Eloqua Training 2.0: Eloqua Blind Form Submit
I quite often get asked during implementations for functionality over and above clickthroughs on emails or request that button on their website do things that they wish to use form processing functionality for.
Well, the geniuses at Oracle came up with blind form submits a good few years back and from my experience this seriously handy feature is not used to its maximum potential.
Some of you might be wondering what I am on about, go and make a coffee, come back, sit down and ask question…
What is an Eloqua blind form submit?
An Eloqua blind form submit is one of the most powerful tools you have at your disposal. At the click of a mouse on a call to action you can set a custom object with the users information on it, update their contact record in Eloqua, Update their account record, create a lead in your CRM and even notify their assigned sales rep, all instantly.
An Eloqua blind form submit is a special URL that has pre-set variables in it for form fields. The URL get constructed and utilizes the Eloqua form processing script, plus the parameters for the form fields you wish to submit and the parameters that are getting passed back.
In turn Eloqua basically processes a form, a little bit like a redirect because it passes everything to Eloqua except it activates form processing steps.
(ok, hardcore Eloqua tech smarty pants, this isn’t always true if you are using AJAX, but this tutorial is aimed at getting people started)
There are loads of reasons why you might use an Eloqua blind form submit, in this tutorial we will use a basic scenario might be having a button on an email that the when clicked passes their information into a call que and adds them to a campaign.
What does an Eloqua blind form submit look like?
An Eloqua blind form submit is a literally just a URL and you add it to a link the same way that you would add a link to a call back form.
The barebones Eloqua blind form submit link would look something like this:
For those Eloqueens and Elokings that are new to this let me deconstruct it for you.
The red bits are the only things you will need to change and I will teach you how to make that change in the tutorial, this is literally just adding your Eloqua site ID, in this case it is 25071713 and the other parts are just the Eloqua HTML form name and the Eloqua form field HTML names.
The green bit is the code you will need to automatically populate email address in the link – it is no different to using a field merge on your email, when the email fires this pulls in the contacts email address and populates it here – when you test – which you better do! You will see it working.
Finally the orange bits are the variables that you want to pass back to Eloqua in your form.
Obviously that is all relevant to a form I might be creating. You will need to update this with your specific variables. If your form just contained the need for email address and the form fields Callback and Email you would need to change the following:
You would need to change the site ID to your site ID and the Eloqua form name to the HTML name of your form.
Top from the Top – I am teaching you how to build this out in theory, at the bottom I have created a tool that will automatically create them for you.
So, put your coffee down now, let’s get started.
Step 1 – Get your Eloqua Site ID
To start off you need to have your Eloqua site ID. The Eloqua form processing URL is the same for everyone, but it is your site ID that tells your Eloqua pod which Eloqua instance you own. Kind of like your passport number.
To find that go to Settings (Gear Icon, top right) -> Company Defaults
You will find your Eloqua Site ID.
Using the scenario for a call back before, let’s go through the steps you need to take.
Step 2 – Set things up in Eloqua
To create an Eloqua blind form submit link, you need:
- A form in Eloqua with fields for all the data that you want to collect. The form does not need to be added to a landing page.
- A landing page that the contact will be redirected to after the form is submitted.
- A basic text editor, such as Notepad.
Step 2.a – Let’s backtrack here, create your Eloqua landing page even if you want to send people to your website.
Go to Assets -> Landing Pages and create your Eloqua landing page.
Tip from the top – A lot of websites including your own may not allow the website redirect command in your Eloqua form processing steps to have a redirect from am Eloqua blind form submit.
If you want to take the user to a page on your website I thoroughly recommend you use a redirect on an Eloqua landing page. Use this little JS script, just wrap it up in <script> tags.
window.location.href = "https://www.example.com";
Step 2.b – Create the Eloqua Form
Go to Assets -> Forms
Give the form a useful name, such as CallBack, or whatever makes sense for the purpose of the blind form submit link.
Add a contact field for the email address. Click the Field Settings tab and make sure the HTML name is emailAddress.
Add custom fields for the data that you want to collect through the blind form submit link. Add as many custom fields as you need.
Tip from the Top – Each blind form submit link tracks a single value for each field. If you want contacts to have the option of submitting different values, you need to create multiple links.
For example, if you want to collect event invite responses, you can add a single picklist custom field called RSVP to the form with Yes and No as the possible responses. You will then create two blind form submit links: one where RSVP is equal to Yes, and one where it is equal to No.
Now go into processing steps at the top right of the page
This is where the fun starts. From here you can set information on custom objects, update contacts and accounts, send notification emails to people within your organization. You name it. For the purposes of this tutorial we will just send contacts to a thank you page using the Redirect to Web Page functionality.
Next to Processing Steps, click the + icon, and then select Redirect to Web Page to add the .processing step.
In the list of Processing Steps, select Redirect to Web Page, and then select Send to an Eloqua Landing Page. In the Choose a Landing Page field, select the landing page that you just configured with the confirmation message.
Add any other processing steps that you want to execute when the contact clicks the blind form submit link. For example, you can add the contact to a campaign, change their campaign status, add them to a shared list, or send a notification email to a sales representative.
Once you have added all of your fields and processing steps, click Save.
Copy the query string parameters and values for the blind form submit link into your text editor:
Step 3 – Build that Eloqua Blind Form Submit
Open up the front end form part of the Eloqua responsive form builder.
- Open two windows with notepad in it.
- Get your site ID – as shown above and paste it into the first notepad window you have open
- In the first one get the HTML form name and the HTML field names from the Eloqua form builder
- In your text editor, paste the following:
Note: The email address is dynamically included in the blind form submit link using a field merge when you email contacts through Eloqua. This means that each contact that receives the email will have a unique blind form submit link. If a contact forwards an email to another contact who then clicks the blind form submit link, it will look like the original contact submitted the form twice. If you do not want this to happen, include a note in your email that tells contacts that the link is unique to them.
- Replace the two instances of [siteID] with your site ID.
- Replace [FormName] with your HTML form name.
- Replace [TrackedField] with the HTML name of the field that you want to track. In the event call back example, this would be Callback.
- Replace [StaticValue] with the value of the field that you want to track. In the call back example, this would be Yes.
- If you want to add additional fields on your form to the blind form submit link, add the following query string to the end of the link for each field that you want to add:
- Replace [TrackedField] with the HTML name of the field.
- Replace [StaticValue] with the value of the field.
You can add as many fields as you like. Make sure that each query string is separated by an ampersand (&), as shown above.
- Create additional blind form submit links for the alternate values of the fields.
Note: You can re-use the same form for different blind form submit links that use entirely different fields. The link does not need to include every field included on the form. If you have processing steps on the form, make them execute conditionally depending on the value of their corresponding form fields.
- Add the blind form submit links to your email like normal
Eloqua blind form submit summary
Now you know the theory behind it, you can use this handy tool below that I have provided for you.
If this has been useful please bookmark it and share this tutorial on LinkedIn – Go on, sharing is caring!
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