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Have you ever been to a fancy restaurant and done a wine pairing with dinner? Roasted chicken with chardonnay, filet mignon with a cabernet.  Some things are just meant for one another.

I see similar parings happening in Eloqua University (maybe not as delicious, but stick with me). Have you ever attended a course because you have a big project coming up? For example, taking the Lead Scoring class right around the time you’re about to build your new Lead Scoring model? Makes sense, right? Just like with food and wine, these courses become even sweeter when paired together. Take a look:

(Note: I have included some pairings for E9 and for E10. Choose the pairing that matches your install version.)


Before we can create too many pairings, we have to start with the basics. The goal is to build a solid foundation of understanding to properly segment your database, build emails, landing pages, forms and ultimately an entire campaign. Fundamentals is a necessary overview of the Eloqua product and sets the stage for what’s to come. There is a Fundamentals series for those on Eloqua 10 and a 2.5-day course for those on E9. The course I would recommend taking along with Fundamentals is Reporting (Eloqua 10: Insight or E9: Reporting). This course is designed to show the everyday user how to run reports and analyze the results. It’s not enough to simply learn how to send an email or build a form. As modern marketers we must understand the meaning of our metrics so we can optimize.


And then….


Clean data is the foundation for many an Eloqua project and lead scoring is one of the most important. Because lead scoring is automated, objective way of quantifying the current sales readiness of a contact, we need the best possible data. Scoring on open text fields or inconsistent data is a nightmare. Besides being painful to configure, it would be impossible to know if you were capturing all the variables. Do yourself a favor and tackle your data quality issues first.


(See a ‘data quality’ trend here?) – Just like clean data helps with lead scoring, it is also a HUGE help when it comes to building and using Dynamic Content, Signature Rules and Field Merges. If you want to incorporate some of these advanced techniques into your email marketing, you’ll want to ensure you’re working with clean data.


Social media is a BIG topic. So big, in fact, we broke the topic into two courses. There is a 3-hour instructor led session that covers its importance and best practices of strategy. There is also a 30-minute web-based session that you can take at any time that covers the tools available in Eloqua, such as reports, cloud components, etc.. Because of the wide range of topics covered, we recommend taking these hand in hand.


Similar to Social Media, the Events Module is a broad topic. The instructor led session is fairly advanced, using the Events Module and Cloud Connectors to create a multi-session Webinar event. If you have taken this course and are looking for more, the Applied Best Practices: Managing Multi-city Events (WBT) session takes you more down the best practices route. We even show how Eloqua uses our own popular Road to Revenue series to combine the Events Module, the Campaign Canvas and Program Builder to engage, nurture and convert leads to customers.


You get the idea, the list could go on forever! Pairings aren't just for fancy dinners (although, please don’t forget about those either. Lobster + Kool-Aid makes the puppies cry). Expand beyond the Fundamentals and be creative with the courses you’re taking in Eloqua University.

There are also recommended learning paths based on key roles in an organization and a Masters Certification program to help guide beyond these simple pairings. And remember, with an All Access Education Pass you have a full year of unlimited access to Eloqua University. You may want to  take a class for basic understanding, and then retake the session later when you’re really diving into the project. That’s ok! In fact, it’s encouraged.


Have questions? Have more course pairing suggestions? I would love to hear them! Leave a comment below. 

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