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What are the 5 Best Practices for ClickDimensions to Streamline your Marketing Automation?

Many people have reached out and asked about better ways to manage their marketing automation efforts in ClickDimensions. The following is a compilation of the 5 best practices that all ClickDimensions stakeholders should be thinking about on a regular basis.   

1. Creating Great HTML for email marketing takes more than just knowing the code

    • It’s important to never create HTML as complex as you would for a webpage when designing your email content. This is due to the various email clients on the web that display HTML emails differently and do not handle complexity very well. Keep it simpleit’s always better! 
    • Make sure you test your HTML for emails in all major web browsers including at minimum, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, and Google Chrome. If the presentation isn’t right in any of these browsers, it’s likely not presentable in other existing email programs.  
    • Make sure your emails are no wider than 600 pixels. This is a safe width for most email programs.  
    • Don’t bother using embedded Flash, JavaScript, or ActiveX. It’s been proven that these controls are not as reliable and consistent in HTML emails.  
    • Try to use the fonts provided by ClickDimenions, as they are web-safe fonts. If you must use a different font, please make sure your HTML provides an alternate web-safe font in case the recipient’s email program does not support your primary font.  
    • Avoid using bullet points since the presentation in different email programs varies substantially.  
    • Make sure to use solid background colors for your email templates. In this way, you mitigate the possibility of an email client that has trouble displaying background images.  
    • Any images in your email should not exceed the max recommended width of 600 pixels, including any padding.   

2. Dealing with Emails for Mobile Devices and Smartphones 

    • Your images should be smaller than usual for a standard email because these devices will generally not be able to download them as quickly as a desktop. In addition, mobile device contracts limit data allowances, and larger images will eat up a larger portion of the recipient’s data.  
    • Include a text version of your email as an alternate in case the recipient’s device cannot process HTML as well as other devices.  
    • Leverage links to additional content in order to keep the email size small.  
    • Stick to one column layoutslarger links and larger buttons for these devices. 
    • Use email subjects that are brief and direct. Most mobile devices will truncate a good amount of the subject. Gaining the recipient’s attention from the subject is critical, especially in mobile email deliveries. 

3. Ensuring that your ClickDimensions implementation is GDPR compliant

    • Switch your account to the Click Dimensions Opt-In Subscription Management method. As a resultevery person who receives an email is opted-in to receive what you are sending.  
    • Create Subscription Lists and Subscription pages to capture and manage opt-ins for SMS.  
    • Update any existing Campaign Automation Send Email or Send SMS actions so that a transactional or a Subscription List is chosen. 
    • Add an Agree to Terms checkbox to your Subscription Pages, using the Agree to Terms component in the designer. For forms, add your own agree to terms checkbox.  
    • If a form has any field that enables recipients to opt-in to a list, update the field in the Form Builder to map it to a Subscription List. This will create an actual Opt-In preference record. This way you have documentation and the sending process will have the recipient as opted-in.  
    • Update your web tracking script to allow users to Opt-out of being tracked by ClickDimensions.  

4. Migration and Upgrades of ClickDimensions Deployments 

    • Remember that every ClickDimensions solution is specifically designed with a unique account key for your CRM organization. You cannot move a solution that works in your production environment to another environment, such as your sandbox or UAT environment. Reach out to your account manager to get a solution for each of your unique CRM instances.  
    • When performing an upgrade of your CRM instance where ClickDimensions is installed and operational, any downtime for the CRM does not mean that ClickDimensions data will be lost. ClickDimensions automatically queues data for a sync later when CRM is available again. Make sure to test your ClickDimensions connectivity and functionality immediately after a CRM upgrade. 
    • When migrating data of Dynamics CRM On Premise to Dynamics CRM Online and you are planning to conduct testing on the new CRM prior to disabling the old CRM, you must register for a new solution file to use temporarily during testing. If you are going to migrate the data and use CRM right away in the new environment, a new solution file is not required. You may use the same one from the original instance.  
    • If you are migrating ClickDimensions data, such as email templates or marketing lists, you must bring over the existing GUID and force the system to accept the existing guid on the creation of the record. ClickDimensions cloud services depend on the CRM record’s unique record ID (GUID) to match it for integration purposes. If you just migrate the data but not the GUID, an email template or marketing list will no longer be integrated with the ClickDimensions cloud to your new CRM.  

5. Handling On-Premise CRM Performance 

    • Make sure you perform the latest updates for CRM, as well as the most recent version of ClickDimensions as often as possible.  
    • Make sure you have a regular maintenance plan set for your SQL server. Key components of your plan include reorganization and rebuilding of index, updating statistics, and releasing cleared space. 
    • If your SQL server is running on its own server, configure SQL’s log files to reside on a separate physical disk from the data files to reduce disk contention for I/O operations. 
    • Enable WCF compression for on-prem CRM deployments. 
    • Don’t forget to think about data retention policies. It can be very helpful to periodically clean out old data that is no longer relevant to your users, or simply house it elsewhere.  In order to properly plan for database growth, use this simple rule. For each 1 million emails sent, expect 1.5-2GB of additional storage for your database.  
    • Try using Dynamic marketing lists more cautiously. They can eat up resources much more than static marketing lists. As a result, if you plan on using dynamic lists for large lists of recipients, ensure your CRM database server is optimized as best as possible to handle the load. 

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