Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Managing Recurring Webinars in Marketo

There are usually multiple ways to solve a problem with Marketo and this flexibility may make certain configurations seem daunting. For example, the standard webinar channel has nine progression steps for a single program, so running multiple weekly webinars increases required management time exponentially. In addition, there is no easy way to share one form across multiple webinars without building individual registration pages.
After solving this problem for many of our clients, we were able to develop an elegant solution that works very well. Here’s how we do it:
  1. There is no way to get around creating individual programs for each webinar, because the details of each event are directly associated to its program. However, cloning from an existing webinar program (without its members), and then modifying the webinar date for the new event, takes just a few minutes from the summary tab.
  2. Second, I create a separate program that has the master landing page for all the listings. Here’s a link to a live page (http://pages.intermedia.net/monthly-recurring-webinars.html). In this example, I had to also create individual landing pages that included multiple listings since each of them were for a different topic and different dates for each of the topics.
    Recurring webinar landing
  3. Use date tokens on the page as well as in the form drop downs. This will allow you to change date values in the tokens and have them appear with the new dates on the landing pages as well as within the registration form. We suggest using a custom “recurring webinar date” to store these token values.
    Screen Shot 2013-07-27 at 10.03.20 PM
    Screen Shot 2013-07-27 at 10.06.33 PM
  4. Have a processing campaign that looks for these dates and uses a campaign request to add the registrant into the correct webinar. Also, to ensure there are no conflicts, remove the webinar date after it’s used so that the registrant is not cookied when he/she goes to register for another webinar scheduled on another date.
    Screen Shot 2013-07-27 at 10.08.26 PM

It’s just that easy. Our clients have had a lot of success using this best practice for webinar programs and we hope you do too.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Marketo Certified Expert

"Congratulations on becoming a Marketo Certified Expert....Welcome to the elite group of Marketo Certified Experts!"

I had to take a moment and just reflect on the all the learning experiences.
  • Sending out 80K emails at once and wished I would've tested to a seed list before sending.
  • Creating a circular set of workflow logic that kept running and putting the Marketo instance into a crawl.
  • Trying to keep cool when the CEO asked why I was sending emails to "dead" people.
Above all, that rewarding feeling of "a-ha" when a complex set of daisy-chained triggers made sense, when all the metics are humming along and I am "in flow". 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Is it TOFU, MOFU, or BOFU?

Happy New Year!

I recently returned from a 1 week foundation training course for a group of future Marketo "super users". These were a hand-picked, elite few who would help roll out the system world-wide. The days were filled with hands-on activities, super-duper advanced topics that I can't reveal, and all the flows, lists, programs and drama that comes with marketing automation. The sessions often diverged into multiple tangents and the agenda became a menu of topics from left over questions. All in all, very exciting and fun to see that look of achievement when someone gets a topic.

In the final day, I realized that we covered quite a bit of ground but something was missing. While we focused heavily on the system side of things, there was very little discussion about how all of these functional pieces were addressing the larger chain of events. 

What are the programs we were creating solving for? 
Do these programs address issues with top of the funnel (TOFU), middle of the funnel (MOFU), or bottom of the funnel (BOFU) problems?

I suspect that we were getting more and more specialized in the sense that one person is charge of executing a campaign and anther coming up with the campaigns. It wasn't just this group or this company. Often, I'm finding more and more separation between automation, marketing planning, field marketing and sales. These folks don't really share a common idea of where exactly the issues are in their funnel in order to come up with relevant campaigns that address the fallouts in these phases. Heck, the concepts are even new yet the campaigns have been planned well in advance....sort of cart before the horse.

As we look into future campaigns, I only hope that everyone is staring at the same set of conversion metrics so we can all figure out if it's TOFU, MOFU, or BOFU we're solving for.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Marketing 101 for MSPs: Marketing Automation

I like keeping things low-key so when I was asked to contribute to a white paper for MSPs (Managed Service Providers) on marketing automation it took me by surprise. It suddenly felt like I had to represent all of us who toil in this art each day and that pressure started to build as we got closer to the first outline. The big question was:

What do I say and how can I put all of these evolving concepts into a paper that is useful and not theoretical?

I've spent so much time reading white papers and they've become the industry standard in getting the initial inquiry. Catchy titles are great, but I've always wanted substance....something the reader who doesn't have an frame of reference can easily get.

It took a few weeks and I never thought these many pages for a 101 on the topic would come out of this. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did in putting it together.

Thanks to Ken Vanderweel and Randy Budde for making it such a smooth process.

Here's a direct link to the paper: Marketing 101 for MSPs: Marketing Automation

Sunday, August 19, 2012

On Today's Program - Catch 22

Since Marketo programs launched, it has provided a easier way to manage campaign flows and assets into a single structure. Campaign reporting has also been simplified since programs consolidate multiple campaigns and provide success metrics through member progression statuses.

For the past few weeks, I've been converting most of our marketing activities into Marketo Programs and also looking into the past few years to properly associated acquisition programs for all of our leads. However, I've also ran into a catch 22 in a few scenarios.

The fundamental issue is that any lead added to a Marketo program will automatically sync to a SFDC campaign if the SFDC campaign is linked. Here are a few scenarios where this is causing problems.

1. Lists - When lists are added to a program, all the members are automatically synced to the campaign. In cases where you only want members who responded to the campaign to actually be in the program, they have to be outside of the program (in the lead database). Here's the catch.

In the list load process, if the Acquisition Program is selected you run into the syncing issue since all members would get associated to the program thus the issue above. If you don't select the Acquisition Program by selecting "none" new leads would not have any Acquisition Program assigned. Acquisition is only attributed to net new leads so they remain empty.

2. Campaign flows - As part of our email campaigns we have instrumented a couple of scenarios where if the lead is a member of our Bad Data list or Email is Bounced, they are removed from flow. This is the first flow step to ensure data quality. This rule is ignored if this is a flow within the program an you'll get all leads synced to the SFDC campaign.

3. Lead assignment race conditions - For many reason, our lead assignment are done in Marketo. The sync between SFDC and Marketo is through a license just for Marketo. The assignments are setup with a single entry point called "sync master" where the lead is evaluated based on the global territory and flows through a series of sub request campaigns that ultimately assigns the lead based on product interest and specific territory to the rep that the lead belongs. However, by default all leads end up assigned to the sync license when leads are uploaded before they have the chance to be assigned. And since there's no way to mass reassign leads once an owner is established, it's a process to get owner's changed.

4. Old leads - If you have a set of leads that are not in a Program (older leads, inactive leads, etc.) and want to add them to a program, they will also sync to SFDc when they are added to these campaigns. Depending on the number of these leads, it can get ugly.

Please support this idea by voting for it in the community: https://community.marketo.com/MarketoIdeaDetail?id=08750000000HnEkAAK

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Ryan Vong – Marketo Jedi Knight

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to meet the ReveStar team in their Palo Alto office. I have to admit, they had me at "revenue." There are some things you can tell right away and the conversations just flowed. It felt like I found a long lost relative and decided to jump in. This is a repost of the blog announcement. Although Star Wars never came up in our conversations, I'm a big fan and the chosen theme was perfect.

Continuing on the “Mad Skills” theme, Ryan Vong has joined ReveStar as Technical Consultant, Special Projects. Like Patricia and George, Ryan has an unbelievably deep knowledge of various marketing automation tool sets, and in particular Marketo and SFDC. Like many in the Marketo user community in the Silicon Valley, I have witnessed first hand Ryan’s ability to deconstruct new “bleeding edge” business processes and layer in marketing automation practices to ensure strong demand gen and pipeline development.
If your company is implemeting advanced new business processes and looking to generate revenue from it (all this by the end of the next fiscal quarter), contact ReveStar and we’ll hook you up with the marketing automation Jedi Knight.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Decoding the Marketo Template (Abridged)

When it comes to designing landing pages using the Marketo template, the common complaint is that it's difficult to customize the template. The typical scenario is that the template should match the website standards and so marketing folks will send the template to a designer, webmaster, or design agency that hasn't seen this before. The template comes back with some of the raw html used for the website or uploaded directly into Marketo.  When the template is previewed, it looks fine. However, when it comes time to edit or add content to it, it breaks or the editor keeps spinning and nothing comes up. Then the whole notion that the editor or the template sucks.

What happened?

The trick to all of this is to pay attention to the way the template is structured. There are some specific div tags in the template which starts off with "div#mkt..." which the Marketo editor looks for. This tells the editor which area on the template it is modifying. There are also some places in the code where it says "DO NOT EDIT". Heed the warning unless you know what you are doing. For the most part, there are three "divs" to worry about. I tried to highlight them in the image. Get those right and the template is pretty easy to manipulate.

A buddy of mine asked if I could reverse engineer the template that Marketo uses for the referral program. My template is on the right and I'm pretty proud of it. It does the trick.


 While it's not exact it took me an hour or so to recreate this template. To save you some time, I've included the bones for it here. You'll have to replace all the places where the images point to our image library and it should look just like yours and take half the time. If you have a good web person, they can add all the snazzy navigation to match your site in no time.