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Get the Most from Your Salesforce Marketing Cloud With These Tips

Updated: Dec 1, 2023


Children telling secrets

Marketers can use the Salesforce Marketing Cloud (SMC) to coordinate very sophisticated customer communications on an incredibly large scale. However, aligning marketing and IT, understanding the complexities of your organization’s data, and becoming an expert at SMC can be quite a challenge. With this in mind, we’ve assembled a few tricks that you may not have come across - even if you have been using Salesforce Marketing Cloud for a while!


1. Edit a Salesforce Entry Event

It’s painful to have to configure the entire Salesforce Entry Event because it can’t be edited after creating a new version of Journey. But here’s a trick:

  • Before going live with a Journey that has a Salesforce Entry Event, create a copy of the Journey. The copied Journey will be used for initial testing – so store the original Journey somewhere secure.

  • After the initial testing, you could find a few issues and need to edit the Salesforce entry event. On the actual Journey, the Salesforce Entry Criteria will be non-editable.

  • Delete/Stop the copied Journey.

  • Now you should be able to edit the Salesforce Entry Criteria in the actual Journey.


2. Edit a Salesforce Entry Event - Without Having to Duplicate the Journey

The tactic above is good if you are in the testing phase. However, if you follow this process after the Journey has been running for some time, then you will have two journeys with their own individual analytics. So, when you need to report the journey performance, engagement data will have to be extracted from both journeys. Prevent this by following these steps:

  • Create a new version of the running journey.

  • Come back to the old version and stop it.

  • Go to the new version and now you should be able to modify the Salesforce entry source.

Note: This will affect the contacts still in the journey as none of these contacts will move to the new journey version, nor will they move forward in their current journey version.


3. Refresh a Data Extension without Exiting

Here’s a simple tip to refresh data extensions without the need to go back to its parent folder. Click ‘Add Records’ and then ‘Cancel’. This is a great tactic with imports or any other processes that update data extensions in the background while you want to immediately check results.


4. Check the Contact’s Path in the Journey

This feature comes in handy when you need to debug a highly complex Journey or have to answer questions about a contact going one way or another through a series of splits. You can search for a specific contact key in the health section in Journey Builder to see the path it took. This includes all decision and engagement splits as well as send activities. It will even show multiple instances in re-entry journeys.


5. Retrieve Salesforce Records on a CloudPage

If are doing some tests and you need some data associated with a contact record in Salesforce, say the contact’s “Total order value,” here’s what you can do. You log into Salesforce CRM and look for the record only to find the ‘Total order value’ field is hidden from the contact layout. You could reach out to the Salesforce CRM team to fix the permission, but that could take time, so here’s another option.


Assuming your Salesforce is integrated into Marketing Cloud, you can do an Ampscript lookup on a CloudPage to get the required data. Note: If you do not have permission to access the record in Salesforce, this feature too will not return anything.


6. Brand Builder

Brand Builder lets you customize the user interface and color scheme for parts of your Marketing Cloud account. You can customize the:

  • Marketing Cloud Login Page

  • Email Page

  • Marketing Cloud Application

  • Subscription Center


7. URL Expiration

If you send event promotion emails far in advance of the actual event date, be careful what you have set for the URL expiration date. This useful feature lets you control when links in emails sent from your account will expire, however, you need to be conscious about its use, otherwise, you might end up losing business without even noticing it.


8. Subscriber Filter

The ‘All Subscriber’ list is shared enterprise-wide. Even if you have data extensions available exclusive to each business unit, a marketer with access to the ‘All subscriber’ list can view the entire database.


Subscriber filters could be the feature to help. Once defined by the admin for each business unit, subscriber filters control access to the subscribers for child accounts. The filter selects subscribers for a business unit based on values in the subscriber attributes.

Use the below steps to define the subscriber filter:

1. In Setup, click Business Units.

2. Select the business unit to create the filter for.

3. Select Define Subscriber Filter.

4. Complete the information and add conditions and groupings.


9. Enable Deep Links

Enable “Deep Links” in the configuration for Marketing Cloud Connect. Allow connected users to login directly into Marketing Cloud from Sales Cloud (just like SSO).

1. In Sales or Service Cloud, navigate to the Marketing Cloud tab.

2. Click Configure Marketing Cloud Connector, Edit Settings.

3. Under General, select the desired setting for Marketing Cloud Deep Link Access.


10. Work with SMC’s Subscriber Filter Function

While working with Marketing Cloud, setting the campaign to ‘All Subscriber’ will help you share the campaign enterprise-wide. An additional way is to use Subscriber Filter which can be used by your admin to define the subscriber for each campaign. The feature helps to choose subscribers for a business unit, based on certain values and attributes of the subscriber.


11. Enable Brand Builder

Among the most interesting Marketing Cloud hacks is using the Brand Builder. It allows teams to customize the color scheme and user interface for specific parts of the Marketing Cloud account. Using this feature you can customize the email page, subscription center, Marketing Cloud login page, and the overall Marketing Cloud application.


Final Words

Celerity’s team of Salesforce Marketing Cloud consultants and engineers have years of experience working with the platform! Our team of professionals can help you with additional tips specific to your business or industry needs. If you have any questions or would like more information, feel free to reach out to Dan Spigarolo at daniel.spigarolo@celerity-is.com.

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