The inclusion of product content in your messages is vital to the success of your marketing programs.  Whether you’re launching a new product and want to share it with all of your contacts, targeting specific segments of customers with promotional offerings, or just providing your customers with information on the products they’ve recently purchased or placed in their shopping carts, having easy access to your product data when building messages is critical.

Store Your Product Data

Bronto is excited to announce new functionality that allows you to easily store your current product catalog directly inside the Bronto Marketing Platform and leverage that data to quickly build messages with both static and dynamic product content.  First, you must bring your product data into Bronto. You can use your existing Google Merchant product feed or any other delimited or XML-based feed and pick and choose what product attributes you want to store in Bronto. This file must include all of your current products. Products that are removed from your feed will be archived. Once your feed is ready, go the Products menu item in the Tables menu to get started. It’s as easy as 1-2-3.MG1Step 1: Configure Import Feed Here you can set up email notifications, tell Bronto how your feed is configured and specify a location where we can pull nightly feeds if you so desire. Step 2: Map Product Fields The fields in your feed can have any names you like. In this step, tell us how those field names map to the fields in Bronto. We’ve already created more than 25 predefined fields for your use, but if you don’t see the fields you want, you can create up to 50 additional custom fields. Step 3: Import Products Once your feed is configured and mapped, you need to perform one manual import of products to complete the setup. You can upload a local file or have us pull from your nightly location. Once setup is complete, you can begin searching on your product data, and if applicable, Bronto will begin importing your feeds automatically each night to make sure your product data is always up to date. We also have APIs available to import your product feeds daily and send real-time updates on individual products. Documentation is available upon request and will be made publicly available shortly. For more detailed information on setting up your product data, see the Help & Learning Center within Bronto.

Create Order and Cart Messages

Now you’re ready to take full advantage of your product data to enhance your message content, while doing it faster than ever. If you currently send or plan to send transactional emails via Bronto or use Bronto’s Cart Recovery app to send cart abandonment emails, the use of product data in those messages couldn’t be easier. Simply add additional cart tags that reference your product data to your message.  The tag looks like this: %%$cart.item.product.field%% Just replace field with the name of the field you specified in your product configuration, and that data will be pulled into the message for the product ID associated to the item in the cart loop.

Create Marketing Messages

Placing product content inside of a marketing message is an easy, flexible, two-step process with Bronto’s Email Message Editor. Step 1: Create your messages with product “placeholders” to indicate where your product content should live in the message. You can specify whatever product attributes you like from your product data. For each product and attribute, just place the following tag in your message: %%$product.placeholder.field%% Replace placeholder with any value you like. It’s just like creating custom content tags. This could be as simple as a number, or give it a name like “PrimaryProduct” to indicate its placement in the message. And as  with the cart items, replace field with the name of the field you specified in your product configuration that you want displayed in the message for the product ID you specify. Step 2: When saving the message or when you click on the Set Product Defaults icon in the Settings > Tools menu in the message editor toolbar, you’ll get a list of all product placeholders in your message. For each, you can specify a default Product ID value that will be displayed when this message is sent. Set Product DefaultsWe are working on some enhancements that will add an optional third step to the process, allowing you to specify delivery-specific product IDs for your placeholders when scheduling a delivery, overriding any defaults you specified in the message editor. This will allow you to create “template” emails and decide at scheduling time what products to insert into the message for that specific delivery. This enhancement will also allow original message editor users to strengthen messages with product data. For more detailed instructions on creating messages that include product data, check out the Enhance Message Content with Product Data document, and look for future posts on additional enhancements to how messages use product data!