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Salesforce Marketing Cloud: January 2021 Release Highlights


Swaraj Joshi

February 24, 2021

Salesforce Marketing Cloud has been rapidly evolving for the past few years. Every new release of the Salesforce Marketing Cloud brings new features and enhancements to the platform, making it the best Marketing tool. Here are a few exciting features from the recent release of Salesforce Marketing Cloud.

Salesforce Marketing Cloud: January 2021 Release Highlights

AMP for Marketing Emails

Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is an open-source web component framework with mobile-first mindset and provides a straightforward way to create web pages that are fast, smooth-loading and prioritize the user-experience above all else. The framework helps in taking customer’s Email interaction experience to a next level by allowing the customer to scroll image galleries, book appointments, fill forms and purchase products straight from emails without going to a landing page.

This feature will be rolled out to all accounts by March 1 2021, for Pro, Corporate and Enterprise Editions.

Event thought the feature is really powerful, while implementing AMP in an email, you must keep in mind that AMP is not supported by all email clients and browsers. Hence, as part of the setup, a fallback ’email form’ should be created in case the subscriber’s email platform doesn’t support AMP

WhatsApp for Marketing Cloud

WhatsApp is the most popular communication channel among the customers and the feature for communication over WhatsApp has been a long-awaited SFMC release.

The new WhatsApp chat messaging feature allows you to only send transactional and session messages to your customers with WhatsApp. Currently WhatsApp does not allow any promotional messaging and marketing messages.

In order to setup WhatsApp for communication with customers using Marketing Cloud, you need to create a WhatsApp account and Link it with Facebook Business Manager. Once the linking is done, WhatsApp must approve your account, which should take approximately 2–3 business days. WhatsApp requires explicit consent from your contacts for template messages. The next step involves creating pre-desired templates to communicate with the customers since they are transactional messages. Like previous steps, this too requires approval from WhatsApp.

Once the account and the template are approved by WhatsApp, you can use the approved template and build your transactional message.

You can also create Session messages. Session messages are more like responses to user-initiated conversations; there are no limits on the number of these. For using session messages, you need to use the Inbound chat entry source introduced in the Journey Builder.

Enterprise and Corporate edition customers can purchase this feature after February 16, 2021.

Datorama Reports for Marketing Cloud

The Discover reporting tool is scheduled for retirement in all Marketing Cloud accounts on April 21, 2022. Datorama Reports, which launch in the January 2021 Marketing Cloud release, eventually replace Discover reports for all Discover.

Journey reporting has not been straight forward so far, however, with the release of Datorama Reports, Campaign reporting and Journey reporting have become very easy and straight forward as Datorama reports provide a pre-built dashboard. These dashboards help to analyse your data to make informed, data-driven decisions.

The Datorama Reports allow you to retrieve, view, and share a detailed analysis of your data. You can export these reports as Excel, CSV, and Text and share them in formats like PowerPoint, PDF, and PNG.

Datorama Reports also provide customisable reports with pivot tables using attributes and measures.

Datorama is available to Corporate or Enterprise account holders. If you have a Pro Edition of Marketing Cloud, you can pay for this as an add-on. The functionality available as an app in Marketing Cloud, but a Datorama account is created in the background.

Google Analytics Integration

The Google Analytics Free integration is available to Marketing Cloud customers. The customers with Journey Builder will have access to this free integration. Tracking configuration can be found in Setup in Google Analytics and Parameter Manager. After completing setup, you will find Google Analytics reporting on the Journey Builder Analytics dashboard.

The free integration opens up some Google Analytics 360 Integration tracking and reporting features for customers. Reporting and tracking will be available for email and SMS.

Enhanced Contact Error Details

Troubleshooting contact related errors in the Journey Builder has got better and easier. You can see details of any error that may have occurred with a specific contact. Open the Health panel of a stopped or running journey to search for a contact and view the path and location. If you find the contact encountered an error that caused them to exit at a particular activity, click to view the details of that error.

With the current roll-out, you will see more details around email, update contact, custom activities, and data binding and unexpected errors, more activities will be added over time.

These were a few exciting and long-waited features from the recent release. To check more details regarding the January 2021 release, please check this Salesforce Documentation “ January 2021 Release “.

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