When you read the word “template” you might immediately think of some not-so-great qualities. Employing templates can suggest using a pre-packaged solution, or trying to take a generic approach. But modern marketing automation means it’s time to rethink those ideas. “Template” isn’t a dirty word. In fact, templates can help your staff more easily engage with your audience. Adobe Marketo Engage’s latest functionality can serve as a tool to bring new ideas to life and deliver personalization on a larger scale – all with functionality that’s easy to use.
Here are three areas where Marketo templates can help you to break through to your target audience.
1. Use Testing To Come Up With Data-Driven Strategies
You can make templates meet your unique needs by trying new things and using data to guide decisions. An optimal testing strategy combines analytics and data points with innovative ideas for creative. Marketo Engage offers a variety of testing capabilities that allow users to make multiple changes. Creatives should feel free to lower inhibitions when trying new things, knowing that test results will speak for themselves.
You can “test for the best” across a wide variety of template elements for emails and landing pages. Try tweaking copy, layout, images, calls-to-action, personalization, and mobile elements. You can also look at things like links vs. buttons, the number of links you include, the position of the “unsubscribe” option, social sharing icon placement, copy length, etc. Once you find what works best you can make changes on master templates or create more custom templates that feature your winning components.
2. Use Templates To Be More Nimble
Naturally, you have a regular marketing calendar with plenty of touchpoints plotted out. But what happens if there is a current event or other situation that you could capitalize on right now – if you only had the creative?
Templates are a great way to plug-and-play messaging that is timely and relevant in the short term. For example, if a certain product is selling unexpectedly well and you want to capitalize on the traction, you may want to send some last-minute emails. Or, if a recent video you created has gone viral, you may want to call additional attention to it with an email campaign. Similarly, current events, new regulations, certain seasons, or updates within your company are all reasons why you might want to send an email that wasn’t planned before.
To better engage your customers, it’s essential that you take advantage of opportunities to create conversations. Having templates available and ready to go will ensure that you have simple ways to break through the noise of inboxes and reach people with truly relevant content.
3. Go Beyond Asset Templates
Many marketers do not take advantage of the full suite of template offerings within Marketo Engage. Mostly, when we say templates we are thinking of assets like landing pages or emails. However, Marketo Engage offers program templates that can be used in conjunction with asset templates for quicker campaign execution. Users who focus only on asset templates are missing out on opportunities to scale their programs more quickly. As a refresher:
Asset templates – These are wireframes for emails or landing pages. They have redundant modules for header, body, and footer elements.
Program templates – These are fully built-out programs with placeholders for things like text and media. You can use them to build out complex campaigns by cloning program templates and making campaign-specific edits.
5 Steps For Creating Marketo Engage Program Templates
If you’re reading this, chances are you’re a Marketo Engage user and you know how to use templates for campaigns. The challenge is really developing a larger template strategy that meets your organization’s particular marketing needs. Marketo Engage templates should be designed with a strong organization and hierarchy so that they are easy to update and can be quickly adapted. Here are a few steps that can help you to balance process with flexibility:
- Work with end-users to plan the right templates. Which programs can benefit the most from templates? Which are most likely to be modified from campaign to campaign? Typical users find the most benefit from recurring campaigns elements like newsletter, nurture drips, event invitations, etc. Talk to your marketing and sales teams to dive deeper into needs and which templates would be most effective.
- Organize templates with naming conventions and token strategies. People love Marketo Engage because of the ability to create hierarchies so that elements below automatically inherit characteristics from those above. Through planning and staying organized, you achieve scalability. Since your program template gets cloned, so does your naming convention – getting it right initially is essential. Create abbreviations for each program and asset type you’re templatizing; include a date element (either created date or launch date); leave slots for the program ID, campaign name, and/or program description; and make sure the naming convention is simple so that all Marketo Engage users will remember and use it.
- Build your master program template. Next you’ll build out your Master programs in their entirety now, including all assets and related operational campaigns. Choose the right program type, and remember that you may also choose to nest programs within a default or engagement program. You can choose from Event programs, Engagement programs, Email programs, and Default programs.
- Test your templates. Before you do anything with your template, do your due diligence. Perform a thorough QA and check the design, program statuses, naming convention, alignment with your token strategy, email or landing page functionality, and rendering across devices and operating systems. We also suggest a peer review and running a function test from beginning to end to ensure the automation completes correctly.
- Document the program cloning process and train users. To ensure that your programs are used correctly and consistently, you need to properly document the process and then make sure all users are trained.
Work Smarter With Marketo Templates
Templates can really help you to scale your customer outreach and increase engagement, but they’re only as good as their adoption and usage. Don’t underestimate the importance of getting all of your users on board and excited about the benefits that both asset and program templates can offer.
Take the power of templates even further with FLEX Template Services. Digital Pi’s proprietary FLEX Framework for Marketo Engage email and landing page designs means users can create unique templates designed for their brand – nothing cookie cutter here. Without any HTML or CSS knowledge or third-party integrations, marketers can take advantage of intuitive, self-explanatory settings and highly customizable drag-and-drop modules for their most engaging marketing efforts. We’ll be sharing more insights on the most efficient way to use templates at the upcoming Marketo Top Tips Event.