For your Realtime Marketing Forms, there are two options out of the box for determining what happens when someone fills out the form. You can either have a new record created every single time, or you can try and find a matching existing record via the email address field to update it if one exists (otherwise, create a new record). Did you know you can add other options, and set a different matching strategy for each form? In this post we will look at adding a new matching strategy and then how to use it on a form.

First, go to the Settings area, then the Customer engagement section. Click on form matching strategy from the menu.

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For this new strategy, I’m going to add a new one to find and match Contacts as the target entity. I’ve seen First Name and Last Name used a lot, but this isn’t always a good idea. Jim Smith could add his name that way on a form, but then next week use Jimmy, or even James. If your matching strategy is using Email, First Name and Last Name to make the match, the system would actually consider those being three different Contact records. Many B2C organisations marketing to people that could be parents of students, or donators to a charity often find people sharing an email address (yes, it happens more often than you would think). In this instance, we want to make sure someone submitting a form isn’t updating details on another record using the same email. For my example, I am using a custom field called Title that is being made required on a form, and must match along with email address.

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After creating the new matching strategy record, add in the specific fields that should be used as part of the match.

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Now make sure those same fields at least are included on the Realtime Marketing form and make them required.

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We can see here my Title field is a Choice so there is no way someone can just type any old thing in as a value. In theory, this field shouldn’t change for someone (at least not often enough to cause many issues).

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Now in the form settings area, you should see the new form matching strategy you’ve added. Select it from the list, then save and make the form live. Now when someone fills out the form, rather than solely looking at the email address, the title field value must also match to determine if it’s updating an existing record, or if a new one must be created.

Click to view in detail

Check out the latest post:
Internal Notification Emails For Event Forms In Realtime Marketing

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4 thoughts on “Using Additional Matching Strategies On Realtime Marketing Forms

  1. Hi Megan,

    Thank you for your blog – really useful.

    Once query I have is what course would you recommend for someone starting out in their Dynamics 365 Customer Insights journey? I am not new to CRMs or digital engagement, but wanted an overview to ensure my first few months was based on sound fundamentals.

  2. Hi Megan,

    I have a question that I haven’t seen people speak on anywhere else.

    Our organisation is using realtime marketing forms to run social media competitions – ‘answer this question to win a prize etc.’
    We us a matching strategy to avoid duplication of contacts as they are created in our environment.

    At the bottom of the competition form we have a topic element that links to our ‘Newsletter’ topic. The checkbox states ‘tick this box if you want to sign up to our newsletter’, and it is not mandatory, as the users may only wish to enter the competition.

    Our issue is as follows: If the user leaves this checkbox blank, the system logs them as having ‘opted out’ of our newsletter – and this is overwriting their previous opt ins. Some users have stated they are leaving this checkbox blank on purpose, as they do not want to opt-in ‘twice’ by mistake.

    Is there a way to configure our realtime marketing form so as to not load any consent in the consent centre when the topic element is left blank? This seems to be an oversight in the design from Microsoft. Any advice?

    Really hoping you can help with this one πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Brian, unfortunately that’s how the purpose/topic check boxes are designed. Someone selecting it will either be Opted In or Opted Out of that item via a Contact Point Consent record. It’s used for collecting user consent and is configured as such. You might be able to do something clever by creating a new Yes/No field for Newsletter requested, put that on the marketing form then if set to Yes, go off and start a flow in Power Automate which creates a new Contact Point Consent record for the email address that was submitted on the form. Not ideal but no other way out of the box that I can think of where you can use the Purpose or Topic fields and prevent it from creating or updating a Contact Point Consent record that way.

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