Eloqua Training: 103 Form Creation in Eloqua

Nov 13, 2019

Creating forms

1 Introduction

Forms are an integral part of landing pages, they are the method employed through which users can transmit their data back to Eloqua and ultimately become leads for your sales team to follow up.  This user guide has been developed specifically for dunnhumby and follows the procedures tailored to your implementation.

For Oracle’s generic documentation on forms in Eloqua, please follow this link; https://docs.oracle.com/cloud/latest/marketingcs_gs/OMCAA/Help/Forms/Forms.htm?tocpath=Forms%7C_____0 .

2 Form options

Since we are using the landing page method for campaign landing pages we have two options available to us when it comes to forms:

  • Static Form
  • Progressive Profiling Form

A static form is a form that would be embedded on a landing page and would remain consistent every time it was visited.  An example of a static form would be a contact form on a website.  The same questions are asked every time a user visits that web page.

A progressive profiling form is dynamic.  You can add a large number of questions to a form, set the priority of those questions and the form dynamically shows a predetermined number of fields that are empty in the contact database.

E.g. If we already held data in the Eloqua database against a contact for First Name and Last Name and a user clicked through from an email to a landing page with a progressive profiling form embedded they would not see the question fields for First Name or Last Name, they would get to other fields e.g. Company Name / City instead.

Another key element of forms are processing steps.  Processing steps are a sequence of events that take place when a contact submits a form.  For example, you may want to simultaneously add the contact to the database, send them a confirmation email and send them to the thank you page all at the same time.

This guide will take you through everything you need to know for creating forms using both Static and Progressive Profiling methods.

3 Creating Forms

3.1 Creating Forms, Navigation

To enter the forms module click on assets > forms

Click on Create new form
Click on blank form and then choose
You will now see the form fields view
There are four options for fields on the left-hand side of the module.  You will only require the first two:

  • Contact Fields
  • Custom Fields

Contact Fields: These are fields that are held in the Eloqua contact database.  Later on you will have the option to set how this processing is handled.  Examples of this include First Name, Last Name, Email Address, etc.

Custom Fields: These are fields that you may wish to pass back through notification emails or set on custom objects.  These would include things like comments.

You are now going to set the following fields:

  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Email Address
  • Comments
  • Description
  • Interest Area

3.2 Contact Fields

Click on Contact Fields

Start typing in the field that you require in the search box, in this case we will look for First Name.
Now double click on First Name
You will see that the form field has now been added to the form canvas.
NOTE: You will notice that a yellow box with some text has appeared.  This is a Field Merge, Field Merges are used for forms that are populated on Eloqua landing pages.   Field Merges will auto-populate a contact’s information when they click through from a linked email.  You should always use field merges on any forms that you are adding to an Eloqua hosted landing page for every contact field.  If you require a field merge for a form field contact Business Support.

Repeat the same steps for adding Last Name and Email Address.

You will now have a form that looks like this:

Using this method you can add any fields you want to a form that are held in the Eloqua database.

You may wish to move the form fields about in-case they are in the wrong order.  In this case we want to move Email to the top so it is the first question.  To do this click on a form field and you will see the form field is highlighted in blue and there are two options.

If you click the up arrow the field will move up.
Click on the field for email address (in the middle of the three).  You will now see that you have an additional arrow to move the field down in the order on the form.
There is also a cross to the right
This will delete the form field.

Move Email address to the top of the form fields

Now we are going to create a custom field for comments.

3.3 Custom Fields

To create a custom field for comments you will need to click Custom Fields.

You will see a number of options pop up.
In most cases you will either choose Single Line Text, hidden or Paragraph Text.

Custom field overview

Custom Field Type Custom Field Description
Single Line Text This is a single line of text
Paragraph Text This is a large text area
Single Picklist This is a drop-down field with standardized values in a picklist, you may only select one option. E.g. Country or Job Role
Multi Picklist This is a drop-down field with standardized values, however a user may select more than one option.
Radio Buttons This is where you have a two option field and only one option is possible.
Checkboxes These are tick boxes.
Hidden Campaign ID Field This is hidden field that is used for campaign IDs.
Hidden Field This is simply a hidden field.
Section Title This is used to create a section heading.

 

In this case we are going to choose Paragraph Text.  This is because you can only have 250 characters in a Single Line Text field.

To select the Paragraph Text field double click it.

Now change the field name to something more meaningful, let’s call it Comments.  Click on the field in the canvas called Paragraph Text, then add in the field label, Comments.
Finally change the HTML name to a single string of text (no spaces) to something more meaningful.

In this instance we shall call it “comments.”

3.4 Compulsory hidden fields

(I strongly recommend you read through each of the Google Analytics and Eloqua blog posts so you can set this up)

There are four compulsory hidden fields that you must put into every form that you want to use.  These fields must be placed in the form to automatically pickup any utm parameters that you have used in the different online communications types you have used.

For example, you may be using LinkedIn banner adverts, Eloqua Email and Google Adwords to attract contacts to sign up for a webinar.

In each case (with the exception of Eloqua, because this has been automatically done for you) you will have used the Google Analytics builder to build the query strings for your URLs.

(https://ga-dev-tools.appspot.com/campaign-url-builder/)

The four fields are:

  • utm_content
  • utm_campaign
  • utm_medium
  • utm_source

Click on Custom Fields and create four hidden fields

Change each of the form label and HTML name to the correct utm parameter
In the case of utm_content you will set both the field label and the HTML name to utm_content.

Create two more hidden fields called Description and Campaign.

Click on the Description hidden field and click on Pre-Population on the right hand side.

Click on Use a static value and type in the description you wish to send with this lead to your sales teams.
Repeat the same steps with Campaign Name

Lastly you need to set the area of interest that this form concerns.  For our example we will use three defined areas of interest:

  • Media
  • Retail
  • Insight

Click on Custom Fields and create a new hidden field.  Change the field label and HTML name to the interest area.  In this instance we will use Media.

Now click on Pre-Population
Then click on Use static value and enter the text TRUE

3.5 Additional form field settings

3.5.1 Display Settings

On the right-hand side of the form module you will notice there is another set of options which corresponds to the field that is highlighted.

You may change the display settings

  • Field Label – The name that is shown next to or above the field.
  • Field Instructions – Optional instructions that help the user fill in the field. This is shown as small text below the field.
You can also change the size settings (Remember, don’t do this when using forms for the landing page template, CSS does this for you)

  • Field Width – The width of the field on the page.
  • Label Position – The position of the text label relative to the form field it is labelling. You can position the label to the left of the field, or above the field.
You can also change the HTML Name and the type of data that is going to be used in the field.

  • Data Type – Determines what can be entered in the field, and how it is formatted. You can choose from Text, Large Text, Date, or Numeric. A Text field can contain up to 100 characters, whereas a Large Text field can contain up to 1000.
  • HTML Name – The name by which the application recognizes the form elements. The HTML name field can contain up to 50 characters.

3.5.2 Form Validation

Click on validation

The availability of the following options depends on Data Type selected in the Field Settings tab:
This field is required – A red asterisk * appears next to the field label to indicates to users that it is a required field. You can customize the error message that is shown to users who submit the form without filling in this field. This message can be generic E.g. (“Please fill in all required fields”) or specific to the field (“Please fill in the Business Phone field”). You can also easily mark progressively profiling fields as required in your forms when you don’t set a validation failure page.
Must contain a valid email address – Use only if this field is expected to contain an email address value. This validation checks for the conventional email address format @. You can customize the error message that is displayed if the submitted value is not in standard email address format.
Must contain a valid number of characters – Specify and enforce minimum and maximum character counts for text fields to help ensure consistent data format. This is useful for text fields you use to request data that adheres to a specific length, such as phone or account numbers. If you enable this option, form submitters who enter values outside of the specified character count range receive the message you enter in the Error Message box. The default error message is “Invalid length for field value.”

Important -Due to the potential for phishing attacks, Oracle Eloqua prompts you to confirm your setting change if you disable this option or set the maximum character count to more than 35. If you receive this warning prompt, click Yes to retain your setting changes, or click No to revert to the default enforcement of a 0 to 35 character count range to reduce the security risk. This applies to any single-line text field, including hidden text fields and hidden campaign ID fields.

Must have a value within the numeric range – Validate numeric data values to ensure that they are in a particular range of values. Specify the minimum and maximum values after checking. Must have a value within the specified numeric range, then enter an error message to display if the value entered in this field is not within the limits specified. This option only appears if the Data Type is set to Numeric.

Must contain a valid date format – Customize an error message to display if the value entered in this field is not in valid date format. This option only appears if the Data Type is set to Date.

Must not contain any URLs – Prevent data in the form field from being saved to the contact record if a URL is present. Allowing users to submit URLs in a form is a security risk. By default, Oracle Eloqua does not allow URLs to be submitted from the following field types: Single Line Text, Paragraph Text, and Hidden Field. However, you can override this security feature to allow URLs from those fields. You can also customize an error message to be displayed if a contact tries to submit the form with a URL in the field.

3.5.3 Pre-Population Settings

Click on Pre-Population

You will see some different options:

  • None: The field is not pre-populated.
  • Use a static value: Enter the value that is used by default for each submitter. Submitters may change this value.
If you click on Use a static value you will get a field displayed that you can populate the static value on.
You may also use a field merge, this would populate a field whatever data we hold in the database in that field.

3.6 Processing Steps

When a form is submitted by a user the platform can then process the data in different ways.

To access the processing steps, click on Processing.

You will now see a new screen, to add processing steps click on the plus button.
When you click the plus button you will see a number of different options.
You will need to use the following processing steps:

  • Update Contacts – With Form Data
  • Update Custom Data Object – With Custom Values
  • Update Custom Data Object – With Form Values (If you need to store comments)
  • Subscribe Contacts Globally
  • Send Notification Email (Testing Only)
  • Send Submitter and Email (Optional – If you require an autoresponder)
  • Add to Shared List
  • Add to Campaign (Optional)
  • Add to Program (Important)
  • Redirect to Webpage

3.6.1 Update Contacts – With Form Data

Update contacts with form values is a processing step which adds contacts to the Eloqua database or updates the data based on what is being submitted in the form

Double click on Update Contact – With Form Values.

You need to take notice of two things.  First, ensure that the field uniquely identifying a contact is Email Address.  You do NOT and will NEVER have any other options when updating a contact.  The unique identifier for contacts is email address.  Do NOT change this.

Underneath you will notice a table.  In this table you can see that the field have been mapped for you because the field names correspond with fields in the Eloqua database.

Double click on First Name.  You will see some options appear.

Click on the dropdown that contains First Name in the Target Field.
This is the place that you go to set a new field.  If you had a field name in your form that did not correspond with something in the Eloqua database you would need to use this to match the target field up with the form field.

You have two options, you can either start to type in the target field name.  This will shorten the list down so you can select the target field you want to connect to. Alternatively, you can use the drop down below to select the field that you wish to connect to.

Once you have chosen the field you wish to match the form field up with you need to select your update type.

You will notice that there are five update types.

  • Set to default – This is the default setting that was preconfigured, in most cases this is set to always update
  • Always update – This will overwrite the value you have in the Eloqua database with whatever has been submitted in the form
  • Update if blank – This will update the Eloqua database if the form field value is blank
  • Update if new value not blank – This will update the value in the Eloqua database provided it is not blank
  • Update if valid email address – The contact field will only be updated if the form field value is a valid email address.

Once you have selected the update type you have now set your field to update in the way you want it to.

Set the utm parameters so they are now transferring the UTM data to the correct contact field as well as Campaign Name and Description.

3.6.2 Update Custom Data Object – With Form and Custom Values

From time to time you may need to collect data that doesn’t belong on the contact database (remember you only have a 250 field limit).  For example, you may be hosting a client event with two seminar sessions and a dinner.  You need to collect the seminars that they are interested and know their dietary requirements.  This type of information you would not want to place in contact fields in the contact database because very soon you would use the 250 field limit.  In this instance you would store the data on a custom object.

In this example though we are going to update the contact status custom object “SYSTEM_Contact_Status”.  In this instance we are going to pass the interest area across.  The reason for this is so you can easily segment your database later on when trying to find contacts that have shown an interest.

Click on the plus arrow and then choose Update Custom Data Object – With Form Values or Update Custom Data Object – With Custom Values

Move down the list of source fields (these are the fields on the form) and double click e.g.  Media.
Now select the target field on the custom object: Interest: Media
Now you are sending data back to that custom object.

3.6.3 Send Notification Email (Testing Only)

It may be appropriate to have form notifications sent to someone, a form notification is an email that contains all the information that was on the form.

Click on the plus button and select send notification email.

Enter the email address you want your form submissions to go to
Now every time the form is submitted, the email address you have just added will get sent a notification email on every submission.

3.6.4 Send Submitter and Email (If you require an autoresponder)

You may need to send an email as a confirmation when your form is submitted.  In this scenario we have a form that is used for someone registering for a dunnhumby event.  We will want to send the registrant a confirmation email automatically.  Click on Send Submitter an email.

Either type in the email name or click on the folder icon to find the email you wish to automatically send.
You now have Re-Sending options.

3.6.5 Add to Shared List

You may wish to add these contacts to a shared list which will make downloading the list and selecting the fields that you want easier. Start by creating a shared list and then click the plus button and select Add to Shared List.

Start to type the name of your shared list or find it using the folder button.
Select your list and it’s now set.

3.6.6 Add to Campaign (Optional)

You may wish to add a contact that submits a form to a campaign such as a welcome program, webinar campaign, etc. To add contacts to a campaign, click on the plus button and then click on Add to Campaign.

Click on Choose Campaign
Now select the campaign you want to send contacts to
Then select the step in the campaign and click choose

3.6.7 Add to Program (Optional – depends on your setup, if I didn’t build your system you may not have them!)

There are two programs which you must always add to each form you create.  These programs are:

  • SYSTEM_DE_CA_DOUBLE_OPTIN
  • SYSTEM_BACKEND_FEEDER

SYSTEM_DE_CA_DOUBLE_OPT_IN is the program that automatically identifies if a contact is either from Germany or Canada and sends their double opt-in email to satisfy certain legal requirements.

SYSTEM_BACKEND_FEEDER sends contacts to the feeder program for a complete stack of additional programs that have been developed for enhanced functionality.

To add contacts to both programs you must click the plus button, then click Add to Program

Select the program SYSTEM_BACKEND_FEEDER
Then select the listener and click choose
Now repeat for SYSTEM_DE_CA_DOUBLE_OPTIN

3.6.8 Redirect to Webpage

Finally, you need to send your form users to a thank you page.  Click the plus button and then select Redirect to Webpage.

Now select the landing page that you wish to send the contact to by searching for it using the search bar or the folder button.

3.7 Configuring Progressive Profiling

Creating a progressive profiling form follows all of the same steps you have been through with one difference, the progressive profiling module.

Follow the steps you have learned to build a new form and set email address as the first contact field as the first form field.

Next click Progressive Profile

Close down the contact fields window and double click on the blue progressive profiling area, it will show you a new set of commands on the right.

You have three options:

  • Randomize – This will randomize the fields that display otherwise they will display in the sequence that you have set them in the form.
  • Display empty fields – This will only display fields where the contact database has no value.
  • Fields to display – This is the number of fields to be displayed instead of all the fields

Change the options to the desired outcome.  Then carry out the exact same steps you have learned to set up the rest of the form.

 

Now give the form an HTML Name.  This is the name that you will need to set on the landing page so you can automatically track utm_parameters that you are using in your campaigns.
Save your form
So there you have it.  As usual questions and comments below!
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