Engagement programs 101: Troubleshooting Marketo engagement campaigns

Lead Nurture Illustration
Adam Kemlo
Lead Consultant - EMEA & APAC


In our blog series: Marketo engagement programs 101 we’ve so far looked at the benefits of engagement programs and when to use them, how to create an optimised Marketo engagement program, and the main challenges associated with Marketo engagement programs.

To wrap up this series, we’ve assembled some of the questions we often get asked on this topic and their answers:

Q: What’s the benefit of adding programs vs. emails to a stream?

Embedded programs allow you to have more powerful segmentation capabilities e.g there’s an additional set of smart rules so you can be really specific about who receives that piece of content.

For example, if you only want to target directors with a specific event vs. practitioners, the additional rules will help you to pick out that target group from the data points you have in your database. 

An email won’t let you add this additional logic, so embedded programs can be really useful for getting granular about who gets what. 

Q: How do I manage the time between each program send?

Once you’ve set the time of your first send, your cadence setting manages how often that stream will send out content. Try not to pause and change cadences between sends, as it can get messy. Instead focus on routing leads into different streams depending on behaviours and data points.

It can also be difficult to use both batch-and-blast programs and engagement programs to the same audience, at the same time – we wouldn’t suggest a hybrid approach on an everyday basis.

Q: How do I manage the cadence on multiple engagement programs?

Check your Marketo communications limit. This will dictate an email send limit across all non-operational programs e.g a lead will only be able to receive x number of non-operational emails from you in x period.

Another way to make sure you’re not over-communicating is to utilise preferences within the transition rules, or embedded program settings within your streams.

Q: How many streams should I use? What should go in each stream?

The power and effectiveness of your engagement program comes from your ability to segment your audience and customise your streams. 

The number of streams and content will depend on your engagement program goals. For lead nurturing we love a revenue model-driven structure that lets you tailor your messaging depending on how far along the buying journey a lead is. 

Aligning content to your revenue model improves engagement with leads, as you’re giving them content that’s relevant to their needs – nurturing them through the funnel. 

Learn how we can help you to develop a Marketo Engage revenue model aligned to your business goals.

Q: Is there a limit on or specific number of engagement programs I should be using?

Again – the number of engagement programs you need will depend on your campaign goals and objectives.

In each instance of Marketo you have a limit of 100 engagement programs – so there’s plenty to play with!

For more further useful information on engagement programs, including how to align your lead nurturing to your buying cycle stages, watch the full webinar on-demand!