How to increase the effectiveness of your marketing efforts and customer journeys with Salesforce

Annabel Fay
4 min readMar 5, 2021

(Originally published at

Marketing is tough. When speaking to marketing professionals around our network, we find a number of challenges, a lot of which surround data and gaining true visibility of attribution and ROI. Poorly linked systems mean it’s difficult to determine lead source or customer interactions- resulting in remarketing to the same people, and it’s a difficult balance to get the tone right and drive demand.

We find many of the best marketers are transformation agents, bringing along the whole company with their ability to bring everything back to the customer. Today’s marketers, according to Salesforce’s 6th ‘State of Marketing’ report, are responsible for connecting with customers who say the experience of the brand is just as important as the product or service it provides. But how do you provide that differentiated experience, at scale?

A single view of the customer

The first step is to connect and unify all of your marketing data across your marketing stack. As the amount of available data has grown, so has the number of platforms to manage it. Salesforce say marketers now use an average of six data management tools, compared with three in 2018- making data unification and activation among marketers’ top five challenges.

Your customers want seamless experiences across every touchpoint where they engage with your brand. But too often, they’ll get one experience in an email, a different one on mobile, and yet another on a website. Service interactions feel different than commerce, which feels different than marketing. Viewed separately, each experience might be okay, but moving between them feels disjointed. It can seem like you’re interacting with different companies.

Customer Lifetime Value

According to McKinsey, customer lifetime value was established in the 1980s as a framework to forecast the net profit attributable to a customer over the entirety of their relationship with a company. For many companies, for all the effort that goes into acquiring a customer, they do not know how valuable that customer will be once they’re won. Not all customers are created equal, and we hear a lot from our customers that without a single, connected view between marketing and sales it’s hard to get true ROI. Marketing’s time would be better spent winning customers who are less likely to attrit, and have a higher value over the course of the relationship. Harnessing the power of Salesforce correctly, you can understand which are your most profitable customers, and create custom reports to track spend and revenue, by customer, from first click all the way to invoice.

Making the most of CRM

When data originates from your CRM, you’re taking advantage of your customer-centric source of truth. This means you can be confident that the customer information driving your experiences is the same across all digital touchpoints. And a CRM-based view of the customer means their information and preferences will follow wherever they engage with your brand.

Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud solution integrates and pulls from your Salesforce CRM as it’s base layer, and the CRM is your single record of truth across marketing, sales and service users. By using tools such as journey mapping, you can make the most of every interaction and harness all of your customer data from any source based on attributes, browsing behaviors, and purchase history to build personalised messaging.

We commonly see that Marketing Cloud hasn’t been connected properly with the CRM, or rolled out correctly alongside the sales strategy. If Marketing Cloud or Pardot are only used for marketing purposes, instead of as part of a holistic customer journey, huge amounts of insight can be lost, which can lead to lost revenue.

Marketing, supercharged with AI

For some of our customers, they’ve got the basics right and have interlinked marketing and sales with a single view of the customer. We can help them level up with artificial intelligence to drive growth even further.

You’ve likely heard that artificial intelligence (AI) is a powerful technology packed with all kinds of potential to enhance your marketing initiatives. You may also be a little anxious about starting to use it, as many marketers are. That’s okay — new technologies are often exciting, but they can also be a bit nerve-wracking.

You can build experiments with AI into your roadmap- for example, Salesforce Marketing Cloud can automatically send emails to individual customers at times when they are most likely to open them. AI can also help you get to know your customers better by combining demographic and behavioural data analyses with each customer’s history — allowing you to make tailored content recommendations.

Data-driven decisions

The number one power of combining everything on Salesforce is having real visibility of campaign performance and ROI. When Salesforce bought Datorama in 2018 they expanded data integration, intelligence and analytics, enabling marketers to unlock insights across Salesforce data and the myriad of technologies used in today’s marketing and consumer engagement ecosystem.

Here’s an example: through Social Studio, you gain access to awareness and consideration data — such as social sentiment, listening data, keywords, and share of voice. Then, using Datorama, you can combine it with data from other channels — such as display, search, and email — to gain a full view of your audience and your competitors.

Marketers expect the next 10 years to bring even greater impacts from new technologies and societal developments. These include online access to more of the global population, the implementation of 5G networks, and virtual reality becoming mainstream. If you’ve invested in Salesforce- Marketing Cloud or otherwise- and you’re not sure if you’re getting the best return on your investment, get in touch with us and we can help you get the foundations right and unlock revenue growth.