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New Gmail/Yahoo Requirements and eComm Preference Model

Frequently Asked Questions

The current eComm email preferences model is a custom solution that was originally developed in 2015 to meet the CAN-SPAM and unsubscribe requirements that existed at that time. Although the model has worked for the last nine years, recent Gmail/Yahoo deliverability requirements have raised questions about its viability going forward.

Action Plan
The eComm team is currently working with the support team at Salesforce Marketing Cloud to determine how we can best bring our implementation into compliance with the new email deliverability requirements. We have also engaged a consulting partner who is familiar with our current model and architecture to provide additional recommendations and guidance.

Solution Prioritization
To ensure that eComm meets the new requirements and that email deliverability is not negatively affected, we need to identify and implement a solution as soon as possible. Our first priority will be ensuring that current users and communications are not affected. Following that critical step, we will then be able to address the processes for onboarding new users who have requested new email preferences.

While we do not yet have a firm timeline in place, this issue is our top priority as a team. We will provide regular updates to campus eComm specialists as additional information and timelines become available.

Please contact Jennifer Mortensen if you have questions or need additional information.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I still obtain an eComm license during this time period?
Yes. We are continuing to onboard new users monthly. However, new users who are onboarded during this time will need to use an existing email preference for their outreach while we continue working toward Gmail/Yahoo compliance. If you are interested in becoming an eComm user and aren't sure which email preferences might be available for you to use, please contact your eComm specialist.

What if I can't use an existing email preference?
We've tried to make email preferences general enough that they can be used across units with similar imperatives (for example, College of Business or Centers & Institutes). If you don't easily fall under one of those preference umbrellas, there may be an opportunity to modify an existing preference name. Preference modification will require the modification of Salesforce reports and Marketing Cloud data extensions, however, which in some cases number in the hundreds, so a name modification cannot be guaranteed until we consult with your eComm specialist. 

Why can't you just make a new preference for me?
As we work to bring our current email preferences model into compliance, it's possible that the way we manage preference data today will be irrelevant and that a new solution will need to be developed. Although the preference appears to be a simple checkbox when viewed by constituents and eComm users, there is a substantial amount of code and data integration that lies behind each email preference category. The amount of work required to make changes necessitates that we fully understand the compliance implications before we move forward.

If I can't get a new email preference right now, are you turning me away?
No, but we are asking for your patience as we work toward compliance. We'll make every effort to compromise with you and find a solution that meets your needs in the interim time. We want to welcome you into the program and set you up for success, and one of the steps in doing that involves ensuring that our current email preference model is compliant and works as desired within the new requirements.

When I read about the Gmail/Yahoo compliance requirements, it sounds easy. Why is this so complicated?
While the requirements are not complex at first glance, the technical infrastructure required to support them is, particularly in a custom Salesforce and Marketing Cloud architecture that supports a multi-campus communication infrastructure. Even Salesforce Marketing Cloud support has struggled to understand the implications of even small changes in our environment, so the risk of impacting CU-wide communications is high unless we spend time strategically planning for and addressing these changes.