Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Locking Down Your Assets

Guest post from Chad Horenfeldt

Eloqua has some great security features that let clients of all sizes implement specific business processes within Eloqua. In this post, I’m going to focus on securing assets in Eloqua.

By assets, I’m referring to the following objects within Eloqua that can be locked down:

- Email
- Email Group
- Contact Filters
- Distribution Lists
- Programs
- Forms

Eloqua allows you to lock down assets by either security group (a specific group of Eloqua users) or by individual user. Let’s look at a specific example. Let’s say you want to modify the security rights of an Email Group within Eloqua as you don’t want certain users to have access to these emails within this folder. We’ll assume that you have Customer Administrator security rights. Login to Eloqua and go to the Email area. Click on the drop down menu of the email and select “Edit Security”.

From the “Edit Security Rights” window, you can quickly select if the various security groups should have the ability to view, edit, delete or modify the security rights for this Email Group.

All you need to do is click on the red X to change it to a green check and vice versa. In this case, we only want certain users to have access to the emails in this group so we’ll disable access for most of the email groups and add the two users that we want to grant access to: Greg Lui and Jeff Porter:

You’re all done! Only Greg and Jeff can access this Email Group. Just to add to this, users who create their own Email Groups can adjust the security access to it.

The same type of asset protection can be done for the other assets listed above such as emails, email templates, forms, programs and email distribution lists. As another example, you can remove editing privileges of an email to a security group or user(s) but these users can still copy the email and modify it for their own purposes. We often recommend to our clients to create emails that will be used as templates this way. After they’re created, put them in an Email Group called “0 Templates” so they appear at the top and ensure that the emails are locked down so that they can’t be modified. You can also secure the sections of an email but we’ll leave that topic to a future post. Remember to lock down your assets – especially if you have multiple groups operating within one Eloqua instance.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Powerful New Contact Filters

Eloqua's spring release had a number of very interesting new capabilities to explore, and over the next few posts, I'll look at a few of those. The first to look at, and perhaps the most powerful, is the integrated filtering engine.

Defining a target segment based on demographic or firmographic information has been a mainstay of marketing for many years, but over the past few years, the ability to add in the psychographics of online behaviour has added a new dimension to the mix that allows you to capture not just who a person is, but how interested they are, or even what they are interested in.

This has been possible within Eloqua for a long time, but now, the new integrated filtering engine brings demographics, firmographics, and psychographics together in one easy to use interface.

Building Combined Filters

As you always have, click "New Contact Filter" to begin creating a contact filter. Now, the interface shows a palette of options on the right hand side. These options range from data on the contact itself, data on attached custom objects, associated company information, or activity information.

Select a filter option and simply drag it onto the main canvas. A configuration window pops up, giving you the ability to set the details of that filter option. Note that for data field, you can use lists of criteria, such as titles, to match if the contact meets any of the criteria in that list.

To build an integrated filter that includes activity, inactivity, company, or custom data object information, just drag in one of those items as a filter option.

For time related criteria, such as activity, the simplification is taken one step further. Just begin typing the amount of time you have in mind, and the auto-suggest feature will provide you with possible options ranging from hours to months.

Keep dragging the criteria you require onto the canvas until you have created the contact filter that you need. By default the conditions you choose will work together as "ANDs" - all criteria must be met to return the contact - but you can configure this logic (including brackets and more advanced boolean logic) by pressing the "Advanced" button at the bottom of the page.

With your filter complete, you can see all criteria displayed for you in natural text form, giving you a very clear sense of what you are looking at:

And to ensure that you are returning the number of contacts you expected, you can always click the "refresh" button and see exactly how many contacts meet the criteria you have specified.

These new integrated contact filters that combine explicit data on the contact, the company, and any custom data objects with implicit information on an individual's activity are extremely flexible and powerful, while also being very simple to use. I look forward to hearing from you how you have used these filters to better target your audience, and any enhancements you see being of further value.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Closing the Loop on Paid Search

Guest post from Elle Woulfe, Senior Marketing Programs Manager at Eloqua. Elle is one of the people responsible for our own internal use of Eloqua to optimize our marketing, and in this post, she looks at how we approach our investments in paid search marketing.


Paid search ranks high on the list of marketing tactics for most B2B companies, but many marketers lack the ability to close the loop on search generated inquiries. Tying clicks to revenue in order to understand the business impact of SEM allows you to optimize spend and improve ROI.

Like most technology companies, Eloqua depends on both paid and natural search to find those buyers in the early stages of researching marketing automation vendors. We use a disciplined system of testing and optimization throughout our search program to produce the best results. But knowing which keywords generated the most inquires isn’t enough. We rely on Eloqua to track SEM leads from first click to close, generating a complete view of the revenue impact and the ROI of our search program.

For paid search, we treat each landing page and its associated keywords, as a campaign. When a visitor searches Google for a term related to marketing automation, like “lead scoring,” and clicks on one of our paid search terms, they land on an Eloqua landing page with a relevant offer for that term. When a user completes the form on the search landing page they are associated with that campaign in Eloqua. Now we can easily track the impact that search has on our sales funnel, but before that happens - our standard lead management process kicks in.

Clean Data Makes Happy Marketers

Eloqua’s automated data cleansing, lead scoring and routing processes are initiated once a prospect submits a form. In order to use our data for segmentation and targeting, lead scoring and analysis, we need an accurate dataset. When a contact enters our database it first goes through the contact washing machine. In this process, contact data is normalized and appended and the contact is associated to an account where possible. The contact is then scored based on fit and behavior and finally, this new data is synced to our CRM system, updating the relevant fields to give sales an accurate picture of prospect activity.

The contact’s most recent search term, as well as any other activities the prospect has taken is displayed in the CRM system so sales as a real-time view into prospect activity and interest.

How We Close the Loop

• A contact is associated to a search campaign when they complete the form. Now, as they engage with other Eloqua assets or campaigns, those interactions are associated to the contact as well, providing a complete picture of all the marketing activities that influence them.

• Eloqua campaign reporting automatically pulls opportunity, lead rank and revenue information associated to the contact and captured in our CRM back into Eloqua so we have a single view of search marketing success metrics and the impact of search influenced leads on the sales funnel.

• If a deal closes with the account our search lead is associated to, the search campaign is tracked as having influenced the prospect. The total deal size is automatically divided by all the campaigns that touched all the contacts associated to the account and the search campaign gets its cut. If multiple people at the account were influenced by search campaigns, all of those touch points are counted as influencing campaigns and get their fair share.

• In the event that our search campaign was the last touch point before a sales opportunity was opened with the account – the search campaign becomes the lead source directly attributed to that deal.

Picking the Winners

By setting up campaigns for each search landing page, we can easily see how each page is performing in terms of the number of inquires generated and follow the trail to see the impact on revenue. With the data pulled in from CRM, we can also see what stage of the funnel each lead is at and can quantify the impact each landing page (and associated keywords) have had on revenue generated. This holistic approach to tracking our search marketing performance makes it easy to pick the winners of our search campaign and calculate the return on our investment in paid search.