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Why wouldn't you have an apex trigger to ensure Account Group=Contact Group?
This should all be predetermined based on Industry field or a List of Companies at the Account Level to avoid issues. Why does Sales need to edit the Contact level?
Josh Hill ok so it should be at the account level then ?
So our industry field currently is pretty general, I suppose we could make it more granular, but the team is set on this marketing group option.
What are you referring to when you say "list of companies" at account level?
And I was thinking, if the checkbox for the marketing group is on the contact object, then sales could pick and choose which contacts at each company would qualify to receive the reports. Kind of a spin on "marketing suspend", you know what I mean?
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I would rather choose a multi select field. The reason is that the list of values will probably evolve over time and it's easier to add values to a field than permanently create checkboxes. I would create that field in SFDC and let it sync to Marketo.
With regards to the account vs contact object, it's really a hard one and mainly a UX issue as in any case account data from SFDC can be used in Marketo for targeting. One thing to always remember is that account fields can only be edited on SFDC side. Meaning that if you choose an account field, you will not be able to offer a preference center where visitors would be able to change their preferences.
As Josh said, you can use some SFDC techniques to propagate info from one contact to others, but if you have 2 contacts with various preferences and you create 3rd one, how are you going to manage it?
At the end of the day, I would probably create an "account preferences" account field + a contact field in SFDC, together with an SFDC or Marketo workflow that copy it's values to new contacts, if the contact field is empty. But I would finally manage the real infos and targeting in the contact multi-valued field. So 2 fields (contact and account) and a workflow.