Drupal Marketing Automation Modules
Aside from its scalability and flexibility, one of Drupal’s greatest strengths is a huge, active community of contributors.
In fact, there are currently over 10,000 contributed modules for Drupal 7 alone. Why not leverage that strength when it comes time to integrate your marketing automation platform of choice with Drupal?
Contributed modules may not get you 100% of the way every time, but, at the very least, they can be a great start toward a consistent, stable, reusable integration. Not to mention the peace of mind that comes from knowing an approved, contributed module has been vetted by the Drupal community and, most times, conforms to Drupal’s coding best practices.
With an almost overwhelming amount of modules to choose from, we’ve done the dirty work of digging into some of the more prominent integrations available through Drupal.org.
Since their acquisition by Salesforce, we’ve seen quite a few requests to tie Drupal into Pardot’s marketing automation cycle. The contributed module does a good job with the basics. Things like adding tracking code and excluding admin data work as you’d expect, without many hiccups.
On top of that, the Pardot module provides web form integration, which is key to a tightly integrated system. For any web form on your site, just create the corresponding form handler in Pardot and map the Drupal fields in the Web Form UI to have your form submission data immediately sent to Pardot.
The Salesforce project is a robust suite of modules that can push data from Drupal to Salesforce, pull from Salesforce to Drupal or go both ways. The basic idea behind the Salesforce Suite is the synchronization of Drupal entities with Salesforce objects, so it goes quite a ways beyond simply sending information from Drupal to Salesforce.
Depending on the scale of your integration, the configuration and use of this module can get fairly complicated, so be sure to check out the documentation available on Drupal.org. If all you’re looking for is a simple connection between a web form and Salesforce, take a look at the Salesforce Web Form module.
Personalize is an exciting, new project. It was developed by Acquia for use with Acquia Lift, their brand new content personalization tool. What’s neat about it is the fact it introduces the idea of a decision agent. A decision agent is basically the third-party system Drupal is talking to, to decide what content to show the current visitor. In the case of Acquia, Lift would be the decision agent, but any development team could use the framework provided by the Personalize module with a different decision agent: Sharpspring, for example. Personalize is still a pretty new product, but there are some very exciting things happening. Keep an eye on this one.
The MailChimp module is popular and well-maintained, with well over 21,000 sites that are currently reporting its use. There’s a lot going on in this module, so we won’t bore you with the details of every feature (check out the project page or documentation for that), but there’s some neat stuff going on under the hood.
The basics are there in terms of integrating Drupal forms with MailChimp subscription lists and creating a place in Drupal to display those forms. Where it gets interesting is the ability to create and send MailChimp campaigns, view campaign stats and even look at MailChimp history for any email address in Drupal. This one is worth a closer look if you use MailChimp and Drupal but aren’t taking advantage of some these features.
The Campaign Monitor module keeps it simple as well. This module is essentially just a way to get information from Drupal to Campaign Monitor, without the need to write code. Just set the module up in Drupal with your CM account info and hit the ground running. Immediately after the module can connect successfully to your account, start placing blocks with your subscribe form(s) anywhere you’d like them to appear on the site.
The Volacci Automatr tool is one of the only open-source marketing automation tools built specifically for Drupal. Rather than being associated with a marketing automation service, it gives users a variety of abilities. These include categorization of contacts based on campaigns and automatic report generation based on however frequently you would like to see results.
Admittedly, we haven’t had a chance to try everything, and Wildfire is a tool we’ve never seen in the wild. The module’s project page promises a lot of interesting functionalities, like adding content from your Drupal site to an email while Wildfire deals with the logistics of sending. There are some good ideas here, but make sure you test the module thoroughly, because the stable release hasn’t had an update in quite a while, and there are very few reported users.
Similar to some of the other modules we’ve looked at, the Eloqua module focuses on the two most common use cases: adding tracking code and integrating web forms with Eloqua. There isn’t a lot beyond that, but even if you’re working towards a larger integration, this module could serve as a great starting point.
There are a couple interesting features to the Marketo MA Drupal project. Of course, you have the standard abilities to add tracking code and integrate web forms. It may be true that the additional features may be more appealing to developers, but the end result is what could attract the attention of the whole marketing team. We’ll use Drush integration as an example. According to the module’s project page, you can view lead details and activity through a Drush script. That means you (or your dev team) could put this information in an automated script and create/send emails containing that data to your team. It’s a simple example of a functionality Marketo most likely already has, but the possibilities are virtually endless.
Another version of what we’ve seen in some of the other modules, the Silverpop project provides a simple way to add tracking and web form integration through the Drupal UI. There isn’t a whole lot to it, but these two key features are required as part of just about any marketing automation strategy. A simple, functional module that can get those two things done every time is a great addition.
The Constant Contact module provides a few more advanced features for interacting with and implementing forms on your Drupal site. On top of web form integration, this also ties the Drupal registration form in with Constant Contact, allowing you to open up subscription options to users creating an account on your site. There are quite a few other features that may be interesting to Constant Contact power users, like import/export of subscribers from the Drupal admin panel. Take a look at the project page if this seems like it might be up your alley.
Just last week a team of Elevated Third developers published the first release of the Sharpspring module. Currently, it provides the two things every site needs the most: a simple way to add tracking code and web form integration (surprise!). However, there is a road map of exciting features, so stay tuned.