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Oracle Eloqua Review: "Powerful tool, but hard to use. Acquisition by Oracle a worry."
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Updated April 06, 2014

Oracle Eloqua Review: "Powerful tool, but hard to use. Acquisition by Oracle a worry."

Score 6 out of 101
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Software Version
Team

Overall Satisfaction

  • This product has the best marketing automation out there, period. Very robust database, great email sends of all volumes, and allows for very complex, specialized marketing.
  • The interface is actually quite difficult to use. While Eloqua 10 does the setup of campaigns much easier, creating an e-mail is actually very difficult. Beginner users basically cannot use this product without significant training and technical ability. Bugs and issues have cropped up quite a bit.
  • ROI from Marketing automation is very significant. All of Marketing's results come via Eloqua, and Eloqua is at the cornerstone of all marketing processes.
Some of the usability issues with E10 are of concern, but the biggest concern by far is the acquisition of Eloqua by Oracle. As a dedicated Salesforce company, we will most likely find ourselves being forced to move, either because Eloqua is going to show a clear preference for Oracle CRMs, or because Salesforce in some way becomes hostile to Oracle/Eloqua, or develops/acquires a competitive Marketing Automation Platform. I don't envision this happening before 2014, however.
Update April 6th, 2014: Updating this from an 8/10 overall to a 6/10 overall. I'm no longer at a company that uses Eloqua (we use Marketo and chose Marketo as our best option moving forward in 2014). My concern about the Oracle acquisition has been highlighted by the fact that there has been a mass exodus of the most key Eloqua employees (CEO Joe Payne, CMO Heidi Melin, CTO Steve Woods, SVP of Product Paul Teshima, VP of Sales Jill Rowley, VP of Content Joe Chernov, Director of Customer Heather Foeh, and many many others who were absolutely critical to the company). Nearly anyone who had any relevance prior the acquisition 15 months ago is now gone. That doesn't bode well at all.

Product Usage

  • This product is the hub of our e-mail sending activities, as well as our marketing automation. We have a marketing database of approximately 600,000 contacts housed in Eloqua, all of our uploads to Salesforce come via Eloqua, and all of our e-mail sends come from Eloqua as well. We also use it as the back-end engine with all our forms, whether on our corporate website, plain HTML, or Eloqua landing pages. The entire team globally uses Eloqua, and we have a full-time resource dedicated to getting the most out of the product.

Evaluation and Selection

We had been using Eloqua 9, but we have been Eloqua customers since 2006. Previous to that, we had not been using Marketing Automation at all.
We evaluated the following systems:
  • Marketo
  • Silverpop B2B
  • Manticore
Of these, only Marketo seemed to be even close in functionality to Eloqua.

Implementation

Implementation went well, Salesforce integration is key, and it helped a lot that we were starting from scratch. All we needed to do was upload databases, create e-mail templates, provision users, set up CRM integration, and we were done.
  • Vendor implemented
  • Implemented in-house

Training

  • Online training
  • Self-taught
Very good system of training/certifying users. Biggest concern about Eloqua is the need for this training due to the complexity of the software.
No, it was not very easy with E10. I would not recommend this approach, and suggest that going through all of the trainings and certifications is critical.

Support

Quite good when we contact them, though I do feel we have needed to contact them a bit too much.
No - Support is included with our trim. This is an area where Eloqua does very well.