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How to create a Customer Journey in Dynamics 365 for Marketing

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing has amazing capabilities that allow you to build from scratch a complete customer journey utilizing a simple drag-and-drop interface.

Marketing Campaigns are one of the core activities needed to gather prospects and convert them into customers.

The most popular practice to bring awareness of a brand or a newly released product is an Email Campaign. Companies usually acquire an email list from an online provider. In other cases, companies build an email database utilizing a newsletter approach.

However, having a massive email list doesn’t mean a campaign will be successful, obviously. There are several factors that determine its success but one of the most important is the design of the Customer Journey.

Today, I’m going to show you how to create a complete Customer Journey in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing.

 

1) Create a Segment

Segments are the contacts who you will engage with your Marketing Campaign. You can not launch a Customer Journey within Dynamics 365 without creating a segment first, so let’s get started:

– On the main panel, go to the left menu and select “Segments”.

– Now select “New segment” and proceed to fill the required information in the “General” tab.

The General tab information doesn’t impact the Segment. However, I do recommend utilizing a key name that you can recognize quickly later on, as the Segment will be saved in your Dynamics 365 configuration.

Now, let’s talk about the types of segments:

  • Dynamic Segment: This type of segment follows a query designed to automatically bring the contacts from your CRM based on your search criteria. This is the best approach if you are planning a large email campaign (at least one with 100 or more contacts).
  • Static Segment: Manually choose each contact utilizing a filter. This one is recommended for small email campaigns (with less than 20 emails).
  • Compound Segment: This segment type allows you to combine one or more existing segments into a brand new one. This type is usually used when you want to start a new campaign utilizing multiple segments, but personally, I think that for this scenario an easier choice is to create a new Dynamic Segment.

We are going to use a Dynamic Segment as an example.

Go to the “Definition” tab and select “designer”, this shows a simple query that allows you to choose each field and filter your segment accordingly. for this example, we are going to create a segment for all our contacts that live in Miami.

Once completed, click on “Check for errors” at the top bar and if everything is okay, click on “Go live”.

Our segment is ready to go! Now, let’s create the email.

2) Create the email

Go to the main dashboard of Dynamics 365 for Marketing and select “Marketing Emails” and then select “New”.

You can create an email from scratch utilizing the drag-and-drop designer canvas, however, Dynamics 365 for Marketing provides several email templates segmented by Market Type, Purpose or Visual Style. Let’s use a default template for this example:

Change the email text from the template by double-clicking it, for the images, click them and use the “search icon” to upload or find the image you want.

Remember to give the email a name and subject.

Once you finish personalizing your email, click on “Check for errors” and then on “Go Live”.

3) Create the Customer Journey

Now that we have our segment and our email, we are ready to launch a simple Customer Journey on Microsoft Dynamics 365.

In the main Dashboard, go to the left bar and click on “Customer Journey” and then select “New” in the top bar.

Just like emails, Dynamics 365 for Marketing provides several Customer Journey templates based on the goal and the market type, for this example, we are going to select a Blank one and create a simple journey.

In order to facilitate user adoption, Dynamics 365 for Marketing has the same drag-and-drop designer canvas for almost every capability.

Drag the segment icon from the toolbox and drop it on the designer canvas. You must start with a segment in every Customer Journey.

Click on the segment and go to properties on the right. There, click on “look for segment” and select the one we just created.

We have defined who is going to receive our emails created with Dynamics 365, now, let’s build the journey.

From the Toolbox tab, drag and drop the Marketing Email icon. Just like we did with the segment, click it and in the properties tab, click on “Look for Marketing Email”. Then, select the one we just created.

With this information your Customer Journey is ready to go, however, Dynamics 365 lets us add a Trigger.

Adding a Trigger allows the Customer Journey to automatically execute an action based on the prospect interaction of your criteria.

Select the Trigger tile on the toolbox and drop it into the canvas.

As you can tell, your email will be divided into two routes, you can assign criteria for each one. In this example, we are going to divide it as follows: prospects who opened the email and prospects who didn’t.

Click on the Trigger tile in your canvas and go to the properties tab on the right. Here, we can choose the criteria we want for this Trigger.

Timeout is how much time after the email delivery you want to wait for the Trigger to act.

For example, if we set 5 Days, this means the Trigger will act 5 days after the first email was delivered.

You can set several Rules within Dynamics 365, such as clicks, opened or forwarded.

In this example, I’m setting “Email Opened” which means the contacts who opened the Email are going to the “Yes” route. The ones who didn’t, to the “No” route.

Dynamics 365 for Marketing lets you assign different actions such as reminders, contact creation or a follow-up email just like I showed in the pictures. I assigned a follow-up email to the “Yes” route and a different approach email for the “no” route.

Don’t forget to give it a name and schedule it using the “start date and time” tab at the top.

Click on “Go Live” and we are done! You have successfully created a Costumer Journey with Dynamics 365 for Marketing.

Hope this blog was insightful for you!

If you want to learn more about Dynamics 365 for Marketing or if you want to schedule a demo, feel free to reach out to us, one of our experts will gladly help.

David Ramirez

David A. Ramírez is the Marketing Manager of Pangea Group. He has worked with SAP and is now working with Dynamics 365, providing a fresh perspective to take full advantage of the Microsoft Dynamics 365 suite of solutions.
David Ramirez

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