Connecting Salesforce to Act-On

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Connecting Salesforce and Act-On facilitates seamless data mapping and synchronization, enabling you to import data from Salesforce, send leads from Act-On, and maintain synchronization.

This integration serves as a fundamental component for many of your marketing automation tasks.

To set up the connection you'll need to be signed in as an Administrator in both Salesforce and Act-On.

Create a Separate Admin User Account in Salesforce

This is used to connect to Act-On.

Why is this important?
  • Identify integration activity
    Act-On's integration logs activities on Lead and Contact records. Using a separate user avoids confusion about who generated the activity.
  • Better control of permissions
    You can specify more precise permissions for the integration user and security profile, such as the password expiration policy (see below).
  • Simplified user management and fewer disconnections
    Avoid disconnection when your organization has personnel changes.
  • You can enable MFA (multi-factor authentication) for the rest of your account users
    Act-On does not support Salesforce MFA, so you must have a separate user that does not have MFA enabled in order to connect. Connected users must have these permissions set:
    - API Enabled
    - API Only User (available only for Enterprise)
    For more details see this article.
  1. Using your Administrator account, sign in to Salesforce.
  2. Click Setup  (top right)
  3. Go to Administration > Users > Users.
  4. Click New User.
    • Enter First Name: Act-On.
    • Enter Last Name: Integration. Alias will auto-fill; edit if required.
    • Enter the notification Email address (eg act-onintegration@admin.com). Username and Nickname will autofill; edit if required.
    • Set User License to Salesforce
    • Set Profile to System Administrator.
  5. Click Save.
  6. Go to Administration > Users > Permission Sets.
    • Click New to add a permission set.
    • Enter Label: Act-On Integration User. API Name will auto-fill.
    • Set User License to Salesforce.
  7. Click Save. The new permission set overview is shown:

Connecting Salesforce to Act-On 00.png

  1. Under Apps, click Object Settings & set the following:
    • Accounts 
      Object Permissions: Read, View All
      Field Permissions as needed for revenue reporting and CRM segmentation. Recommendations:
      - Active = Read Access
      - Annual Revenue = Read Access
      - Industry = Read Access
    • Campaigns
      Object Permissions: Read, Create, Edit, View All
      Field Permissions as needed. Recommendations:
      - Contacts in Campaign = Read Access
      - Converted Leads in Campaign = Read Access
      - Leads in Campaign = Read Access
      - Opportunities in Campaign = Read Access
    • Contacts
      Object Permissions: Read, Create, Edit, View All, Modify All
      Field Permissions as needed based on data policy. Recommendations:
      - Email = Edit Access
      - Email Opt Out = Edit Access
      - Hard Bounce = Edit Access
      - Lead Score = Edit Access
      - Lead Source = Edit Access
      - Owner ID = Read Access
      - RecordID = Read Access
    • Leads 
      Object Permissions: Read, Create, Edit, View All, Modify All
      Field Permissions as needed based on data policy. Recommendations:
      - Email = Edit Access
      - Email Opt Out = Edit Access
      - Hard Bounce = Edit Access
      - Lead Score = Edit Access
      - Lead Source = Edit Access
      - Lead Status = Edit Access
      - Owner ID = Read Access
      - RecordID = Read Access
    • Opportunities
      Object Permissions: Read, View All
      Field Permissions as needed for reporting and CRM segmentation. Recommendations:
      - Amount = Read Access
      - Lead Source = Read Access
    • Tasks
      Field Permissions:
      - Comments = Edit Access
      - Due Date = Edit Access
      - Name = Edit Access
      - Type = Edit Access
  2. Return to the Permission Set Overview (as pictured above). Under System, click System Permissions, click Edit & set the following by checking the boxes:
    • API Enabled
    • Edit Tasks
    • Export Reports
    • Run Reports
    • View Reports
    • View Reports in Public Folders
    • MFA must be disabled for this user
  3. Return to the Permission Set Overview and at the top, click Manage Assignments.
  4. Click Add Assignments.
  5. Select the check box for your Act-On Integration user, click Next, and then click Assign.

Turn Off or Extend the Period for Password Expiration

We recommend adjusting the default 90-day password expiration policy in Salesforce for the user's profile. Otherwise, Salesforce will force a new password and security token. When this happens, you need to immediately update your credentials in Act-On.

See this page in Salesforce for further information and instructions: View and Edit Password Policies in Profiles.

Gather Your New Salesforce Credentials

  • Make note of your new Salesforce username, password, & security token. This is needed to connect your Salesforce account to Act-On.
  • Securely store your password and security token.

This will reduce the need to reset your password, and in turn, will avoid disconnections with your Act-On account.

(Optional) Create Custom Fields in Salesforce

Before syncing, we recommend setting up two custom fields: Act-On Lead Score & Owner ID. Act-On Lead Score enables Lead Score visibility in Salesforce, and Owner ID enables sender personalization (so you may send emails on behalf of your sales team).

These fields must be created once for Contacts and again for Leads. They will be used to push Act-On lead scores to Lead and Contact records. Instructions here are for both Salesforce Classic and the Lightning Experience.

Act-On Lead Score:

Salesforce Classic

  1. When signed in to Salesforce using your Administrator account, at the top right, click Setup.
  2. In the left menu, go to Build > Customize > Contacts > Fields.
  3. Scroll down to Contact Custom Fields and Relationships and click New:

Connecting Salesforce to Act-On 01.png

  1. Under Data Type, select the Number radio button and click Next.
  2. Enter New Custom Field details:
    • Field Label: Lead Score or similar. This must match for Contacts and Leads.
    • Length: 6
    • Field Name will auto-fill. This must match for Contacts and Leads.
    • Description and Help Text may be customized for your application.
    • Leave all other fields blank/unchanged.
  3. Click Next.
  4. Establish the field-level security for all users who will use the lead score field as follows:
    • Visible:
      - Checked for all users who need to see the score in Salesforce (eg Sales Profile).
    • Read-Only:
      - Unchecked/false for the Act-on Connected User's Profile (usually System Administrator).
      - Checked/true for all other roles - only Act-On should change this field.
  5. Click Next.
  6. Choose the page layouts where you want to display the score in Salesforce.
  7. Click Save & New.
  8. Repeat these steps to create an Act-On Lead Score custom field for Leads (i.e. in step 2 above, go to Build > Customize > Leads > Fields).

Lightning Experience

  1. When signed in to Salesforce using your Administrator account, at the top right, click Setup.
  2. In the left menu, under Platform Tools go to Objects and Fields > Object Manager.
  3. Select Contact.
  4. In the left menu, go to Fields & Relationships and click New:

Connecting Salesforce to Act-On 02.png

  1. Under Data Type, select the Number radio button and click Next.
  2. Enter New Custom Field details:
    • Field Label: Lead Score or similar. This must match for Contacts and Leads.
    • Length: 6
    • Field Name will auto-fill. This must match for Contacts and Leads.
    • Description and Help Text may be customized for your application.
    • Leave all other fields blank/unchanged.
  3. Click Next.
  4. Establish the field-level security for all users who will use the lead score field as follows:
    • Visible:
      - Checked for all users who need to see the score in Salesforce (eg Sales Profile).
    • Read-Only:
      - Unchecked/false for the Act-on Connected User's Profile (usually System Administrator).
      - Checked/true for all other roles - only Act-On should change this field.
  5. Click Next.
  6. Choose the page layouts where you want to display the score in Salesforce.
  7. Click Save & New.
  8. Repeat these steps to create an Act-On Lead Score custom field for Leads (i.e. in step 3 above, select Lead).

Owner ID:

This custom field duplicates the Owner ID, allowing it to be included in a marketing list for Act-On. This is crucial for associating sales ownership in functions like personalized sending, as the native Owner ID field cannot be pulled into the Act-On list.

Salesforce Classic

  1. Go to Setup > Build > Customize > Contacts > Fields & in Contact Custom Fields and Relationships click New.
  2. Under Data Type, select the Formula radio button and click Next.
  3. Enter New Custom Field details:
    • Field Label: Owner ID
    • Field Name will auto-fill: Owner_ID (this must be exact - do not change)
    • For Formula Return Type, select the Text radio button
  4. Click Next.
  5. Copy this text:
    CASESAFEID(OwnerId)
  6. Paste it into the Simple Formula text box.
  7. Description and Help Text may be customized for your application.
  8. Click Next.
  9. Establish field-level security for users who will use the Owner ID field as follows:
    • Visible: unchecked for all - this field is for background use only.
    • Read-Only: checked for all and cannot be changed - this is a formula field.
    It is not necessary to make the Owner ID field visible to your end-users or add it to the layout since this will only be used for reports that are pulled into Act-On.
  10. Click Next.
  11. Uncheck all page layouts so the new Owner ID field does not display.
  12. Click Save.
  13. Repeat these steps to create an Owner ID custom field for Leads (i.e. in step 1 above, go to SetupBuild > Customize > Leads > Fields & in Lead Custom Fields and Relationships click New).

Lightning Experience

  1. Go to Setup > Platform Tools > Objects and Fields > Object Manager > Contact & in Fields & Relationships click New.
  2. Under Data Type, select the Formula radio button and click Next.
  3. Enter New Custom Field details:
    • Field Label: Owner ID
    • Field Name will auto-fill: Owner_ID (this must be exact - do not change)
    • For Formula Return Type, select the Text radio button
  4. Click Next.
  5. Copy this text:
    CASESAFEID(OwnerId)
  6. Paste it into the Simple Formula text box.
  7. Description and Help Text may be customized for your application.
  8. Click Next.
  9. Establish field-level security for users who will use the Owner ID field as follows:
    • Visible: unchecked for all - this field is for background use only.
    • Read-Only: checked for all and cannot be changed - this is a formula field.
    It is not necessary to make the Owner ID field visible to your end-users or add it to the layout since this will only be used for reports that are pulled into Act-On.
  10. Click Next.
  11. Uncheck all page layouts so the new Owner ID field does not display.
  12. Click Save.
  13. Repeat these steps to create an Owner ID custom field for Leads (i.e. in step 1 above, go to Setup > Platform Tools > Objects and Fields > Object Manager > Lead ...).

Connect Act-On to Salesforce

  1. Sign into your Act-On account as an Administrator.
  2. Go to Settings > Connectors > CRM > Salesforce.
  3. Click Connect.
  4. Fill in your Salesforce login, password, and security token here:

Connecting Salesforce to Act-On 04.png

The security token must immediately follow the password with no space. For example:
Login = Act-Onintegration@admin.com
Password & Security Token = Salesforcepasswordsecuritytoken
  1. Click Login. A successful connection shows as:

Connecting Salesforce to Act-On 03.png

Next Steps

Congratulations! Your Salesforce and Act-On connection is complete.

Now, you may proceed to sync your Salesforce CRM data with Act-On:

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