their hyper-personalization and targeted communications are already generating more engagement. Emails for their welcome series, which include dynamic content, have seen a 20% higher CTR than their previous, less targeted emails.

    Watch the full session here:

    See full transcript

    Rick Ellis:
    Hello. Good to be with you all. I’m going to try not to talk too fast. I’m a little nervous. And I’m also really excited to hear what Eric, Rhonda, and Josie have to say as well. So let’s see how I do. All right.I’m here to tell you exactly as she had just described. The goal that we had was to use the data that we’re collecting with the Omeda CDP to assign… I should be looking here. To assign topic affinity data, and follow up engagement messaging. So identify and utilize the individual topics of interest for new subscribers to increase engagement. Basically, I’m using subscriber first party data and dynamic content to improve our Welcome series. So I’m going to talk about the process we used. This slide could be trouble. So into the weeds with us folks. So first we identified 31 core topics, the ones that were most important to our subscribers and our customers.We then built a query for each of those 31 topics. Looking at form filled data. Looking at behavioral data for us, that means like eBooks, webcasts, data along those lines. And analytics data from the website. Then we built, with Omeda’s help, we built a campaign lead gen data loader process to assign those topic data’s to each subscriber record. We then went, we applied it to our database. There were over 250,000 records that had this type of data, we swept through it. Took about three, four days broken up into chunks. And we swept through and coded all of the people that had the data. Lastly, we set up a job to run nightly so that each night we’re bringing in the people that took some action or that engaged with our content. So it’s an ongoing process. We then attached it to a Welcome Odyssey, where we targeted a very specific group of new subscribers.In the Odyssey we have dynamic emails that we created for multiple topics across five different of our favorite product categories in this Welcome series. And I’ll show you guys that. We launched it in two brands in March of 2023. And we’re in the process of reviewing the results, and we plan to of course, improve and iterate. So I’ll give you the details and some examples. Here’s the actual Odyssey. It’s very straightforward. It is a seven email series across seven weeks. Five of these emails have dynamic content. One is a, “Hey, go to your profile and adjust what you like.” And the last one is a survey to say, “Hey, how are we doing so far?” So seven weeks of this. Here’s the actual dynamic emails we created. The first one is the example of a default one. So if somebody has engaged, but they haven’t engaged with one of those top topics that I was talking about, they get this default message. And that’s the face of the franchise there. Our marketing manager, Mackenzie. I said I wouldn’t mention you. I lied.So that’s the default email that the folks would get if they engaged. But when they start to engage, you’ll see that the topics, you can’t read it, can you? Anyway, the topics are specific to that person. In this case, this email was about digital transformation. They engaged with the topic of digital transformation. The next one, it’s multiple topics, right? So this other example has three. I think it’s actually four different topics that the person engaged with. So they’re getting content. This was an ebook email that I’m showing. So they’re getting, “Here’s three different topics that you’re interested in on the eBooks.” We did this in conjunction with a new question we’ve been adding to our subscriber profile form. So these are the topics for control engineering. And working with Omeda we designed this process so that it’s a customer-centric process. So we’re assigning this data based on activity and the things that the folks are doing.

    Most of them haven’t come to this form yet, but when they do come to this form, they can then adjust it. And of course their preferences will override anything that we may have assigned them. And it’s done individually and topic by topic. Okay, I’m already to the results. You guys better get queued up back there. All right, so the results… I’ve been good so far. So early successes. Some of the emails have a 20% higher click-through rate than our standard Welcome series that we were testing against. But I was looking this morning and it was exciting because I was seeing 10%, 11%, 12% click-through rates. I actually saw a 17% click-through rate, and my favorite was a 26% click-through rate on my planned engineering brand. Those guys, they’re not a desk bound audience. So if I can get those guys to click and engage with us, I loved it. So that one was particularly exciting to me. And of course, as more subscribers engage, they’re all falling into this Odyssey with the topics riding right along with them.

    Next ideas. So we’re going to test it out on our two other brands. We’ve got it on two brands now. We’re going to take it across onto the two other brands. Build it out on re-engagement. I actually think this is going to be a really good tactic for re-engagement as well, using those topics that people are interested in. And then I want to devise a couple of programs. One for either, I’m thinking highly engaged subscribers, but I’ve also got some highly desirable demographic segments that we will probably do this on. Some kind of iteration of this. And then last, I got a couple of guys in sales that would love me to be able to come up with some kind of package for the dynamic content and some of these processes that we’re using to sell. So do our customers.

    So anyway, it’s early days yet, but it’s been a real success so far in what we’ve seen. And yeah, we’re rolling it out more. So I know that was quick guys, but that’s what we have. And I’m going to be at a round table later, so you guys have questions more into the nuts and bolts, let me know. All right. Thank you all.

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