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Planning For Marketo: The Discovery Process [Part 1 of 2]

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Planning For Marketo

Planning for Marketo sounds like an obvious thing to do. However, getting your ducks in a row when setting out to stand up a new Adobe Marketo Engage instance can be daunting. With Marketo being such a powerful platform that can be configured in countless ways for all types of marketing strategies, it becomes imperative to plan ahead.

Whether you’re a member of Marketing, Sales, or IT, planning ahead for a new Marketo implementation begins by putting together the minds of all three said teams. Typically, it can take months between the time of purchasing Marketo and performing all the necessary steps to prepare for it, all while using a variety of enterprise resources.

Here are three hard-hitting sets of discovery questions to ask of your organization in order to hit the ground running with a new Marketo implementation:

Is your organization currently using another marketing automation platform?

A big part of moving from one marketing automation platform to another is the amount of work that it takes to ensure that branding, targeting, and analytics are not altered or diluted. Seek out ways to document what previous marketing automations have accomplished without losing key deliverables. Define what your goals are in moving to Marketo.

If you do have a marketing automation platform, will you be migrating assets from it?

If your organization has many digital and/or intellectual assets at its disposal, moving them into Marketo should be methodically accounted for. This takes more time than you would think. Look to develop a digital asset inventory approach to ensure that no landing pages, forms, or custom lists are lost. This planning will help ensure that everything can be immediately leveraged once your Marketo instance goes live.

Does your organization have an existing Customer Relationship Management (CRM) in place to be used directly with Marketo?

If you do have a CRM, how mature is it, and how clean do you believe it to be?

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The work towards a clean and actionable CRM tool is a never-ending endeavor. With that said, the fruits of Marketo are only as good as the integrity of the CRM in which it is integrated with. Ahead of implementing a new Marketo instance, it may be necessary to clean and perform deduplication processes on your CRM. Take the time to identify unusable data or even to purge undeliverable email addresses.

If you don’t have a CRM, do you have any sort of data warehouse(s) that stores lead/account data?

Without a CRM, additional processes may be necessary to configure your data store so that Marketo can address things such as duplicative records, real-time data upkeep, or record key identifiers. Furthermore, uncover if there are any siloed data sets that need to be combined with others so that your Marketo instance can have the full data picture.

Marketo is only as powerful as your data is clean, with or without a CRM.

Additionally, do you know how many leads/accounts are in your database(s)?

Adobe offers tiered database license limits for Marketo. Being cognizant of the state of your current database, knowing what could be discarded, and forecasting its future state, is imperative as this knowledge will affect license structure and costs. Not only this, but if you require a dedicated IP, the IP warming process heavily depends on understanding how many leads are available and which ESPs are they are using.

How many distinct channels of information feed your marketing data?

From webinars to PPC ads, and everything in between; gathering data from numerous marketing channels is now expected of marketing teams. With that comes the added responsibilities of configuring said data into a marketable and useable format. It becomes critical to structure marketing data from a wide variety of sources not only for the sake of targeting, but also to normalize it for use across multiple business units. Uncover whether or not data normalization and configuration will need to happen before it is fed to Marketo, while it is in Marketo or a combination of both. With this in mind, take into consideration what marketing data gathering and normalization will look like. Make it known exactly how many business units and personnel it may take to accomplish it.

Best of luck in hitting the ground running with your new Marketo instance. If your organization needs support with any of the processes detailed above, or even something much more complicated, reach out to the Perficient team.


Click here for Part Two of ‘Planning For Marketo: The Discovery Process’.

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Marc Babel

Marc Babel is an Adobe Certified Expert Marketo Engage Business Practitioner. Marc has over 4 years of experience in Marketo specializing in technical configuration and net new Marketo implementations. He has put his knowledge of the Marketo platform to work for clients ranging from software startups to enterprise healthcare and insurance providers.

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