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Purposeful Duplicates in Marketo and Engagement Programs

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Purposeful duplicates can be very difficult to work with and is not recommended for any Marketo instance. However, there are some reasons that one may choose to use a purposeful duplicate strategy. Maybe there is a need to separate by type of form submissions or to designate what kind of product that the person is interested in.  

Whatever the reason behind the duplicates may be, their presence in an instance can make a nurture strategy difficult to execute. Engagement programs don’t allow for duplicate email addresses to be running in the same engagement program. if you try and create one engagement program with a purposeful duplicate strategy in place records will be skipped and the ultimate nurture strategy will not be achieved. So, how do you create a successful nurture strategy, when engagement program restraints limit duplicates? 

When building out the nurture strategy a couple of questions can help to determine what direction you need to take. Are there duplicates within the same workspace and partition? Do these nurtures need to communicate with each other in any way? Was the original plan to move people through streams? 

If so, the same effect can be achieved by using separate engagement programs for the individual areas and then creating a “pausing” smart campaign to pause certain records based on chosen criteria. 

A couple of how to’s to help create engagement programs with a purposeful duplicates strategy in place:

  • Instead of one engagement program with multiple streams, build out multiple engagement programs.
    • Important Note: Instances have a limit of 100 active engagement programs. Keep that in mind when building out engagement programs.
  • Due to the fact that the programs will be separate and have different qualifying criteria, duplicate records can be running in each engagement program.
    • A person has filled out a form for  Product A and a form for Product B, meaning now there are two records with the same email address, one for each product.
  • That is where “transition rules” or more accurately, pausing smart campaigns come in.  Determine your “transition rules” meaning what moves people between the streams – or in this case it will be what “moves” people between the engagement programs.
    • For example, we have Product A & B. You can qualify for the Engagement Program for Product A or Engagement Program for Product B but if you Qualify for both you should only be in the Engagement Program for Product B.
  • Create pausing smart campaigns, to pause a record in an engagement program based on the qualifications you set.
    • Determine a send schedule. Ideally the pausing campaign should run before each engagement program send to pause any record that qualifies.
  • Create a smart list that pulls in duplicates. It can be a reference list for the pausing campaign.
  • Create test records to make sure that the smart campaigns (both add to engagement programs and pausing campaigns) are functioning.
    • Additionally, creating the same engagement programs in a Sandbox instance is extremely helpful to make adjustments and test the functioning.

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Emily Kawola

Emily Kawola is a Senior Technical consultant with over 3 years of experience in Marketo. She has put her knowledge of the Marketo platform to work for clients ranging from higher education, enterprise healthcare and insurance providers, construction, and automotive.

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