The Salesforce to Marketo sync

The Salesforce to Marketo sync

I’ve often considered the Marketo <> Salesforce sync as one of the most solid, robust, predictable, well-architected synchronisations available between two systems I’ve ever seen.  It’s one of the reasons that Marketo and Salesforce are a great combination.

But now and then things go bump in the night, don’t they?  No system is 100% bulletproof, is it?

Now the Marketo to Salesforce sync is not to blame – as I say, as far as I am concerned it’s the best I’ve seen.  But what happens when Salesforce goes down ?  Again – a rare occurrence, but it does seem to happen more and more these days – although that may be because we’re just doing more in-depth things with the two systems and pushing them to the limits. Incidentally, you can get a status of SFDC’s systems here – and make sure the region your SFDC instance is on by checking the first three characters of the URL when you’ve logged into Salesforce [unless you have a personalised URL in which case you’ll need to check in one of the admin tools].

SFDC Server down table

Anyhow – the point of this blog.

What dies when Marketo cannot log into Salesforce because SFDC is unreachable?

When this happens:



If your sync does fail, not all is lost, but there are SOME Smart Campaigns that you will need to re-run. In Particular, these are smart campaigns that action something directly into SFDC. Here are the 3 most common examples for RMS Clients the Smart Campaigns that:

  • Sync new leads to SFDC: Remember that although this lead is likely to make it’s way into SFDC in the future through campaigns and other smarts, any leads that met the criteria for the trigger at the time that the sync was failing will not have been pushed through.
  • Push leads into and out of specific SFDC Campaigns: This only applies to smarts that are syncing directly to a campaign and is why it is best practice to use a Marketo Program synced to an SFDC campaign. If you have a program syncing then you’re fine, but if you have a Smart Campaign managing members directly in a SFDC campaign, then this will not function the way it’s intended.
  • Create SFDC Task: These are another set of smarts that take an action directly in SFDC and will not run correctly without the Sync.

So how do you fix this error if you run into it in the future?

In all honesty, the easiest and most accurate way of doing this is to give your RMS administrator a call to determine which of your smarts are at risk. they will be able to provide you with a step by step guide to remedy any issues you have run into.

Generally, the idea is to:

  • Fix the issue causing the sync failure.
  • Identify the Smart Campaigns (usually triggers) that could not execute their flow steps.
  • Then create the logic (often as batch filters) to go back and execute the smarts that were missed.

A lot depends upon what you share between your systems of course – and here’s a couple of other blogs that may assist in identifying what has caused the sync issue to begin with:


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