Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

Level 3

Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

We're currently in the planning stages for a fairly sophisticated set of nurture programs that are aimed at highly personalizing engagement across:

Multiple feature capabilities (going beyond "product" messaging)

Multiple personas

Multiple levels of engagement (going beyond just "education" and "consideration")

The chief problem we have with engagement programs is that the triggers that determine what leads qualify are working in a silo (smart lists in the transition rules), and it takes a lot of out-of-Marketo flowcharting to coordinate how they interact. The chief advantage of the older traffic cop/gatekeeper approach was that you had a central program into which you could direct a lead and have it go through a sieve of a consolidated analysis to determine, in priority, which track it belonged in. I find comparing the transition rules across multiple engagement tracks much harder to "read" and follow than the single old traffic cop program.

I get all the advantages of the engagement programs vis-a-vis setup, cadence control, reporting, etc., and we don't have any plans to abandon that. But over the years I've seen leads not get nurtured because the coordination between engagement streams was not tightly planned, and a lot of that had to do with visualization of how they interact. So some questions:

- Can anyone point me to a best-practice article or blog on how to make sure multiple engagement programs are well coordinated and "leak proof"; in particular, best practices for planning interaction among transition rules in multiple programs; flowcharting tools or some secret Marketo feature?

- Alternatively, has anyone had experience using a hybrid system where a traffic-cop-type program is in charge of listening for nurturable triggers and directing the lead in the right priority to the right engagement program?

- Or even more alternatively, consolidating all your nurtures (however disparate in terms of content, persona, stage) into a single engagement track with a ginormous number of streams.

- Or ... what are we missing?

This is going to be a significant undertaking, so we're hoping to get the benefit of some of colleagues' insights into complex engagement models.

7 REPLIES 7
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Level 10 - Champion Alumni

Re: Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

It's probably also worth surfacing here the issue/limitations when using programs in your EP - primarily to do some of that "traffic cop" functionality by using filters within the smart lists of smart campaigns of those programs:

If a lead doesn't qualify for an Engagement Program cast, does it proceed to the next email?

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Level 3

Re: Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

Thanks Dan. Sounds like something definitely to keep in mind. It doesn't sound like you're endorsing moving that logic completely out of the engagement program into something more global, but it does reinforce that they require a lot of attention.

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Level 10 - Champion Alumni

Re: Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

A perfect use-case is for when a member of an EP has already engaged with the content that one of the EP emails is promoting.  The desire here would be to filter out anyone that's already a member of the content program that tracks this engagement; and instead have them skip this email and move on to the next one.  Unfortunately, Marketo doesn't allow these leads to move on.  For other use-cases, you may be able to leverage "choices" - but for us, what I just explained would be ideal if they could "fix" that behavior.

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Level 10 - Champion Alumni

Re: Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

Other than the noted Child Program, quite a few threads discussed using a Traffic Cop to manage Entry and Exits. Totally possible.

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Level 3

Re: Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

Thanks Josh. What should I be searching for to find these? The searches I did all turned up threads on how to migrate from traffic cop to engagement program, but not how to integrate the or create a hybrid.

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Level 7 - Champion

Re: Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

I have used a separate program in a traffic cop style approach to manage entry into multiple nurture streams and move people from one nurture to another.  It's very unique and customized to your individual situation.  It would be very difficult to find a generic blog or article that would address your specific situation.  Let me see if I can find something and I'll let you know. 

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Level 10 - Champion Alumni

Re: Hybrid nurture w/ engagement programs and traffic cop?

There's a very old slide deck, which I might have if I have time. Maybe Jessica has it. But you know you sound smart, so I bet you can design what you want and then do it. The traffic cop is like this:

  • Trigger on Conditions
  • If X, then do Y
  • if Z, then do A
  • allow repeats

With engagements, it's worth recalling the following:

  • you'll have to trigger on lifecycle or a key change like score
  • if you do a batch redo, then same deal, but you could have new options if fields or list members move.
  • DO NOT remove a lead from the Engagement, move to an Empty Stream and List so you can re-route back
  • you can "traffic cop" inside engagements based on Stage/speed/etc.
  • Lead can be in ONE stream at a time.
  • I suppose I'd base this on my Engagement or Stream Goals and somehow allow that to trigger the movement to re-route leads. I wrote about this at the Summit 2016. Nurture Waterfalls.