Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels

Last weekend, most Eloqua customers had access to Release 20B which included new features like Blocks. Locked up at home with COVID-19 restrictions in place, I logged in first thing Sunday morning to take a look. Here’s what I found.

Eloqua Release 20B rolled out to most customers on Friday 15th/Saturday 16th May and the remaining clients will have access this weekend Friday 22nd/Saturday 23rd May. We’ve had some time to play with these new features, so we’d like to give you a heads up on the innovation that keeps coming from the team at Oracle CX Marketing.

What are Eloqua Content Blocks?

“Content blocks are groups of layout containers and cells that can be reused when building responsive emails or landing pages. They can be a combination of different cell types such as text, images, dynamic content, shared content, and more.

By breaking down your most commonly used components and re-assembling them to meet the unique needs of each new email and landing page, you can more quickly create brand-compliant content with ease.

For example, if you find yourself frequently using a particular portion of an email template, you can save that section as a content block and re-use it in several emails to achieve a consistent look and feel instead of maintaining a large template library.”

SOURCE: Oracle Eloqua Help Centre

Our client, The University of Auckland, has had BETA access to blocks for the past couple of months.

Blocks will be a game-changing feature for us. Not only will it improve our brand consistency across the board, it will also really help to speed up our onboarding process for new users as they can now quickly build emails using a combination of blocks to form their emails and landing pages.

Dan Holt – Marketing Automation Specialist
Communications and Marketing
The University of Auckland, New Zealand

We suggest you apply some strategy to your Block creation

The last thing you want to do is arrive at mid-October and discover your Block Library has 200+ Blocks. If that’s the case, something has gone seriously wrong and perhaps you’ve misunderstood the objective behind this new Eloqua function.

After some thinking and robust discussion amongst our Modern Marketing Consultants and Customer Success team, we’ve prepared some suggestions below to help you get started with Blocks.

Strategic Services

Our team of Strategic Marketing consultants can help you in a range of ways from Persona Development, Customer Journey Mapping and more.

Why using templates should be a key part of your asset strategy

Catching the vision of templates and understanding the time-saving benefit they offer can be a roadblock for some users.

Some customers understand the benefit of templates and use them, while others waste time either copying and pasting past assets or starting from scratch every-time.

Smart development of Blocks will speed your email build time.

You can easily drop in pre-built content containing Dynamic or Shared Content. Backed by a solid Content Strategy, Blocks and templates are a must-have part of your Eloqua instance.

Let’s take a step back & apply some thinking before we rush in headfirst. 

We see two types of Blocks being used for many of our clients.

  1. Enhanced Template Blocks e.g. two columns, three columns. With images and buttons or without. They will contain placeholder copy e.g. Lorem ipsum.
  2. Various Calls to Action (CTA’s) e.g. Invitations to subscribe to specific campaigns, invitations to always-on campaigns, invitations to visit more popular areas of your website and/or content/thought leadership.

Enhanced Templates design using Blocks

Blocks can be built to conform to your branding guidelines allowing users to select from pre-built modules. As an example, you may build modules like the following:

  • 2 columns, image of the left/right with copy and a button in the opposite column
  • Webinar speaker block. Placeholder images, with bio & links
  • Newsletter blocks with a full-width image, two columns below with copy and a CTA button

There’s really no limit to what you can build, however, we’d suggest the focus be on the content you find yourself building again and again.

Various Calls to Action

We’ve started with a range of blocks that invite people to subscribe to various ongoing or always on campaigns e.g.

  • Subscribe to our Eloqua Important Updates
  • Subscribe to the Eloqua User Group
  • Subscribe to our Marketing Automation Blog

Creating Blocks & adding them to your Email or Landing Pages

Eloqua Administrators have default access to “Manage Blocks”. Access can be provided to other User Groups as needed. In figure 1 below you can see Blocks highlighted in the main tab menu between the Design Components and Email Style tabs. From there, users can search for Blocks then drag and drop them into their email or landing page.

The Block Library is available from within the Email and Landing Page Design Editors as shown above. When you add a Block to your asset, you sever the connection to the library. If your user access levels allow you to edit the Block, those changes are unique to the asset you're working in i.e. your Email or Landing Page.

Figure 1: How do you access Blocks as an Eloqua user?

The Block Library is available from within the Email and Landing Page Design Editors as shown above. When you add a Block to your asset, you sever the connection to the library. If your user access levels allow you to edit the Block, those changes are unique to the asset you’re working in i.e. your Email or Landing Page.

Creating & editing a Block

You can locate an exisiting email or landing page and identify a specific piece of Content and save it as a Block. Or you can create a new email or landing page for the sole purpose of creating Blocks.

Blocks can contain up to three Layout sections e.g. one full width, one two columns and one three columns etc. Which ever combination best suits your needs. However, you need to add the second and third layout parts in the Block Editor.

Once you've created your Block Content, you need to click on the layout portion of the email (the orange highlight) and then click on the Block icon, highlighted above.

Figure 2: Creating your Blocks

Once you’ve created your Block Content, you need to click on the layout portion of the email (the orange highlight) and then click on the Block icon, highlighted above.
The ability to create & edit blocks is determined by your user profile. Your Eloqua Administrator will be able to assist you with access to editing Blocks.

Figure 3: Editing Blocks

The ability to create & edit blocks is determined by your user profile. Your Eloqua Administrator will be able to assist you with access to editing Blocks.
Once built and added to the Block library, Block Administrators can make edits to Block masters in the Library

Figure 4: Editing an exisiting block

Once built and added to the Block library, Block Administrators can make edits to Block masters in the Library

Don’t make the mistake of sidelining Eloqua Shared Content in place of Blocks

Some initial feedback from clients has included comments like, “Now that we have Blocks, what purpose does Shared Content really serve?”.  We see Shared Content continuing to be an important part of any Content Strategy.

What is Shared Content?

Shared content is reusable content snippets that you can create once, then reuse in emails and landing pages. It allows you to “build once, re-use everywhere” for your most valuable common pieces of content.

How is it different to a Block?

When you add Shared Content to an Email or Landing Page, you do not sever the connection to the master. There is only ever one piece of Shared Content.

Each time you add a Block to an Email or Landing Page, you sever the connection to the master Block, and the Block in your email or landing page is now a copy of the master.

Visit our Preference Centre today to subscribe to various items and tell us what interests you.