Custom Data Objects are used to store data that may be related to a Contact or Company's record. Some examples of data you might want to store in a custom object include: Product Purchase history, Registrations, Warranty Expiry. Custom objects can be synchronized with your CRM system on a scheduled basis.
Creating Custom Data Objects
To create a custom data object:
- From the navigation toolbar at the top of the page, select Contacts > Custom Objects, then click the Events dropdown and choose New Custom Data Object.
- Enter a Display Name. This is the name of the Custom Object (also referred to as a Data Card Set)
- Enter a Description. This is information to help you and your colleagues determine the use of this Custom Object.
- If desired, select a folder to store your Custom Object in.
- Choose the Entity Type. This is either Contacts or Companies, and your Custom Object will be linked to whichever you select.
- Select the Entity Field. This is the field used to create a unique match to your selected entity.
- When you have set these parameters, click Next. The Custom Object is created, and you are taken to the Data Card Fields section.
- Select the Data Card Fields dropdown at the top right of the screen. Select Add New Field. Note: You can also add existing contact fields, or fields from existing forms. Enter your desired parameters, and click Save and Close. In most cases you will want to be sure to create a field for email address, as this will be your unique identifier, as set in step 6 above.
- Add additional Data Card Fields as required.
Adding Data Cards to Custom Data Objects
To add a data card:
- Click the Data Card Set dropdown at the top right of the screen.
- Select New Data Card to manually enter information, or select Upload Data Cards to upload a list of data cards as you would with contacts. When manually adding your data cards, be sure to click Save and Map to tie your data card to your contact record matching on email address. Similarily, when uploading be sure in step 4 of the wizard to select Map data cards.
Writing Form Submission Data to Custom Data Objects
To write form submission data to a data card:
- Navigate to your form's processing steps - Assets > Forms > Open an Existing Form > Processing
- Click the + icon and select Update Custom Data Object - With Form Data
- Edit your new processing step as you would with the standard Update Contacts - With Form Data step.
Example of Using Custom Objects
You can use Custom Objects and Data Cards to store additional information for your contacts, without cluttering up the contact record. This helps to keep your database clean and organized, and provides the opportunity to store data which will later help you to segment your contacts. The following video provides an example of how Custom Objects are useful.
Example 1: Storing Product Warranty Information for Purchased Products.
A customer purchases a product from you, and at the same time purchases a 2-year extended warranty. You would like to store this warranty information in your database, but because there could be many purchases by one client, you do not want to clutter your contact's record. Instead, you store this warranty information in a Custom Object.
Video 1 - Creating your Custom Object
Example 2: Storing Product or Communication Preferences from CRM
You have contact records in your CRM system which hold a large number of preference related fields. You have check boxes for communication preferences, product preferences, likes, dislikes, etc. You don't want to clutter your contact records in Eloqua, so you store this information in a Custom Object. Because Custom Objects can be created automatically via Auto Sync, this makes keeping your contacts' preferences up-to-date a real breeze. Create your Custom Object, add your fields, create a new Data Source and Auto Synch, and that's all there is to it!