Hackathon: Successful integration of SAP Hybris marketing campaigns with predictive analytics

16. August 2017

The SAP Hybris product range, complete with modules for Marketing, Cloud for Sales, Service, Social & Billing as well as a Commerce Platform, is becoming increasingly present. While the majority of decision-makers are still testing out the functions and potential of various products for their company, others are one step ahead and have already put in place productive environments.

One of our insurance sector customers recently hosted the annual “Focus Days” Hackathon. In the context of the recent successfully concluded SAP Hybris marketing implementation and integration project, in the course of which classic campaign channels such as e-mail, CRM leads and CRM CallTasks were provided, one topic of perspective should be carefully examined. “The integration of SAP Hybris marketing “Facebook campaigns” supported by predictive analytics.”

Predictive analytics facilitate target group identification for SAP Hybris marketing campaigns

The aim initially was to identify customer “lookalikes” within the customer database who already demonstrated successful sale closures for a specific product. These “lookalikes” have a similar profile or behavior. Based on this information it is possible to predict that they are highly likely to purchase similar products. Existing functions on Facebook were not used since the approach involved systematically targeting pre-existing insurance customers. The next step involved approaching the contacts identified using SAP Hybris marketing-controlled Facebook campaigns.

The tasks here have been split up among two teams:

  • Set-up of SAP predictive analytics to identify “lookalikes” for a Facebook campaign using manually-triggered processes
  • Set-up of Facebook integration and execution of a SAP Hybris marketing “Facebook campaign” based on the target groups identified with predictive analytics
  • Advertisement of the Facebook campaign on a Facebook account

In order to comply with the timeframe of 1.5 working days, some preparatory measures were implemented in the run-up:

  • Registration on Facebook
  • Creation of a Facebook campaign including content
  • Opening up of technical access between SAP Hybris Marketing and Facebook
  • Provision of users and authorizations

The team consisted of marketeers, data modelers, SAP Basis specialists and a SAP Hybris Marketing specialist. The result was surprisingly successful for all of us. Even within the first few days we were able to put together and implement a prediction model, thus providing a target group with potential “lookalikes”. These were then used in the course of a periodic SAP Hybris marketing campaign: The channel Facebook was used to address the target group, clearly assigned to a pre-prepared Facebook campaign.

40 percent of the potential interested customers identified were already known to Facebook on the basis of the phone numbers or e-mail addresses supplied, thus demonstrating the key role played by social media in the insurance sector too. Whether and to what extent advertising via a channel like Facebook in a serious sector like insurance is rewarded by customers, was not dealt with in this step.

For the target group, Facebook requires a critical size of more than 100 to ensure a certain measure of protection against the traceability of communications. This must be taken into account within the context of the forty percent hit rate mentioned above. Facebook does not disclose which users were actually targeted by the Facebook campaign. However, if the post is actively opened, this information is transmitted to SAP Hybris Marketing directly via a landing page for example and made available for follow-on campaigns.

One small added obstacle was: Facebook prioritizes the execution of a campaign over the value (cost) per post. In our case, the minimum amount was selected and the minimum target group size chosen – this resulted in the campaign not being executed for a few hours.

And on the second day, before the end of the Hackathon, our own Facebook test customers had the marketing post on their mobiles.

Lessons Learned – Wichtige Faktoren für die erfolgreiche Integration von SAP Hybris Marketing „Facebook-Kampagnen“

  • The cost of implementing a proof of concept is low
  • The available documentation is sufficient with some prior knowledge of SAP Hybris Marketing and the Facebook environment

  • The integration process works simply and reliably, however it is important to involve SAP Basis colleagues After all, as is often the case, the greatest challenges lie in the correct provision of the firewall, proxy, certificates and other basic configurations

  • The most up-to-date SAP Notes must always be installed to support the current version of Facebook (changes every 3 – 6 months)

  • It is also helpful to provide basic knowledge about Facebook campaigns and administration. There are various framework conditions which influence the implementation of the campaign, e.g. the interaction of defined post costs vs. time of execution or varying designations in Facebook and SAP Hybris Marketing

The topic of privacy and data security were not dealt with any further during the focus days. Since it is an interface based on SAP Hybris Marketing accessing Facebook, the initial assessment was that this could be classed as less critical. The approach to this topic and the motivated team involved turned this into a success and delivered great results. Based on the knowledge obtained, we would certainly recommend this function to others.

About the author: Lawrence Bogdain has gained more than 16 years of professional experience in the field of SAP consulting. After being responsible for IT in a medium-sized company, he joined Q_PERIOR in March 2001. He is now in charge of the SAP CRM & Hybris topic development. In numerous projects Mr. Bogdain has established an extensive user and product knowledge.


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