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Twin Cities Oracle Marketing Cloud User GroupTwin Cities-based Oracle Marketing Cloud customers met at the Relationship One Minneapolis office this week for the bi-monthly user group.

Attendees shared updates and announcements including job opportunities at their respective companies. The user group event continues to be a great opportunity for networking within this tight community. Also discussed were upcoming Oracle Marketing Cloud events including the Modern Marketing Mashup in Minneapolis (we’ll be there!) and the Modern Marketing Experience customer conference in London (we’ll be there, too!).

Carol Mendenhall of Thomson Reuters presented her experience with selecting a solution for optimizing lead capture at events. The Tax and Accounting division at TR does 800+ events annually! Attendees learned how the division’s previous state of anecdotal event attribution will be improved with the roll-out of Relationship One’s Lead Capture App, a free app that submits business card captured data into Eloqua quickly and easily. We look forward to hearing the results, Carol!

Erin Rowles of Relationship One presented tips and tricks for deploying event campaigns in Eloqua. We covered the gamut of executional options including the Campaign Canvas and the Event Module, learning gotchas and inside secrets along the way! Also presented were options for organizing and tracking event attendee data with a demo of External Activities. Activities that are not natively seen by Eloqua (like a contact that attended a demo) can be tracked for use in Eloqua campaign reporting using the External Activities function. In addition, this activity can be passed to CRM as campaign-related data.

The feedback we received on the presenters and content was all positive. We love to hear that! For many, it seemed that the focus on event campaigns was very timely.

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public-sectorA couple of weeks ago, I was catching up with an old friend who works in a completely different field than I do, so I was trying to explain what it is that I actually “do” for my job.

After several minutes of me trying to explain some of the complexities of working with a robust software platform like Oracle Eloqua, I could tell he wasn’t totally getting it. I finally said, “We help companies get the most out of the software marketers use to create business opportunities.” Even though he still has no clue about the nuances of using all the functionality of what’s available with a platform like the Oracle Marketing Cloud, I think that explanation made sense to him. One of our consultants does a good job explaining it here.

He let my description set in for a second and asked, “How do you go from working for the government to consulting with businesses on marketing software?” I went on to explain my meandering career path of working in the government, to the non-profit world, and finally on to marketing for tech companies. My story made sense to him, and we moved on.

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Integration-BlogOracle Eloqua can integrate with nearly any CRM or database. How that happens depends on whether a standard integration option exists as well as the unique requirements for the customer. Relationship One has successfully integrated hundreds of Oracle Eloqua instances with CRMs – from the well-known names to homegrown systems. Oracle Eloqua often calls on us to provide solutions for customers that have complex and custom integration needs. While Microsoft Dynamics CRM (any version) is technically categorized as a standard integration, it does have its quarks to consider.

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query-strings-are-coolQuery string. You may have heard the term before, or perhaps you are new to the concept. For those who are the latter, first things first: what is it?

In a URL, a query string follows a separating character, usually a question mark, with identifying data appearing after.


The “?” identifies when the query strings start. The “src=” and “cmp=” represent the query string parameters. The characters that come after the equals sign, in this case, “Eloqua” and “Welcome,” are the query string values. The “&” represents a break point between the parameter/value pairs.

Query strings can be used on dynamic websites as a means to trigger a query program to recover specific information from a database and populate content on the webpage based on the data provided.

They are also used by website reporting tools like Google Analytics and Omniture for reporting purposes whereby standard or custom query string parameters can be set up with the purpose of tracking specific data about a person’s website visit. Marketers add query strings to URLs used for web-based or email ad campaigns. When visitors click a link with a custom parameter, the unique parameters are tracked within their Google Analytics account so they can identify the campaigns that are most effective in attracting visitors to their content.

With the knowledge of what a query string looks like and common use cases, I’d love to share with you some creative ways that they can be leveraged in Oracle Eloqua.

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Why-You-Need-MA-BlogI will admit it. I am a total marketing geek. I think about new campaign ideas in the middle of the night. I love learning about the latest marketing technology that’s going to revolutionize how we do business. I dig reading articles about the latest marketing tech companies that get bought up or raise a bunch of venture money. I could talk marketing geek speak all day long and with anyone who’s willing to talk to me. It’s one of the many reasons I love working at Relationship One.

With all this love and excitement for marketing geek-ery, it’s easy to forget that not everyone shares my passion. Even some people who work in marketing don’t share my level of enthusiasm. When I talk with fellow marketers who work at an organization that has a very slim marketing technology stack, I find it odd. I can’t fathom how I would do my job without all the amazing technology I have access to. At the core of this is marketing automation. Whether it’s the best enterprise-level tool, Oracle Eloqua, or a lighter weight tool, the modern marketer needs something to serve as the hub for digital marketing activities. If you aren’t using marketing automation now, but are thinking about it, here are some reasons why you should pull the trigger.

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Ask-An-OracleEloqua-Partner-BlogSo you’ve decided to make a big investment in your future marketing success and have chosen Oracle over the competition. First of all, let me say, I think you made an excellent choice. You’ve gone with the industry leader and have chosen the most flexible, powerful, robust solution on the market.

Now what?

First, you will need help with the implementation of the platform to get you set up for success. Once this is complete and you are ready to fly, you may require outside support for executing campaigns or managing your integrations. Down the road, you may look for help with running the platform when you have staff transition and need extra capacity; when you recognize there’s a skills gap on your team and you would rather contract out the work, or you might want to go with a fully managed service option. Whatever the business need is, you will want to make sure you thoroughly vet any potential partner you will hire.

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Chicago User GroupAnother Chicago User Group is officially in the books. Thank you all for who attended, as this was by far our largest (and most active) audience to date.

In addition to general announcements and updates, due to the gap between our quarterly events, we covered, in detail, Oracle Eloqua Release updates for Version 470 and 471, as well as Sales/Apps Versions 2.7-2.9.

Oracle Eloqua’s own Mike MacFarlane, stopped by and presented an updated version of this “Eloqua+: Advanced Tips n’ Tricks” presentation from MME15. This was a definite crowd-pleaser as group got a walkthrough on how to incorporate dynamic content in subject lines, capturing historical lead scores and building a gated form with the progressive profiling cloud component.

Our event wrapped up with a lively group discussion including topics such as Lead Scoring and the Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) to Sales Accepted Lead (SAL) flow.

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lead-nurturing“Batch and blast.”

I still cringe whenever I hear someone say this phrase. Maybe it’s because it brings me back to my marketing intern days when “lick it and stick it” was the story of my life. More likely, however, it’s because the phrase implies such unrealized potential. So many marketers get stuck in the land of one-time sends, event marketing, and newsletters. Although email marketing can be very effective for these campaigns, it’s a small percentage of a marketing automation platform’s capabilities. It’s like buying a Ferrari and only driving it back and forth to the grocery store. Yes, it will get you there, but think of how much more fun you’ll have driving on the autobahn.

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Twin Cities Oracle Marketing Cloud User GroupIt’s been a couple months since the Twin Cities Oracle Marketing Cloud user group has met. We took a brief hiatus with the custom conference, Modern Marketing Experience, being in March but we are back in action!

The addition of a few folks we met at the Modern Marketing MashUp in March and Oracle team members had us at full capacity. We’ll be looking for a new location as the user group grows; a reflection of the thirst for knowledge from the Oracle Marketing Cloud community and the great discussions being had. Speaking of, if you want to review the slides (or check them out for the first time) please do. There is some valuable information that you won’t want to miss.

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Data-HighwayAs Oracle Eloqua users, our jobs require that we wear many hats, from html coders and database managers to email creators and strategic thinkers. Like everyone, I certainly have my favorite hats. I was talking with a client recently who said she just doesn’t like spending time in the integration area of the platform. I could tell she has a solid understanding of integration and can make changes as needed; however, she prefers other roles and wants to leave the integration work to us.

Even if your role is not to maintain your integration, a basic understanding of how it works will make you a stronger and more valuable team member. Understanding the terminology is the place to start.

So grab your integration hat, make sure it fits snugly, and let’s hit the data highway.

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