A+ Marketing Cloud Strategies for HigherEd Success: A Fireside Chat with Cornell and UMGC (Transcript)


Anthony Lamot: Hello, and welcome everyone to another webinar by DESelect. Today. We have a really exciting topic getting an a plus with Marketing Cloud strategies for hired success today. The fireside chat. And I’m very excited to have our customers from Cornell University as well as University of Maryland Global Campus here. So let’s introduce them today. I’m joined by Alina from Cornell as well as Becky from Maryland Global. Alina, Would you please introduce yourself to our audience?

Alina Morgade: Yes, of course. I’m Alina Morgade, the Marketing Cloud, technical lead at Cornell University. I’m always trying to design technical solutions for Marketing Cloud and trying to drive initiatives so that our users are making the most of Marketing Cloud. I’ve been using it for about eight years and I’m a huge enthusiasts and advocate. So thank you for having me here. I’m sure I’m going to enjoy this conversation.

Anthony Lamot: Fantastic and having a technical background myself. I’m very curious for all the things that you’ve learned and what I can still learn from you because Marketing Cloud is a very versatile platform. Next step we have, Becky, could you please introduce yourself?

Becky Crosetto: Sure. My name is Becky. I’m the Senior Director of Student Communications at University of Maryland Global Campus. And my unit falls within the student affairs unit, and we focus on holistic student communications and one of the major mass communications tools that we use is Marketing Cloud. We’ve been in it probably about five to six years now and been using DESelect for probably three years. It’s been great.

Anthony Lamot: Well, I love to hear that. And, and that’s also why it’s so exciting to have you on the call. We’ve been working together for a while. It’s been a pleasure having you as a customer too. I’ll quickly introduce myself. So I’m Anthony Lamot. I’m a cofounder of DESelect in a former life, I was a consultant for sales for CRM Marketing Cloud and so on. But today, I have the honor and privilege to be leading this a little rocket ship called DESelect. And with that set, we’re going to jump into the Fireside Chat. And first of for our guests here, I had a question for both ladies for both Becky and Alina just to kick it off. What are some of the most recent challenges you faced with regards to student communication, Becky? Why don’t we start with you?

Becky Crosetto: Sure. I think on our end, it’s always a challenge to just balance it all right now. You’ve got so many different types of communications that can go out to students, e-mail SMS, classroom notifications, a phone calls, recorded, voice mails, and just finding the right multi channel mix, not bombarding students and providing the right messages at the right time, so that we drive students success. That’s a challenge. And, we work on that every day and Marketing Cloud has been great and we just take different kind of techniques. I think what we find really successful for us is really unity internally with all of the different units that can send mass communications. So that everyone’s on the same page and we have lots of conversations and meetings to keep everyone aligned. We have a shared calendar that also helps from that sense. But, it is a, you know, it’s something you have to stay on top of, you want to provide a good student experience, and also make sure that students, you know, get the right amount of messaging and they don’t get too much and then get annoyed and frustrated.

Anthony Lamot: So I heard the right message at the right time especially by having a shared calendar in the team. Alina, what would you say are some of the recent challenges?

Alina Morgade: Yeah. Well, I can speak about sort of technical challenges involving the students communication. And one of then I would say is the fact that some of our teams didn’t have instant access to create segments. And that was kind of a huge limitation because it limits your ability to create relevant messages and to actually target all the different interests across your student population. And I think that kind of just story behind that is that we actually didn’t have an enterprise tool and mass communication and marketing enterprise tool to a centralized tool across the university. And because of that, a lot of our units and departments we’re using like a stand along tools are not always connected to fresh data. And that was kind of a huge pain point because our users will need to kind of request manuals and do like a lot of merging and deduplication on their own. And there was a huge limitation for us and that’s kind of our Cornell University meets Marketing Cloud as an enterprise tool that allows you to solve some of those issues.

Anthony Lamot: That’s great. I like how you phrase it that, you know, we’re using at Cornell as an enterprise platform. And so you’ve kind of already described how Marketing Cloud fits in into solving those challenges. So, Becky, for you, how does SFMC, how have you been able to leverage the platform?

Becky Crosetto: Yeah, I think it’s great. I would love to have one communication system of truth, and we’ve been moving towards a lot of our messaging coming out of that tool, but that is kind of Alina, touched on one issue that we have to in challenges that we have is just, you know, fully connecting all of our tools and our data so that we have access to do all the great things that we wanna do. We can get so creative. But it gets challenging when you have multiple mass communication tools and Marketing Cloud is great. There’s a lot of like creative solutions that we can leverage in it. But we also have to keep in mind that balancing act. And I think we really loved some of the creative aspects of Marketing Cloud like being able to use dynamic content sometimes optimization. We use the embedded forms a lot to get students feedback and then figure out that based on what they’ve told us, how do we then form our communication, the follow up communication with them? And it’s been great for that.

Anthony Lamot: The creative aspect, the mix of creativity and technicality. But before we dive deeper into that, I have a small poll here for our attendees and it should be showing on the screen right now because we do want to hear where are our attendees at. So how is your rate at the current level of alumni engagement at your institution? Very high, moderate, low, very low. I’ll give everyone a second to reply. And while people are looking at the pole and filling it in, I also just wanna remind everyone we love interaction engagement on the webinars. So if you have any questions for the panelist for myself, by all means, please put Q&A we’ll either try to cover them as we go along or if not do a little round up at the end. And meanwhile poll results have trickled in. And I think everyone’s very modest share the results. So on average moderate, you know, sticks out there with 71 percent, few people set very high, few people set low. So yeah, moderate level of alumni engagement. So that’s good there’s room for improvement there. So let’s dig a little bit deeper related, to the poll. I’ll start with Becky again. What if you find helpful to drive alumni, And I’ll even say, student engagement?

Becky Crosetto: Sure. I think I touched on a little bit the creativity and just kind of thinking outside the box. You know, how do we do things a little bit differently? I probably shouldn’t share this with them and they share it anyway. Like if a lot of people are sending messages around the lunch hour, we might send our message at 12:02 because a lot of people are going to set it up for 12 o’clock right? So, how do we hit the top of the inbox? Just kind of a little example of how do we think about things differently? And how do we put ourselves in the, you know, the students see it and think about, you know, what they’re doing at any point in time of day and how do we get our message to be top of mind? How can we use an engaging subject line or something creative within the e-mail body? Like using image care sells something that just keep their attention and their eyes on our message that we want them to pay attention to for even a couple of seconds longer will really help.

Anthony Lamot: I love some of those ideas you’ve shared. But a little bit more about those cases, I don’t think that’s something that a lot of people are using today.

Becky Crosetto: Yeah. So it’s imagine the image banner at the top of the e-mail you can set it up so that it’s one image, but then it rotates to another image and then it rotates to another image. So it gives your e-mail a little bit of interactivity look to it. And we know consumers attention spans are very short. I mean, they’re getting 100 to 200 messages a day. So even if you know, that little interactivity and motion within the e-mail keeps their eyes on your message a couple of seconds longer, then you’ve captured their attention a little bit longer. So you’ve got more odds that they’re going to pay attention. We full message do what you take, the action that you want them to take and engage with their brand a little bit more.

Anthony Lamot: I love it. Images have given me an idea for our own e-mail campaigns. I do love carousels on social media too on platforms like LinkedIn, they can be very useful as well. Alina same question for you following our poll, what have you found helpful to help drive engagement?

Alina Morgade: Yes. And that topic, I would definitely advise for embracing cross channel approach. And this is something that we are not currently doing at Cornell because we are in the earliest take, so really not marketing and it’s been like a year or so. But on previous experiences, right? Have, I think that if someone is, our students are certainly on the goal all the time and sometimes they might not Engage with your emails, but they do have the fund mobiles, and they do Engage through a lot of different ways through their mobile funds. So if you notice that someone is actually not engaging with your emails, you can try sending a text message or maybe just put in an ad in front of them. And that would probably feel like less invasive to just filling out their invoices with emails that they will never read. That would certainly be even if you have like an app that’s great. Because let’s say that you have alumnies are not actually engaging with your emails and you suddenly see that they are around campus. Well, that’s the right time to send an pentification. And that’s another way to probably reengage them with your activities. So I would, that would be my top one recommendation. And the second one would be just try to stay collecting as much data as possible in order to connect with your audience. You really want to get to know them and you could do that through data. So you don’t only want to know that Alina is an employee at Cornell. You want to know if Alina is taking classes and what classes you taking, what are the interests? And I think that that’s one of the best way to actually be relevant and connect with your audiences.

Anthony Lamot:Amazing. And I think now the audience already gets a good idea of how Cornell is using Marketing Cloud, true as an enterprise platform because I think you just describe all the key capabilities that platform has. So it’s really cool to see that being  open.

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Alina Morgade:Yeah.

Anthony Lamot:Great. All right, Becky, a somewhat different question on a more strategic level, how do you align your strategic goals with the capabilities of Salesforce Marketing Cloud to enhance those student communications we’ve been talking about?

Becky Crosetto: Sure. So, one of our strategic goals is just providing students with a seamless experience. And I think we focus on student centricity, and like I mentioned before, really putting ourselves in the students perspective and thinking through how they’re going to experience different experiences that you and GC offers. So part of that is just knowing who our students are and listening to them creating a feedback loop or we can get information from them. And one of the ways that we collect feedback from them is we use the embedded forms within Salesforce Marketing Cloud. So for instance, you can just ask a really quick easy question. You can put four stars up on the screen. There can be a comment box. And then students, when they receive the e-mail that little survey, it’s just right within the e-mail it’s quick. It’s easy. It’s it’s you know, they can very easily without even having to leave their inbox, send us feedback a couple of clicks and then hit submit that hits a data extension and Marketing Cloud. And then we can trigger follow up off of that. So sometimes we might trigger a full a follow up off of that, we might push the information back into Salesforce so that we can save the data and then trigger different things off of it later. So we just again, I think I try to, I think creatively about how do we leverage the capabilities to be able to drive that good student experience, seamless student experience? So that the students really appreciate being a student GC and delivering, that smooth… classroom experience?

Anthony Lamot: That’s a great illustration of connecting a strategic goal to a very concrete tactic. Jennifer is adding in the chat. Love this tactic, Becky. So I think people it’s resonating what you’re saying, Alina, on the more technical side, can you share some examples of automation that you’ve implemented for attracting prospective students or maybe engaging current students and alumni?

Alina Morgade: Yeah, sure. Well, engagement is in a where our teams are constantly trying to improve. So on the technical side of marketing cloud, we set up a set of automations to help them with that. And what the automations do is that it basically looks at the engagement data. It looks at the data views that marketing cloud has and collect all that data into what the results would be is like an e-mail activity data tension that would have a lot of data and clicks, bounces opens and whether someone receive an e-mail or not. So I will have an e-mail activity data sent. I would say, okay, Alina pinned an e-mail on the last seven days. It would be a flag on the last 14 days, 30 days, 60 days and 180 days. And it would do the same with clicks and opens and bounces. And then at the end, we would have like last time Elina actually opened an e-mail it would be like a date field. You would have last time Alina click an e-mail bounce or receive an e-mail and this has been very helpful because now that we have a, all that information collected in the data extensions, our team can leverage to select and actually kind of join this data of engagement data with other attributes that we have, in our court data extensions to, we have a lot of different use cases. Let’s say said someone had a sub pounds a week ago. You don’t want, maybe you want to wait a little bit more before you attempt to send in another e-mail. Maybe they have a full inbox and you want to give them like more time so that they can clean up the inboxes. And that’s just an use case or you want to probably like send an e-mail to someone who actually clicking your emails from the last week or the last month. That gives you a lot of possibilities and a lot of different combinations and how, to use engagement to better target your different audiences.

Anthony Lamot: That’s great. So it sounds like what you’ve been doing is querying some of those data views and kind of abstracting some of the most actionable information to the data extension. Am I understanding that correctly?

Alina Morgade: Yes, exactly. It’s like the information that we would use us and we would break it down but like three years like seven days, one week, two weeks, one month, et cetera.

Anthony Lamot: That’s really interesting. I also love the fact that, you linked it to one specific use case. I would be curious if you could also because we have a mixed audience here today. If you could shed some light a little bit more on the technical aspect of it or maybe if you could give some other use cases an example, so people can maybe get some ideas themselves.

Alina Morgade: Yeah as well. And the technical side is just a bunch of SQL queries that print the data from the, from your data use in Marketing Cloud. So that information is kind of transparent. It’s not easily to get to that unless you actually use SQL queries. So you could also use to select. But after you get that, what we do is how we really organized into those time frames like seven days like one month et cetera. And we create flags that are very easily to check. So you don’t really have to ask the system what today? Because, you have to flag turn on that would be easier for you for the user and let’s speak about use cases. Well, I know that the soft bounces, we’ve been impacted with a lot of bounces and we really care about that because you could impact our sending reputation. So we are very careful. We try to take that into consideration when sending emails and free engagement. Yeah, we certainly want, to, we don’t want to overreach the people let’s say is that we have, I don’t like any and you really want to, you don’t want to over reach to them. So you wanna keep the users engaged? We have a newsletter which is the chronicle newsletter. And one of the main concerns that they have is how, to keep the audience engaged and send emails to people who actually are not up in the new to anymore. So they will be able to use this, the data extension to say, okay, let’s just send a communication to the only the ones who have been engaging for the last three months. And on the other hand, something else that another use case that, we do is that let’s say that you haven’t engaged for a long period of time. Like let’s say that I have engaged in August 2023 we do, we could trigger a reengagement campaign and say, hey, do you still want to receive this newsletter? Is this something that you’re interested in? I don’t know where you are most interested in. Let’s say it’s like I port research or whatever your interest is, and that’s probably another use case.

Anthony Lamot: Amazing. Yeah, thanks for clarifying that. I think it’s a really interesting takeaway there that having all this data available in marketing cloud like data views is useful but it’s not always super actionable itself and it kind of helps to stage the data prepared data in a different format like flax, so you can use it and a lot of the use cases including figuring out what part of your audience is maybe getting unengaged so you can retarget them, hopefully win them back as an active subscriber. So that’s great stuff.

Becky Crosetto: Where you asked the next question that got me thinking you guys had an amazing article that taught me how to create a contact interaction report. So we could see of our different student buckets, how many e-mail communications they’re receiving over a weeks period, a months period. And we have a lot of people across the university that have access to some mass communications. And that balancing act that I mentioned earlier is really complicated and you have to align more with that many people. But the interaction report that you guys helped me develop was really helpful to see where we have over saturation and under saturation. And then we can dig in and who do we need to have discussions with across the university? So that we can get that under control and not be either bombarding students with too many messages or sending too few messages? And it was all connecting those data views to be able to surface that report. And that article you wrote was really impactful for us for being able to pull something like that together.

Anthony Lamot: That’s great, Becky. Thank you for the call. I will make sure that we share the URL once we upload this video too, so those listeners can find it and we can share as a follow. Up. Yeah, in general, we were talking at the very start of a conversation about right message, right time and there’s so much focus on the personalization and segmentation of campaigns and it’s super important, right? I’m not advocating at otherwise, but even figuring out the right timing of the message can be. So critical timing is everything. And we’ve also seen customers that start to experiment with optimizing their frequency and sometimes to their own surprise, I find out they can actually push a little bit harder than I thought like maybe they thought before three emails per week is, you know, that feels good. But when they look at the data, they can find that sometimes I can send a whole lot more always, but sometimes… so great. Love it. Just another check for our audience. I’m going to launch another poll here since we’ve been talking about some of the technicalities, quick check. To what extent? Are you already using Salesforce Marketing Cloud, full technical capabilities. It sounds like Alina is already using quite a bit of them. Let’s see what our audience is doing. I will give you that another second. And meanwhile we’re getting some other call outs in the chat too from the attendees about great tactics. Amy is saying that really is great. Once again, if you have any questions, for the panelists, please share them and thank you for applying to the poll. Meanwhile I’m gonna end this poll and just share the results on the screen. And as you can see most people again a quite modest audience moderately. So it’s good to see people are adopting quite a bit of stuff. There are a few people who are not at all adopting the capabilities. So, I hope today, after today, you’ll be inspired to make the most of this quite incredible platform and offers so many capabilities with that set, stop sharing the poll and we’re gonna go back to some questions. I have another follow up question for you regarding this, Paul, could you hear some key technical aspects or features of the platform that have proved particularly valuable for your initiatives? And you’ve already covered at a high level some of those capabilities earlier, but we’d love to hear some of the key technical aspects?

Alina Morgade: No, I think there is something that we probably take for granted when it comes to Marketing Cloud but it’s been very helpful and it is the way business unit works. This is a gave us so much flexibility to accommodate only one instance of Marketing Cloud to a lot of different business needs just because it allows you to kind of keep your data private to keep like different workspaces for each group. We’re trying to use Marketing Cloud as an enterprise tool. So that means that a lot of different groups across the university are going to be using it. And that means that they will have different data needs. They will have different business needs. And you have to accommodate this to all those needs. And business units have been really great to help us with that because you can actually like decide what set of data business unit will have access to if someone have like sensitive emails or information, they didn’t really need to share that with other people. These are groups across university and at the same time it actually foster collaboration which is great because something that I have seen is that our departments or groups are actually sharing data extensions or templates and it allows them to easily collaborate, with each other. And that’s amazing. So, yes, that’s one of the features would highlight even when it’s a one that we assume when we use Marketing Cloud. And actually this select it’s been great. I think that for me as an admin, it’s like before and after we do have a lot of skill sets in our users and all of them need to have autonomy and to be selfsufficient when create segments and data tensions. I mean, last time I would need to be creating data tensions for all of them because they don’t really know how to use sequel to create the data tensions. But with this select, they can achieve that themselves, they can even create automations, will strike and drop. And that’s been amazing. So, yeah, those are some of the ones that I would highlight.

Anthony Lamot: That’s it’s actually interesting because this kind of admin setup is what you would also expect from an enterprise scale platform. And I can imagine that someone, their own environments have multiple users and a certain level of complexity. Could you, could you share a little bit more about how you set up your business units, use our access permissions?

Alina Morgade: Yes. Well, we do have a multi R set up in marketing cloud that means that some of our business unit are directly connected to Salesforce. But we do have another set of business unit that gets the data through the parent business unit. So that kind of serve as a distribution, that kind of distribute all the data for those different groups that doesn’t really need full access. And we just take all the data to that parent business unit. And then we distribute that into different segments and groups based on each need. So that’s kind of how we set it up. But we do have other groups that do need access to Salesforce because they even do games that automatically trigger with Salesforce event, and data is they will have kind of all you can need like everything that they need that will get it from the CRM.

Anthony Lamot: It’s interesting. And I, so what I’m hearing is some business units taking data from sales for CRM, but from there, we might push it through to some child business units. I’m guessing that through shared folders.

Alina Morgade: Yeah. Through chileah, that’s exactly how it works. So we have all other nations running and departing be, and that’s take the data extension into different share folders that’s how we say, okay, this share folder, is it’s going to feature only with the alumni business unit or only it’s a university relations business units? That kind of how we limit the access to the different data extensions. And I think that in the future, we will probably have our instance connected to more than one Salesforce or so we’ll get there some time.

Anthony Lamot: That’s great. You also said something interesting about segments but I think you kind of already answered the question I was going to ask. So how did you segment the data across business units? But it sounds like this is split between things like alumni students. Is that right?

Alina Morgade: Yes, we like for example, we have an alumni business unit, so they will have access to our constituent information that just kind of how it’s divided. And then we have, the university relations business unit that mostly have access to, I don’t know like students and employees information, or like we have a business unit for a student and campus life which is mostly students in each of. So that business unit would have access only to a student data and not to all student data. So only the data that they actually need for the communications.

Anthony Lamot: Yeah, makes all sense. To me. A question here for Becky. I’m kind of curious though when you hear us speak of us about admins in permissions, slicing and dicing of data depending on audience, what are your thoughts on that? And, and do you guys have a different approach to that? Are there some similarities?

Becky Crosetto: Yeah, no, I think some similarities I think for us and when I think about it, just segmentation is key like thinking through, you know, for the message that you have, who’s the population that you really want to target, and really sending relevant messaging to those students. DESelect has been really helpful for us. I love segmentation DESelect. And it just makes things easy. All of our journeys are segmented through DESelect data extensions and then we save certain segments that we continue to hit regularly and DESelect. So all you have to do is check over the filter sets run and your population is ready. So it saves us like tons of time and efficiency. But, you know just, I would say the key thing there really is like making sure that messaging is relevant to the student that you’re trying to reach. And segmenting is so important because if you don’t do the segmentation right? And the messages and relevant to your audiences, they’re just gonna TUNE you out. And then you’ve got a whole another issue.”

Anthony Lamot: Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, I think we’ve always seen the importance of organizing your Marketing Cloud the right way, having good governance in place. And I’ve even seen in my consulting career before it sometimes starts with silly things like folder structure, and naming conventions is nice for us to be able to also play a role in helping organize and structure the environments of our customers because it makes a big difference, in marketing operations. Great. Well, my next question is again for both of you and it has to do with a lot of the things we’ve already touched upon. An overarching theme that I’ve noticed with customers is the difficulty the challenge in finding that balance between automation and personalization. And let’s maybe start with you, Becky, what have you found to be helpful to strike that balance between the two between automation and personalization?

Becky Crosetto: I feel like a broken record. I’m gonna say students centricity and putting ourselves in, students choose and thinking about what’s the message that I need to send to them. You know, what type of feedback do I need back from them? What type of action am I asking them to take? And then, you know, thinking about your communications tool box. You know, you’ve got phone e-mail SMS, all of these different channels that you can use to outreach to the student. I think it’s just depending on what’s the message and then what type of conversation do we need to have with them to figure out what’s that right? Multi channel mix? And I think if you can do that, then you can find a way to make automation and personalization work together and in harmony so that it drives efficiency internally. So, for example, like if we know that we’re asking the student to do something that’s a little bit complicated and really they need to have a conversation with the student facing team, then we, and let’s say we have like a very large list but we only have a certain number of staff internally. We might use that embedded survey, ask a question, get that, you know, 20,000 student population to raise their hand for those that are interested, and then trigger a call follow up from our limited resources of, you know, that student facing team to call those students who basically raise their hand and said, I’m interested. And then we’re driving impact too, and kind of driving ROI in our best efforts… internally to drive results too.

Anthony Lamot: That’s great. I think the biggest takeaway there maybe for our audience, at least mine would be… the finest automation versus personalization trade-off balance based on feedback loops. And I think that’s interesting because I believe many people, many Salesforce customers who just start out with Marketing Cloud, they may be tempted to do these like very, you know, extensive exercises and kind of build castles in the sky and it’s okay to sit together, do a workshop, think about what the big picture should look like critical even but without actual data and usage and testing. I think it can be a bit of vain exercise too.

Becky Crosetto: Yeah, that makes sense.

Anthony Lamot: You said something interesting too about… adjusting the channels you’re using. You mentioned a text message and e-mail maybe also push. So what’s the link there between personalization? How you go about that? And maybe you can have an example, I don’t know.

Becky Crosetto: So, I think today’s consumers like they’re just, they’re busy, right? I mean, a lot of our students are working adults, so, and some of them are balancing working family and school. And today’s society I think is used to, you know, they’ve got their mobile devices and they’re just constantly busy and they’re getting bombarded from every angle from us is their university of school, but also retailers and kids, family life, balancing a job and so forth. So, I think, we do a lot of testing on what that multi, right, multi channel mix is. And we also recognize that there’s not gonna be a it everyone’s solution. Everybody is different. And so like we’re collecting students preferred channel and some people might prefer to get a phone call and have that conversation with their success coach, others might prefer text messaging and they don’t have time to talk. It just seems to be like quick and easy and, you know, texting, it might be a great solution for them. So we’re trying to collect the right data so that we can figure out what is that right mix for that individual student. And that’s part of I guess the balancing the automation and the personalization, like you can make it work together and you can optimize and you can drive efficiency internally. You just have to collect the right data and leverage it the right way.

Anthony Lamot: That’s great. Thank you for sharing that. Alina, same question for you. You already spoke about automation, but how about balancing it with personalization?

Alina Morgade: Yeah, I think that I’m kind of on the same page then Becky, I think that you certainly want to use automation so you can streamline your business processes, but you also want to deliver great experiences, but those can actually work together. I don’t, I don’t think that because you’re using automation, you could not deliver a customer experience. You could do both. Maybe for a customer support. There are areas where you really need the human touch, but there are a lot of different ways you could certainly automate and also use the data that you have about, your users to deliver customer experiences. I think it’s essential to have a good bit of information that our your customer because that will give you more options on how to customize to your communications. And if you have let’s say like life cycles, it’s very important to have your data fresh because you don’t want someone to start journey. Let’s take that you are like promoting a fundraising and, or something like that. And it takes like about a month or so. So. It’s like a month. And, if it’s been two weeks, you don’t want to keep sending communications, to someone who already sign up. So you really want to have your data fresh. And you want to know like when people sign up if they actually already donated, so that you can kind of customize the automation and customize the different paths for all those users based on the data that you have. And because they testing, just because you created a journey, it doesn’t mean that is going to work forever. Behavior changes over time. So you have to be on top of that and be testing just to adjust it based on what’s happening.

Anthony Lamot: That, so I hear customizing different pathways and keep working over time because behavior can change. I think that’s all very insightful as we’re starting to get closer to some clothing pots, you know, for fellow administrators in the audience, what advice would you give when it comes to effectively managing and optimizing SFMC?

Alina Morgade: Yeah. Well, it was higher education. I have found something that’s different that Marketing Cloud is used not always to send marketing e-mail which come very naturally with Marketing Cloud, but also to send transactional communications. And in the case of the university, that means communications that are essential for university operations like public safety announcements or president messages. Those sometimes goes out of Marketing Cloud. And in those cases we don’t really care about conversions. What we really need is, that e-mail to be delivered and to be in front of our users. And for those cases, I have found really helpful to have a close collaboration with internal e-mail team on your organization because they certainly help with applying any necessary rules to have those emails delivered to your internal e-mail addresses at the university. And you need to be constantly kind of updating your e-mail headers. So you don’t miss anything that could help, to get those emails delivered especially when it comes to internal e-mail addresses at the university. And something else that I would recommend to do like the best practice is that we do keep a testing environment and we use a business unit as a testing environment for any admin. I know that make cloud doesn’t have like a native sandbox environment that you could leverage, but we do use a separate business unit for that. And it’s been very helpful. Like let’s say, I a, I, we have had users I wanted to test like approval workflows that’s something that will break the way your business unit work. And you really want to make sure that they test it and they feel comfortable using it before you actually move that to a production business unit that can actually affect actual campaigns and sense. So we do that. We use it for custom development. It’s very helpful. So that’s in a recommendation. And lastly just stay connected is try, to be up today with the latest release, trying to get a good network, of people who are really facing the same challenges as you. That’s been very helpful for me in my personal experience.

Anthony Lamot: That’s a ton of great advice. And I love how you ended, will stay connected, I hope. And I think to this call will certainly find some great advice in there. Becky. Do you also have some closing thoughts for us? Like in your role? How do you measure the impact of communication strategies on student engagement? And, and of course, how has SFMC contributed to that?

Becky Crosetto: Sure. Yeah. I mean, I think each campaign has its own goals, right? And they’re all a little bit different, but ultimately, we want students to have a good experience. We want them to be successful and we want them to meet their goals, right? So if we have a education progression campaign, the goal of that campaign just to get current students finishing up their current degree to consider what their next step is with the GC. So if they’re finishing up in the undergrad, talking to them about graduate opportunities. So ultimately, we’re trying to drive continued education and that’s obviously measured by applications into the next level program. But some kind of leading metrics and KPIs that we look at are, is the messaging strategy resonating with them. So looking at open rates, click through rates, call connect rates. And I think he mentioned is key there like you don’t launch a journey and then it’s done. There is an element of journey management that’s not only like keeping the content fresh but, you know, looking at the overall strategy and is it doing what you wanted to do? Is it really driving the results that you want? And that’s you know, that’s a big task. So I think just continuous, you know, review of your campaigns and is it delivering the results that you want? And then just thinking outside the box? And, and also like Alina mentioned, and you mentioned Anthony connection is key like you can learn so many great ideas. I just heard Alina say a bunch of things that I wanna go try to just joining webinars like this and connecting with peers, you know, outside of your university. I think you can learn a lot of, a lot of things even outside of the higher end industry that you can just think about differently and creatively apply to your strategies.

Anthony Lamot: I love it. Thank you for sharing that, Becky. And with connection being so key, I’m going to just quickly share my screen, just a bit of a placeholder slide here while we open the floor for some Q and a because we do have time for a question or two. So I’ll give the audience a second if anyone has some questions. So here’s, a question. I think this is for Becky. You spoke earlier about student outreach. Can you tell a bit more about the collaboration in for that campaign with other departments?

Becky Crosetto: Yeah, we partner with people all across the university. So, for instance, if we have a financial aid type campaign, I look at my peers over in the financial aid department is the content experts. And my team, you know, is really good that the messaging and engagement and how do we do creative things with our channels to really drive results? But ultimately, it starts with that conversation with the content experts with that financial team to talk about, you know, what message do we need to send? What do we need the student to do? And then we overlay, you know, our voice and tone and sentiment on top of that, and then try to get creative about, you know, how do we drive that action? But we have so many partners across the university and it’s really key to have those right conversations with the right people internally so that you can drive impact with your campaigns.

Anthony Lamot: Kind of imagine just tying it back to something I said at the very start that the campaign planning part here plays a crucial role as well. I have a hunch we…

Becky Crosetto: You can’t do that alone. I mean, you need a partner with several people across the university that really get it, right?

Anthony Lamot: Yeah, for sure. Especially for such tailored campaigns where you’re literally doing student outreach, you need to work together with maybe a counselor, or teachers. There’s just no way around it, right? To be effective… as a question here for Alina too. It’s actually about e-mail Deliverability. Are there certain things you found useful for increasing e-mail Deliverability? Working with bounces and subscribe those kind of things?

Alina Morgade: Yeah. Well, we do have some automations in place to auto suppress bounces and that have helped us a lot with bounce management and also a standard reputation because we have experienced a high amount of bounces in the past and by excluding those who are permanent bounces, that, you know, that those are not deliverable anymore, we’ve been able, to actually clean up our leads, and reduce the amount of bounces and increase our standard reputation. So, I think that some sort of auto suppression leads for bounces something that have worked for us very well in that sense. We also, as I said, we work closely with our e-mail team when it comes to deliver our messages to the university e-mail addresses that will help us, to set up rules on the domain side of things in the university to make sure that emails are delivered. And so, yeah, those are kind of some recommendations I could give you like keep working on maybe out season leads, keep monitoring that all the time and yes, work closely with your e-mail team.

Anthony Lamot: Right. Great. Thank you for sharing that. Meanwhile, we have another question this time. It’s from Amy. How well does it work to have multiple people sending emails? We have agents… and that would like that. But I’m not sure I get the rest of the question but I’ll just that this way, how well does it work to have multiple people sending emails? I think this is a question for both of you.

Alina Morgade: Yeah, I think that in Marketing Cloud, we have that global calendar where you can see e-mail it going out from all of the different business units. So if you are concerned about like separation or something like that, you can probably look at that calendar and maybe you can have a quick overview of what’s going on the entire organization. And we also for separation, we also use, this automation that I mentioned earlier where we can see like how many emails or if someone have received emails in the last week, and we can kind of check engagement across different business unit because that automation will look at the enterprise level is not focus only one business unit, so that’s kind of a way to know that. But yeah, for future e-mail campaigns, I would look at, we would leverage that global calendar that we have in marketing class so you can see if something is scheduled from other groups in the future.

Anthony Lamot: Okay. I see, Alina answered, okay, that’s great. I don’t know Becky if you will still add anything to Alina’s answer?

Becky Crosetto: Yeah, no, I definitely think it’s a challenge and we have several tactics internally to keep everyone aligned. We have internal alignment meetings and the internal calendar of Marketing Cloud is great, but we find that for forward looking, it doesn’t capture everything. So we use a shared outlook calendar which helps keep the teams that can all send mass communication aligned. But it is a challenge and you have to have, you know, strong business relationships with those that have access to be able to truly do it, right?

Anthony Lamot: Yeah, that makes sense. And I think with that, we have answered all the questions for today. Really appreciate your time, Melina, Becky, it’s been great having this fireside chat with both of you. Thank you for being on today’s webinar. Thanks a lot.

Alina Morgade: Happy to be here.

Anthony Lamot: And thanks for everyone attending. Have, a great day. Everybody. Bye bye.

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