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Imagine if your favorite author would release a new book every few months. Great, right? However, what if they also kept releasing new editions of their existing works, with significant alterations – and even changed their titles? Tricky for a fan to stay on top of it all – and that’s what it can feel like when you’re keeping up with the ever-evolving world of Salesforce®. So, to help you get up to speed with the technology, this article will provide an update of some recent, important Salesforce Marketing Cloud news. You’ll find out what Marketing Cloud Account Engagement is, as well as some other exciting developments. Let’s start off with the aforementioned.
What is Marketing Cloud Account Engagement?
Marketing Cloud Account Engagement (MCAE) is actually an old friend that’s now going by another name. MCAE is Pardot, rebranded by Salesforce. The trusty marketing automation solution gains its new title as part of an initiative called “MC Easy”, which may sound like a member of an 80s hip-hop group but actually stands for Marketing Cloud Easy, a strategy aimed at making the entire Marketing Cloud suite more consistently-named and easily understandable. The move also aims at bringing together the traditionally business-to-consumer (B2C) customers of Salesforce Marketing Cloud with the business-to-business (B2B) customers of Pardot. Now, both are unified under one Marketing Cloud umbrella.
This is all great from a consistency-of-branding point of view, but it may take some getting used to for a Salesforce customer. They will now have to take some more care when it comes to their hiring and support needs. Do they need a Marketing Cloud specialist or a Marketing Cloud Account Engagement expert? Is a particular support ticket concerned with MC or MCAE? These two little extra words in the equation now have the potential to cause mixups if you’re not careful – but we’re always here to help you.
There’s another thing worth mentioning here: as part of this change, the Pardot Classic app will be retired on October 17th, 2022. Access has already been removed for new and current Pardot customers who haven’t accessed the app between July 14th and September 14th, 2021. So, now all that remains is for those still using the app to migrate to an alternative. The Pardot Lightning app is recommended by Salesforce, although the standalone Pardot app is also still available to all Salesforce customers. The former gives access to all the latest features – which is why Salesforce encourages choosing it – while the latter provides the Pardot Classic interface and functionality. Once again, if you need some advice or assistance with making the move, reach out to us.
New Account Engagement app for Slack
Along with a raft of other new synergies between Salesforce and Slack, Salesforce has unveiled the Account Engagement App for Slack. With the new app, when a prospect makes an interaction with a Marketing Cloud Account Engagement (Pardot) asset, you can receive a notification via a Slack channel. That could be a contact form, a request for a demo – whatever it is, your sales team will be alerted right away, and be able to coordinate their response right there in Slack. This is really useful functionality for keeping your sales team up-to-date via the same digital space they use to collaborate and communicate.
These notifications are enabled using “completion actions”, which can be set up on MCAE forms, form handlers, files, custom redirects and more. To get started, the app needs to first be installed, then enabled and finally the Slack connector set up by your Salesforce administrator. If this new enhancement sounds like something that would bring value to your own organization, but you’re not sure about how to start using it – or how to make the most of it – then we’ll be glad to assist you.
Social Studio is being retired for good
The Salesforce universe doesn’t feature departures quite as shocking to its community as those in George R.R. Martin’s best-selling Game of Thrones. However, sometimes our favorite “characters” do have to face the final curtain, and in this case Social Studio will be the one bowing out.
This product within Marketing Cloud will no longer be available for renewal after August 1st, 2022. However, it will be accessible until the end of your contract date or November 18th, 2024, whichever comes first. This last date may change, but at the time of writing this article, it’s Salesforce’s word on the matter. It will also be Social Studio’s “end of life” date, meaning that as well as access being ended, associated customer data will be deleted – so if you need assistance with extracting your data, just get in touch with us.
If you’re wondering what to replace Social Studio with, there’s another piece of news from back in March 2022 that may interest you. Salesforce has partnered with Sprout Social to provide integration with core solutions including Sales Cloud, Service Cloud and Slack. This enables customers to make the most of Sprout’s industry-leading social media suite. I’m eager to see what this partnership will bring in the future and to help any of our customers who want to adopt Sprout as a replacement for Social Studio.
Here to guide you through these and future changes
Looking to implement Marketing Cloud or any of the functionality we’ve discussed here, or already have but need them to work more effectively? Our award-winning Salesforce consulting services can help you identify the right route for your organization.
If you’re a growing startup, small business or nonprofit, a Marketing Cloud QuickStart implementation (see our handy guide) may be the perfect way to get started. Our dedicated QuickStart practice can get such organizations up and running in as little as four weeks, with total focus on cost-effectiveness, your needs and your goals. We also offer Managed Services to ensure your Salesforce platform keeps up with any future changes and makes the most of every development.
As I discussed earlier, when changes occur in Marketing Cloud and elsewhere, it’s easy for customers to miss them – and to miss opportunities they offer to increase return on investment. At VRP, we place great importance in staying up-to-date with the very latest developments so we can help our clients make the most of them. Get in touch today and we’ll help to make sure none of them pass you by.
Marketing Cloud Practice Director
About the Author
Anastasiya has led VRP’s Marketing Cloud activities since 2017. As an experienced Marketing Cloud and Pardot architect, she has extensive expertise in data management, analytics development and automation process configuration, among other areas. Anastasiya is dedicated to constantly increasing VRP Consulting’s Marketing Cloud capabilities so we can deliver the utmost value and innovation to our clients.