In the April edition of the Fearless Forum, we received a lot of questions about how to use Marketo Engagement Programs. So we sat down with Chris Saporito of Paycor to discuss how he executes successful engagement programs within Marketo to onboard new clients.

 

Q1: What led you to develop an engagement program?

A: We decided to revamp the way that we are onboarding clients because we had a gap in the quality of the current process. Our service organization wants to combine automation and personal touches to make the process as seamless and easy as possible. By adding sophistication to the automation and mixing in personal touches we hope to improve the efficiency and quality of the onboarding process. The ultimate goal of the project is to reduce the number of no-starts that we have, meaning the clients don’t make it through onboarding and we lose the business.

 

Q2: Could you describe the engagement program you created for onboarding new clients?

A: Our engagement is a series of emails that are triggered throughout the onboarding process for new clients. We created a new custom object in SFDC and synced the object to Marketo so that we can key off of the values. There are 7 emails in the series that we use the custom object for to tell Marketo which dates to fire the emails and which versions of the emails to fire. Most of the emails are standard for all clients, where we do some tokening within the emails, but the fourth email in the series is critical for onboarding. The custom object that we created has a field that we can populate with the information that is needed from the client. So, when the email is triggered, we are dynamically sending a specific email based on what the client has or has not given us yet. This is important because the data and documentation are critical to have before the client can process payroll. Also, within the series of emails our client service department has a specific cadence where they are mixing in emails and phone calls with the client to ensure that the client is on track and has a good user experience.

 

Q3: What was the process like to build out the engagement program using custom objects to trigger emails in Marketo? How long did it take?

A: The entire process for the project took about 3 months due to some internal prioritization. It took some Salesforce development work to build the custom object and to dynamically populate it to meet the needs of the business. Also, during the process we were able to get a temporary Marketo Sandbox to test out these processes, which had a learning curve in itself. Once we had the custom object built I was able to easily sync it to the Marketo sandbox and begin QA’ing the processes. Within a couple of weeks of QA’ing and working out the kinks we were ready to pull the trigger on the program.

 

Q4: Before using the SFDC custom object, had you tried to create a similar engagement program in Marketo only?

A: We have an email series that we ran out of Marketo for a few years to help client onboarding. The issues that we ran into were that it was difficult to customize the process due to some nuances of our business. By creating a custom object and doing some of the complex decisions in SFDC, it made it possible to pass that information to Marketo and create a better experience for the client.

 

Q5: What was the most challenging part of building and executing the program?

A: The most difficult part of this project was figuring out what all was needed to build this out. There was a learning curve since this was the first time that we had built something like this. Also, with the customization there was definitely some trial-and-error to get it to where we wanted it. Anytime that you have multiple organizations within a business working together for the first time it can be difficult but overall, I think it was a great success.

 

Q6: What advice would you give to Marketo users who are creating engagement programs?

A: I would recommend with any project and especially projects of significance, understand what the ask is. Truly understanding what the project needs to accomplish before determining how to build it is critical to creating the best product that you can. Something else that is crucial to projects like this is to give yourself plenty of time to QA. Test everything and then test is again, that’s the best way to make sure these projects have the smallest chance of error when they launch.

 

We hope you enjoyed reading about Paycor’s new Engagement Programs. To start building your Engagement Program today, check out Josh Hill's 5 step guide to building a successful Engagement Program in Marketo.