Marketo Activities Data Retention Policy - Under the Hood

Version 12

     

    Overview

    Starting August 15, 2018, Marketo will be implementing a new policy for the retention of marketing activity data. Under this policy, Activity and Campaign Membership data will be stored for a rolling period of 25 months past the activity date, and high-volume activity data will be retained for a rolling period of 90 days past the activity date. Beyond these retention periods, the data will not be available through the Marketo UI.

     

     

    Premium option is 37 not 25.PNG

     

     

    Activities and Retention Settings

    There are two components to the data retention policy: a retention period of up to 90 days for nine (9) high-volume activities; and a retention period of up to 25 months for other lead activities.

     

    Activities with a 90-Day Retention Period

    These lead activities have a very high volume and will be retained for 90 days. After 90 days, these activities will be deleted.

     

     

    Activities Retained for 90 Days

    • Add to List
    • Change Score
    • Change Data Value
    • Visit Webpage
    • Click Link on Webpage
    • Sync Lead to SFDC
    • Sync Lead to Microsoft
    • Sync Lead Updates to SFDC
    • Update Opportunity
    • Request Campaign

     

     

    Activities with a 25-Month Retention Period

    The lead activities listed below will be retained 25 months. After 25 months, all such lead activities will be deleted.

    • The only exception is the New Lead activity, which will always be displayed.

     

      Category

    Activities Retained for 25-Months

      Web

    • Click Predictive Content
    • Click RTP Call to Action
    • Fill Out Form
      Smart
      Campaign
    • Add to Engagement Program
    • Call Webhook
    • Change Data Value
    • Change Lead Partition
    • Change Engagement Program Cadence
    • Change Engagement Program Stream
    • Change Program Success
    • Change Revenue Stage
    • Change Revenue Stage Manually
    • Change Program Status
    • Compute Data Value
    • Delete Lead
    • Enrich with Data.com
    • Interesting Moment
    • Merge Leads
    • Remove from List
    • Resolve Ruleset
    • Reward Test Group Variant
    • Schedule Test Variants
    • Send Alert
    • Engagement Program Cast
    • Wait
    • Push Lead to Marketo
    • Remove from Flow
      Social
    • Click Shared Link
    • Share Content
    • Vote in Poll
      Email
    • Click Email
    • Email Bounced
    • Email Bounced Soft
    • Email Delivered
    • Open Email
    • Received Forward to Friend Email
    • Send Email
    • Sent Forward to Friend Email
    • Unsubscribe Email
      CRM

    Salesforce

    • Add to Opportunity
    • Add to SFDC Campaign
    • Change Owner
    • Change Status in SFDC Campaign
    • Click Sales Email
    • Convert Lead
    • Create Task
    • Delete Lead from SFDC
    • Lead Assigned
    • New SFDC Opportunity
    • Open Sales Email
    • Receive Sales Email
    • Remove from Opportunity
    • Remove from SFDC Campaign
    • Resolve Conflicts
    • SFDC Activity
    • Sales Email Bounced
    • Send Sales Email
    • SFDC Activity Updated
    • SFDC Merge Leads
    • Add to Case
    • Add to SFDC Custom Object Test (Contact)

    Microsoft Dynamics

    • Add to Opportunity (Contact)
    • Add to Opportunity (Account)
    • Remove from Opportunity (Contact)
    • Remove from Opportunity (Account)
    • Update Opportunity (Contact)
    • Update Opportunity (Account)
    • Delete Lead from Microsoft
    Segmentation
    • Add to Segment
    • Change Segment

     

     

     

    Rolling 25mo may show extra.PNG

     

     

    Data Access

    Marketo’s data retention policy gives you a rolling 90-day view of certain high-volume lead activities and a rolling 25-month view of other lead activity data. To help prevent any actual data loss, Marketo has developed a Bulk Extract API that enables you to export this data directly if desired. Once exported, you will be able to host this information locally and utilize it in any way you deem necessary.

     

    Areas Affected

     

    Smart List filters

    Smart List filters referencing high-volume lead activities beyond their 90-day retention period or other activities beyond their 25-month retention period will not have the activity to reference. Results from any Smart Lists or campaigns that use filters looking for lead activities that occurred past their retention period will not show results from those activities.

     

    Flow step min number times example.PNG

     

     

     

     

    Flow Steps with Choices Added

    Flow steps offer the option to add a choice to do different things depending specified conditions. In addition to searching for lead attributes, these choices may include looking for activities that the lead has taken. If the condition selected in the flow step is searching for an activity the lead has taken, that flow step choice will only be able to find activities that happened within the data retention period for that activity.

     

     

    Flow step choice activity.PNG

     

     

    Lead Records

     

    Activity Logs

    Activity log data will be retained for 25 months and will not display any activities older than 25 months. This provides a rolling 25-month view of lead activities. The one exception to this policy is for the “New Lead” activity. That activity will be retained regardless of how long ago the lead was created.

     

    Lead activity log.png

     

     

    Identifying Anonymous Lead Creation vs Known Lead Creation

     

    There are two places in lead records where info is stored for when it was created - in the activity log, showing when the lead became known, and in the Lead Info tab, where it shows the first anonymous activity.

     

    Known Lead Creation - Activity Log

    In the lead’s activity log, the “New Lead” activity records when a lead became a known lead. This activity is the only one that is not deleted after 25 months. The “New Lead” activity will always be retained in the activity log, even after others are deleted.

     

    New lead activity log.PNG

     

     

    Anonymous Lead Record Creation Date - Lead Attribute

    In the Lead Info tab of the lead record, the first attribute listed is “Created”. This gives you the exact date and time when the lead record itself was first created. If the lead was anonymous first before becoming known, this will give you the date and time of the first anonymous activity. NOTE: If the lead did not first have have anonymous activity, but was instead created through list import or manual lead entry, this date and time will match the New Lead activity.

     

    Lead attribute Created date.png

     

     

     

    Custom Activities

    Custom activities are included in the new data retention policy. All activities, even custom activities, will be deleted after 25 months.

     

     

    Programs

     

    • Program Membership

      Record of program membership will not be affected. Leads that became members of a program over 25 months ago will still show as members of that program.
    • Engagement Programs

    Engagement programs are not impacted.PNG

    Engagement Programs will not send the same email to a lead that has already received it, unless the lead was sent the email more than 25 months ago.

     

    • Engagement Program Transition Rules

      Marketo’s Engagement Programs allow you to move leads into different streams based on criteria you set in the stream’s transition rules. The transition rules use triggers to activate the transition from one stream to the next. Filters can be added to the transition rule as well, including activity-based filters.

     

    If you add activity-based filters to your engagement stream transition rules, they will only be able to access lead activities within their retention period. For example, if the activity you’re filtering for has a 25-month retention period and it has occurred more than 25 months ago, the transition rule will not be able to reference the activity and the lead will not transition to the new stream.

     

    NOTE: This same condition applies to Revenue Cycle Model transitions. See the information in the section below for more details.

     

    Recommendation: Review your marketing strategies. Do you really want a lead to be in the same engagement program for over two years? Do you still want the same email in circulation if it was drafted over 2 years ago?

     

     

    Smart Campaigns

     

    • Records of campaign membership will be stored for up to 25 months. After 25 months, that information will not be available.
    • Smart Lists, campaigns and reports that use the “Member of Smart Campaign” filter will only be able to reference a lead’s membership in the campaign for up to 25 months.
    • While most activity information can be exported through the Bulk Extract REST API, campaign membership activity cannot be exported.

     

     

    Revenue Cycle Model Transition Rules

     

    Marketo’s Revenue Cycle Model allows you to advance leads through Revenue Model Phases based on criteria you set in the Revenue Model’s transition rules. The transition rules use triggers to activate the transition from one phase to the next. Filters can also be added to the transition rules, including activity-based filters.

     

    If you add activity-based filters into your Revenue Model Transition rules, they will only be able to access lead activities within their retention period. For example, if the activity you are filtering for has a 25-month retention period and it has occurred more than 25 months ago, the transition rule will not be able to reference the activity and the lead will not transition to the next revenue model phase.

     

     

    Reporting

    Marketo Analytics reports can be affected by the data retention period of lead activities. Reports that directly draw data from lead activity logs will only show data for up to 25 months. Also, reports that do not directly reference lead activity, such as those with filters added to the smart list of the report, could be affected. Filters that look for activities the lead took are only going to be able to access activities for 25 months, so if the activity occurred beyond the 25-month retention period, it will alter the results of the report. Note, filters that reference lead attributes (information in fields in the lead record) will not cause any change to the report.

     

    Example:
    The People by Status report does not draw data from lead activities by default. However, if you add filters to the Smart List of the report, the report results may be affected depending on the type of filter you apply.

    • Adding the filter, “Job Title” would not have any effect on the report results because lead attributes are not affected by the data retention limits.
    • Adding the filter, “Filled Out Form” does potentially affect the report results because its references data in the lead activity log which is retained for up to 25 months only.


    To help you identify exactly how each report will behave, please see the detailed documentation on Data Retention Policy – Impact on Reporting.

     

     

    Sales Insight

    Sales Insight is a powerful tool for your sales reps to get information about your leads and contacts. The data in Sales Insight is not actually stored in Salesforce, it’s an up-to-date feed directly from the Marketo database.

     

    When Sales Insight is opened, it makes an API call to Marketo to pull data into Salesforce. Since the data shown in Sales Insight is coming directly from the lead records within Marketo, it will only be able to access lead activities within their retention period.

     

    Sales Insight on Lead and Contact Page

    The Sales Insight window in your Lead and Contact pages has four tabs; Interesting Moments, Web Activity, Score and Email. All four of these actively retrieve data from the corresponding lead’s activity logs, so the data displayed in each of those tabs will only display information up to 25 months old.

     

    Example - Interesting Moments

     

    MSI Interesting moments.png

     

     

    Example - Email:

     

    MSI Lead Email Tab.PNG

     

     

     

    Marketo Sales Insight Tab

     

    Aside from the Sales Insight you see within the Lead and Contact page, there is also the Sales Insight Marketo tab in the toolbar. In this section of Sales Insight, only one area is affected: My Email. The other tabs including Best Bets, My Watch List, Web Activity and Anonymous Web Activity are not affected

     

    The activity found within the My Email tab is based on Marketo lead records. Therefore, it will only display records up to 25 months in age.

     

    Marketo Tab MSI My Email tab.png

     

     

    Areas NOT Affected

     

    Custom Activity Sync

    Marketo gives you the ability to customize the sync of specific activities to Salesforce. Sales Insight and Custom Activity Sync tend to go together, even though they’re different features. When you set up Custom Activity Sync, the activity data is sent to Salesforce and stored there inside of SFDC. Since the data exists inside SFDC at this point, this feature will not be affected in any way.

     

    To set up Custom Activity Sync, go to Admin > Salesforce > Edit Sync Options. You’ll find a dialog box like this:

     

    Sync activities from Admin.PNG

     

    Once you’ve selected which activities to sync to Salesforce, they will appear in the Activity History of your Lead/Contact inside Salesforce.

     

    EDITED Activity history in SFDC from MKTO activities synced.PNG

     

    Since the Activity History of a Salesforce Lead/Contact is contained inside of Salesforce, these activities will not be affected by this policy change.

     

     

    Variations of Current Policy

     

    Marketo’s Activity Data Retention Policy is intended to standardize data retention across all Marketo instances. Over time there have been three variations of data retention: Default Retention Setting, Legacy Retention Setting, and Custom Retention Setting.

     

    All variations will be replaced by the new policy.

     

    Default Retention Setting

    The Default retention settings are the most current settings and are what most customers currently use.

    • The high-volume activities are displayed in the lead’s activity log for 90 days and can be referenced in filters and reports.
    • After 90 days, these activities are moved into an archive where they are no longer accessible in Smart Lists or reports.
    • These archived activities can still be accessed, but only when searching each individual lead’s activity log directly.
    • No other activities have retention limits applied.

    Note: Once the new Data Retention Policy goes into effect, the high-volume activities will only be retained for 90-days and the archive tab/feature will be removed.

     

     

    Legacy Retention Settings

    The Legacy retention setting is an older default setting that was replaced by the newer Default setting listed above. Only a small number of long term customers may have this Legacy retention setting. This setting worked in the exact same way that the current Default retention setting except that the 90-day archive was applied to five activities, not the nine activities that the Default setting above archives.

     

    Default High Volume Activities Archived at 90 Days

    Legacy High Volume Activities Archived at 90 Days

    • Add to List
    • Change Score
    • Change Data Value*
    • Visit Webpage
    • Click Link on Webpage
    • Sync Lead to Microsoft
    • Sync lead to SFDC
    • Sync Lead Updates to SFDC
    • Update Opportunity
    • Request Campaign
    • Add to List
    • Change score
    • Change Data Value*
    • Visit Webpage
    • Click Link on Webpage

     

    Note: Once the new Data Retention Policy goes into effect, the high-volume activities will only be retained for 90-days and the archive tab/feature will be removed.

     

    All variations will be replaced by the new policy.

     

    High Volume Activity Archive

    Some customers may use the archive view of lead activities. Even though it is being removed, below is a description of where it was to help you better understand the exact changes being made.

     

    Archived activities are seen in individual lead records by navigating to the lead’s activity log and changing the filter setting to custom.

     

    Activity log custom filter view.png

     

     

     

    A dialog box will open where you can select which activities to display. Change the Activity Source to Archive and the only activities that will be displayed in the log will be the high volume ones that were archived at 90 days.

     

     

    activity log archive.PNG

     

    All variations will be replaced by the new policy.

     

     

    Custom Retention Settings

    Some Marketo customers have customized retention settings to extend the duration that high-volume activities are displayed in the activity log. Instances with custom retention settings will not have the archive option available in the custom filter. The Activity Source selector will not show at all.

     

    Lead record _ No archive in custom view.png

     

    All variations will be replaced by the new policy.

     

     

     

    Where to go for More Information

     

    Activities Data Retention Update Webinar

    In the webinar, you'll get an introduction to the updated Activities Data Retention Policy, affects across Marketo, and options for extending the data retention period and/or exporting activities data. Also includes Q&A from the live session: Marketo Activities Data Retention Policy Update Webinar

     

    Overview & FAQ Documentation

    This doc will give you an overview of what the policy changes and answers to the most commonly asked questions: Data Retention Policy Change - Overview & FAQ

     

    Marketo Activities Data Retention Policy

    The official Marketo Data Retention Policy can be found here: Marketo Activities Data Retention Policy

     

    Data Retention Policy - Impact on Reporting

    See how your Analytics reports will operate after the new policy goes into effect. Marketo Activities Data Retention Policy – Impact on Reporting

     

    Ways to store activity data in custom fields

    Here are two docs that can help you keep activity data inside of custom fields on the lead records

    Storing Activity Data Beyond Retention Policy

    Maintaining a Directory of Leads Bouncing Emails

     

    Bulk Extract API

    Check out the documentation here to find out how to use the Bulk Extract API

     

    Contact Marketo Support

    If you have additional questions, please Contact Marketo Support