Salesforce Connection

What: The Salesforce connection allows you to sync visitor data between BlueConic and Salesforce (back and forth) in real-time.

About BlueConic: BlueConic is a Customer Data Platform that harnesses the data required to power the recognition of an individual at each interaction, and then synchronizes their intent across the marketing ecosystem. Click here to learn more.

Why: CRM data integrated into BlueConic is prime material for segmentation and personalization. BlueConic features a unique data collection engine that captures data at the customer level for known and anonymous users. For known users, or once a user becomes known, having this data in your CRM will arm your call center and other communication platforms with relevant details about your customers' explicit and implicit intents.

Introduction

Salesforce (www.salesforce.com) is a customer relationship management system that, among other things, provides a service that collects sales lead and contact information and stores it in rich visitor profiles. BlueConic is able to synchronize its own information with Salesforce using the Salesforce Connection, enriching the available information on both sides. The Salesforce Connection provides matching between BlueConic profiles and Salesforce Lead, Contact or Person objects, allows asymmetric synchronization, supports Lead creation, and lets the sales team see live BlueConic information in Salesforce.

The following components are required to configure the connection:

Setting up the connection

Setting up a connection between BlueConic and Salesforce actually consists of several steps:

The following sections explain these steps in more detail.

Create a Salesforce connection

Start by creating a Salesforce connection in BlueConic:

  1. In BlueConic, open "Connections".
  2. Click [Add connection].
  3. Select "Salesforce Connection" to create a new Salesforce connection.
  4. Enter a title for the connection, e.g. "Salesforce".

Having created the Salesforce connection in BlueConic, we can start to configure it.

 

Configure BlueConic API Access

Salesforce needs to be allowed to connect to BlueConic to instantly send updates from its side or to retrieve and display information.

  1. Think up and enter a new Consumer Key. This key will be used to set up a secure connection between BlueConic and Salesforce. The key may contain uppercase, lowercase and underscore characters and numbers, for example: "2017Salesforce" or "My_CRM_system".
  2. Copy and paste your Consumer Key to a temporary note pad, as you will need it to configure Salesforce later.
  3. Click [Generate Secret] to generate a private secret key based on your consumer key.
  4. Copy and paste your Consumer Secret to a temporary location, as you will need it to configure Salesforce later. Do this now, because the secret will be hidden once you navigate away from the connection!
  5. Click [Save] to store your changes.

You can always generate a new secret key. Doing so will invalidate all previously generated keys which will stop an already active connection from working.

Having set up BlueConic API Access, Salesforce will now be allowed to connect to BlueConic. Time to set up that part of the connection in Salesforce.

Install the Salesforce managed package

With the initial setup on the BlueConic side done and the important data copied in your notepad, it is now time to inform Salesforce that you are going to work with a remote site.

  1. Open Salesforce.
  2. In the quick search field above the left menu pane, type "Remote Site" and select "Remote Site Settings".
  3. Click "New Remote Site".
  4. Name the remote site, for example "BlueConic".
  5. For remote site address enter the URL of your BlueConic (e.g. "https://taylorshop.blueconic.net/").
  6. Make sure the remote site is active.
  7. Save

Next, install and configure the Salesforce managed package for BlueConic. This will allow Salesforce to send information to BlueConic.

Find the BlueConic app on the AppExchange or click the button below, click "Get It Now" and follow the instructions.

sf-appexchange.png

Install the package for all users:

  1. After the installation you need to fill out the details that you copied and pasted to your notepad earlier:
    • Consumer Key: Enter the key that you thought up and copied.
    • Consumer Secret: Enter the secret that you generated and copied.
    • Server: Enter the BlueConic URL (e.g. "https://taylorshop.blueconic.net/")
    • Connection: Enter the connection id bit of the BlueConic URL that you copied. It will look like "d5c24bf2-b980-4d28-ba7c-2f118e42d0f2" and consists only of letters, numbers and dashes (so no "=" or "&").
  2. Click [Save] to finish configuring the managed package.

 

Salesforce can now send information to BlueConic, although it can't receive anything from BlueConic yet. We will configure the necessary connection settings in the next step.

Configure Salesforce connection settings

To be able to send information from BlueConic to Salesforce, BlueConic needs to be authorized. It is recommended to not use your own user but instead use a separate user for authorizing BlueConic. This way your Salesforce reports will not be influenced. Using a separate user may require you to adjust assignment rules or other Salesforce settings.

Take the following steps:

  1. Log out from Salesforce.
  2. In BlueConic under "Salesforce connection settings", enter your Salesforce instance URL (e.g. "https://na25.salesforce.com")
  3. Click the button [Connect with Salesforce].
  4. A popup opens where you can log in to Salesforce. Log in with the separate user (recommended), or with your own user. After logging in Salesforce will ask for permissions.
  5. Click "Allow Access".
  6. If you want to limit the information exchange to visitors that are part of a specific segment, select a segment other than "All Visitors".
  7. Save the connection.

Your connection should not show an error, which means that BlueConic can now send updates to Salesforce. 

Configure the Salesforce page layout

Technically you are done now; two-way communication between Salesforce and BlueConic is now possible.

However, with a little extra configuration you can give your Sales team advanced access to BlueConic information without having to synchronize all data to Salesforce.

The Live Profile Viewer is an optional object that you can add to a page layout. As the Salesforce page is being loaded, it will request live information from BlueConic and make it available for inspection.

Set up the Live Profile Viewer as follows:

  1. In Salesforce, click "setup" in the top right.
  2. In the left menu select "Build > Customize > Leads > Page Layouts"
  3. Click "Edit" for the layout that you want to add the Live Profile Viewer to.
  4. From the "Fields" bar drag and drop the element "Section" to the "Lead Detail" block.
  5. In the popup:
    1. Enter a name for the section, for example "BlueConic Live Profile viewer".
    2. Select 1-column Layout.
    3. Press [OK].
  6. In the layout bar, scroll the menu in the left down to select "VisualForce pages"
  7. Drag the "LeadProfile" page to the newly created Section.
  8. Save the layout.
  9. Hover over the blue LeadProfile area of the BlueConic Live Profile and click the wrench icon in the top right to modify its settings.

  10. Save the layout.
  11. Repeat this for all layouts and also for Contacts.

 

Using the connection 

Now that you have a working connection between BlueConic and Salesforce, it is time to define exactly what will be synchronized between the two. You can determine:

  • What data to collect from Salesforce
  • What data to deliver to Salesforce
  • When to create a new Lead in Salesforce
  • How to match profiles in BlueConic to Leads, Contacts or Persons in Salesforce
  • What BlueConic information to show in the Salesforce page layout.

The following sections delve deeper into the options that are at your disposal for synchronizing BlueConic and Salesforce.

 

Collect settings

The collect settings allow you to determine which fields will be collected from Salesforce and how they will be mapped to BlueConic profile properties. You can add variables by clicking the [Add Variable] button.

Collecting variables is optional; if you do not need anything from Salesforce in BlueConic profile properties it is okay to leave this section empty. 

Each variable has the following options:

Salesforce Object Type(s)
Indicate whether the field belongs to a Lead, Contact, Person or any combination of these in Salesforce.
Salesforce Field Label
Select the field from Salesforce. Note that availability of fields is dependent on the selected object types. 
Profile Property
Select the BlueConic profile property into which the Salesforce value should be collected by typing its name or by using advanced search to find it.
Merge Rule

The merge rule setting determines how a value collected from Salesforce will be stored into the BlueConic property. These are the options:

  • Set: Copy the value from Salesforce exactly to the profile property, overwriting the previous value.
  • Set if empty: Copy the value from Salesforce exactly to the profile property but only if it is empty. If the profile property already has a value do nothing.
  • Add: Add the value from Salesforce to the list of values already in the profile property if it hasn't been added yet, omitting duplicates.
  • Sum: Numerically add the value from Salesforce to the value in the profile property. If the profile property was empty, it will be regarded as value 0. Only works for profile properties and values that contain integer numbers.

To duplicate a variable click the copy icon, or to delete a variable click the delete icon on the right hand side.

 

Deliver settings

Use the deliver settings to determine which BlueConic values will be delivered to Salesforce and to which fields. You can add variables by selecting the type "Profile Property", "Segments" (to deliver the list of segment names a profile is part of) or "Permission Level" (to deliver the permission level of a profile) and clicking the [Add Variable] button.

Warning
Make sure you always deliver all fields that are marked as "mandatory" in Salesforce! If you leave out mandatory fields, Salesforce will block the connection from creating any new leads as mandatory information is missing.

Delivering variables is optional; if you do not need anything from BlueConic in Salesforce it is okay to leave this section empty.

Each variable has the following options:

Variable
Select the BlueConic profile property whose value should be delivered to Salesforce by typing its name or by using advanced search to find it. If you added a variable of type "Segments" or "Permission Level" the variable has already been preselected for you.
Salesforce Object Type(s)
Indicate whether the field belongs to a Lead, a Contact, a Person or any combination of those in Salesforce.
Salesforce Field Label
Select the "Field Name" from Salesforce. Note that availability of fields is dependent on the selected object types. 
Merge Rule

The merge rule setting determines how a value from the BlueConic profile property will be stored into the Salesforce field. These are the options:

  • Set: Copy the value from the profile property exactly to the field in Salesforce, overwriting the previous value. If the profile property contains a list of values and the Salesforce field is a text field all values will be concatenated into one string with a semicolon as separator (e.g. "value a; value b; value c").
  • Set if empty: Copy the value from the profile property exactly to the field in Salesforce but only if it is empty. If the profile property already has a value do nothing.
  • Add: Add the value from the profile property to the list of values already in the field in Salesforce if it hasn't been added yet, omitting duplicates. The Salesforce field should be a Picklist (Multi-Select). Due to constraints in Salesforce there can only be a maximum of 100 value entries in the list and each value can only be 35 characters long.
  • Sum: Numerically add the value from Salesforce to the value in the profile property. If the profile property was empty, it will be regarded as value 0. Only works for profile properties that contain numbers.

To duplicate a variable click the copy icon, or to delete a variable click the delete icon on the right hand side.

 

Creation of new leads

Under creation of new leads you decide when it is okay for BlueConic to create a new Lead object in Salesforce and deliver all information subsequently.

Select all required profile properties; these will need to have a value in BlueConic before a new Lead is created in Salesforce.

This section is optional; if you do not want BlueConic to create any new Lead objects in Salesforce, do not select any profile properties.

Activate the checkbox to automatically assign leads according to the Salesforce lead assignment rules.

 

Matching criteria

Under matching criteria you decide when a profile in BlueConic matches a Lead, Contact or Person in Salesforce. Do this by adding variables that will match BlueConic profile properties to Salesforce fields.

Each variable has the following options:

Profile Property
Select the BlueConic profile property whose value should be matched to Salesforce by typing its name or by using advanced search to find it.
Salesforce Object Type(s)
Indicate whether the field belongs to a Lead, Contact, Person or any combination of these in Salesforce.
Salesforce Field Label
Select the field from Salesforce. Note that this is dependent of the selected object types.

To duplicate a variable click the copy icon, or to delete a variable click the delete icon on the right hand side.

When you add multiple variables, a match is found if any of the profile properties matches its Salesforce field. Synchronization only occurs when a single match is found. When multiple matches are found in Salesforce for a BlueConic profile, nothing will be synchronized.

BlueConic data blocks

BlueConic data can enrich the Lead, Contact or Person detail information in Salesforce by displaying live information from BlueConic. See above on how to configure the Salesforce page layout to display live BlueConic information. Upon opening the details page in Salesforce the VisualForce component that displays the blocks requests the most recent profile information for this particular Lead, Contact or Person from BlueConic and displays the information. The profile information will be refreshed whenever the page is reloaded.

Select the profile properties that you want to be displayed in Salesforce by searching for them.

The blocks can be reordered by clicking the left and right arrows in the blue bar.

In the Salesforce Lead, Contact or Person details page you will see something like this:

The "Segments" and "Other Profile Properties" blocks are automatically added. The former displays a list of all segments a profile is a member of. With the latter you can search for profile properties and inspect their value.

 

Synchronization

As soon as you activate and save the Salesforce connection in BlueConic, scheduled runs will start to synchronize the two systems regularly. Due to restrictions on the number of Salesforce API calls synchronization from BlueConic to Salesforce is not instant and data is pooled to make effective use of the connection. Updates from Salesforce to BlueConic are instant.

Click the "Show History" link to see previous runs.

If there was a problem during synchronization it will be mentioned under "Details". When you hover over a run a "Download log" icon will appear on the right. Click the icon to download the log for that particular run.

The Salesforce connection is a certified plugin.