What a Salesforce.com Campaign Is and Is Not

Campaigns, Campaigns 101, Marketing in Salesforce


In my previous post, What is a Salesforce.com Campaign?, I ended with the comment:

When implemented correctly, Campaigns are an excellent tool to track ROI and KPIs, optimize efforts, record marketing activity and provide accountability and visibility to the rest of the company.

However, this is not the full story.  It is easy to fall into common traps that increase marketing pain and complexity, including too much tracking, disconnection from sales and failure to manage priorities.

While “marketing tactic” is a great description of a Salesforce Campaign, let’s now examine what a Salesforce Campaign is and is not.

Salesforce Campaigns are great for:

  • Measuring: ROI correlated to Primary Campaign Source in related Opportunities
  • Collaboration: Chatter feed tracking and shared Campaign Calendar

    Generally speaking, Salesforce Campaigns are not optimized to handle:
  • Automation: Complex multi-triggering events
  • Project Management: Tracking of pre-production or follow-up activities
  • Planning: Scheduling and calendaring of campaigns

While Salesforce lays an excellent foundation with the Campaigns feature, the list of things that the feature doesn’t do is pretty daunting. Luckily, Salesforce has cultivated an excellent community of partners in the AppExchange. These partners offer applications that enhance marketing-campaign execution and fill in some of the gaps.  Partners like MarketoHubspotiContact, and, of course, Bracket Labs all provide tools (like our Campaign Calendar) that add varying levels of functionality to the Salesforce Campaigns feature. Implementing some or all of these tools can help you automate and execute portions of your Salesforce Campaigns and integrate the resulting data into Salesforce. 

The Campaign Calendar app adds much-needed visualization and management of Campaign data.

Now that we’ve established a definition of Salesforce Campaigns, where do you begin on either implementing or fine tuning your deployment? Keep these three rules of thumb in mind:

  1. Start simple.  Grow organically.  Focus on embedding closed-loop tracking with your sales process.
  2. Evaluate the tools, but choose the one that puts you on the simplest path to solve your major pain.  Solve it, adopt it and then tackle your next hurdle.
  3. Focus on visibility and collaboration, providing visibility on ROI to the rest of the company.

Future blog posts in this series will cover simple and practical tips for implementing or fine-tuning campaigns, including topics such as:

  • Naming Convention
  • Campaign Hierarchy
  • Closing The Loop
  • Lead Source vs. Campaign Source
  • Web Forms
  • Member Status Values
  • Marketing Automation
  • List Views
  • Company Visibility
  • Marketing Team Collaboration
  • When you Need More
  • Measuring ROI
  • Maintenance