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Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

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Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hi Community,

This morning we noticed a number of records showing bizarre activity where large volumes of fields went through Change Data Value updates from [null] to [xyz value].

Edit: this is actually affecting all of the records on account objects from what we've seen, not just a small group. This is not affecting lead records at all. Even stranger is that these same fields went through the same exact Change Data Value updates for three consecutive days beginning on Saturday, March 26th. We cannot see how or why these values keep being set to null, as this data value change is not shown in Marketo's activity log.

For example, the screenshots below are from one contact and you can see that the same fields are being changed over and over again from null to the value on their SFDC record. There is no activity of the field being set back to null, only the field being set to the SFDC value. I've highlighted one specific field where the value keeps changing from null to 7000, but you can see there are a number of fields showing this behavior.

03262016_12am.png

03262016_0940pm.png

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Activity-log-detail.png

Since these are fields on the account object, we thought these changes were made in Salesforce and then synced to the Marketo record. When you open up the activity detail, the reason says synced from Salesforce account. However, we checked with our Salesforce Admin and confirmed these fields were not changed in Salesforce per their activity logs (changed values are documented in the system information section). Furthermore, some of the affected fields (like Minutes to First Contact and First Paying Date) are fields that cannot be edited by any of our Salesforce users, including our Admin. Once these fields are populated, their values do not get updated.

We're very confused and concerned by these updates. Our sync has not been disabled recently and these fields have full visibility between Marketo and Salesforce and the permissions/visibility has not been updated recently.

Could someone please provide insight on how or why certain field values would suddenly be set to null just to re-sync info from Salesforce that hasn't changed?

Thanks,

Liliana

Message was edited by: Liliana Cheng (typo)

Message was edited by: Liliana Cheng Edit: this is actually affecting all of the records on account objects from what we've seen, not just a small group. This is not affecting lead records at all.

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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hi Community, this was solved last week. Here is the official response from one of the Marketo engineers who assisted on our support rep:

The updates that some customers saw were due a change that was made in the most recent release. This has since been patched and it has been verified that it is no longer an issue. The problem was that we batch query custom fields, compare accounts fields between MLM and SFDC, and skip fields with the same value. However, we do not query "not exportable" custom fields, in other words, custom fields that are read-only in Salesfore and have synced to Marketo. Because the batch query function does not include "not exportable" fields, the update function thinks the field value of any "not exportable field" is different (its cache value is null but DB value is not null). So the update function logs the extra activity (Null > new value) on "not exportable" fields. As seen in the lead's activity log, this was done continuously in some cases.

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9 REPLIES 9
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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hi Liliana,

I would bet that these fields are formula fields in SFDC. Therefore, they cannot be changed in SFDC, but nothing prevents you from trying to change them in Marketo. So I would also bet that you have another rule in Marketo that sets them to Null, then, when the sync happens, the value is overridden by SFDC again and again.

To know more, in the activity log of our lead, just type "minutes to first contact" in the search box at the bottom of the screen. It will show only the changes to this field, on a larger period of time.

Then copy the screen shot here, and we be able to help you further.

-Greg

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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Thanks for your help, Greg. Here's a screenshot of the Minutes to First Contact activity for this example. There are only four activities on the log. The behavior of fields being reset to null, and the behavior of daily sync updates are both brand new behaviors in our instance. We have not seen this type of activity prior to March 26th.

Screen Shot 2016-03-29 at 9.37.44 AM.png

Many of the fields that are being reset are indeed formula fields, however there are also date fields, pick list fields, number fields, and text fields being set to null somehow.

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Level 4

Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hello Liliana,

Thank you for writing this post. We are experiencing the same issue starting March 25 around 9pm ET, and it continues to occur. Interestingly, this time frame coincides with the Marketo Q1 Minor Release: 2016 Release Schedule - Marketo Docs - Product Docs

This impacted us negatively because we have a trigger campaign listening for a value change on an Account field, with a flow step that sends an email. Since the value changed from [null] to "something", emails were erroneously sent to a bunch of customers which caused a headache.

I have a case open with Marketo and will respond here if they provide any information.

Anthony

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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Thanks Anthony Pica. I have a case open too and I'll share whatever helpful info they respond with.

We were negatively impacted as well because we also have trigger-based email campaigns based on data value changes. Have you turned off your trigger campaign or have you found a workaround to prevent erroneously "qualified" leads? Unfortunately, I have not been able to think of a workaround so I've just turned the campaign off for now.

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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

I deactivated the trigger campaign Saturday once the issue was detected. As a workaround, I was thinking we could perhaps try a constraint for Previous Value is not null/blank (is not empty), but to be safe, I kept it off.

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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hey Anthony Pica, our support rep will escalate our ticket and reference your ticket as well. He looked yours over and said we're having the same issue so he will ask tier 2 to investigate.

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Level 4

Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hi Liliana, you probably already know by now, but Marketo pushed a patch Tues night / Wed morning to fix the issue.

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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hey Anthony, yes and you were correct that it was a bug associated with their Q1 Minor release. A shame that we didn't have access to those release notes!

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Re: Account fields overwritten to null then updating to SFDC record value

Hi Community, this was solved last week. Here is the official response from one of the Marketo engineers who assisted on our support rep:

The updates that some customers saw were due a change that was made in the most recent release. This has since been patched and it has been verified that it is no longer an issue. The problem was that we batch query custom fields, compare accounts fields between MLM and SFDC, and skip fields with the same value. However, we do not query "not exportable" custom fields, in other words, custom fields that are read-only in Salesfore and have synced to Marketo. Because the batch query function does not include "not exportable" fields, the update function thinks the field value of any "not exportable field" is different (its cache value is null but DB value is not null). So the update function logs the extra activity (Null > new value) on "not exportable" fields. As seen in the lead's activity log, this was done continuously in some cases.

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