Salesforce Marketing Cloud – Release Winter 2023

omg-release mkt cloud winter 23


Although we’re not even halfway through autumn and it can feel a bit strange to talk about winter, at this time of year the new Salesforce releases, in this case Winter’23, are always fresh.

  • In Marketing Cloud Engagement the main new features are Interactive Emails, Einstein Artificial Intelligence, Automation Studio and Journey Builder best practices.
  • In Marketing Cloud Account Engagement the focus is on database synchronisation and consent.
  • In Marketing Cloud Intelligence the good news is mainly for the module included in Marketing Cloud: new KPIs and bounce reasons.
  • In MC Personalization we continue to make progress in the hyper-personalisation of interactions.
  • And in Customer Data Platform we are focusing on integration with Analytics and improving identity resolution.

Marketing Cloud Engagement

Warnings on Journey Builder

What is it? With the new MC Release, Journey Builder will warn us with a warning when it detects bad practices in the Journeys configuration.
Why? With the aim of accompanying the marketer in all his tasks, Journey Builder will show warnings with advice to follow in order to maximise the performance of the journet and reduce the risk of having to stop or update it in the near future to increase its performance.
How? If someone gets lost and performs a configuration that MC identifies as a bad practice in Journey Builder, a warning icon will appear as a result of the Journey validation along with an explanation with indications to get back on track with best practices.


Select images and colours with Package Manager

What is it? From now on in Package Manager you can add an optional syntax layer to add an image selector to select which images to include in the package, as well as a colour selector to select the colour of each package.
Why? So you no longer have to wait to deploy the packages to see if the selected images are the ones you really wanted to package, nor do you need to know the HEX colour code to style the package before creating it.
How? These features are included in all editions of MC completely free of charge.

Package Manager already works with Interactive Email

What is it? Package Manager in Marketing Cloud Engagement continues to expand its functionality and also includes the ability to package Interactive Emails, along with all their settings and dependencies.
Why? By adding Interactive Emails to Package Manager packages, MC continues to make it easier for us to automate deployments in different environments.
How? Since the production release of Release Winter ’23, it is now possible to select this type of asset when creating packages.


Processing Openings with Einstein Probabilistic Opens

What is it? The Einstein Probabilistic Opens card from Winter’23 provides information about Salesforce’s processing of email opens.
Why? Because with the latest regulations open rates are not always reliable, Einstein’s Probabilistic Open provides a score based on the probability that the open is real.
How? The score, which is available in the Marketing Cloud thanks to Einstein Probabilistic Operans, gives better data for models that use email open metrics to produce predictions.


Optimise your content with Einstein Content Testing

What is Einstein Content Testing? Einstein Content Testing helps you test images quickly through automated A/B/n testing to ensure you include the images that generate the best response from your audience in your communications.
Why? So you can pre-test before a major mailing or automate the selection of images that get the highest click-through rate.
How? All users who have Einstein activated can use Einstein Content Testing, as no additional activation or configuration steps are required.


Einstein Engagement Frequency in Automation Studio

What is it? And now that we’re talking about Einstein, it’s a good time to celebrate that with the new Marketing Cloud release this winter, it’s now possible to use the Einstein Engagement Frequency functionality in Automation Studio in addition to Journey Builder.
Why is that? To maximise customer engagement with your brand, it is essential to send them the right amount of communications. The Engagement Frequency piece, so popular in Journey Builder, is also coming to Automation Studio so that it can be used in the mass-sends launched from this Marketing Cloud module.
How? Einstein continues to grow its presence in Automation Studio, allowing us to apply artificial intelligence in terms of frequency to mass and batch mailings. Since Winter ’23 in Automation Studio this is as simple as selecting saturation levels and Einstein will do the rest.


New Data Views for monitoring Automation Studio

What is it? Continuing with Automation Studio, there are two new Data Views in Marketing Cloud and they are called AutomationInstance and AutomationActivityInstance. These Data Views will help us monitor the status of our Automations.
Why? With these two new Data Views we will be able to improve the efficiency and success rate of the automations we have running in Marketing Cloud by being able to check their status.
Having this information will be really useful when it comes to identifying Automations failure points, determining the cause of these errors or confirming their correct operation.

Activate Automations from Amazon S3, Azure Blob, and Google Cloud Storage

What is it? Without leaving Automation Studio, from this Winter’23 it is possible to start automations by uploading a file to a customer-managed file location and triggering an API call in MC with the new Trigger startup source in Automation Studio.
Why? Triggering triggers from Amazon S3, Azure Blog and Google Cloud Storage makes it easier for the customer, as the processes associated with delivering files to client-side FTPs are simplified.
How? This functionality is available for all editions of Automation Studio.


Import and Export files from Google Cloud Storage without FTP (beta!)

And without leaving Automation Studio and Google Cloud Storage, from now on it is possible to move data (both encrypted and unencrypted) between Marketing Cloud and Google Cloud Storage.
Why? Transferring directly from Google Cloud can be up to 10 times faster than using Marketing Cloud’s FTP. In addition, it allows you to self-manage folders, permissions and security controls in Azure; encrypt files and compress them; or use an allow-list of IP addresses to connect to the service.
How? Please note that this is currently a beta feature and you need to sign up for it here.

Marketing Cloud Account Engagement

Account Engagement External Actions

What is External Actions? External Actions open the door to many use cases where it is essential to act on Prospects from outside MC Account Engagement (MCAE, fka Pardot). From Engagement Studio you can register Prospects for a webinar, send them an SMS or a survey, or perform any other action on another platform.
Why? In this way, MC Account Engagement opens up the range of possibilities for Marketer and Sales interactions with Prospects, but only with the help of a Developer with knowledge of the MCAE API.
How? External Actions are linked to Marketing App Extensions, which use the Pardot API to connect MCAE with external platforms. And they can be combined with External Activities to record the activities of Prospects in Engagement History in your record.


Bot? Pause in Prospect Activity Tracking

What is it? From now on it is possible to pause the tracking activity of Prospects that have an excess of activity.

Why is this possible? In order to protect the health of your MCAE business unit and prevent suspicious activity from triggering unwanted changes in a Prospect’s Score or in the automated actions that may be triggered, the Pause mode in Activity Tracking allows you to safely investigate behaviour that may be reminiscent of a bot.

How? Paused Prospects will be marked with an icon next to their record and an error message will appear within the Prospect to help us know where to investigate what is going wrong with the tracking. Of course, those Prospects that have Opt-In will continue to receive emails even if they have Activity Tracking paused.


Full sync for the Prospects database with just one click

What is it? With Winter’23 MCAE has introduced the possibility to perform a full sync of the Prospect Database.
Why is this possible? Until now, the ways to perform a massive synchronisation of Prospects were not ideal – you had to do exports and imports mapping by Id, or there were even those who created dummy fields to force the synchronisation – but now, in the drop-down menu of the Prospect Database, you can synchronise the Prospect Database with a single click.
How? But now, in the drop-down menu of the Salesforce CRM connector, you will see the option “Sync All Prospects”. It is true that there will be some limitations: it can only be done every 7 days and with a maximum of 500,000 Prospects per Business Unit, but it is an advance that many of us will be grateful for.


Simplified Opt-out status between Salesforce and Account Engagement

What is it? The Opted Out field will now require a system of record, having the same information in both Salesforce and MCAE, with one of these two platforms containing the primary value for the record.
Why is this the case? Until now there could sometimes be some doubt as to who was the source of truth, MCAE or Salesforce, because in the synchronisation behaviour you could choose the option “Use the most recently updated record”. This meant that if the Opt-Outs were updated in both systems before the information was propagated to the other system, there could be unintentional misalignments.
How? With the choice of either the Salesforce or MC Account Engagement value prevailing, this removes any doubt about the synchronisation of consents. A relief for marketers, who can forget – at least as far as synchronisation is concerned – the worry that always accompanies them in relation to Opt-In and Opt-Out.


Marketing Cloud Personalization

Personalise the appearance of Chatbot in the conversation with your visitors

What is it? The Chatbot Global Template allows you to personalise the visitor experience also in terms of the appearance of the chatbot. This way you can activate its appearance with segmentation rules for both campaigns and browsing experience.


Why? Being able to decide which users should see the chatbot and which visitors should not helps to improve the experience for all users, by taking into account issues such as time spent on the page, inactivity or depth of navigation; and also by being able to delimit use cases such as activating the chatbot when a visitor scrolls more than 50% of a FAQ page or preventing it from activating for those customers with an open support case.
How? This new feature of MC Personalization (fka Interaction Studio) is included in the Growth and Premium editions at no additional cost.

Marketing Cloud Intelligence

Include Send Classification and Bounce Type in reports.

What is it? In the Marketing Cloud Intelligence for Engagement reports in MC since the Winter ’23 Release we have the possibility to add information about the Send Classification of the emails and the bounce type for the bounced emails.
Why? These fields are available when accessing pivot tables and reports and allow us to have more detail about the performance of the different communications launched from MC in order to continue improving both the relationship with customers and the deliverability of emails.
How? This change will be available in the Intelligence Reports for Engagement module in the Pro, Corporate and Enterprise editions of Marketing Cloud.


Create custom KPIs in Query Builder

What is it? In MC Intelligence, within Marketing Cloud with the Advanced licence, it is now possible to create custom KPIs. Some examples that come to mind are the click-through rate or the open rate by city or age.
Why? This makes it possible to go deeper into the analysis of the performance data of campaigns launched from the Marketing Cloud.
How? In the Query Builder tab, within Builder Calculations, it is now possible to create these new fully customised KPIs. Please note that this change is only available in Intelligence Reports for the Pro, Corporate and Enterprise editions of MC with the MC Intelligence Advanced licence.


Connect MC Intelligence with Sprout Social

What is it? In order to include omni-channel insights in a single platform and to optimise the performance of the social channel, the MC Intelligence connector with Sprout Social allows you to ingest all the data managed by this platform and combine it with the rest of the connected sources.
Why? As part of the Social Studio EOL (End Of Live) plan, it is now possible to combine Sprout Social with Intelligence to help clients guide the transition to an out-of-the-box connector with a tool that allows the creation, activation, analysis and optimisation of Social Media activity.
How? Sprout Social is Salesforce’s recommended replacement for social media management and intelligence and analytics.


Add ecommerce Marketing Insights to your dashboards

What is it? MC Intelligence’s Ecommerce Marketing Insights app allows you to unify marketing and ecommerce data by connecting marketing and ecommerce data to optimise experiences from awareness to transaction, creating high-impact marketing moments while understanding how investments in these channels affect online shop conversion.
Why? Until now, customers needed to manually ingest ecommerce data into MC Intelligence, harmonise it with marketing data and then create dashboards to include it, and now this job is easier with an app that walks the user through the process of optimising RoAS through a guided data integration process and offering out-of-the-box dashboards.
How? The app is available in all editions of Intelligence, and platform administrators can install it for free from the Marketplace. However, it is necessary to have the login credentials of an ecommerce platform and an advertising platform.


Customer Data Platform

One-click access to CRM Analytics

What is it? With Release Winter’23 it is possible to explore and analyse Customer Data Platform data in CRM Analytics, jumping from one environment to the other with a single click.
Why? In this way it is possible to increase the level of analysis on the different unified profiles in the Customer Data Platform.
How? To do this, select a data object and click on the “Explore in Analytics” button provided by the Winter ’23 release.

Ruleset warnings for better Profile Unification

What is Ruleset Warnings? The Ruleset Warnings in Customer Data Platform come to identify mappings, rules or fields that need to be fine-tuned to improve the unification ratio of the database.


Why? Having more unified profiles has a positive impact on the contracted licence and, obviously, allows for better performance when performing segments and activating them.
How? Reconciliation Ruleset warnings, for example, will prompt us to select the source Source Sequence rule as a way to reduce the frequency of value changes in ID fields, so that identity resolution is even more stable.

End of Life

Like all releases, Winter ’23 is marked by the appearance of new features, but also by the farewell of some others. In this Release, we say goodbye to the Real Time Automation Rule of MC Account Engagement: those environments without Automation Rules currently in place will no longer have this functionality from this month of October; and for those environments with rules with this configuration activated, the check will simply be deactivated in the Summer’23 update.

And we also say goodbye to something we had almost forgotten: Classic Email in MC Engagement is now read only and will disappear forever at the end of 2022. It seems we’ve long since got used to creating content in Content Builder, doesn’t it?


Marketing Cloud continues to explore new territories, while consolidating the known functionalities – e.g. Einstein, Interactive Email, Package Manager – making them available in the different activation capabilities – Journey Builder, Automation Studio, MC Personalization… – so that whatever method is chosen to deliver messages or personalisations, the marketer has the maximum of capabilities at his disposal and has the necessary help to follow the best practices of Digital Marketing.

We are aware that in this post we have not talked about Salesforce Genie, but this new feature deserves a separate article.

We know it’s a lot of information, but we can also imagine that you’ve been left wanting to know more. Don’t think twice and contact us so that we can help you implement the improvements that will allow you to get the most out of your CM solution and take your marketing activity further.

We are ready to take you to the next level!

Digital marketingSalesforce

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