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4 Steps To Set Up Your Salesforce Marketing Cloud Instance

At this point, we all know the key components of a successful Marketing Cloud implementation: identify your data models, set up your integrations, warm up your IP, etc. 

However, if you’re looking to migrate over to Salesforce Marketing Cloud (SFMC), there are many small steps to take for a successful implementation that don’t get talked about as often—like setting up your Marketing Cloud Connector, figuring out your unique identifier, or migrating data from your previous ESP.

While some of these steps might not be as glamorous as building out your first journey, or creating dynamic email templates, they are some of the most important. Taking the steps to get the small things right can make or break a successful implementation of Marketing Cloud. 

At Lev, we get to partner with marketing teams from top brands every day to help them maximize their use of Marketing Cloud. Below, we’ll dive deep into 4 steps to set yourself up for success with Marketing Cloud.

1. Set up the Marketing Cloud Connector

The seamless integration between Salesforce CRM and Salesforce Marketing Cloud is one of the most compelling features of Marketing Cloud. When setting up the Marketing Cloud Connector, we often support our customers in setting up an automation to continually import and refresh data using a Salesforce Data Extension. We also recommend setting up synchronized data sources—meaning there are automations set up to update contact data to ensure the Salesforce CRM data is the single source of truth. This helps to avoid messy and inaccurate data.

2. Configure Email Studio

Next, you’ll want to configure your Marketing Cloud Business Unit, including migrating assets from previous ESPs. By leveraging responsive template design, you can have more flexibility in how you build your emails. 

Of course,  you’ll want to ensure you’re following IP warming best practices, including implementing a bounce rule to ensure that bounced contacts are immediately removed—minimizing the opportunity to send emails leveraging bad data, which could potentially negatively impact your sender reputation.

You’ll also want to enable Reply Mail Management (RMM), including leveraging dynamic sender profiles and setting up RMM to support multiple languages if you have a global audience.

3. Create Efficiencies with Automation Studio

Automation Studio is a key component of maintaining data cleanliness.  As referenced above, one automation to consider is implementing a delete process to remove records that use email as the subscriber key—effectively eliminating duplicate records. 

You can also leverage automation to import Salesforce Reports and refresh your filtered data extensions, which is used for segmentation.

4. Take Advantage of Training

Training is the most important factor when it comes to driving adoption of a new tool, including Salesforce Marketing Cloud. Our customers often partner with Lev to conduct training sessions and create documentation for Marketing Cloud, including using filters and data extensions.

For some of our customers, one of their main goals with SFMC is to drive more self-sufficiency across multiple teams, and we’ve been able to train non-marketing users from other communications departments to use Marketing Cloud to send internal emails. This can be a game-changer for marketing teams, saving them time and stress, by being able to enable other team members to send relevant communications internally. 

These 4 small steps are critical parts of the crawl-walk-run approach we often promote at Lev. By taking the time to ensure your configuration of Marketing Cloud was best-in-class, and that you have a sound data management system in place, you’ll be able to dive into fully leveraging the robust capabilities of Marketing Cloud.

For some of our customers, as a result of increased data cleanliness and the ability to segment communications to the right audiences, they’ve experienced great results—with their click-through-rates (CTRs) and click-to-open-rates (CTORs) both increasing by nearly 3x.