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3 Posts authored by: heatherfoeh

[Originally posted by David Seaton on the Eloqua Artisan blog]

 

Essentially, Cloud Connectors allow anyone in the Eloqua community to build their own steps within Program Builder. If you're an interested developer, the instructions for building Cloud Connectors are here, but for now, we'll focus on installing one that's already built. Here's a step by step guide to getting your first Cloud Connector installed and ready to go.

 

1. Enable Eloqua Account

First you need to have your Eloqua account set up correctly. Please ensure that your company is enabled for API usage and that the user account you plan on using is enabled as an API user. To confirm your company has the API enabled please contact an Eloqua Product Specialist at 1 866 327 8764. If you are a customer administrator for Eloqua you can go to the user management tab and ensure that the user has the API User role enabled as well as one of Advanced User - Marketing or Basic User - Marketing User Role. Please feel free to contact an Eloqua Product Specialist if you require assistance setting up an account.

 

2. Enable Cloud Connector Account

The repository of Eloqua Cloud Connectors is located at https://cloudconnectors.eloqua.com. Think of it as the translator between Eloqua and the other piece (WebEx, Jigsaw, Adobe Connect, etc.) you're connecting to. Go to https://cloudconnectors.eloqua.com and create an account then proceed to step 3. [This site was formerly known as Black Starfish]

 

 

3. Find a Connector

With an API-enabled, account, you're now ready to set up a connector. If you have built one already, or have a third party you're working with, great. For this example, we'll use one of the connector prototypes that Eloqua has built, but the same sequence of steps is used for whatever connector you're looking to install.

 

Each connector is identified by a unique code, and a URL. These should either be displayed in the connector's setup screen, or provided to you by your Cloud Connector provider. You will need to copy the Unique Code and Configuration URL into Eloqua.

blackstarfish_code.jpg

 

4. Install Connector In Eloqua

To install this Cloud Connector in Eloqua go to System Management and you will see the Cloud Connector Manager on the left side. (Setup -> Management -> System Management -> Cloud Connector Manager). Note: this requires that your account have Customer Administrator access level.

 

Name your Cloud Connector in the service name field, copy the Configuration URL from cloudconnectors.eloqua.com into the service URL field and copy the Unique Code from the provider into the Unique ID field. Click add - you have now created a Cloud Connector!

 

cloudconnectorsinELQ.jpg

 

5. Implement Connector

With this Cloud Connector installed, it will now be an available option within a step in Program Builder. You can use it once, twice, or as many times as you like, as you would a normal Program Builder step. To implement the connector go to the Program Builder module in Eloqua. In a program you need only create a new step and set the default action to Cloud Connector. Then use the drop down menu to select the Cloud Connector you have created.

ConnectorInProgramBuilder.jpg

 

6. Configure Connector

While editing the default action of your cloud connector step you will need to configure the external program that the Cloud Connector connects to. Simply click on the configure button, login and a window will open that connects you to the login for the Cloud Connector's configuration screen.

CloudConnectorConfigurationScreen.jpg

 

You have now installed and configured your first Cloud Connector!

If you're an Eloqua customer who uses Adobe Connect to run your online meetings, you're going to love our newest addition to the Cloud Connector family! I've created this step-by-step document to help you set up your event and measure attendance. Please try it out and post any feedback here (comment on this blog post) and I'll answer and/or update the document as needed.

 

(NOTE: I was a bit intimidated to start the process of using a Cloud Connector -- I was worried it was going to be too technical for me -- but I'm very happy to report that it was EASY! If I can do it, you can do it...trust me.)

 

Here’s the overview of how the Adobe Connect Cloud Connector works:

 

  1. You send an email invitation or otherwise drive traffic to a registration form for your event, which is an Eloqua-based form.
  2. When the user submits the form, they’re added to a Program (via a Form Processing Step).
  3. The Program uses a Cloud Connector step to register the user with Adobe Connect then sends them a confirmation email.
  4. When the event begins, the user logs in with their email address and password (which were configured in the Cloud Connector step and sent in the confirmation email).
  5. The Program then holds the user until a date/time you specify after the event, then it uses another Cloud Connector step to check in with Adobe and see if the person attended. You can then send “thank you” or “we missed you” follow-up emails as desired.

 

Let’s walk through this step by step!

 

1. Getting Started: Eloqua

 

You must have an account on the platform where the Cloud Connectors are hosted (https://cloudconnectors.eloqua.com), and your Eloqua user account must have API access. Cloud Connectors: Step by Step Installation Instructions if this is your first time using the Cloud Connector.

 

Eloqua elements you’ll need:

 

  • Emails: Invitation, confirmation and follow-ups (we recommend adding a calendar ICS file to the confirmation email so people can easily add the event to their personal calendar)
  • Registration Form on a landing page     
    • Minimum required fields by Adobe: First name, last name and email address
    • Form Processing Steps: in addition to the usual “Save to Contact Table” and “Update Existing Record or Data Object”, you’ll also need “Add to Step in Program Builder”
  • Contact Fields:     
    • Adobe Connect Meeting URL Holder (text field) [OPTIONAL] – this holds the Adobe Connect meeting URL that gets returned by Adobe
    • Number of Minutes Attended (numeric field)
    • Number of Questions Asked (numeric field)
  • Program Builder program – explained more below

 

2. Getting Started: Adobe Connect

You must use an Adobe Connect account with Administrator rights.

 

Create your meeting and make note of the URL and telephone connection information to use in your confirmation email and ICS file.

 

3. Building the Program in Eloqua

 

Here’s an overview of what your program will look like in Program Builder:

Adobe1.jpg

 

 

First Adobe Connect Cloud Connector Step – Register Users

 

The first Cloud Connector step (“00. Send to Adobe”) registers the user with the Adobe Connect system. To configure the step, choose “Cloud Connector” for the action and then “Adobe Connect Register Attendee.” Click the Configure button to get started.

adobe2.jpg

  • On the Credentials tab, enter your Cloud Connector credentials
  • On the Configuration tab, enter your company’s Acrobat.com domain and your username and password (remember: you must have Administrator access or be using an account that has Administrator access).
  • Enter a generic password that all new users will use (note: their username will be their email address, you cannot edit this).

 

TIP: If someone registers for your event with an email address that’s already connected to an Adobe Connect account, Adobe will NOT overwrite their existing password. The registrant can use their existing credentials to attend your meeting and it will still be recorded.

 

At this time, you can ignore the “Send email invitations” option as Adobe Connect does not support this. We set ours to “Don’t Send” as an added future-proof precaution. Click Save Settings and your meeting options will show up in the drop-down field and you can select the correct one. Click Save Settings again.

 

adobe3.jpg

 

Next you’ll set up your field mappings:

 

  • The Contact Field mappings are required
  • The “Join Meeting URL Field” is optional. Adobe Connect does not generate unique links for each attendee, so you can simply paste the link for your event directly into your confirmation email, rather than use this field to hold the information and then dynamically insert it.

 

Click SaveSettings.

 

adobe4.jpg

 

Return to the Credentials tab when you’re finished and check the “Enable Step” checkbox in order to let this step run without any intervention from you. Click Save Settings.

 

adobe5.jpg

 

 

Wait Step

 

Be sure and build a wait step into your program that holds all contacts until at least 2 hours after your event has ended. If you begin querying Adobe too soon you may not get accurate registration information.

 

adobe6.jpg

 

 

Second Adobe Connect Cloud Connector Step – Query Attendees

 

The second Cloud Connector step in the program allows you to query the Adobe Connect system to see if someone attended your event. To configure the step, choose “Cloud Connector” for the action and then “Adobe Connect Query Attendance.” Click the Configure button to get started.

 

adobe7.jpg

 

On the Credentials tab, enter your Cloud Connector credentials again.

 

On the Configuration tab:

 

  • Enter your Adobe Connect login information and click Save Settings. Your list of meetings will then appear.
  • You can choose to store your meeting attendance information on the Contact record in Eloqua (as created in the Getting Started step above) or in Data Cards (Note: Data Cards are only      available in the Eloqua Team and Eloqua Enterprise products). Click Save Settings to proceed.

 

adobe8.jpg

 

For this example, we used the Contact Record and created two numeric contact fields that we mapped to. Click Save Settings. Go back to the Credentials tab again and check the Enable Step checkbox.

 

adobe9.jpg

 

Decision Rule

If you want to send different follow-up messages to attendees and non-attendees, you can create a decision rule to look at the number of minutes the person attended, as shown below:

adobe10.jpg

 

 

4. Setting Up the Email Confirmation

 

Make sure your confirmation email includes the log-in link and the person’s username (email address) and the password that you’ve created. Here’s a simple example:

adobe11.jpg

 

That's it!

[These instructions refer to Eloqua9. For Eloqua10 instructions go here]

[Check out the Blind Form Submit Link Generator created by Sterling Bailey-Oracle]

 

Sometimes when a user clicks a link in one of your emails you’d like to be able to do more than simply track the click-thru. The method below describes a ‘trick’ so that you can do just that! The basic premise is that you will build a form within Eloqua (that you can use again and again). In your email message you will insert a specially created URL that points to this form. When the user clicks this link in your email, they are actually submitting an Eloqua form – although they don’t know it and it’s seamless to them (which is where the term “blind form submit” comes from). You can then use Form Processing Steps to perform many actions, such as associate them to a campaign, change their campaign status, add them to a group, notify a salesperson, etc. All of the normal Form Process Steps are available to you as options. An example of this might be an RSVP link in an email. You could have two separate links “No, I cannot attend” and “Yes, I’ll be there”. Each one of these links can point to the same form. But in the “rsvp” variable we can pass along a No or a Yes. Then, with conditional processing steps on the form, we can add these people to one of two contact groups.

 

  1. Create Your Form
    Go to Automate > Forms > Forms (tab) > Manage Forms (menu) > New Form
    Set the Form Display Name to “Click Thru Tracking” or whatever makes sense for your organization. This form name will appear in your CRM activity history section when this form is submitted (if you have an integration between Eloqua and your CRM, and if you have Form Submission activity turned on).
    blindform1.jpg
    Click the Create Form button in the lower right corner.
  2. Additional Settings
    Scroll down to the lower part of the Form Details page. Select the No button for both Progress Message and Performance Settings as shown here:
    blindform2.jpg
    Click the Save button in the lower right corner.



  3. Begin Building Your URL
    Now click the Integration Details button. You will use the information in the top two boxes on that page to begin building your special URL.
    blindform3.jpg
    Open Notepad and begin pasting the information you see in these two boxes like this:
    http://now.eloqua.com/e/f2.aspx?elqFormName=click&elqSiteID=531
    In case you want the details, here is an explanation of what we have so far:
  • Everyone who uses this process will have the same beginning part of the URL. All Eloqua forms are processed through this URL: http://now.eloqua.com/e/f2.aspx
  • The ? is the beginning of the first query string. (Query strings are a way of passing along additional information with a URL. The first one always begins with a question mark and subsequent query strings are joined by adding an ampersand [&]. )
  • The first query string is the elqFormName. Everyone will have this same parameter, but the value (the part after the equal sign) will be unique to you. For example, if you named your form something other than ‘click’ that name will appear here.
  • The & is the beginning of the next query string.
  • The second query string is the elqSiteID. Again, everyone will have this parameter, but your Site ID value is unique to you.

Note: This first part of the URL (up through the SiteID value) will always be the same every time you use this feature

 

  1. Add More Fields To The Form
    Now click the Fields > New Field button in the upper right.  There are two fields you MUST add, then additional fields are optional.
    Email Address: Set the HTML name to “e” (this will help keep our URL shorter).
    blindform4.jpg
    Destination URL: Set the HTML name to "url"
    blindform5.jpg
    Additional fields you may want:
    Campaign ID (recommend “cid” as the HTML name)
    Campaign Status (recommend “status” as the HTML name)
    RSVP – if you intend to use this similar to the example at the beginning of this document



  2. Finish Building the URL
    Now continue building your URL. At a minimum it will now look like this:
    http://now.eloqua.com/e/f2.aspx?elqFormName=click&elqSiteID=531&e=<span class=eloquaemail>EmailAddress</span>&url=http://www.company.com
    /landingpage.html

    It may even look like this:
    http://now.eloqua.com/e/f2.aspx?elqFormName=click&elqSiteID=531&e=<span class=eloquaemail>EmailAddress</span>&url=http://www.company.com
    /landingpage.html&status=responded&cid=701000000000csR&rsvp=yes

    You can add as many fields as you like – simply connect each of the fields/query string with an ampersand.
    NOTE: That the recipient’s email address will be inserted correctly into the link when the Batch or QuickSend is sent to them.
    NOTE: The Destination URL that you enter must be a fully-qualified URL. (That means it must begin with http or https.) This is the location that you want the person to end up after they have clicked the link in the email.



  3. Building the Form Processing Steps
    The number of Processing Steps you have will depend on your needs for this functionality.  You will probably use some conditional Processing Steps as you begin to use this form more and more. For example, if you want to use the RSVP functionality example, you may have two “Add to Contact Group” steps – one for “yes” and one for “no”.
    At a minimum, you must have the step called Redirect to URL. Change the Source Type from Constant to Form Field (as shown below) and then point to the field that you created called “Destination URL.”
    blindform6.jpg
    If you are passing through Campaign ID or Campaign Status, you’ll also want to add the step called “Update Existing Record or Data Object” and save those fields to the appropriate Contact Fields in Eloqua. You will also need to either:
    Add the “Add to Program Builder” step and choose the Update CRM program so that the person’s Campaign Status/ID can be updated in your CRM, or
    Talk to the Support team about adding a step called “Run Integration Rules” and configure this to directly fire off the Associate to Campaign capability directly from the program.



  4. Inserting the Link into an Email
    In your email, highlight the text that you want to make clickable and click Insert/Edit Hyperlink. Choose “Send to Webpage” as the link type and paste your link code into the Webpage field as shown below. Do not click “Insert as Redirect Link”.
    blindform7.jpg

 

A few things to consider:

  • Email Address Considerations
    It is important to note that because the email address is being passed directly in the link, the email click and form submission will be associated with that specific email address.
    For example, if we use the RSVP example: If Bob Customer receives the email and clicks the link to RSVP “yes”, then he forwards it to his friend Joe who clicks the “no” link, it will look like Bob submitted two forms – one with a yes, one with a no. For simple things like RSVP tracking this is usually okay – you’re just trying to get a general idea of raw numbers. But there may be times that this might cause you a problem. In those cases you might add verbiage that says ‘This is your private link, do not forward’ or something like that.
  • Re-Use the Form
    You can continue to use this same form over and over by simply adding more fields as needed. It’s perfectly okay to have multiple fields within the Eloqua form but then only use two or three of them in the URL. Just use what you need at that time. And remember that conditional Processing Steps can be very helpful to you.
  • Click-Thru Tracking
    Download the Word file attached to this post for more information about tracking the click-thru in the email stats report in Eloqua.

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