What actually connects you both to the topic of marketing?
Sandra: *Laughing* I had to learn that back then. Seriously: As a marketing communications specialist, big campaigns were my daily job. And now I combine that with what I like to do today: TYPO3.
Alex: In my last job almost 10 years ago, I worked in the marketing department of a Munich-based real estate software company. It was there that I first came into contact with marketing automation using the Eloqua and Salesforce software. There were a few things that immediately fascinated me.
Ok, so you wanted to build a similar tool to Google Analytics with a lot of visitor information?
Alex: The task of Analytics or Matomo is a completely different one. These tools are visitor analysis software aimed at optimizing the website and its content. Marketing automation, on the other hand, aims to automatically present information at the right time. In addition, leads are dropping out without any active intervention (see marketing terms in documentation).
Although the analysis part is also available in LUX, it is much smaller than in Analytics, for example. A customer (from sales) once said after an integration on their servers: "Google Analytics offers so much more information, while LUX provides so much more valuable information".
Yes, the Sales ... but why do I need a tool like LUX on my TYPO3 website?
Sandra: There's a strange fact about many companies with TYPO3 websites: While the creation and maintenance of larger sites is often expensive and time-consuming, very few customers know what the site actually brings them. In the worst case, it's just a very expensive business card somewhere on the Internet - unless an online shop is integrated. This is exactly where Marketing Automation comes in. By developing the leads (Lead Nurturing) visitors get to see relevant content while at the same time high quality leads are transferred to the sales department. So I can only calculate what a qualified web lead (Sales Accepted Lead) costs me and what the website really brings me when I use such a tool.
Ok, and what is the difference between LUX and other marketing automation tools like Mautic or Hubspot?
Alex: Both are very powerful tools. But with LUX, we have a solution in the content management system. In other words, where the editors work every day. From our point of view, content should be created there and important information about leads should also be displayed there. In addition, simple operation should support editors in their daily work. And last but not least: We also found data protection with data sovereignty on our own server not completely unimportant.
Good catchword. GDPR and data protection - what does it look like here?
Sandra: That was the focus of our work right from the start. One should not be overly afraid of the GDPR. On the contrary, this regulation helps us to deal with data and that is exactly the point. Whether with or without marketing automation, I would always recommend a transparent approach to the topic - especially on your own website.
The information collected is used by a marketing automation tool with the purpose of increasing user-friendliness. If the visitor does not want this, he has of course the possibility to prevent the data collection via different ways. By the way, all this should be explained clearly in a data protection declaration.
How does the name come about? As a TYPO3 Extension Key LUX is a bit unusual.
Sandra: The name is a play on words. Living User eXperience describes the actual topic. We wanted to build a piece of software that would improve user experience on the website by displaying relevant content. At the same time, of course, a lynx (in German Luchs - similar to Lux) also stands for an elegant animal that can be heard particularly well.
How long has LUX existed and how often is the tool already in use?
Sandra: The tool is currently in use in a handful of installations. We have used the last year to fix initial errors and further sharpen the user interface. For example, we first had to learn that the Google Bot will get a very high ranking if you don't prevent it. *Laughing*
Version 2 of LUX has been around for almost a week - what's different?
Alex: Since version 2.0 we have splitted LUX into two extensions. The basic extension lux is a freely available extension for the acquisition and analysis of leads in a Community Edition. In an Enterprise Edition as an extension add-on we offer workflows and contextual content - everything you need to use the captured data to provide individual content.
What is the difference between the Community Edition and the Enterprise Edition?
Alex: In principle as just described: Analysis and workflows.
For the Enterprise Edition we charge a few Euro per month. We use the same model as for the TYPO3 Content Publisher and want to finance the long-term maintenance and further development of both extensions. So also the community has something of the distribution and the price model.
What are you particularly proud of at LUX and what were the challenges?
Sandra: It was fun to sketch and scribble the interfaces beforehand. Alex had to implement them exactly according to my ideas. I gradually banned irrelevant information.
Alex: *Considers a bit longer* I think the technical modularity is one of the best. At LUX, workflows consist of triggers and actions. We built the tool so that you can easily add more. If someone needs a new action that the system doesn't yet have - for example, an automatic transfer of the lead to Salesforce - it's very easy to add a few lines of PHP. Many already know the basic principle from the finishers of powermail or the Form Extension in TYPO3.
Are there already plans for the future?
Sandra: Of course we hope for a lot of feedback from the community what we can improve or what is missing. So feel free to contact me at any time!
Alex: I'm thinking about building an Extension luxletter. So a professional and visually appealing newsletter integration in TYPO3. This tool could send individual newsletters on its own or in combination with lux automatically. Even if I already have ideas and a rough concept in my head, we still don't have the financing.
Thank you both for your time. All information about LUX can be found on our product page and of course directly at Github or in the TER.
Would you like to learn more about this project? Sandra Pohl is looking forward to your inquiry.