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How 5 Brands Leveraged Salesforce Marketing Cloud to Reach More Customers and Fuel Growth

How 5 Brands Leveraged Salesforce Marketing Cloud to Reach More Customers and Fuel Growth

5 cool brand stories to inspire you to take a second look at your SFMC investment....

Salesforce Marketing Cloud aka SFMC offers multiple solutions for email marketing, automation, analytics and personalization, content creation, management and personalization, and even customer journey mapping in a single, integrated platform. With SFMC, brands in any industry can build hyper-personalized email campaigns and on-brand eCommerce sites, strengthen customer relationships, boost sales, and deliver meaningful customer experiences.

Several well-known brands have done all of this in the recent past, including Adidas, Lyft, PepsiCo, Estée Lauder, and Sonos. With SFMC and other Salesforce solutions, these companies:

  • Designed personalized email marketing programs to deliver bespoke customer experiences and offers
  • Supported select customer groups during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Strengthened their digital foundation to accommodate customers’ changing shopping needs
  • Expanded their sales channels with technology and digitization
  • Created customer-centric content to improve Customer Experiences (CX)


Who: Adidas

What: AI for Email Personalization

Why: So global customers receive content and offers to match their interests and needs

Adidas is passionate about helping their customers meet their fitness goals. For this, they leverage their digital channels, particularly email, to create premium, connected, and personalized experiences across the consumer journey.

In the post-COVID world, Adidas has increased its focus on sharing personalized content via email to encourage people to keep pursuing their health and fitness goals. To match subscribers with relevant content, they use specific data points like language, location, and product interest.

With SFMC Einstein’s predictive intelligence capabilities, Adidas has created an intelligent, automated dynamic email solution that allows them to automatically send the best content to each customer and at the right time. Einstein Content Selection (ECS) uses AI to customize content from a standard template – built into SFMC Email Studio – and then selects the most relevant asset to be displayed whenever a subscriber opens the email. By adding new customer attributes and behavioral information into SFMC, Adidas can leverage real-time content optimization, and quickly create relevant, on-brand, personalized emails that resonate with each subscriber. Moreover, they can send such hyper-personalized emails at scale to millions of customers within a single campaign. 

Using SFMC and Einstein, Adidas successfully increased the relevance of their email campaigns to connect and engage with subscribers and encourage them to discover new Adidas products.

Proven SFMC Practice from Adidas: Tap into the power of Einstein AI to create dynamic, personalized content based on individual user behaviors or attributes.


Who: Lyft

What: Account-based Marketing (ABM) for the essential worker community

Why: To create memorable customer experiences and improve lives through transport

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many companies adopted work-from-home norms. Frontline and essential workers didn’t have this option because they still needed to get to and from work on a daily basis. In this scenario, ride-sharing company Lyft saw an opportunity to support such workers with a personalized approach to transportation solutions.

Lyft leveraged Salesforce CRM to implement Account-based Marketing (ABM). With this approach, the company designed tailored marketing campaigns and personalized messaging for target accounts. To perfectly match the specific needs of essential workers, they leveraged three key information types to get to the single source of truth:

  • Company profile: Industry, size, technologies, etc.
  • First-party intent: How each individual member already engaged with Lyft on various digital channels
  • Third-party intent: To fill knowledge gaps

These data points revealed which of their customers were essential workers, which then enabled Lyft to design timely and relevant transportation solutions to support them during the pandemic. SFMC enabled Lyft to pivot seamlessly to ABM with buy-in from all their functional groups, including Sales and Marketing. With the help of SFMC and ABM, Lyft discovered an effective way to target the right audience, and share personalized content to keep them engaged and loyal.

Proven SFMC Practice from Lyft: Use customer data residing within SFMC to create accounts lists, develop a data-driven ABM program, and engage them with personalized communications across digital touchpoints like email.


Who: PepsiCo

What: Consumer eCommerce sites

Why: To enable consumers to buy PepsiCo products online

Like Lyft, PepsiCo also adapted to changing market and buyer trends fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic with the help of SFMC. To stay on top of evolving local guidelines and consumer behaviors, the company added two key digital channels to its massive global retailer network: two eCommerce sites that would allow its customers to browse and purchase its products from the comfort of their own homes.

PepsiCo’s lightning-fast foray into direct-to-consumer (D2C) commerce and marketing was made possible by Salesforce Digital 360. This suite of eCommerce digital marketing products combine marketing, commerce, and personalized experiences, allowing companies to scale up their eCommerce offerings and make up for brick-and-mortar sales shortfalls in the shortest time possible. PepsiCo also developed an “ROI Engine”, a system that enables the company to get a clearer understanding of how marketing campaigns (including email marketing) impact their business results.

Proven SFMC Practice from PepsiCo: Leverage data and integrated Salesforce tools like Digital 360 to personalize every customer journey touchpoint, and deliver tailored experiences that keep them coming back for more.


Who: Estée Lauder

What: Pivot to at-home sales from in-store sales

Why: To allow consumers to buy makeup products via messaging or over the phone – without stepping into a store

Founded in 1946, Estée Lauder is a highly-respected manufacturer and marketer of skincare, makeup, fragrance and hair care products. As with every product company, the COVID-19 pandemic negatively impacted Estée Lauder’s brick-and-mortar sales and profits. With retail stores and malls closed, the company had to quickly find other channels to sell makeup. The audience was already there – what they needed was the right channel to connect this audience with their products.

With the help of technology, its beauty advisors and makeup artists successfully transitioned to selling makeup from home. They were also able to provide customer-friendly delivery options like home delivery and curbside pickup. Messaging tools like WhatsApp, social media platforms like Instagram, and the cloud-driven Salesforce Marketing Cloud and Sales Cloud enabled this seamless pivot in record time.

Service Cloud enables Estée Lauder associates to see all cross-brand transactions because all the customer data is in one place. It removed unnecessary functional silos so teams can collaborate better to serve more customers, increase sales, and boost revenues. Since Salesforce also shows customer information about past product purchases (purchase history), the company can increase upsells and cross-sells to increase sales and profits. SFMC enables teams to communicate better so they can work together towards a unified goal – increase the company’s at-home sales and ensure that consumers’ needs are perfectly met through a channel they’re comfortable with.

Proven SFMC Practice from Estée Lauder: Leverage Salesforce Service Cloud and Marketing Cloud to connect teams and implement alternative sales channels that reduce customer friction and boost cross-sells/upsells.


Who: Sonos

What: Customer-centric content and personalized email marketing

Why: To boost online sales when retail sales were badly hit

Following the onset of the pandemic, Sonos, a developer and manufacturer of audio products, experienced a massive 90% dip in sales from retail locations. They had to think of an alternative solution to get high-quality audio into people’s homes. They quickly realized that the only way to do this would be to connect with customers in new ways by reimagining and recreating Customer Experiences (CX).

First, Sonos leveraged Salesforce Customer 360 to unite their teams around the customer. Since every team now had a shared view of every customer, they were able to design new marketing and sales approaches, and serve up experiences tailored to their needs. They also leveraged Einstein AI to automate several tasks, and Commerce Cloud to create connected digital journeys for more personalized engagement and increased online sales.

With Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Sonos captured customer listening data – for instance, the type of music they like most – to develop personalized marketing campaigns across owned and paid channels. They retargeted customers with blogs like seasonal product stories and cart abandonment emails to drive traffic to their online store. They also created seasonal product marketing stories to deepen the customer-centric engagement and CX even further.

Here's to all the moms out there
Source: Reallygoodemails

Proven SFMC Practice from Sonos: Tap into customer behavioral data to create new CX and build meaningful relationships through digital interactions.

Wrap up

By effectively using Salesforce Marketing Cloud and other Salesforce solutions, brands can understand their customers better, reach them wherever they are, nurture meaningful relationships, and even build up future opportunities. In this article, we shone the spotlight on 5 brand stories and showed you how they achieved these goals with the help of SFMC. We hope you are inspired to do the same!

Email Uplers is a full-service email marketing agency with expertise in 50+ ESPs including SFMC. We can help you achieve your email marketing goals with world-class, on-brand campaigns that reflect your brand’s unique voice and personality. To know more, get in touch.

*Please note that these case studies have been collated from the Salesforce website to help you get an idea of how brands are leveraging the CRM to reach more customers.  

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Chintan Doshi

Chintan is the Sr. Manager Email Marketing & CRM at Email Uplers. He loves email marketing and has been in the industry from last seven years. His track record of email marketing success covers building email programs from scratch and using data-driven strategies to turn around underperforming accounts.



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