With Salesforce CRM, the Livongo B2B sales and marketing teams had a great core technology at their fingertips. They also had Pardot that could be leveraged for their marketing campaigns – if it had been configured and integrated to work with their Salesforce instance. But with their Salesforce instance having been reconfigured multiple times by many people across the years plus custom code installed that changed core structures, things didn’t always work the way Salesforce was initially designed or that the users could understand. Because of the inconsistencies and complexities, every sales rep and marketer had created their own workaround, resulting in essential data living in a plethora of “shadow databases” – aka: spreadsheets. Unfortunately, this meant that data needed to accurately target and market to prospects, customers and partners was not available centrally.
In order to address their needs, we needed deep understanding of the root causes; use that insight to make detailed recommendations for how to fix now; and, determine what could be implemented (both technically and in business process) to avoid the issues recurring in future. The recommendations were adopted by the Livongo team and the MLY team went to work implementing. This included targeting content and improving the end user experience for Salesforce users, developing an automated lead distribution process and architecting/building the data structures for Pardot and Salesforce to integrate the two.
One of the key elements identified as essential to success was developing the concept, infrastructure and business processes for data governance. Just because you can make a change to a database doesn’t mean you should. Just because it is easier to move data out to a spreadsheet to aggregate doesn’t mean it is the right answer to solving a reporting issue in the long-term. With the establishment of a representative committee of the different stakeholders in the systems, along with identifying and initiating the appropriate controls/guidelines/processes, Livongo’s team had an approach that could grow and adapt with their needs.
This project had two major phases: 1) Research and Analysis; and, 2) Implement Recommended/Approved Changes.
For the first phase, Discovery included reviews and analysis of people, processes and systems. This included extensive analysis of the data and their structures – data inside and outside the Salesforce Sales Cloud – and how it is used, compared against how it needed to be used. Representatives from across the user spectrum were interviewed extensively to truly understand how they work. The specific answers in the recommendation document provided their candid responses to our questions, because we had promised them (and lived up to our promise) to not directly attribute it to the respondent. We tracked and documented the existing Salesforce “system change management” approach. Since Salesforce Sales Cloud and Pardot have inherently different data structures, we identified and documented exactly what would need to be created/changed in each in order to have them connect properly and produce repeatable/reportable results.
Based on the research and analysis phase, we put together an extensive findings document with specific recommended actionable items – some that could be rolled out within the first week to kick start change and show users we heard them, while implementing the more extensive changes. Upon review with the leadership/project teams, recommendations were approved and we went into build mode. Pardot was configured and Salesforce elements created to engage. For the end user changes in Salesforce (page layouts; user profiles; help/FAQ support; etc.), we shared drafted changes and provided surveys to all B2B sales, marketing and partner team members to gather insight and feedback along the way.
Most importantly for future success, the Data Governance Team was launched involved throughout the creation of the systemic changes.