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I would like to share my experience of developing an Eloqua nurture campaign. It was one of the first more complex projects I was involved in at my current position and I will describe a few challenges that occurred on the road.


Brief

I work for CRM Technologies, the marketing operations agency, and we were requested to help with developing global Eloqua nurture campaigns for one of our customers. Each campaign is focused on a separate product, and consists of several emails. The main content asset was translated into 17 languages. Before downloading the content a contact needs to fill in a progressive profiling form. When all specific contact fields are completed the lead is passed to sales.


We were participating in rolling out several product nurtures. Over time our involvement and responsibilities changed. At the beginning we were building the whole campaign from start to the end. Further into the project, the client was able to allocate a specialist who took over more responsibilities.


Eloqua Assets

The product oriented campaign was launched across 5 regions, and consisted of 5-6 emails. Translated dynamic content was used on emails to reduce the number of assets.

Landing pages were minimalist, displaying only a small amount of content and simply showing a tinted sneak preview of the desired white paper and a pop-up window prompting for the lead’s details.


Challenges

  • Too many landing pages - at the beginning we were using a unique page for each asset, for each language. This meant we ended up with around 50 landing pages per campaign. Over time we evolved to a unified background with a simple company logo. In the end we had decided to give up on the sneak peak preview background as it was ineffective.
  • A bug in the progressive profiling cloud component forced us to find a workaround. We weren’t able to successfully map contact to the email address field, instead, we basically had to recreate another field on the form for the email address.
  • At the beginning of the project our customer made too many changes within the running of their campaigns. This made it impossible to have stable, comparable results to evaluate and make campaign improvements.
  • Cloud component unfortunately did not offer an option to populate localised dynamic labels based on a contact’s preferences/country, we were forced to create a brand new cloud component for each language.
  • Eloqua progressive profiling cloud component doesn’t allow you to use advanced logic (for example ‘state or province’ field should be rendered only to US/Canadian customers). We ended up with two streams - one for US market and one for global market.


Little things you should remember

  • Document everything - even though it’s not requested or required by customer.
    • My lesson: We still maintained several documents for keeping track of Eloqua names, links, uploaded assets and QA process. Always do that as it helps to share work within a team.
  • When you do content extensive work make sure you have robust templates that will actually help when adding content itself. Think smart which section will be dynamic, if image size could break the design.
    • My lesson: We had several dynamic sections within an email - multiplying the amount of work.
  • Evaluate often for improvements.
    • My lesson: At the beginning reporting suffered from too many changes in live campaigns. We weren’t able to provide reliable and comparable reporting data for the last few months (actually not even the last few weeks).
  • Test. Test. Test.
    • My lesson: We found so many minor things I would never believe could break when I built them originally in Eloqua. Test on as many devices, browsers and platforms as possible.


I am aware our nurture build approach and process isn’t perfect or definitive. But it was a great experience to see small things click together and slowly improving. Campaigns provide a great wireframe for further amendments. It’s easily scalable (languages, email steps). Insight reporting is unified in one place and any content can be very quickly updated. We can still update templates, apply responsive design, merge dynamic contents together in emails, re-work dynamic background on landing pages, do more A/B testing. The next step should be building a roadmap to give visible and clear responsibilities, what needs to be monitored and what has to be amended according to feedback.


Results

Four campaigns generated approximately over 12,000 new leads in the 3 monitored months, with unique response rates varying from 5% to almost 30%. Over the same period of time emails had open rates of around 55% (10% unique open rate). Campaigns also maintain a very low unsubscribe rate. Progressive profiling forms had several thousand form submissions that helped enrich the database.


I hope you’ve found our experience helpful and if you have any further questions I will be more than happy to answer them in discussion below or you can contact me over email david.huml@crmtechnologies.com.

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