Oracle Eloqua’s contact record is the hub of the database. It allows marketers to store hundreds of data points on each individual and track that individual’s activity at every stage of the lead lifecycle.
With its role at the center of marketing automation, the contact table isn’t designed to support multiple data sets. That’s where custom data objects, or CDOs, can step in, acting as spokes to tie the contact to various subsets of information. Using a CDO to extend the contact table can establish a trail of that person’s activities, maintain subscription history, automate product communications, manage campaign routing, and precisely assign lead scores.
Activity History Reporting
When an Oracle Eloqua contact becomes a marketing-qualified lead, a custom object can preserve the lead source, lead score, and product of interest. Marketers can leverage this data to further inform lead scoring, measure campaign success, identify high-impact tactics, and report on the marketing-to-sales handoff.
This is especially important if your team uses a “point of interest” lead model, where one individual can become a CRM lead multiple times. In each case, marketers capture the campaign that was a tipping point in the sales cycle, building insight on the efforts that bring customers back time and again.
Subscription Management and Data Compliance
Modern digital marketing offers myriad opportunities to engage audiences, but each type of outreach has regulations that must be followed – often regulations that vary depending on your prospect’s location. Violating these regulations, or just ignoring your contacts’ requests, can cost your organization, both in revenue and reputation.
Oracle Eloqua’s native functionality allows marketers to track contact preferences via email groups, and to opt contacts out of all communications. In theory, collecting and complying with a prospect’s preferences is enough to keep marketers on the right side of regulations. But with guidelines becoming more complex, it might be prudent to also track when and how those preferences were gathered.
For example, some laws differentiate between an “implicit” marketing opt-in – someone attended a tradeshow and gave blanket permission to the event host – and an “explicit” opt-in – someone clicked through an email and submitted a form declaring that they allow your organization to market to them.
A CDO can capture the date and method of implicit and explicit opt-ins, to ensure you are complying with standards on these different permission methods. It also can help identify contact sources for future database maintenance, such as a third-party list that must be purged after a certain period of time. Marketers carry an ever-increasing compliance burden when it comes to personal data, so it makes sense to leverage CDOs to carry some of the load.
These days, marketing doesn’t stop when a lead is handed off to sales, or even when that person makes a purchase. Onboarding, retention and reminder campaigns help your audience keep in touch, and CDOs can keep that outreach running without manual input.
One example is with a product purchase or trial. Storing product information, the purchase date, and the expiration or renewal date turns a CDO into a segmentation engine. Trial users will appreciate the follow-up with tips to best use your product, and a renewal notification can save the hassle of reactivating a lapsed subscription.
If your marketing efforts leverage third-party data, such as webinar attendance, social media clicks, or video views, a custom object is the perfect place to store it. CDOs can manage a level of detail about specific activities that isn’t practical on a contact itself. The introduction of Program Canvas has broadened the possibilities to use these custom objects as drivers of both internal programs and external campaigns.
With that data, an always-on program can parse those records and automatically route them for follow-up. For example, Program Canvas can evaluate a custom object for a social media click to see the topic of the post and check whether the contact mapped to that record has watched a video on the same product. If so, Oracle Eloqua can direct the contact to a campaign offering a data sheet for the product – delivering relevant, timely information without manual input.
To get a complete view of contact engagement, marketers must look beyond online behavior. Trade shows, product demonstrations, and phone conversations all indicate a high level of interest – but none of them is visible to Oracle Eloqua directly.
Preserving these actions as custom objects enables their use in Oracle Eloqua’s lead scoring engine, boosting the rating of an individual whose activity might otherwise go unnoticed. Such a CDO also allows Oracle Eloqua to automatically receive and send data from CRM, qualification teams, and event sponsors. This ensures that offline engagement is recognized quickly and eliminates the need for list uploads.
These are only some of the ways that custom objects can expand the database hub of the contact record. We’re always excited to leverage Oracle Eloqua’s tools and get things rolling with new marketing possibilities. Give us a shout to discuss how you can streamline operations with CDOs, or just geek out with us over marketing technology!