Inheriting a Marketo Instance: What's next?

So much of what I encounter when first logging into an existing instance, is the obvious outcome of hopelessness. Anyone who’s spent a decent amount of time in Marketo’s Marketing Activities area knows there are about five ways to accomplish any one task, and guardrails aren’t there for newbies to choose which asset or workflow is best for their tactic. Without templates, tokens, processes, and SLAs defined, one’s instance quickly enters the realm of chaos. Measurement can be allusive, process is convoluted at best, and programs are pushed out last minute with the objective of “just make it work”. I’m never surprised when meet folks who are in some state of distress, perhaps near the brink of giving up. Marketo can be a friend or foe, and a deep understanding (and execution) of its backbone is key to properly harnessing its ability to automate at scale. I utterly love seeing the “Ah-ha!”s when I’ve transformed an area of a client’s day-to-day.

One of the first steps I take when modifying an instance, is to complete an audit. Do they have the proper channels set up with the success (or successes) aligned to their marketing tactics? Can we simplify the number of channels by incorporating strategic tags? Can I build a Venn diagram over other platforms, such as Google Analytics so measurement aligns across instances? Are templates built with nestled tokens for simple cloning? Are they incorporating standard features such as Segments and Dynamic Content when appropriate? Are they using their Revenue Cycle Model and is it aligned to mirror their Sales Demand Funnel? Do they have lead scoring dimensions looking at pain and fit...are their scoring campaigns using tokens and are they located in one area for easy updating? Are nurture campaigns aligned to the stage of the buying cycle and do they have personas in use? Do they have a Content Engine running and is it listening appropriately for program attribution? Are triggers set up to map prospects into engagement programs with the proper cadence?

Although this is just the surface of a full audit, some or all of these areas are on the agenda of items to tackle first. At this point, we usually identify the opportunities that have the greatest immediate impact to the team, and roll up our sleeves. Projects like this, rearchitecting an instance takes some hard work—yes, from me—but also the project owners along the way. The team has to collectively agree on their processes, timelines, definitions, etc., for me to build the infrastructure to automate and measure. Not to worry, I love helping folks through this process (in fact, we usually have a fair amount of fun). It’s an investment of the team’s time, but one with the magic of compounding interest.

Albert Einstein is said to have once described compounding interest as “the eighth wonder of the world”.

“He who understands it, earns it; he who doesn't, pays it.”

As this is my first blog post, I haven’t yet created linked posts which will dive deep into some of the topics I covered above. Check back to go in-depth, or subscribe to my blog. Thanks for stoping by! 😎