Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Grassroots Innovation

The MarDreamies awards celebrate solutions marketing and sales professionals built to reach their goals using Salesforce. These solutions are especially impressive because they each rose to solve a specific challenge while utilizing technology to automate their way to greatness. 

Winners of the MarDreamin’ awards get bragging rights for their team and company, a sweet prize pack, and a fancy trophy to remind them how awesome they are every day. And the MarDreamin’ team announced the MarDreamies winners during the After-Party, which took place November 3, 2022. 

Check out this blog post to get details about the full MarDreamin’ conference — including information about watching all session and keynote replay videos.

MarDreamies Award Categories

The MarDreamies awards are divided into five categories to honor the teams behind the magic:

  • Personalization Perfection: Right-time, right-message marketing
  • Social Impact: Creating positive change through Pardot
  • Grassroots Innovation: Scaling small business with Pardot
  • Extending Pardot: API-driven solutions
  • Best in Show

You can find all the details about what went into choosing the award winners in this blog post.

2022 MarDreamies Award Grassroots Innovation Category Winner: FTD Disorders Registry

Here’s the solution that won the MarDreamies 2022 award for the Grassroots Innovation category, which recognizes teams that scale small businesses with Salesforce marketing tools. The MarDreamies Grassroots Innovation award went to FTD Disorders Registry, which was submitted by Sherry Harlass.

What does the FTD Disorders Registry do?

The FTD Disorders Registry (FTDDR) is designed to bring together the frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) community. This means persons diagnosed, their family members, caregivers, and friends as well as clinicians, scientists, patient advocacy groups, and the pharma/biotech industry.

Their goal is to advance the science and move faster toward finding treatments and cures for this spectrum of disorders, which includes:

  • behavioral variant FTD (bvFTD)
  • primary progressive aphasia (PPA)
  • progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP)
  • corticobasal degeneration (CBD) / corticobasal syndrome (CBS)
  • FTD with motor neuron disease (also called FTD-ALS)

A diagnosis of FTD can be isolating, so the registry was created to be a resource for patients, families, and caregivers. We provide one location to collect and share de-identified data, promote research studies, and notify potentially eligible research study candidates.

How does FTD Disorders Registry use Salesforce to reach their goals?

The team at FTD Disorders Registry is technologically savvy and uses the Salesforce platform in a unique way to support the company’s mission. Specifically, the marketing team uses Marketing Cloud Account Engagement (Pardot) to communicate with their audience while tracking campaign success so they can adjust their strategy when needed. 

The FTD Disorders Registry collects data to help researchers and direct prospects to clinical trials in the search for treatments and a cure for a group of rare diseases, for which there currently are none. Maintaining data fields is critical for reporting on these diseases. When the team updated their enrollment forms, they added several new data points in Salesforce. An intricate Pardot campaign was built to collect this additional data from participants who joined prior to the update.

Turning to the Salesforce Community for Help

Marketing teams who have limited resources know the importance of relationship building within technical communities to solve challenges that go beyond their teams’ expertise.

As a small (3 people when campaign was initiated) nonprofit registry, FTD Disorders Registry lacked time, people, and knowledge to set it up. Thanks to a Spring of Salesforce opportunity, we learned by doing guided by a wonderful (volunteer) expert (in another state). 

Assets the team built for this campaign included:

  • 1 layout template
  • 2 landing pages
  • 2 forms
  • 1 Thank You landing page on their website
  • 6 email templates
  • 12 Engagement Studio Programs
  • 17 email lists
  • 4 completion actions
  • 6 operational emails
  • 2 Thank you emails

Salesforce is the data collection tool from which enrollment and survey information is collected. The team then generated an NIH Globally Unique Identifier (GUID), which allows the sharing of data specific to a research participant without exposing personally identifiable information. They used Pardot to collect missing data fields, because they also use it to generate lists from these same Salesforce fields to send targeted emails about research opportunities.

Small Teams Use Grassroots Innovation to Accomplish Big Goals 

The team at FTD Disorders Registry truly encompasses the spirit of the grassroots innovation category. The small team wears many hats and uses community resources to figure things out when necessary.
Check out this blog post to learn more about the MarDreamies awards. Or, share a few words to congratulate the winners using the comments section below.

Original article: Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Grassroots Innovation

©2022 The Spot. All Rights Reserved.

The post Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Grassroots Innovation appeared first on The Spot.

By |2022-12-01T20:17:14+00:00December 1st, 2022|Categories: Community, Community Spotlight, Events|

Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Best In Show

The MarDreamies awards celebrate solutions marketing and sales professionals built to reach their goals using Salesforce. These solutions are especially impressive because they each rose to solve a specific challenge while utilizing technology to automate their way to greatness. 

Winners of the MarDreamin’ awards get bragging rights for their team and company, a sweet prize pack, and a fancy trophy to remind them how awesome they are every day. And the MarDreamin’ team announced the MarDreamies winners during the After-Party, which took place November 3, 2022. 

Check out this blog post to get details about the full MarDreamin’ conference — including information about watching all session and keynote replay videos.

MarDreamies Award Categories

The MarDreamies awards are divided into five categories to honor the teams behind the magic:

  • Personalization Perfection: Right-time, right-message marketing
  • Social Impact: Creating positive change through Pardot
  • Grassroots Innovation: Scaling small business with Pardot
  • Extending Pardot: API-driven solutions
  • Best in Show

You can find all the details about what went into choosing the award winners in this blog post.

2022 MarDreamies Award Best In Show Category Winner: INSURICA

Here’s the solution that won the MarDreamies 2022 award for the Best In Show category, which recognizes the overall winner from Mardreamies Award submissions. The MarDreamies Best In Show award went to INSURICA, which was submitted by Andy Paden.

What does INSURICA do?

Placing over $1 billion in annual premiums for our clients, INSURICA is among the 50 largest insurance brokers in the United States and is currently the 24th largest privately-held independent agency in the country.

INSURICA employs more than 700 colleagues in 35+ offices located throughout Oklahoma, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Mississippi and Texas. They are constantly looking to expand their network with partners who bring additional value and expertise to the enterprise and clients.

Award-winning solution details

INSURICA wanted a way to pull in data from the Department of Transportation (DOT) alongside their client’s information/statistics. Their intention for the project is to offer a well-rounded picture of their DOT data with the end result being a customized report by account. 

By developing a connection between the data into Sales Cloud and using Pardot to call that information into an email template with merge tags.

How it works

Here’s how the solution pulls Department of Transportation Data into Salesforce and uses merge tags to dynamically populate email in Pardot. 

Using the API to call in DOT data to Sales Cloud, and the database updates that pull on a monthly basis. TO accomplish that, the team developed custom Sales Cloud fields on the account object. Then, the solution parses that data over to Pardot via mapped fields. 

Additionally, the team uses an email template with custom merge fields to populate data in a report-like layout template. Then, sales team lead members enroll their accounts to receive the email using a custom Salesforce flow action on the account record page.

Data updates monthly and the report needs to be refreshed to ensure the most up-to-date information.

And the results speak for themselves. The team at INSURICA now has custom data-centric reports to enrolled accounts.

Congratulations to the Best In Show Winners

Marketers often turn to third-party data sources to accomplish their goals. The team at INSURICA now has a customized view of carrier data that varies by account, and it does that through an innovative API-driven solution that lead to their MarDreamies Best in Show award.

Check out this blog post to learn more about the MarDreamies awards. Or, share a few words to congratulate the winners using the comments section below.

Original article: Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Best In Show

©2022 The Spot. All Rights Reserved.

The post Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Best In Show appeared first on The Spot.

By |2022-11-29T21:35:00+00:00November 29th, 2022|Categories: Community, Community Spotlight, Events|

Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Personalization Perfection

The MarDreamies awards celebrate solutions marketing and sales professionals built to reach their goals using Salesforce. These solutions are especially impressive because they each rose to solve a specific challenge while utilizing technology to automate their way to greatness. 

Winners of the MarDreamin’ awards get bragging rights for their team and company, a sweet prize pack, and a fancy trophy to remind them how awesome they are every day. And the MarDreamin’ team announced the MarDreamies winners during the After-Party, which took place November 3, 2022. 

Check out this blog post to get details about the full MarDreamin’ conference — including information about watching all session and keynote replay videos.

MarDreamies Award Categories

The MarDreamies awards are divided into five categories to honor the teams behind the magic:

  • Personalization Perfection: Right-time, right-message marketing
  • Social Impact: Creating positive change through Pardot
  • Grassroots Innovation: Scaling small business with Pardot
  • Extending Pardot: API-driven solutions
  • Best in Show

You can find all the details about what went into choosing the award winners in this blog post.

2022 MarDreamies Award Personalization Perfection Category Winner: Zoopla

Here’s the solution that won the MarDreamies 2022 award for the Personalization Perfection category, which recognizes teams that deliver right-time, right-message marketing campaigns. The MarDreamies Personalization Perfection Award went to Zoopla and was submitted by Rebecca White.

What does Zoopla do?

Zoopla is a property website and app based in London, England. It is part of Zoopla Limited, which was founded in 2007. 

The website and app have over a million properties to browse along with helpful tools and reliable house price estimates.

Personalization Perfection Project Details

Zoopla needed to drive user adoption for a major software upgrade with their clients and internal teams, and they needed it to be completed fast. It was a task that needed to be automated due to the scale of the project. And the teams couldn’t let anyone slip through the cracks.

The team created a flow of Marketing Cloud Account Engagement (Pardot) Engagement Studio Programs (ESPs) that used third-party and Salesforce data to send clients and internal teams through personalized next steps based on their stage in the journey, as well as reminders using unique upgrade dates. 

The ESPs ensured any changes in client information were reflected in the messaging and when they were delivered, they also updated campaign member statuses that helped departments understand where members were in the journey.

Personalization through automation was the key to success

Upgrading such a large client database in a short period of time was the key problem that inspired this initiative. With so many variables, stages and a reliance on third-party and Salesforce data, there was no possibility that this could have been done manually. But, having limited internal resources and having previously used spreadsheets and other offline resources meant there was also the opportunity to change the way internal departments worked.

Using data from third-party platforms and Salesforce, ESPs seamlessly moved clients through the upgrade stages, monitoring their actions and adapting messages when needed. It wasn’t just clients receiving the right messaging at the right time, ESPs sent internal updates (campaign statuses) to each department, some of which had been used to only working with spreadsheets. This initiative streamlined the way Zoopla worked and gave them time back knowing that automation was now working for them.

Challenges they overcame along the way

A key challenge was seamlessly piecing together the stages that relied on external data. ESPs also needed to react to client changes and still send the correct information. An average CTR of 5% shows messages are resonating with clients.

Taking a complex journey and ensuring internal teams knew what was happening and what action they needed to take was a hurdle. But, Salesforce reports, tasks and campaigns are now part of their day. 100+ Salesforce tasks have been created to help teams take action.

Results from the project

Pardot allowed Zoopla to create nimble automations that reflected the original goal of automating the upgrading process. Engagement Studio Programs (ESPs) and the Pardot connector allowed them to not only personalize messaging at a time right for clients but also deliver relevant information to internal teams. That ensured they could monitor the campaign in real time and provide a feedback loop to marketing, while Salesforce API integration allowed custom information from the upgrade portal to flow through to Pardot and the ESPs.

Using Personalization to Complete Essential Business Tasks

We often think of personalization in marketing as something that changes marketing assets based on customer personas. However, personalization is something that is essential when a company needs to get things done that affect their ability to operate. This project helped the Zoopla team to get clients and internal teams upgraded to the new Zoopla CRM. And they accomplished this through an automated process that ensured everyone felt supported and nobody was left behind.

Check out this blog post to learn more about the MarDreamies awards. Or, share a few words to congratulate the winners using the comments section below.

Original article: Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Personalization Perfection

©2022 The Spot. All Rights Reserved.

The post Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Personalization Perfection appeared first on The Spot.

By |2022-11-25T18:34:00+00:00November 25th, 2022|Categories: Community, Community Spotlight, Events|

Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Social Impact

The MarDreamies awards celebrate solutions marketing and sales professionals built to reach their goals using Salesforce. These solutions are especially impressive because they each rose to solve a specific challenge while utilizing technology to automate their way to greatness. 

Winners of the MarDreamin’ awards get bragging rights for their team and company, a sweet prize pack, and a fancy trophy to remind them how awesome they are every day. And the MarDreamin’ team announced the MarDreamies winners during the After-Party, which took place November 3, 2022. 

Check out this blog post to get details about the full MarDreamin’ conference — including information about watching all session and keynote replay videos.

MarDreamies Award Categories

The MarDreamies awards are divided into five categories to honor the teams behind the magic:

  • Personalization Perfection: Right-time, right-message marketing
  • Social Impact: Creating positive change through Salesforce marketing tools
  • Grassroots Innovation: Scaling small business with Salesforce marketing tools
  • Extending Pardot: API-driven marketing solutions
  • Best in Show

You can find all the details about what went into choosing the award winners in this blog post.

2022 MarDreamies Award Social Impact Category Winner: Lexipol

Here’s the solution that won the MarDreamies 2022 award for the Social Impact category, which recognizes teams that utilize Salesforce to affect positive social change. The MarDreamies Social Impact award went to Lexipol, which was submitted by Miriam Childs and Julie Rasco.

What does Lexipol do?

Lexipol serves more than 2 million public safety and government professionals with a range of informational and technological solutions to meet the challenges facing these dynamic industries. The company strives to make communities safer through the development of content and technological solutions that empower local government leaders.

How does Lexipol use Salesforce to reach their goals?

The team at Lexipol is technologically savvy and uses the Salesforce platform in a unique way to support the company’s mission. Specifically, the marketing team uses Marketing Cloud Account Engagement (Pardot) to communicate with their audience while tracking campaign success so they can adjust their strategy when needed.

Enabling first responders to access essential mental health resources

In recent years, suicide has been the leading cause of death for police and firefighters—ahead of line-of-duty deaths. Research has shown that 75% of first responders have unresolved emotional issues from stress on the job, with 70% concerned about the cultural stigma around asking for help. This is preventable, but agency leaders often don’t know the risks of ignoring wellness or have the expertise to develop wellness resources first responders will trust and use.

Using Pardot to provide wellness education for first responders

In December 2020, Lexipol acquired Cordico, a wellness solution for first responders and public servants. Since then, and specifically over the last 18 months, Lexipol has utilized Pardot to create an ongoing campaign to accomplish several goals. 

Their goals are to:

  • Build awareness of the Cordico solution.
  • Educate first responders on the importance of both physical and mental wellness.
  • Break down the cultural stigma around mental health that exists in public safety.
  • Introduce key wellness topics that disproportionately affect them.

Because of the stigma surrounding wellness in public safety, education is critical. Both the Cordico wellness solution itself and the campaign surrounding Cordico focus heavily on education. Lexipol provides resources including tip sheets, Q&As, webinars and case studies that highlight critical behavioral health issues affecting first responders. These resources, shared through email campaigns and landing pages, clearly demonstrate the need for wellness, an often-avoided topic in public safety.

MarDreamies award-winning campaign results

Wellness is a challenging topic, and first responders require specialized resources and communication. Lexipol has delivered over 65,000 emails featuring case studies and other resources, and our wellness webinar invitations have generated 1,500+ leads. Over the last 18 months, since creating the quarterly Cordico wellness newsletter, subscribers have grown by 101%. Across the board, these campaigns have influenced 100+ won opportunities, meaning more agencies with the right resources.

Salesforce tools and features used in the solution

Pardot was critical in targeting the correct audience and tracking successes: List and automated emails, dynamic segmentation and engagement studios were key to Lexipol’s strategy. 

Integration with outside apps, including GoToWebinar, along with Pardot files and landing pages, were central to gathering leads. A/B testing allowed the team to hone in on the most effective topics and phrasing. Scoring, grading and connected campaigns informed the sales team of interaction data to convert prospects to customers.

Using Tech to Deliver Essential Resources to People Who Need It Most

The team at Lexipol is using the Salesforce platform in innovative ways to reach their goals. Leveraging Pardot as a communication engine, the team at Lexipol has found success in building awareness about the resources available to their core audiences. As a result, they are creating positive social change in the world by bridging the gap between first responders who work with people in the most critical moments in the lives of the people they serve and essential wellness resources that can keep them feeling their best.

Check out this blog post to learn more about the MarDreamies awards. Or, share a few words to congratulate the winners using the comments section below.

Original article: Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Social Impact

©2022 The Spot. All Rights Reserved.

The post Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Social Impact appeared first on The Spot.

By |2022-11-22T21:04:00+00:00November 22nd, 2022|Categories: Community, Community Spotlight, Events|

Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Extending Salesforce

The MarDreamies awards celebrate solutions marketing and sales professionals built to reach their goals using Salesforce. These solutions are especially impressive because they each rose to solve a specific challenge while utilizing technology to automate their way to greatness. 

Winners of the MarDreamin’ awards get bragging rights for their team and company, a sweet prize pack, and a fancy trophy to remind them how awesome they are every day. And the MarDreamin’ team announced the MarDreamies winners during the After-Party, which took place November 3, 2022. 

Check out this blog post to get details about the full MarDreamin’ conference — including information about watching all session and keynote replay videos.

MarDreamies Award Categories

The MarDreamies awards are divided into five categories to honor the teams behind the magic:

  • Personalization Perfection: Right-time, right-message marketing
  • Social Impact: Creating positive change through Pardot
  • Grassroots Innovation: Scaling small business with Pardot
  • Extending Pardot: API-driven solutions
  • Best in Show

You can find all the details about what went into choosing the award winners in this blog post.

2022 MarDreamies Award Extending Salesforce Category Winner: Nebula Consulting

Here’s the solution that won the MarDreamies 2022 award for the Extending Salesforce category, which recognizes teams that build API-driven marketing solutions. The MarDreamies Extending Salesforce award went to Nebula Consulting, which was submitted by Kyle Blacker and Sarah Kelleher.

What does Nebula Consulting do?

Nebula Consulting started out in 2012 as a core Salesforce consultancy practice. Since then, the team has added Pardot, Communities and CPQ to their skillsets. However, Nebula Consulting’s focus then remains the same today — helping companies to grow their revenue. 

To do this effectively, they believe that first and foremost the company’s consultants must truly understand the sales & marketing process.  That drives them to only hire the very best people with relevant real-world experience. That’s why they truly believe that there is no team better to work alongside your own.

Extending Salesforce Award Project Details

The team at Nebula Consulting built Enhanced Engagement History, which is a component that’s available to all Pardot users via their listing on the Salesforce AppExchange.

The Enhanced Engagement History component allows users to view and inspect Prospect activities, regardless of which Pardot Business Unit (PBU) the user is logged into. It also allows users to interact with the activities, to view the emails sent and engaged with, without ever needing to leave the record page.

The standard Engagement History component displays activities from one Business Unit at a time depending on the BU a User was last logged into. Users are required to switch PBU just to see if there had been any cross-activity or if Users aren’t aware of this then they will see inaccurate data. Users can see an email had been engaged with, but not what the email was.

Why Nebula build the Enhanced Engagement History component

The initial concept of the product came from a problem a customer of Nebula was facing. What initially started out as a single consultant’s task evolved into several members of different teams collaborating. 

After the solution for the customer was deployed, we identified areas where this solution could be improved and developed further in a managed package to distribute via the Appexchange. We became an ISV partner as part of this process which was a complete new way of doing business for us.

Challenges the team overcame

During the initial concept phase, the team at Nebula wasn’t sure whether data from multiple PBUs could be collated into one place. In discovery and testing, they found the API in general to be a challenge; making sure to return correct information, remove unwanted data and optimize accordingly. 

Results of the project

The Enhanced Engagement History app provides time-saving and productivity benefits, not only providing greater visibility for Salesforce users without the need to switch PBU, but also in returning data using the API quicker than the standard component.

The majority of the component uses the Pardot API, however various security features using Apex were implemented. For example, ensuring that if a user doesn’t have access to a Lead, then they still can’t see that Lead. There are security checks in the background. In addition, with the flexibility of Salesforce we developed this as a Lightning Web Component that is customizable.

Finding innovation while meeting client needs

The team at Nebula Consulting found an innovative way to meet their client’s expectations. And they found a way to build on that solution so other Pardot customers can use it. 

Enhanced Engagement History reveals marketing engagement across multiple Pardot Business Units to give users rich insights to make data-driven decisions and drive meaningful customer conversations. It’s a solution that embodies the spirit of extending Salesforce, which is why it was chosen for a 2022 MarDreamies award.

Check out this blog post to learn more about the MarDreamies awards. Or, share a few words to congratulate the winners using the comments section below.

Original article: Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Extending Salesforce

©2022 The Spot. All Rights Reserved.

The post Mardreamies 2022 Award Winner Story: Extending Salesforce appeared first on The Spot.

By |2022-11-22T00:03:00+00:00November 22nd, 2022|Categories: Community, Community Spotlight, Events|

Breaking into the Salesforce Ecosystem: A Military Veteran’s Story

Merivis recently named Sercante as their “Partner of the Year” for 2022, and I couldn’t be more proud to be a #Merivet AND a #SercanteDragon. In the spirit of this award, I want to share the story of my journey into a new career in the Salesforce ecosystem as a transitioning military veteran.

Summer is in full swing, and folks are having BBQs, going to baseball games, and heading out for vacation. This is also the time of year when many active-duty servicemembers and their families are getting ready to move from one duty station to another, or transition from the service back to civilian life. 

Every year, over 200,000 active-duty sailors, soldiers, airmen, marines, guardians, and coast guardsmen separate or retire from active duty. This is a large group of highly motivated, smart, and loyal potential employees that have no idea that they can break into tech and the Salesforce ecosystem. 

First, I’m going to tell you a bit about my journey and then I’ll lay out resources for you and your team to tap into this talent goldmine. 

My Limited Duty Officer Class in front of the USS Constitution in Newport RI, circa 2011

My journey from sailor to Salesforce solution engineer

Why am I talking about this? 

Well,  a little over two years ago, I was in that same group of transitioning service members. I was coming up on 20 years of active duty service and was preparing for life after the Navy (Yes, I’m a retired sailor). I knew I didn’t want to be one of the guys who leaves the service only to come back as a Government employee — it just isn’t for me. 

I spent a lot of time mulling over my options, and I knew I wanted to break into tech. But that’s a nebulous destination at best with so many options (too many to count!). 

By now, you’re probably thinking…

“Jason, get to the point, I mean isn’t this blog supposed to be about marketing?”

Well, not in the traditional sense but be patient young grasshopper. 

Here I am reenlisting one of the best sailors I ever worked with. Reenlisting a sailor was a sacred honor I cherish to this day.

Introduction to big tech through military-sponsored program

In 2019 as I was planning my escape, er I mean, retirement, I applied to and was accepted into a program called Fourblock. It’s a program specifically designed to help veterans and transitioning Active Duty break into tech. 

We got to do some cool stuff like visiting the T-Mobile HQ, Microsoft Campus, Amazon (they are truly everywhere in Seattle), and meeting with and networking with Veteran Group Leaders at these Fortune 100 companies. 

We did resume reviews, interview prep, and networking! Pretty awesome stuff, right? I mean I had never seen a place that had craft beer ON TAP in the lunchroom, wild!

It was during this time in my Fourblock cohort when I was lamenting about breaking into tech without any tech skills (queue up imposter syndrome), and someone recommended Salesforce.

I jumped on Trailhead, created my profile, and got to work. ANNNND then the pandemic hit — my job got super crazy and I totally neglected Trailhead, Astro, and all the cool things I was starting to get hyped about with Salesforce. 

Learning Salesforce through the Merivis cohort program

Fast forward to Spring 2021 and I’m starting to panic about my post-Navy career. Then, after one fateful Veterati Mentorship phone call, I was directed to the Merivis website

I applied to and was accepted into Admin Cohort 20, and I achieved my Salesforce Administrator certification in June of 2021. 

It was through a Merivis contact, the amazing (and former Sercante Dragon) Hayley Tuller, that I was introduced to the leadership team at Sercante. And the rest is history. 

Team Sercante with Merivis Executive Director Kate Perez

Since joining Sercante in September 2021, I’ve added 2 more certifications and I truly love my job! 

I get to work with thought leaders in the Salesforce and Pardot (MCAE) space every day. And the best part is that it’s fully remote. My commute is the 15 seconds of walking downstairs to my office after taking my dogs out. 

What is Merivis?  

The name Merivis comes from the Latin roots of Merit and Force, Merivis is a non-profit Veteran’s Service Organization (VSO) that specializes in “Transforming military years into tech careers.”

 It was founded by Hector Perez, Kate Perez, and Joe Castro and focuses exclusively on helping veterans, military spouses (current and former), and transitioning service members break into the Salesforce Ecosystem. From Hector’s experience as a hiring manager at various tech companies, he recognized a growing talent gap that veterans could be trained and hired to fill, which inspired him, Kate, and Joe to found Merivis. 

Merivis provides no-cost training by Salesforce Certified Instructors to members on a wide range of certifications: 

  • Salesforce Administrator
  • Platform App Builder
  • CRM Analytics
  • MCAE (Pardot)
  • and more

Members of each cohort are paired up with a coach to help them with the technical side of understanding Salesforce and a mentor for accountability and guidance on job seeking and networking. 

Seriously, that one phone call with  Jeri Lim and her advice to check out Merivis changed my life. 

Why Veterans? (or Transitioning Military, or Mil Spouses?)

We all know and appreciate military veterans for the jobs they do while wearing a uniform. But what if I told you that even the most junior enlisted sailor has better project management skills than the kid who just graduated from college? 

Real-Talk: Any member of the military who has served for at least 2 years has been a project manager. And the same applies to military spouses. Military spouses are project managers, logistics experts, and financial gurus. No joke.  

The point I’m trying to make is that most, if not all, vets, transitioning service members, and military spouses have those “soft skills” you see on job posts. 

Hard skills versus soft skills 

Hard skills are the things that can be taught or learned — like coding, building automation, writing flows, building marketing campaigns, developing reports, etc. 

Soft skills are more abstract and tend to be hard to codify — like being a team player, adaptability (whoa boy is that a military requirement), authenticity, passion, and leadership. 

You can study a book on coding and retain the information and make use of the skills immediately, but it takes time and effort to put soft skills into practice. And it takes a lot more time to effectively use and master them. 

Ok, you’ve convinced me. So what’s next? 

I’ve only scratched the surface of what the veteran and mil-spouse community can bring to the table. And I could write a series of blogs about each group, vertical, or specialization that veterans and mil-spouses can excel in. 

However, to keep this more of a blog and less of a Doctoral Thesis, I’m going to sum things up for you. 

  1. Veterans, mil-spouses, and transitioning service members are often overlooked as a resource in the martech space and Salesforce ecosystem when searching for talent. 
  2. Training in technology is easy. Training in soft skills is hard. Vets and mil-spouses probably have the soft skills you’re looking for. 
  3. Merivis and other amazing VSOs provide no-cost technical training to vets, mil-spouses, and transitioning service members. 
  4. Finally, if you connect the dots, Merivis and other VSOs fill the skill gaps for vets, mil-spouses, and transitioning service members so they can come to the Salesforce ecosystem and find fulfilling careers. At the same time, they’re filling skill gaps that make it hard to hire people for technical specialty roles.

Technology career resources for military veterans

There are a number of great resources out there for companies looking to hire veterans and veterans looking to break into the tech industry. 

Here are some links:

My sincere goal was to introduce you to these wonderful organizations, bring awareness to this untapped talent resource, and share a little bit about my story.  

If you have any questions, feel free to hit me up on LinkedIn or drop a comment below.

Cheers!

Original article: Breaking into the Salesforce Ecosystem: A Military Veteran’s Story

©2022 The Spot. All Rights Reserved.

By |2022-07-07T20:51:00+00:00July 7th, 2022|Categories: Career Development, Community, Community Spotlight, Real Talk, revive|

The Spot: A Community Resource for Marketers on Salesforce

Your Marketing Automation Platform (MAP) doesn’t exist in a vacuum. And neither do we.

The Spot for Pardot is following a natural evolution we’re seeing in the marketing technology industry. As demand for integrations with MAPs increase and Marketing Operations Professionals (MOPs) are finally finding voices among the big players, we’ve shifted our focus to the MarTech stack as a whole.

We’re still The Spot for Pardot. But now we’re so much more.

Moving forward, you’ll find community resources for ALL marketers who use the Salesforce platform. The ones who use Pardot. Or Marketing Cloud. Or both. Or some other MAP they’re integrating with Sales Cloud.

We’ll share what we know about using marketing technology and the Salesforce platform together.

A new focus for “The Spot” (and a new name)

It started as a personal blog sharing quick tips and solutions from one Pardot user. Then others joined to share their knowledge. And more readers followed. Now it’s a community hub for marketers on Salesforce who work together to reach their goals. 

Here’s a message from the original The Spot blogger, Andrea Tarrell, to share how we got here.

A message from Andrea, OG blogger at The Spot

I am thrilled to announce a fully revamped, reimagined, relaunch of “The Spot.”  Shout out to the amazing marketing team at Sercante — especially Sarah, Ambre, and Christina — for bringing this to life.

The new site looks infinitely better than the old WordPress site I hacked together in 2017. 

But it’s much more than a face lift.  The content, authors, categorization, and overall focus are evolving to better serve you, dear reader — and I couldn’t be more excited about it.  

Where The Spot got its start

I started The Spot for Pardot in August of 2017.

It was a side project.

Actually, if I’m being honest — it was a bit of a stall tactic.

I was thinking about starting a business, but I was scared.  So, I started the blog instead.

As a marketer, I wrote hundreds of blog posts for various clients and employers, on everything from insurance best practices, to architecture, to industrial printing, to trucking firms, and more.

But I had never had a place to write about things that mattered to me.

I created The Spot as a place to express myself and share learnings, hot takes, and the occasional war story.  I half expected no one to read it.

But it picked up steam shockingly quickly.  Turns out that a lot of other marketers had been grappling with the exact same problems that kept me up at night.  And before I knew it, the blog became a magnet for my PEOPLE — the kinds of marketers that I want to work with, both as team members, clients, and community members.

The authors on The Spot: More insights from the best minds in MarTech

For the first two years of The Spot, it was just me penning posts.

But today, it is supported by authors from the Sercante team, and across the entire martech community.  (Shout out to Brittany Rhyme for being our first ever “guest post” back in 2018 and opening the flood gates!)

Do you have a perspective you’d like to share?  We welcome guest posts and paid, long-term contributor gigs.

The Name: Welcome to “The Spot”

To reflect our new focus, we’re dropping the word “Pardot” from our blog name.  Instead, you can just call us “The Spot.”  (And actually, most people called us that anyway.)

We’re keeping thespotforpardot.com as the URL right now for SEO juice, and will be phasing that out over the next 12 months.

What’s not changing: Our relentless zeal for learning & sharing

To recap — in addition to a new look for The Spot, you’ll now see:

You’ll also continue to see our team share content and resources through:

When I started The Spot back in 2017, I had no idea what it would grow into.  Thank you for being here, for sharing this content with your friends and colleagues, and for constantly challenging my team and I to bring our best to this community.  

Cheers to the next chapter!

Content on The Spot: Hello Marketing Cloud, martech & more

The Spot started out as content about Pardot with the goal of sharing insights to help marketers be successful on the Salesforce platform.

To meet that goal, we’ve branched out beyond Pardot. We’re covering topics and platforms like:

Expect to see a wave of new content covering all kinds of martech — especially other parts of Salesforce Marketing Cloud that we see growing in relevancy for savvy digital marketers. 

We’ve also added a categorization system to our posts. Now, it’s easier to browse and find what you’re looking for:

Why marketers on Salesforce need third-party resources

Yes, we realize Salesforce has Trailhead. And product-specific blog posts. And webinars. And all kinds of other resources. But you’re only getting information from the Salesforce perspective. 

You’re a real marketer with real-life challenges. And you know your tech stack includes more than just Salesforce products.

The Spot has resources to find solutions and better utilize all of your technology tools — all from the perspective of a marketer who uses the Salesforce platform.

On a mission to mobilize marketers

Our mission is simple — to provide an online home for marketers on Salesforce to learn and collaborate. It’s a central location to find Pardot resources across all levels — from getting started guides to launch an org to expert tips for advanced integrations that extend marketing technology stacks.

We want marketers to realize “what could be” and feel empowered to take their marketing campaigns and lead generation efforts to the next level. 

Get involved and claim your spot

Contributors from around the world represent all kinds of digital marketing specialties on The Spot. It’s filled with easy-to-digest (and sometimes cheeky) content for marketing professionals who use Salesforce and want to automate all the things.

Join us by getting involved and connecting with the community.

3 ways you can get involved with The Spot

  1. Become a contributor.
  2. Post an open job listing.
  3. Join the conversation in our Slack community group.

And remember to become a subscriber! The Spot newsletter delivers a healthy dose of martech to your inbox — and nothing more.

The post The Spot: A Community Resource for Marketers on Salesforce appeared first on The Spot for Pardot.

By |2022-03-29T11:30:38+00:00March 29th, 2022|Categories: Career Development, Community, Community Spotlight, Real Talk, revive|

How to Conquer Imposter Syndrome in the Pardot World

I seriously felt imposter syndrome as a professional in the Salesforce and Pardot community — but I overcame those feelings by learning everything I could through Pardot training courses and blogs.

As a new member to the Sercante team and overall Salesforce consulting ecosystem, I was struggling with imposter syndrome over the past few months. 

Part of that is because my journey with Pardot hasn’t been the most conventional. I had a big skill gap from taking two years off from using the platform. But, I’ve been able to combat imposter syndrome by sharpening my Pardot skills. 

My Pardot journey and the imposter syndrome that followed

Jordyn Jaffer
Jordyn Jaffer at Atlanta Braves Opening Day in 2019

I became an accidental Pardot admin back in 2018 when I was working for the Atlanta Braves. That’s when they implemented Salesforce and Pardot for customer and email marketing management. 

I learned as much as I could from our implementation partner and through modules on Salesforce Trailhead. But, I hadn’t yet achieved expert-level knowledge. And I didn’t feel like I could engage with the Pardot community due to my lack of knowledge in Pardot features the Braves didn’t use. 

I earned my Pardot Specialist Certification while working for the Atlanta Braves. But, I decided to leave the Atlanta area in late 2019. I moved to the Northeast, which is where I’m from.

Pardot specialist certification

Learning Pardot while working as a Salesforce admin

I quickly found a job as a Salesforce & FinancialForce administrator for a specific department at Northeastern University, my alma mater. Northeastern didn’t use Pardot, so there was no way for me to continue learning within an actual Pardot environment. 

I knew I wanted to get back into the Pardot ecosystem eventually, but I didn’t know when.  So, I applied to join the inaugural Salesforce Marketing Champions class as a way to prove to myself that I can still be attached to Pardot. 

I regretted submitting my application right away. I didn’t think Salesforce would pick someone with less than two years of Pardot experience and who wasn’t even working with Pardot at the time. Luckily, I was chosen to join the Marketing Champions class and soon after achieved my Pardot Consultant Certification by continuing to study as much as I could.

pardot consultant certification

Finding my way back to working with Pardot

sercante logo

Fast forward to September 2021, an old colleague from the Atlanta Braves recommended that I join the Sercante team. I was fortunate enough to be offered the job and joined a team that mainly focuses on guided implementations with clients. 

After learning more about the members of not only my team, but the entire company, I slipped back into being anxious and wondering if my boss would believe that I didn’t know as much about Pardot as I said during my interview. There were so many concepts that I didn’t have actual experience with. I worried about being able to articulate things correctly during my client calls. 

Fortunately, I found my way to the right place. There are a vast number of resources available within the Pardot community (and within Sercante) that helped me fill the gaps. These Pardot resources eased my anxiety, and I know I’ll use everything I learn for the rest of my time in the Pardot ecosystem.

What is imposter syndrome?

You just read the long story about my Pardot journey and may be wondering, “What is imposter syndrome anyway?” 

As I referenced above, imposter syndrome can be feelings of anxiety over not knowing certain topics and being called out for that knowledge gap. It can also come in the form of putting yourself down even though you have evidence of your success and knowledge. 

If you have ever felt like luck was the main factor when reflecting on your achievements, then you may be struggling with another form of imposter syndrome.

Why people in tech jobs experience imposter syndrome

A 2018 study showed that 58% of people working in technology jobs experience imposter syndrome. Within that survey, 66.88% of people working at Salesforce said they have experienced the feeling of imposter syndrome.

One reason that people in tech feel may like impostors is because they have a different background from the people they work with. Or they may have recently started working in a new position and they are feeling doubtful about their ability to take on new responsibilities and manage new tools.

Imposter syndrome is usually prevalent within the Pardot ecosystem. That’s because there’s limited knowledge of the platform outside of those who use it. Like other Salesforce cloud admins, many Pardot admins get thrown into the role when their company migrates or upgrades their marketing automation tool. 

The “accidental admin” roles can make people feel like they’re on their own and don’t have anyone to discuss issues or ideas with. It can also be very depleting to train your coworkers on a platform that you don’t have much experience on. Without having other companies or admins to benchmark against, you may believe that you cannot possibly be considered as a valuable resource in the Pardot community.

How to continue to sharpen your Pardot skills and combat imposter syndrome

If you read “Pardot Admins & the Lurking Impostors” back in 2017, written by Andrea Tarrell (the CEO of Sercante), then you may already have an idea of how you can fight your imposter syndrome. We’ll be looking into those ideas in detail to help us determine the best strategies to hone your Pardot skills.

Here are my favorite resources for keeping my Pardot and digital marketing skillset up-to-date so I feel more confident in my work.

Salesforce Trailhead!

Trailhead logo

Trailhead is typically the first place I recommend to anyone who wants to learn more about Salesforce as a whole or an individual product offered by Salesforce. Although there is not a lot of content on Pardot as there may be on other products, there are still a couple trails and a Trailmix you can use to enhance your skills:

Salesforce Pardot community resources

Salesforce Pardot community resources (these are created and hosted by the Pardot team at Salesforce) are also a great place to learn information on various Pardot features.

There are tons of free webinars and downloadable content, as well as a detailed outline of what you need to know when first getting started with Pardot. I also highly recommend joining the Pardot Community Group where you can ask questions and get answers from other Pardot users around the world.

Pardot user groups

Along the same lines as using resources from Pardot, you can also join a Pardot user group that is based where you live. These are user groups that are led by community members who go through the Trailblazer Community User Group process.

It is very easy to see what user groups are active in various areas by going to the Trailblazer Community Groups page. I recommend checking out other areas as well as most user groups are still meeting virtually and are open to anyone to join. Most user groups are preparing their 2022 schedule right now, but here are six of the most active Pardot User Groups, in North America, from 2021 to look out for:

Get Salesforce certified

As Andrea previously mentioned in her article, “If a cert makes you feel better, do it.” Getting certified in various Salesforce products and features has helped me personally combat my imposter syndrome as it shows me that I do know my shit when it comes to certain topics.

The Pardot Specialist certification is the first cert recommended for anyone who has experience as a Pardot Admin. If you feel as though you are prepared to take the exam by the end of January 2022, you should take advantage of Salesforce’s 30% offer to save some money when signing up for your exam. I also recommend reading my colleague’s post on her tips to pass the Pardot Specialist exam.

Pardot Admin Bootcamp training course

Finally, I recommend signing up for Pardot training sessions from a trusted instructor or Salesforce partner to learn about topics more in-depth from Pardot experts.

Sercante offers Bootcamps for Pardot Admins and mini-workshops on specific Pardot topics. These courses are run by the consultants and experts who work at Sercante and provide hands-on experience that will help you retain the knowledge you learn.

Get the Pardot skills you need to feel a sense of belonging

Imposter syndrome is something that most people will have to deal with at some point in their professional lives. I know I have experienced it in each of my roles and am still struggling with it in my current role at Sercante. 

When it comes to battling imposter syndrome within the Pardot ecosystem, there are many resources that you can use to continually improve your Pardot skills and prove to yourself and others that you do belong.

If you are experiencing imposter syndrome as a Pardot admin, user, or consultant and have additional tips on how to combat it, we would love to hear from you in the comments!

The post How to Conquer Imposter Syndrome in the Pardot World appeared first on The Spot for Pardot.

By |2022-01-06T21:15:01+00:00January 6th, 2022|Categories: Career Development, Community, Community Spotlight, Real Talk, revive|