I Wish That I Knew What I Know Now – Marketo Edition

While preparing to get recertified as a Marketo Certified Expert, I took the opportunity to review the study materials and refresh my memory on all of the exam topics. I realized that during my journey as a Marketo user, I’ve picked up several tricks and tips that may not be included on the test.

As Marketo users, we’ve all been there: spending hours researching the MKTG Nation community for answers, picking fellow users’ brains, and testing various solutions until we have finally reached that eureka moment!

While those countless hours of research and testing helped me achieve MCE status, there are several things I’ve learned along the way (and had to learn the hard way) that I wish I’d known as a new Marketo user.

Using tokenized subject lines in Marketo Sales Insight is not a good idea

If you have engaged sales reps who like to understand what specific emails were sent to prospects, do not use my tokens in the subject line. The Email Tab of Marketo Sales Insight will show the token rather than the actual subject line the person has received.. And if you use the {{trigger.Subject}} token in interesting moments and your emails use tokens within the subject line, it will again only show the token itself. This is less than ideal when sales reps are reviewing email history.

Salesforce Lightning users can’t send Marketo Sales Insight emails to multiple recipients

The latest version of Marketo Sales Insight, version 1.4365.0, is Lightning-enabled (yay!) and looks pretty much the same as in Classic. Unfortunately, list view buttons like “Send Marketo Email,” “Add to Watch List,” and “Add to Marketo Campaign” are not available.

So, if your reps are used to sending emails to multiple recipients directly from the lead or contact list view, they’ll have to switch back to Classic. Or buy some beers for Marketing and ask them to create compelling campaigns.

Subscribe to RSS feeds of Interesting Moments

This is not a well-known feature of Marketo Sales Insight, but it can be incredibly useful. Records you own or that have been added to your watchlist will show up in the Lead Feed which allows sales teams to view important milestones in a prospect’s journey in a curated feed.

You can access this from the Marketo tab in Salesforce, grab the RSS link, add to your favorite reader or Outlook, and watch as notifications roll-in in real time. Don’t forget to enable RSS feeds in Marketo’s admin panel for this to work.

Don’t rely on “Email Suspended” to filter out unmailable records

When Marketo detects a certain type of hard bounce on a record, it sets the “Email Suspended” value to true and updates the “Email Suspended At” date. This blocks the email send for the next 24 hours.

However, after the 24 hour period expires, the “Email Suspended” checkbox remains checked even if the record is in fact, mailable. So, if you use the “Email Suspended” filter in your campaigns, you may be filtering out mailable records. Note: This is not to be confused with “Marketing Suspended.”

Webhook calls are not counted as part of the daily API limit

Webhooks are a great way to use internal or third party services to append, validate, or normalize data in almost real-time. A lot of popular Launchpoint services use webhooks. The good news is that webhooks are not counted toward your API limit. Remember: in order to call a webhook in a flow step, the smart campaign needs to be triggered.

Wait steps can backfire

Wait steps can be helpful. They allow you to pause the flow in a campaign – for example, you can use a wait step to allow enough time for a lead to sync over to your CRM before a flow step sends an alert to your team with a link to your CRM record link. In this case, the wait step will allow the system processing to complete and the alert email will not show a blank value for the CRM record link.

As helpful as wait steps can be, they can backfire in certain situations. For instance, if you turn off a smart campaign where records are still in wait steps, the flow will still execute. It could be some unintended action, like inviting people to an event that already passed. What a nightmare! Also, check if something changes on the record while in a wait step that would make it no longer qualified for the smart campaign. Would you want the next step to still execute? Consider adding a “Remove from Flow” step after the wait step that would check if the lead still qualifies for the smart campaign. Also, beware that adding wait steps that are longer than five minutes makes the campaign become the lowest in the priority queue and can slow down your instance.

CRM field mapping doesn’t update

If you inherited an older Marketo instance, don’t even bother downloading the Field Mapping from the Admin screen. It only shows the list of fields available during the initial set-up.

To avoid this, it’s a good idea to keep a data dictionary offline, where you keep tabs on the fields used and their definition. Also, please do me a favor and vote on this idea in the community: Allow to refresh to see current SFDC field mapping.

The number of clicks in “Email Performance” and “Email Link Performance Reports” are calculated differently

I often have stakeholders who question why the number of email clicks shows different values in “Email Performance” and “Email Link Performance” Reports. The clicks column in the Email Link Performance Report displays the raw number of clicks, while the leads column displays the number of people who clicked links in the email. The Email Performance Report counts clicks as recipients who clicked a link from the email while the Email Link Performance Report counts clicks as the number of times that link was clicked.

Links in email report subscriptions time out

One of the favorite analytics subscriptions reports for sales teams is the “Web Page Activity” report. This gets emailed every morning and provides an overview of their leads and the pages they visited.

Sometimes when you click on a record from the report you’ll see a 404-page error. This can be annoying, but this is there for data security reasons. Your Marketo administrator can adjust the expiry date in the Login Settings. Maximum time is 30 days. Once this is updated, you won’t have to worry about the 404 error!

What are some of the features you learned about the hard way? Share one of your eureka moments. Would love to hear from you and update this list!


About the Author

Liz Medeiros

Liz is a Martech Solutions Architect at DemandLab and a Marketo Certified Expert. She has 20 years of software, SaaS, and cloud technology industry experience and has led cross-functional and departmental groups through process and technology transformation projects that have increased efficiency, simplified processes and reduced cost.

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