Salesforce Marketing Cloud: How Can You Maximize its Benefits?
What’s the greatest challenge facing marketers today?
The same as it has always been – making a personal connection with customers. Digital technology has provided a vast array of options for addressing this baseline issue, but one solution has clearly dominated in recent years: Salesforce Marketing Cloud.
What is the Salesforce Marketing Cloud?
Marketing Cloud is a SaaS platform that integrates all relevant marketing avenues: social media, mobile apps, email, SMS, and websites. It allows marketers to send personalized messages through any or all channels at any desired time, creating bespoke customer journeys that evoke robust responses, enduring loyalty – and maximum revenues.
What are the features of Marketing Cloud?
Marketing Cloud’s applications are wide-ranging. Marketers can use it to:
- Create personalized and automated email campaigns
- Produce cross-channel campaigns (e.g., email, mobile, advertising and web) that offer compelling customer journeys
- Generate targeted SMS messaging linked to events, locations, and proximity
- Build personalized webpages that feature captivating content and offers
Focusing on customer-centricity through Marketing Cloud
From a larger perspective, Salesforce Marketing Cloud’s transcendent value lies in its power to provide a rich 360-degree perspective of every customer and prospect:
- Marketing Cloud enables personalized messaging through any relevant channel, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google, and YouTube.
- It allows teams to adjust campaigns via views of the real-time channel and site analytics.
- It unifies data, leveraging AI to complete prospect profiles.
- Marketing Cloud employs SFMC and SFDC data to build audiences and enact campaign segmentation.
- It also engages and captures visitors by providing dynamic content based on prior page views and purchase history.
By connecting all these touchpoints, Marketing Cloud allows companies to develop deep relationships with each and every customer and prospect.
Charting the customer journey with Marketing Cloud
Marketing Cloud’s power to chart a rich and immersive customer journey illustrates its value to both your company and consumers. It accomplishes this by:
- Accumulating contact data (e.g., email clicks), allowing individual journeys to follow different paths. Evolving data, for example, might shift a consumer from prospect to customer, with a correspondingly different journey.
- Automating communication contact continuity: a shopper may get an initial “welcome” email, then receive subsequent emails on various subjects following a purchase.
- Identifying ideal contact channels that correspond to appropriate points in the journey. Email, for example, might be used for service and support, with SMS for deadlines or other time-related issues; either or both could be used for post-purchase communications such as completed deliveries, surveys, product registration, and billing or loan payments.
Maximizing your benefits from Marketing Cloud
Getting the most out of Marketing Cloud depends on its implementation and support.
Yes, it’s an out-of-the-box solution – but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to integrate. Most businesses, if fact, lack the in-house resources needed to fully exploit Marketing Cloud’s value. That requires a partner who is deeply versed in all nuances of the product.
And it also demands a partner who understands not just the specific applications of Marketing Cloud and the deliverables of each Marketing Cloud project, but also the culture and aspirations of the client.
What should you look for in a Marketing Cloud partner?
A successful Marketing Cloud implementation requires a partner who knows how to apply Marketing Cloud to the unique challenges faced by each customer, one who can adapt to changing markets, consumer trends, and evolving client goals.
And it requires a partner who is committed for the long haul, one who is available 24/7 to support any Marketing Cloud solution for any client at any location on the planet.
Questions to ask when implementing Marketing Cloud
As with any good tool, Marketing Cloud must be applied properly to yield desired results. That implies a basic question: How do you identify an opportunity for this powerful but complex solution? A good partner will tackle this essential query from all angles:
- Does the client have a customer journey map?
- How do they define MQL and SQL?
- What tools are used to create a holistic view of a customer?
- How is multichannel prospect data used?
These are all questions that Marketing Cloud is designed to address – and that a good partner can answer.
But that information alone hardly guarantees a successful Marketing Cloud implementation. Effective solution partners go beyond defining the immediate needs of the customer to anticipating and analyzing any possible challenges they may face during and after launch. That means the deployment of a full team to every project. What’s required? A developer? Or the deep analytical insight and guidance of a solution architect? It really doesn’t matter either way.
Optimal teams include architects, developers, data analysts, content managers, and campaign managers, with partner contributors dovetailing seamlessly with client staffers.
Marketing Cloud is a complex array of independent components that must work together smoothly and harmoniously to realize best-case results. Achieving that synchrony is immensely challenging – in development, during integration, and through the post-launch environment. It’s difficult for a single client user to properly employ Marketing Cloud; it takes an in-house team. And for true success, it takes ongoing support from an implementation and integration partner who is deeply conversant with the solution.