We have a requirement to integrate Salesforce Marketing cloud with an Third Party System (like AOP) and fetch bulk data from there and store it in a Data Extension.

Can you please help me with answer to the below queries :

1) API Approach - if we will be using the soap API to fetch the bulk data from the third party system into SFMC
i) Can we use Server Side Java script Activity in Automation studio to schedule the API to run hourly ? and can the SOAP API be fetch the data be written in the Server Side Java script ?

Can you also please suggest any other approach other than FTP transfer to implement this requirement in SFMC.

1 Answer 1


Normally, the approach is for the 3rd party to utilise the API of Marketing Cloud, and upsert data directly to the relevant Data Extensions. Here you can bulk update hundreds of record with each API call, using either the synchronous or asynchronous REST API. REST API is recommended for SFMC, especially for data upsert operations.

And yes - you could write SSJS in Automation Studio, to schedule e.g. hourly data retrieval from 3rd party. There is a number of examples here, how to do this with SOAP API. Some of them are referencing SFMC's own API, but that is a similar approach as to calling external API:

Server-Side Javascript calling SOAP API

Is it possible to call external SOAP/REST API in ExactTarget?

Making SOAP Calls via SSJS

But personally - I really like the FTP approach for bulk updates. Especially since you can use the File Drop trigger in Automation Studio to initiate a number of data processing and validation steps.

  • Thanks for your response.So using SSJS we can directly write the API in SFMC and there will be no need to use a ETL tool ? Jan 14, 2019 at 8:38
  • This depends on the capability of the system you want to retrieve data from. But let's assume it can expose an endpoint which provides latest updated/created records, SSJS should be fine fetching this data and writing it into a Data Extension. Please keep in mind SSJS can use platform library to write to DE in same BU the SSJS is executed. If you want to write to different DE, you will also need to call SFMC API with credentials valid for that BU. Jan 14, 2019 at 8:49
  • You're welcome. if you found my answer helpful, would you checking the check-mark beside it. I'd appreciate it. For more information about accepting answers, take a look at this FAQ. Jan 14, 2019 at 11:33
  • Adding to the above question ,If we make the DE as a shared DE then we can run the SSJS in any Business Unit right ? Jan 14, 2019 at 11:52
  • Yes - as long as the shared DE is shared with the BU where SSJS is executed Jan 14, 2019 at 11:54

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