Celebrity Cruises

Triggered Emails


ExactTarget Automated Emails

Consistently voted one of the best cruise lines in the world, Celebrity Cruises has been providing quality, luxury cruises since 1988.

As a leader in the field, Celebrity wanted to make greater use of email marketing automation to ensure a fast response to specific user actions and bring their customers the information they need rapidly.

Trigger, Alert, Report

The objective for this project was to create a fast-acting triggered email system using ExactTarget, so that users receive automated emails with useful information when they complete specific Tridion or ShortStack forms on the website.

As part of this we needed to create two new CRM request types for Ship Visit (SHIPVIS) and Competition (COMPENT) and expose an endpoint for third party integrations (like ShortStack/WordPress forms) to call the CRM/ExactTarget implementation.

With the Building Blocks Digital Operations Services team supporting Celebrity, we also wanted to build in improved error reporting and enable them to be alerted if certain parameters were not met e.g. if three CRM request types fail within an hour.

In addition we created a Kibana dashboard where the client can easily see reports on successful and failed submissions into their CRM, the database and for their emails.

Implementing and Integrating

Working with Celebrity’s internal IT and infrastructure team we developed an effective solution which required us to refactor the current form submission process, in order to provide a generic way of submitting a number of different submission types. The team settled on a polymorphic design pattern to choose the relevant fields and templates for the submission.

We exposed a new controller action to allow third party integrations with ShortStack forms, using a discriminator to describe the submission type. This allowed requests that used both the existing CRM integration and a new ExactTarget integration to store the data, submit to the CRM service and trigger emails in ExactTarget.

Using Log4Net.ElasticSearch we were able to index the result of any of the above requests into ElasticSearch and use this data to create statistical dashboards in Kibana and fire alerts when any errors arose using ElastAlert.

To achieve the successful implementation of the project Building Blocks supplied additional support to Celebrity Cruises' internal teams to get their Siebel implementation mapping to the forms correctly. We also introduced the ELK stack and ElastAlert as a new technology into the Celebrity Cruises’ infrastructure, this provides future opportunities for adding more metrics in, to enhance analytics.

Improved Customer Experience

As a result of this project Celebrity’s brochure upload FTP application has been added into the monitoring service to track issues with brochure request uploads. This was an area of serious impact on customer experience, so being able to simply add monitoring of it into the system we set up is a great way to build on the work we have done and mitigate a problem.

The analytics provided on the dashboard are straight-forward, so non-technical users can identify issues and the marketing team can identify the quantity and types of requests coming through determine trends in a fast, visual way.