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I have created a few Profile Center Attributes like First Name, Last Name, Gender etc. and have also mapped them to our salesforce Contacts object in the Salesforce tab within the attribute properties.

Now when I include these attributes in my email content for personalization, nothing shows up when trying to preview with subscriber records. When I check the record in all subscribers all these fields are blank.

So, I am trying to understand how these fields are populated and when? I am unable to find any documentation around this online.

We have the following email send use cases for which I would want to understand this behaviour -

  1. Email send via Email Studio to Sendable DE with new subscribers which are not yet in the "All Subscribers List"
  2. Email sends to new contact records tagged to opportunities in salesforce through a Journey. Entry event will be "Salesforce data" and starting object will be opportunities.
  • I asked SF last year for specifics on this and no one was able to tell us. If you manage to get a clear answer would be great to hear:) – Doug Jul 25 '18 at 14:56
  • @Doug - So I got some inputs in this from the salesforce community. Profile attributes are only populated while doing a send to salesforce campaigns or salesforce reports. They don't even get populated in a journey with salesforce data event. Essentially they are a legacy feature with very limited use cases and should be avoided if possible. – Vic Aug 1 '18 at 11:21
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The Profile Attributes are populated when it's a send to Salesforce Campaigns or Salesforce Reports. I also believe they are retrieved if you use the "Standard" Salesforce Profile Center.

Important to note that pulling in personalisation strings, depends on your send target, to my knowledge. So:

  • Salesforce Send to Report = a Send to all subscribers (i.e. %%FirstName%% pulls from All Subs)
  • Send via Journey Builder = send to a snapshot of data (i.e. journey data), which means that %%FirstName%% refers to the Journey Data

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