When a contact has a work email and a personal email

Level 1

When a contact has a work email and a personal email

Hi all, 


I work for a professional services company that deals with people across two common contexts:

1. They are customers or potential customers of my company; AND

2. They are interested in the newsletters we publish or events we put on


When we deal with them as [potential] customers, we use a work email address. 

When they subscribe to newsletters or attend our events, they often use a personal email address to register. Some may even choose to register for a newsletter or event using a mixture or work email or personal email at different times. So Marketo will have two instances of that 'person', each with a different email address. 


In our CRM (Salesforce), our goal is to have one record per person so we have a holistic view of their interactions with the company. Salesforce is synced with Marketo, and vice-versa.


Our CRM has many instance of two duplicate contacts attached to the same account, where one record has the work email, and one record has the personal email. 


I can't figure out how I can keep a single record for a person, and maintain any newsletter/event subscriptions they may have using the two different email addresses. 


Has anyone had this problem and found a solution?


Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: When a contact has a work email and a personal email

Marketo supports secondary email address fields as CC: fields.


While Send Email always sends an email to the primary email address, you can also, optionally, CC any other address fields.


Therefore, at a fundamental level, if you can build/enforce the processes to put both addresses under one Marketo person, you will be able to maintain the subscription preferences at the person level and send to both addresses at once (or only the primary Email Address, should that be useful for some emails).


But that's easier said than done. A whole lot easier.


See, a standard Marketo Form dedupes on the primary email address — never a secondary address. So you'd need to build supplementary form logic, using the REST API, to prefetch the single lead that matches the provided address in any of its address fields. Then you have to make the form gets posted in the context of that single existing lead.


But not only does that mean hiring a dev, the dev must be used to building for rate-limited environments, since changing to API-based forms opens your instance to DoS attacks. So it's a not just something you cobble together.

Then you have to make sure equivalent logic is used at your other entry points. A Marketo CSV upload, for example, also dedupes on the primary email. So you'd need to build alternate API-based upload logic that prefetches the right lead by checking all email type fields.


In sum, it's definitely possible to build out such a system, and it's been done in a couple of instances I've seen (or least ~80% of it). But it's a significant project that takes real planning. There's no switch to "multiple email address mode" or anything.