From Good to Great: A Framework to Create Salesforce Marketing Cloud Journeys

How well are you designing your journeys? What are you considering when you are designing your Salesforce Marketing Cloud Journey? How many journeys are you planning to build and how do they all relate? Which segments do they cover? All these questions are very important for any marketer as well as any Salesforce Marketing Cloud implementation and below Transformative will share a little peak at our framework in helping create Salesforce Marketing Cloud Journeys.


Think about you want to achieve

When you drill down from your journey map, you’ll end up having to think about the specific tactics needed to achieve those specific goals. If I want to increase retention through loyalty, what do I as a business have to offer to my customers that increases loyalty. How are these offerings currently being communicated and are they being underutilised?

Let’s drill down one more level; how many touch points do you need to communicate your message and which channels would communicate this message best?

Which triggers are available

Choosing an entry point is also incredibly important for engagement. Behavioural triggers such as sending an abandoned cart email to a customer generates more engagement because there is buying intent, relevant content and excellent timing. These 3 elements combined make communication effective; regardless of the channel used.

Think about the content

As mentioned, relevant content is incredibly important. People open an email but stay for the content. If the recipient has a dedicated account manager, why not show the account manager’s name and profile in the email to more easily converse? If you are sending a weekly newsletter for your online store, why send male products if the recipient has a purchase history for female and children products only? It would be a waste of valuable real-estate. And what value does the message bring to the recipient? Which channel is best to inform my customer? SMS works incredibly well but is expensive, it should be used to directly communicate with customers with time-sensitive information and you are sure people will read it! Emails tend to stack up so important information gets lost or is read too late! The younger generation also doesn’t read emails, however, because they are tied to their phones, SMS has also made a comeback! But the content you can communicate in an email is vastly larger than in an SMS, so think about the content and how you can bring value to your customer.

Think about the KPI’s

The final step is to assign KPI’s to each communication and or journey! After all, you want to know how effective they all are. If your abandoned cart email converts both online and offline, you need to measure both metrics. (ie, your brand provides tailored suits, someone goes online to check which suits he or she is interested in and then goes to the shop to have professional advice and some tailoring.) Another example, is your reminder email working? If the KPI’s indicate it doesn’t, then why doesn’t it? Maybe it will work better if you add a sense of urgency or convenience. Does this increase performance with regards to conversion, click & open rate?

Let’s visualise this in our framework

Below is a single step in your customer journey, you would attach several of these together to complete a full customer journey and if you are interested to get the full overview, please download our ebook right here.


For each step in the journey, we would define who will receive this message and what behaviour got them there. Followed by choosing and defining a piece of content to be delivered and through which channel. Then defining when would be the best time to deliver this content and which KPI’s should we attach. Once this is defined for the first step, we could continue with this framework for each of the steps following this journey.

Keep in mind the big picture

Lastely, as the title suggests, it is important to keep in mind the big picture. Are you excluding subscribers when they enter a particular journey from all the other journeys? Or do you want them to be in 1 or more journeys simultaneously. Some clients want to make sure that anyone and everyone is in a journey at all times. But this a topic for another blog post!

Published by
Gary Vassart

A Belgian-born golf & mountaineering enthusiast with 8 years of Salesforce & Marketing Automation expertise. Having spent a decade abroad, Gary has worked with global brands with the likes of Nestlé, Coca-Cola, Adidas, and SNCF.