Grégoire Michel

Just do it! Marketo so-called minor missing features

Discussion created by Grégoire Michel on Jan 23, 2016

Dear Marketo PM,


I know Christmas is over, but still we are in January and I decided to write that post with the hope that it would be read and taken care of, for good. It's about that long list of apparently minor things that at the end of the day, dramatically impair the productivity and, even worse, induce user errors.


As any one who is a little active on the community, I very often bump into some repetitive questions about the exact same issues. What's really frustrating is that all of these issues are in the Idea section, some of them have been there for 5 years or more. Each of them, taken alone, seems minor, but when you gather them all together, you discover, as I did, that is sums up to a significant amount of frustration and wasted time for regular users.


Of course, this list is not exhaustive, and obviously subjective. I have deliberately left out key features that would indeed represent significant improvements but also be changes in the functionalities of the software. Instead, I concentrated here on these "minor" things that impact our day-to-day operation of the core product but which fix would not change what we can do with Marketo. Of course again, I'll add on any other missing "minor" feature readers point to me. I also encourage the readers to vote for all the ideas listed here and express their willingness to have them fixed.


Here they are:


1-Error-drivers and time-waster all at once (yes, it is that bad!):

  1. The lack of a recycle bin, that may drive someone to destroy in a second minutes, even hours of work or precious lead data. See Recycling Bin / Trash Can opened in 2013.
  2. The missing undo feature, that would save you from an erroneously deleted flow step or hazardous modification to an asset. See Auto-Save disable or Undo opened in 2011.
  3. The absence of an efficient testing mode for smart campaigns and programs: Testing mode for smart campaigns and programs. It was in fact opened in 2013, here Testing Mode for testing programs and erroneously declared as "already have it".
  4. The impossibility to schedule trigger campaigns to turn on of off, which leads for instance a visitor to receive a auto-responder email for an event that is passed. See Schedule trigger campaigns to turn on and off, opened in 2014
  5. The impossibility to schedule the automated swap of a landing page See Automatic Landing Page URL Switch, opened in 2015 (Thx Hallie Exall), for the same use case as above : when the event is over, I would like the form LP to be replaced by a non form LP.
  6. The impossibility to leverage program tags & channels in "member of program" filter. Try to create a smart campaign that adds 10 score points to every attendee to any webinar in the instance. You can leverage naming conventions... if your users comply with them. Truth is, it's very likely you will end up forgetting one of these webinars. Leverage program tags &channels in "member of program" filter, opened in 2014, thx Amy Palmer and Have tag and channel constraints to "program status is changed" Trigger
  7. Not changing automatically the follow-up form when cloning a program:  Change the follow-up page on forms in LP when cloning a program, opened in in 2016
  8. Not changing automatically the program in program related reports when cloning the program:  Smart clone program based reports, opened in 2015
  9. Impossibility to see where tokens are being used: See Tokens used by opened in 2014 (thx Joshua Johanni) and yet, Marketo tells you when you cannot delete a token because it’s in use
  10. The way URL clicks are detected, that require that users enter URL fields or tokens without the "http://" at the beginning. This is very error prone as users frequently forget about that. Super Users and admins often have to double check emails and edit them to correct these. This adds to the absence of control on URL values (URL fields and program tokens) that creates all the conditions for frequent non working URLs and absence of click detection (often too late, the email is gone). See Supporting tracking of Token URLs   (2013) andURL token type in programs.
  11. The impossibility to lock down smart lists, that enables some inexperienced user to change them and create trouble and failure in all the instance. See Lock Down Smart Lists posted in 2013
  12. The total absence of AUTOMATED UTM tagging on email links, that makes the utm tagging process painful and very error prone. See Make it Easier to add Google UTM info to links inside emails, posted in 2013, and Jeff Shearer's most recent one Automatically tag links in emails with utm variables
  13. The lack of automated exclusion for people who partially unsubscribed from some specific content type Tag exclusion lists and email level tags, which often lead users to completely forgetting these exclusions and make the use of preference centers hazardous.
  14. The need to always reference campaign and programs by their name, instead of having a straightforward "this campaign" or "this program" reference in filters, triggers and flow steps. This is possible today only on certain, limited, cases and we need this across the board to significantly reduce errors. SeeRemove from flow with Add Choice - "This Campaign", posted in 2016 (Thx Dory Viscogliosi)
  15. The possibility to change ID's in template editable zones without any warning, drive to severe loss of content (potentially hundreds of emails). See Prevent template approval if some editable zone ID's have been modified/removed, posted in 2016 (and here for a workaround that may take hours to applyChanging the ID of an editable zone in a template leading to severe loss of content)
  16. The necessity to set the advanced wait steps in the instance time zone, and not in the user's one, leading to risk that the time difference is not correctly computed. See Have advanced wait steps be in the user's time zone (Thx Allison Sparrow )
  17. The impossibility to delete the 2 example revenue cycles, that, in turn, prevent the hiding of unused fields, leading users to erroneously put these fields in smart campaigns. See Make it possible to delete Marketo Example Revenue Cycles
  18. When making a field hidden in a form, the "Prefill" setting is left to "enabled" by default. Users often forget to disable it, which drives the hidden field to ignore captured values if the lead is cookied. See Hiding a form field should turn off prefill by default
  19. The lack or real handling of enum/picklist fields that would automate form build up and enable to limit (or not) the creation of bad values, as well as the lackof possibility to control values imported in Marketo. See Allow ability to make a picklist type field in Field Management (Thx Jonathan Wu ) and Provide a mechanism to prevent import of incorrect field values.


2-The time-wasters:

In addition to the speed of the product it-self (some simple queries even on a 50k or 200k DB can take minutes to return a result) See Speed Up Marketo (Thx Jonathan Ankiewicz and also Iryna Zhuravel for pointing this out) here is a list of issues that make us waste operating time:

  1. Poor Email & LP sorting & filtering capabilities in design studio. The initial idea that enable to see all assets and mass reapprove them was great, but obviously, it has only been half implemented. Get to an instance where 20 templates are in use and 1400 emails have been produced and try to reapprove a series after a template modification and you will love this one General improvements to mass editing/approval of assets, opened in 2014 by Jeff Shearer and also Search by template in the design studio opened in 2015 (thx Shannan Garrett Cooper). The mass approval should also be enhanced so that it's possible to filter and finally have a "select all" that can select more than 30 assets at a time to launch a mass approval (see Bulk Approve More than 30 Assets at a time, thx Frank Breen). Mass unapproving assets would be great also (see Mass approve landing page at a folder level, Thx Cecile Maindron). And also, it should be possible to sort on the Draft last update date (the "update date" field being that of the approved version). See When sorting emails in Design Studio, include the date of draft emails as well - currently it only applies to last ACTIVE date (Thx Dan Stevens.) and Fix Design Studio view for LP / Emails to show true Last Updated (Thx Robb Barrett)
  2. The fact that it is impossible to change the template of an email: Allow templates to be changed after email created, opened in 2013 (Thx Amber Hobson ) and, more recently Easily swap templates when editing an email (2014)
  3. And the same for landing pages, of course: Ability to change a Landing Page's Template, opened in 2011, or alternatively, the possibility to replace a  landing page with a new one based on a new template. "Replace Landing Page" action thx Ari Echt
  4. The impossibility to sort on all fields in views:  A - Z Sorting for All Fields opened in 2011, but also Ability to sort custom fields in the lead record, Allow custom columns sorting in smart lists (Thx Alex Stanton), here Allow sorting on custom fields in web UI and Ability to sort by ascending / descending for ALL columns
  5. "Used By" links not opening in new window. If you have ever tried to remove the usage of a field, for instance, you have hit this one, that forces you to reload Marketo pages tens of times. See : Allow "open in new window" for "Fields Used By" links, opened in 2014. And while you are there, please make it possible to use also links in activity logs, such as proposed here: Access the email that was sent from the activity log and there Access the Marketo web page that was visited from the activity log and everywhere such links are displayed (on lists, smart lists, forms, landing pages, emails ...)
  6. On that same topic, it should also be possible to export the list of places where a field is used by. See Export list of Assets where a field is used (Thx Ana Berger ) and Export field used by
  7. The impossibility to create Local Assets Within a Folder Directly, meaning you have to drag and drop them if you want to keep your programs ordered: Creating Local Assets Within a Folder Directly, opened in 2014 Could even be considered as a bug...
  8. The impossibility to cut, copy & paste filters and flow steps, both within a smart campaign and across smart campaigns and smart lists: Cut, copy and paste flow steps and smart list filters, opened in 2012
  9. The impossibility to deactivate all smart campaigns within a Program or a Folder at one time: Deactivate all smart campaigns within a Program or a Folder at one time, opened in 2012, and its counterpart, the impossibility to activate all smart campaigns at once (see ACTIVATE all Trigger smart campaigns within a Program, engagement program or a Folder at one time, opened in 2015)
  10. No possibility to approve and Send as One Action: Send sample to me (Thx Dory Viscogliosi) and more recently  Approve and Send as One Action, opened in 2015, Thx Jeff Smith. No possibility to send samples of multiple emails (e.g. all emails in a program) in bulk (see Send Samples in Bulk, thx Nicole Macias ).
  11. The absence of field API names when field is selected in Field Management:Display field API names when field is selected in Field Management, opened in 2015, thx Valerie Armstrong
  12. All the click that are required when you want to run a manual flow step again : Run again button on single flow status box, opened in 2015
  13. The lack of any way to enforce naming convention for programs, that drives users and admin crazy when they have to do some maintenance or heavy cleansing work in an instance. See Enforce naming conventions: compute program name based on tag values + other info  (2015) and… (thx Jeff Coveney)
  14. Inability to view and change form settings without editing the form. See View Form Settings without Automatically Moving to Draft Mode, opened in 2015(Thx Abby Ryan)
  15. The impossibility to clone and move tokens across folders (Enable to clone and move up or down tokens across programs and folders ) posted in 2015
  16. The missing "clone to same program" that would reduce the number of clicks when cloning assets, opened in 2014 here: Add "Clone to Same Program" feature when you clone a local asset (Txh Cecile Maindron)
  17. The inadvertent creation of drafts in hundreds of assets each time you want to look at the code of a template, that leads to wondering whether or not you should reapprove them, spend useless time comparing the draft with the approved and finally spend another tens of minutes reapproving all assets. See Add a validation step on "Approve" or "Approve and close" when the template or form is used , Add the possibility to view hidden fields on form preview and Enable to access template code without creating a draft, all created in 2016
  18. The impossibility to easily swap snippets on landing pages (and emails ?). See Swap snippet by pressing gear icon like with images on landing pages added in 2014
  19. The need for a better way to manage MSI emails, as proposed here Better Way to Remove Multiple Emails Published to Sales Insight/Outlook in 2014 (Thx Ray Solanki) and also the possibility to schedule publishing and unpublishing. See "Auto-un-publish" MSI content (2016, Thx Nathan Allison), Expiration Date for Sales Insight Emails (Posted in 2013) and Publish to Sales Insight with expiration time (Posted in 2013) as well as this one Better Way to Remove Multiple Emails Published to Sales Insight/Outlook (Posted in 2014, Thx Ray Solanki)
  20. We also need to make sure the sales do not spend too much time navigating in folders in Sales Insight, as proposed there Create shortcuts, redirects, pseudos and lifetimes for Sales Insight (MSI) access to resources, instead of navigating through folders  and there Limit marketo folder / workspace access from Sales Insight (MSI) based on CRM roles/profiles in 2015.
  21. That weird little bug that is also a nice time waster, when you make a change to you email templates that are in used in a nurturing program…
  22. The impossibility to open the admin in a new window (Open Admin view in new window ) Thx Sofia Fogelfors and Cathal MoranSofia FogelforsEDIT: this is now possible with a CTRL-click or a right click.
  23. The impossibility to sort files as we would in the design studio -> files section and also to filter them. See here: View Settings - Design Studio > Images and Files (Thx Kara Pietrykowski)
  24. The impossiblity to exclude Marketo users from communication limits (see Communication Limits Should NOT apply to Marketo Admins dated 2014, thx Cristan Hutto ) and more broadly the impossibility to adjust the communication limits to the level of relationship (see Exclude specific domains from communications limits dated 2015, Thx Elizabeth Robichaud) as well as to exclude some lists from the communication limits. See Internal Leads not Subject to Communication Limits (Thx Tara Petre ) and Communication Limits and Seed Lists (Thx Ericka Yockim ) and also Select specific people in database that communication limit does not apply to (Thx Nicolle Chase )
  25. Remove the autocomplete on email schedule time dropdown or replace it with a real picklist that lets you type in (see Disable autocomplete on email schedule time dropdown, dated 2016, thx Ryan Baker)
  26. The impossibility to sort all columns, and specifically the custom ones, in views. See Allow custom columns sorting in smart lists  (Thx Alex Stanton).
  27. The impossibility to use email name as a constraint for sales email filters and triggers, that drive endless and necessarily mistaken lists, especially in an international environment, to a point where these filters and triggers are almost impossible to use. Could be also in the bug section. See Sales Email by Name or ID , date 2014, althoug It think there was an older idea that I could not retreive.
  28. The impossibility to mass select and move programs or assets at once in the marketing activities or the lead database. See Select and move multiple items in Marketing Activities/Lead Data base tree, posted in 2016, thx Olga Khadieva
  29. The need to edit CSS (which means to know how to do it in the first place ) for simple form formatting things such as displaying the check box on the left of the text instead of the right. See Allow checkbox text to be right of the button posted in 2016 (Thx Inactive - Christina Zuniga)
  30. The impossibility to change the type of programs a channel applies to after creating it, and before using it. See ability to change the channel applies to, 2013, thx Michelle Tiziani
  31. Limitations to the global calendar, such as no handling of holidays, nor the possibility to hide week-ends, or the impossibility to enter a calendar entry without moving to a program focus. See Calendar Functionality Improvements(Jim Butler), posted in 2015 or Add an entry to the calendar without a program, posted in 2014 (Thx Marie-Pier Godere) or else the impossibility to see recurrent campaigns in the calendar. See Show recurrent campaigns in the Marketing Calendar  posted i 2015 (Thx Takehiro Masaki).
  32. The fact that, when adding choices in a flow step, they are added on the top of the other choices, while most of the time, we want them at the bottom, as we are dealing with choices from the first priority down to the lowest priority ones. See "Add Choice" to bottom instead of top (Thx Robb Barrett).
  33. We would also need a much quicker way to expand or collapse sections of the marketing activities left pane, i.e. the ability to have a right-click -> expand all and right click->collapse all on the folders and programs.
  34. The fact that seconds and milliseconds are not visible in the lead activity logs, making the lines ill-ordered and therefore sometime very difficult to interpret. See Add seconds/milliseconds info to Activity Log (Thx Ryan Baker).
  35. The impossibility on certain screen to access the Marketo circle menu, so if you have closed other tabs, you have no choice but reconnect. See Make the Marketo Circle ALWAYS clickable (Posted in 2016, Thx Robb Barrett)
  36. The impossibility to create custom fields on Accounts and Opportunities without the help of support, while these objects are now available through the API. See Creating MKTO custom fields for Company and Opportunity, created in 2013.
  37. The frequent issues which drop lists not showing up when building smart lists. e.g. Fix the Smart Campaign Smart List bug (Thx Robb Barrett PRD)
  38. The repeated error we make when we clone a smart campaign because there is no default value in the "Clone to" field. See Clone to a campaign folder as default (Thx Nicholas Manojlovic)
  39. The need for multiple click when we want to jump from editing an LP to editing the form. See Ability to jump to form editor from inside LP editor  (Thx Robb Barrett)
  40. The impossibility to edit an email from the preview pane. See Edit email from preview screen (Thx Robb Barrett PRD)
  41. The impossibility to run a lead action from the lead detail view: Ability to run flow action on lead detail screen, posted in 2013
  42. The impossibility to share Design Studio form, email or lnading page folders which prevents cloning programs between workspaces. SeeMake Form/landing page/email Folders sharable across workspaces, Allow forms (and emails/LPs) in Design Studio to be shareable across workspaces (Thx Dan Stevens.), Sharing More Assets Forms!!! Across Workspaces (Thx Christina Deex-Schaper) and Global assets for workspaces (Thx Elizabeth Oseguera)
  43. The need to deactivate all smart campaigns before archiving a folder and its programs. See Automatically turn of smart campaigns when archiving folders (Thx Nadine Regan ) and more broadly the impossibility to mass activate/deactivate smart campaigns. See Mass Deactivate & Auto Deactivate Smart Campaigns (Shannan Garrett Cooper )
  44. Missing some basic UI function such as the "Select all" option in the folder sharing dialog box. See "Select All" / "Select None" in the workspace share dialog
  45. The impossibility to sort fields in the view when creating the view. One needs first to approve the view, have it displayed and only then he/she will be able to reorder the fields. See Re-order fields when creating a new view  (Thx Axel Baran)
  46. When reviewing forms, it's impossible to know what fields and tokens a form uses without editing it. So See Show field on form tab (Thx Robb Barrett ) and See tokens used by forms in the form summary
  47. Accessing the audit trail for any object would be a huge time saver. See Audit Trail - navigate directly from asset in Marketing Activities (Thx Devraj Grewal )
  48. The impossibility to trigger or filter on specific score changes. See Trigger: Score was changed increased vs decreased , New trigger filter value on "Score is Changed" of 'At Least' (Thx Gordon McCallum) Advanced Constraints for Lead Scoring and Trigger off of positive/negative change in score
  49. Make it possible to move image and files from one workspace to another. See Move images and files accross workspaces. The current process for achieving this is really painful.
  50. The possibility to select a segment, rather than having to scroll trough every segment when previewing a email with Dynamic content. See Add dropdown to preview for emails with dynamic segmentation (Thx Karl-Heinz Thaler )
  51. The impossibility to force a refresh of the stats on the "streams" tab in an engagement program. See Engagement Programs - ability to refresh "Streams" tab (Thx Devraj Grewal )
  52. The time it takes to manage modules in email editor 2.0 is really a time waster. See Email Editor 2.0: Make module management much faster with a dedicated wizard
  53. In the form editor, when adding a new field, the field selector only enables to search by the field starting letters. Please make it a real search box. See Search fields in forms
  54. The limitation on order of fields in the form editor: not being able to set fields or rich text areas after the progressive profiling area, nor being able to add a text zone after the submit button are huge limitations. See Add fields below Progressive Profile field set  (Thx Edward Masson) Moving progressive profiling area on forms 2.0 from bottom and Numbering the display order of fields in Forms 2.0 and also Forms 2.0: make it possible to add a text area after the submit button (Without JS)
  55. Have the "Powerball" open Marketo sections in new tabs by default. See All Modules from Power Ball are "Open in New Tab" by default (Thx Christina Zuniga).


3-The error-drivers:

  1. The impossibility to remove the "View as web page" flag from email creation dialog, while you are using the equivalent system token in your template, leading some email to have it twice...Gray view as web page flag on email creation/email properties dialog when using the system token opened in 2016
  2. The difficulty to detect in which instance you are, whether in a sandbox of not, see Make it obvious you are in the sandbox (Thx David Mason) Fixed  in Spring '16
  3. Separate "Approve Draft" and "Discard Draft" so that it's harder to confuse them. See 'Approve Draft' and 'Discard Draft' commands too close together (Thx Mike Truong)
  4. The impossibility to fire campaigns once per email opened or other events. See Add a "first time" constraint to "opens email" and "clicks link in email" triggers and "email opened" and "click link in email" filters, as well as to "Visits web page" trigger and "visited web page" filter  posted in 2016 and which makes us count false values, or else end up with crazy scores.
  5. The absence of warning if one approves an email program which email still have drafts. See Force preview/confirmation before Approve Program, posted in 2016 (Thx Nelson Trautman)
  6. The impossibility to set ALT tags on images when we upload them, so that this ALT is used everywhere when the image is used. See Ability to create ALT tag on image upload (Thx Geoff Krajeski )


4-The features that just do not work as they should (a.k.a bugs):

  1. Inability to move lists and smart lists (smart campaigns can be moved) Ability to move lists, smart lists, and smart campaigns, opened in 2013
  2. Impossibility to delete overriden tokens in certain circumstances:  How to delete an Overridden token?, opened in 2015, thx Stijn Heijthuijsen. The idea is here: Allow deletion of "overridden" tokens, to return them to "inherited" status (Thx Charles Thompson)
  3. Impossibility to delete a program if it contains a form and the form is in use in the same program.  Trying to delete program, but it's saying that the asset is in use within the program, opened in 2014, thx Dory Viscogliosi
  4. Impossibility to delete a program when 2 smart campaigns in the program reference each other (with a "Request Smart Campaign" or a "Remove from Flow" flow steps). See Impossible to delete a program: a new case and Enable to delete a program when 2 campaigns reference each other
  5. The Marketo navigator that does not refresh correctly when clicking on a "used by" link. Not found this idea, but the problem is easy enough to replicate.
  6. The incomplete click detection on PDF links when some one clicks on many PDF links in the same page. See Tracking PDF clicks on Marketo landing page (Thx Casey Robilliard and Sanford Whiteman)
  7. The fact that the field mapping section is not updated when new fields are added (see Allow to refresh to see current SFDC field mapping , thx Alex Stanton) which really let the admin user think he is loosing his mind.
  8. The fact that the velocity script rendering in preview depends from the user locale, instead of being rendered as if it was sent from a smart campaign. See Have velocity scripts to render in preview independently from the user's locale (2016)
  9. PURLS that consider leads as anonymous instead of recognizing them if they have not been "cookied". See Undesired behavior when using Personalized URLs PURLs (Thx Dan Stevens)
  10. The impossibility to choose in which workspaces the field orgnizers should be created. see Being able to change the default workspace or move the field organizers
  11. The fact that "Export" functions only export incomplete information. See Make the Smart Campaign summary export complete! or Add "Used by" information to the smart campaign summary export
  12. The fact that some default settings cannot be changed once the instance is live: See Being able to change the default language  and Being able to change the default workspace or move the field organizers
  13. The email editor can break if the email name is too long. yet, there is no limitation to the length of the email name. See Can't edit email when the name is too long, decrease the max characters for an email name so users can't give emails names so long they break the email (Thx Emily Higgins )


5-The admin-trouble-makers that can even cause compliance issues:

  1. No possibility to deactivate a user without deleting it: Deactivate user without deleting it, opened in 2015
  2. Impossibility to delete Custom Field: opened in 2010 and marked "already have it", but not yet delivered, and reopened in 2014 (see Deleting Custom Field) thx Karen Black  and again in 2016 ( Ability to delete custom fields that are not used) Thx Cecile Maindron.
  3. The impossibility to export user list, roles and workspaces access, which is needed in large orgs for documentation and auditing purpose. See Exporting User & Roles list from Marketo Admin (Thx Mike Truong)
  4. The impossibility to easily export asset information for documentation and impact analysis. See Add Form List Export to Design Studio  (Thx Courtney Grimes ), Add Email list export to the design studio, Add Snippet list export to the design studio, Add images & file list export to the design studio
  5. the need for some enhancements in the user deactivation process, in order to make it safer and easier. See "Expire user now" button, Be able to remove the "delete user" button., and Being able to filter out expired users in the admin-user list.
  6. The impossibility to get a rapid overview about which program are sync'ed to SFDC and which are not. See Make SFDC Campaign Name an exportable data point
  7. The audit trail, as welcome as it was when released, is still missing some important capabilities. See Add custom field creation to Audit Trail, Log changes to Workspace/Partition assignment in Admin audit trail (Thx Pavel Plachky) , Add Salesforce Campaign Sync/Unsync to Audit Trail (Thx Courtney Grimes) , Audit Trail - Engagement Program Cadence Change (Thx Roxann McGlumphy) Audit Trail should show Campaigns deactivated by Idle Trigger Campaign Cleanup, Have Audit trail to show changes in the smart list rule. and Audit trail on field value change.


6-The consultant (a.k.a Marketo Ambassadors All Around the Market or MAAAM's ) speed reducers:

  1. Linked Language and Locale settings in the My Account screen : Unlink Language and Locale settings in the My Account screen, opened in 2015
  2. The need to separate email and login at user creation: Logins, opened in 2013 and also under different form here : Enable to distinguish username from email at user creation so that one can have multiple accounts with the same email address.
  3. The lack of serious tools to manage the data schema and fields, such as getting simply a complete information about the fields (see Export Field Names and DESCRIPTIONS in Field Management, created in 2015, thx Michael Langellotti)
  4. The possibility to connect and disconnect 2 instances without help from Support. See Connect and disconnect to another instance from admin  (Thx Jose Tarzian)


There are 50+ points listed in this page, and 60+ ideas, and it's really impossible for a normal Marketo user to run a working session without bumping into many of them, and this many times a day, every day. People do change their cars because they do not like the radio or because of some repetitive glitches in the windscreen wiper. They may as well change their marketing automation system because after a while they tend to see more the defaults above than all the good things that Marketo does for them.