Salesforce Marketing Cloud Journey Builder

We’ve come across several reviews raving about Salesforce Marketing Cloud and its number one feature – Journey Builder.

And, why the hype?

With 4.7/5 overall peer rating on Gartner, Salesforce Marketing Cloud is every bit as powerful as it sounds and loaded with features that effectively enable reaching out to the subscribers in a highly personalized and customized way. Being a registered Salesforce Consulting Partner, we’ve been using Salesforce Marketing Cloud for our marketing campaigns and promoting our Salesforce service offerings, and, our opinion matches the rest of its worldwide customers.

GIF Source: https://www.salesforce.com/in/products/marketing-cloud/journey-management/

Across all Marketing Cloud products, Journey Builder is undeniably the best product that provides today’s marketer with a platform to map out highly personalized, customized and multichannel one-to-one customer journeys based on their engagement with your brand.

But first, what is a Customer Journey?

On a broader level, a customer journey is a map of how a customer engages with your brand. The map consists of a series of predictive, pre-planned, multichannel steps triggered based on a subscriber’s engagement with your brand. For example, sending a welcome email after a subscriber has registered for your product/service from an email or by visiting the website, or automating the steps for the employee onboarding process.

Using Journey Builder, we’ve designed much more responsive, adaptive and automated customer journeys for our marketing campaigns and webinars than the examples mentioned in the previous statement.

Here, in this two-part blog series, we’ll dig deeper into Salesforce Marketing Cloud Journey Builder and the available components that can be incorporated on a journey canvas to map a customer journey. We’ll talk about the capabilities, use cases and best practices of the Journey Builder in the next part.

Now that we have an idea about the Journey Builder, let us move on to the pre-requisites and the components of the Journey Builder, where we can create multichannel customer journeys.

Pre-requisites:

Certain requirements that need to be fulfilled before getting started with the Journey Builder include:

  • Account Provisioning: Your Marketing cloud account should support Journey Builder and you’ll have to manage access permissions for a user to enable them to view and create journeys using Marketing Cloud Setup. You can assign them custom permissions and roles to limit their access to view only based on the user role.
  • Create an entry source: The most common entry source for a journey is a send-able data extension which is created by either adding or importing contacts.
  • Campaign content: Consists of customer touchpoints like emails, SMS messages or push notifications. Ensure that the emails, whether transactional or commercial, comply with the CAN-SPAM legislation to avoid unwanted litigation.

Next to explore is the Journey Builder dashboard. It looks like:

As evident in the screenshot above, the Journey Builder Dashboard consists of 8 components, they are: –

  • Folders: At the left-hand side of the dashboard, Folders are used to categorize and organize journeys after creating and saving them.
  • Journey: The center pane displays a list of all the journeys available in the folders along with their Status, performance stats, and the Last-Modified date.
  • Analytics: The right-hand side pane displays the analytics about the number of journeys who’ve met their goals and the highest and lowest performing journeys.
  • Search: To find a specific journey by its title and description.
  • Create New Journey: An option to create a new journey from scratch or prebuilt templates.
  • Entry Sources: Contains the entry sources previously used for a journey. The entry sources can be unique or shared among the journeys.
  • Journey History: Requires a ContactID to view a specific contact’s path through a journey or the journey version.
  • Templates: Contains prebuilt, editable journeys templates.

Now that we have an overview of the Journey builder dashboard, we can move our focus to the Journey Canvas. The journey canvas consists of four components: –

  1. Journey Title and Description
  2. The Builder: Consists of Entry Sources and Canvas Activities.
  • Entry Sources: Every journey needs an entry source that can range from a Data Extension, API events, Audiences, CloudPages or Events. Lists cannot be used as an entry source for journeys.
  • Canvas activities: Canvas activities contain a list of customer touchpoints like emails and SMS and the flow control objects to build responsive and adaptive multichannel customer journeys and an option to update contacts into the journey.
  1. Journey Canvas is the main play area where we drag and drop activities in a series of steps based on predictive customer behavior to create a multichannel or a single platform journey.
  2. The Journey Builder toolbar consists of editing buttons along with Settings, Goal, Guidance, Exit Criteria and Create a new version.

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