MQL Tracking in Marketo

November 14, 2015 Chris Leonard

Marketing Qualified Leads, or MQL’s, are leads that have been vetted by marketing, for behavioral and demographic qualities, and deemed eligible to be passed over and worked by sales.  They are judged most likely to convert to a closed-won deal.  The number and source of MQL’s are some of the most prevalent metrics used by Marketing Managers to attribute the success of various channels, initiatives, and determine where marketing spend should be allocated.

There are four basic processes that we recommend in order to report effectively:

  • MQL Count
    • This field will keep track of how many times a lead has MQL’d. In a closed-loop model, leads, even customers, should never fall out of the sales cycle.  There is always room for nurturing, up-selling, cross-selling, etc.
  • MQL Original Date
    • This field will keep track of the first time a lead MQL’s.
  • MQL Current Date
    • This field will track when the lead has most recently MQL’d.
  • MQL – Last Program Touch
    • This field will help track which marketing program is responsible for causing the lead to reach MQL

These processes can also be applied to Sales Accepted Leads (SAL’s), Sales Qualified Leads (SQL’s), or any other stage in your sales cycle that you would like more clarity and reporting on.

When possible, we recommend creating these fields in your CRM system (Salesforce for example).  The reason for this is that Marketo can see all fields available in SFDC, but the process does not work the other way.  Creating these fields in your CRM system will allow reports and information to be pulled in both your CRM and Marketo systems, without having to remap fields, which can be messy and time consuming.

MQL Count:

  1. From the Setup section of SFDC, navigate to Customize > Leads > Fields (#1 on the screen cap below)
  2. At the top of the Lead Custom Fields & Relationships section, click on New (#2 on the screen cap below)
  3. Select Number and click Next
  4. In the Field Label section, type MQL Count (or whatever you would like the field to be called) and click Next
  5. Select the proper Field Level Security access and click Next
  6. Select which Layouts you would like this field to appear on and click Save
  7. Repeat this process from the Customize > Contacts > Fields section
    1. This is to ensure that this information is written to both the Lead and Contact records
    2. Make sure to label the two fields exactly the same thing, this is important
  8. Now we have to map the two fields together so that information is not lost upon converting a lead to a contact. From the Lead’s Fields section, click on Map Lead Fields (#3 on the screen cap below)
  9. Scroll down to MQL Count and make sure it’s mapped to MQL CountImage One
  10. Now that we have Lead and Contact fields created and mapped, we’re going to jump back to Marketo. Head to the Admin section and click on Field Management.  Type MQL Count into the search box and select that field.Image Two
  11. From there you can see that it is mapped to the Lead and Contact fields in SFDC via the CRM Field Map line item (#1 below). Perfect!
  12. Click Field Actions in the top left of the screen and select Change Type (see #2 below)
  13. Select Score and click Change
    1. This will allow us to add and subtract numbers from existing values, rather than just writing in new values
    2. Image Three
    3. Image Thirteen
  14. Now that the MQL Count field has been created, mapped, and updated to a score field, we can create the logic which records how many times a lead has MQL’d
  15. Within your existing MQL smart campaign add in a new Change Score flow step
  16. Select MQL Count and change the value by +1 (see screen cap below)
  17. On the Schedule tab, be sure to leads are allowed to flow through this campaign Every Time and activate the campaign
  18. Moving forward, this field will now represent how many times a specific lead has MQL’dImage Five

MQL Original Date & MQL Current Date:

  1. The first several steps here will be similar to steps 1-9 in creating the MQL Count field
  2. In Salesforce, you will need to create two new fields on both the Lead and Contact objects, MQL Original Date and MQL Current Date
  3. Both of these will need to be set as Date Set Field Level Security and Layout placement as desired
    1. Make sure that the fields on the Lead and Contact objects are named exactly the same
  4. Once all four of these fields have been created, remember to map them from the Lead’s Fields section, using the Map Lead Fields button
  5. Within 7 minutes these fields should be fully synced to Marketo
  6. Once they have synced, find MQL Original Date in the Field Management tab of the Admin section
  7. Click Field Actions and select Block Field Updates
  8. Check All boxes in this pop-up (see screen cap below) and click Apply
    1. This will ensure that this historic ‘Original’ date will not be overwritten once it is setImage Six
  1. Since we will be regularly overwriting the values in MQL Current Date, we do not need to block field updates for this field
  2. Within your existing MQL smart campaign, add two new Change Data Value flow steps
  3. Select MQL Original Date for the first and MQL Current Date for the second
  4. Input {{system.date}} as the New Value. When a lead flows through this campaign the current date will be written into the lead’s record (see screen cap below)
  5. Ensure that leads can flow through this program Every Time and activate itImage Seven

MQL Last Program Touch:

  1. The first several steps here will be similar to steps 1-9 in creating the MQL Count field
  2. In Salesforce, you will need to create a MQL – Last Program Touch field on the Lead and Contact objects
  3. These fields will need to be Text fields
  4. Once these fields have been created, don’t forget to Map them using the Map Lead Fields button in the Lead’s Fields section
  5. Within about 7 minutes these fields will be fully synced to Marketo
  6. From the Field Management tab of the Admin section, ensure that this field is correctly mapped to both the Lead and Contact objects in Salesforce
  7. Still in the Field Management section of Marketo, click Field Actions, select New Custom Field, choose a type of String, name it Last Program Touch, and click Create
    1. This field will be used as a placeholder and only be referenced when a lead MQL’s (see screen cap below)Image Eight
  1. In the Marketing Activities section of Marketo, create two new smart campaigns, Last Program Touch and Last Program Touch – MQL. These can live within a data management folder, or your lead lifecycle program
  2. In the Smart List of the Last Campaign Touch smart campaign, pull on the trigger Program Status is Changed
  3. Select Any Program and pull on the constraint New Status Is
  4. From there, select any Program Status that shows Positive Behavior (Tradeshow > Attended, Webinar > Registered, Email Blast > Opened, Etc.) – See screen cap belowImage Nine
  5. On the Flow tab, pull on a Change Data Value flow step and change the recently created Last Program Touch field to {{trigger.name}}
    1. This will write whatever program caused the trigger to fire into that field
  6. Make sure that leads are allowed to flow through this campaign Every Time and Activate it
  7. In the Smart List of the Last Campaign Touch – MQL smart campaign, pull on the trigger Data Value Changes
  8. Select MQL and select a New Value of True (another typical trigger is Lead Status changes to MQL. It depends on how you mark a lead as an MQL)Image Eleven
  9. On the Flow tab, pull on a Change Data Value flow step and change the recently created Last Program Touch – MQL field to {{lead.Last Program Touch}}
    1. This will pull the value that’s currently written to the Last Program Touch into the Last Program Touch – MQL fieldImage Twelve
  10. Ensure that leads are allowed to flow this campaign Every Time and activate it.

Moving forward, every time a lead shows proactive/positive behavior, that action will be written to the Last Program Touch field.  Once a lead reaches MQL, this value will be written into the Last Program Touch – MQL field.  This will allow us to determine the final program that pushed each lead over the MQL threshold.  The same process can be created for SAL, SQL, or any other stage/status you would like to report on.

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You will now be able to pull reports that clarify how many times a lead has MQL’d, when a lead originally MQL’d, when a lead most recently MQL’d, and what program was responsible for pushing them over to sales.  There are many ways to build upon these fields and reports, these are just a few of the building blocks that will help you pull the right information for the right people at the right time.  If you have any questions on how to create these reports, or would like help implementing any of these processes, please feel free to reach out!

 

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