Prepare for the Journey
After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:
- Describe how to connect Advertising Studio to external ad accounts.
- Explain how to create and populate an advertising audience.
A super-motivated Leung plans to implement NTO’s campaign using Email Studio, Advertising Studio, and Journey Builder. But she’s uncertain about where to start. Chinua is here to help.
He maps out the high-level implementation tasks in the order he and Leung complete them.
- Advertising Studio: Connect Advertising Studio to NTO’s Facebook ad account.
- Email Studio: Create a data extension for the hiking shoe email.
- Advertising Studio: Create the Facebook audiences.
- Email Studio: Create the hiking shoe promotional email.
- Journey Builder: Implement the customer journey.
- Advertising Studio: Implement Facebook lookalikes.
The NTO campaign includes Facebook advertising that targets unengaged email subscribers and cross-sells to customers who make a purchase. For this to work, Advertising Studio must connect and securely send target audience data to Facebook. NTO has a Facebook ad account, but Advertising Studio isn’t aware of it.
To connect Advertising Studio to NTO’s Facebook ad account, Chinua must provide the account credentials of an NTO Facebook ad account authorized user. He prefers to use his Facebook ad account, which is tied to his Get Cloudy email address: email@example.com. But he’s run into a snag. His account isn’t authorized to access NTO’s Facebook ad account.
He explains the problem to the NTO admin who’s responsible for its Facebook ad account administration. The admin promptly sets up Chinua as an authorized user of NTO’s Facebook ad account. The admin specifies the email address tied to Chinua’s Facebook ad account, firstname.lastname@example.org, and gives him Page Advertiser permissions.
Now Chinua can configure the connection. From the Advertising Studio dropdown menu, he selects Advertising Audiences.
On the audiences page, he selects the Administration tab (1). Only users with Advertising Studio Admin privileges see this tab.
On the administration page, he clicks the Facebook icon (2). He’s prompted to enter ad account login credentials and other configuration details. He uses the login credentials for the account that NTO’s admin authorized, email@example.com. Now Advertising Studio can securely send contact data to the Facebook Ads network. Advertising Studio supports several other networks, including Google and LinkedIn, and also supports ad exchanges. To target audiences on ad exchanges, Chinua can send audiences to a demand-side platform (DSP) or data management platform (DMP)—typically using an onboarding partner. This type of third-party onboarding is only largely available in the United States.
Chinua points out, “Contact data flow is unidirectional, from Marketing Cloud to ad networks. External ad networks don’t send ad performance data back to Marketing Cloud. Performance data is typically available directly from the ad network.”
Leung’s design has two initial audiences, one for email and one to seed the Facebook lookalikes search. Chinua creates those now.
NTO has a master subscriber list that contains all of its contacts. It’s stored in the NTO_All_Subscribers data extension. Leung’s email audience contains a subset of the contacts in the master list. At this point, Leung is a bit confused about the difference between advertising audiences and data extensions. Chinua explains: “Broadly speaking, ‘advertising audience’ is a generic term for a group of consumers who are part of the same target market. In Advertising Studio, the term also refers to a group of contacts associated with an advertising channel, such as Facebook and Google.”
He continues, “Marketing Cloud stores advertising audience info, such as email addresses, in database tables known as data extensions. You can use a data extension to store sendable subscriber data and also relational data, such as purchases, inventory, and rewards program data. In NTO’s campaign, we create a data extension for the email audience that contains a subset of the contacts in NTO_All_Subscribers. For Facebook, we create an advertising audience and populate it with contact info from an existing ‘top purchasers’ data extension.”
They get to work on the email data extension. Chinua launches Email Studio, then selects Data Extensions from the Subscribers submenu.
He clicks the Create button on the data extensions page. A Create Data Extension form pops up. To populate the data extension with relevant contacts from NTO’s master subscriber list, he can either run an SQL query or use data filters. A data filter can be used to segment a data extension. For example, use a data filter to extract all the subscribers in a data extension who purchased boots or who live in Japan. This is exactly what he needs, so he selects Filtered Data Extension and clicks OK.
He’s prompted to select a source data extension. He clicks through the folders (1) to locate and select NTO_All_Subscribers (2) and clicks OK (3).
On the next form, he sets up filter criteria: customers who purchased hiking shoes more than 6 months ago. He saves the filter criteria, names the data extension hiking_shoes_email_audience_DE, and saves it. Email Studio builds the audience and displays a summary page. We now have a populated data extension for our email audience to use when we implement the customer journey in Journey Builder.
For more details about creating email data extensions and importing data into extensions, complete the Email Creation and Sending Trailhead module.
Next, Chinua sets up the Facebook lookalike seed audience in Advertising Studio. From the app dropdown menu, he selects Advertising Audiences.
On the Advertising Audiences page, he clicks the Create Audience button. The Create New Audience form appears.
He names the audience
Facebook_lookalike_source_audience, enters a description, and sets the ad network Destination to Facebook. For Ad Account, he selects CToure, the username for his Facebook ad account.
Because this is the first time he’s using his Facebook ad account in Advertising Studio, he’s prompted to accept Facebook’s terms of service. He clicks the Facebook Terms of Service link. The Facebook terms page opens in new browser window.
He clicks Accept and a success message appears.
Back on the Create New Audience form, he clicks Configure and the data source configuration page appears. He tells Leung, “We now have our Facebook audience, but it’s empty. We must populate it with top purchaser info.”
He has a few data source types to choose from: a list or data extension that was created in another Marketing Cloud app, an existing Contacts list, or a custom contacts list that he can create. He explains to Leung, “There’s an existing data extension that’s perfect for this scenario, NTO_Top_Purchasers. It contains email addresses, purchase info, and demographic info—everything Facebook needs to search for lookalikes.”
To view the existing data extensions, he chooses List or Data Extension (1). From the list of existing data extensions, he locates the NTO_Top_Purchasers (2), and clicks Select. Next, he maps source attributes to Facebook identifiers.
He saves that audience info and is prompted to choose a refresh option. Chinua chooses daily refresh (1), and clicks Activate (2). When the campaign executes, the new audience is dynamically populated with Facebook users who are similar to NTO’s top purchasers.
Chinua set up this channel-specific audience for Facebook. By selecting a different value for Destination, he can create audiences for other ad platforms, such as Google AdWords and LinkedIn.
It’s time for some creative work. Leung gets in the driver’s seat and launches Email Studio. She’s ready to jump in and create the hiking shoes promotional email.
As she steps through the creation tasks, she’s prompted to select a subscriber list. She chooses the data extension Chinua created for the email target audience, hiking_shoes_email_audience_DE, and saves the email. It’s ready to go out to the contacts identified in the data extension.