I have questions following this case : Adding BUs to Corporate Edition (Marketing Cloud)

Our client wants only one BU for the moment (for budget reasons), so they want a Corporate edition. But in the future, for sure they will need other BUs. We try to warn then about the impacts of having only one BU and upgrade to several ones later...

What would be the impacts (other than financial) if we add other business units in the future and if we want a "clean" platform? For example if BU1 was the parent BU at the time there was only one BU, what should we do and what would be the impacts if we want BU1 to become a child BU ? (impacts on data ? journeys ? reports, etc...) We actually try to evaluate the impacts and the amount of extra work that will be needed if we add BUs and to make the initial unique BU as a child BU.

Thank you



1 Answer 1


There is not a simple answer to this, as it is very much depending on organisational structure when it comes to your client's data and digital marketing activities. If there is a need for keeping the data separate between BU1 and (future) BU2 (e.g. contacts in BU1 should not be visible in BU2 and vice versa), splitting the current BU in two will be a challenge.

Keep in mind that the BU1 will ALWAYS remain the ENT (root) BU, with all the pros and cons this carries along. Main consideration is the All Subscribers list, which aggregates to root, having all the Subscribers visible there. Also managing unsubscribes natively will not be possible for BU1 alone, since these will always also be unsubscribed from any child BU.

If you plan on using Shared Data Extensions, remember these "belong" to ENT BU, hence any integration will need to authenticate and push data to ENT, whether or not you want this data to be available for BU1.

I understand the commercial rationale behind starting with one BU, as the immediate value of having a ENT BU with no marketing activities going on, is not very clear. However the drawbacks can be substantial the moment the additional BU is added, and a need for data separation emerges.

  • 1
    Partly right and from my understanding not ideal. Let the Main BU stay and create two child BUs. That is how I would do it, if there might be even more BUs when the company needs more seperation (and even access rights regulations) Commented Jan 6, 2020 at 21:25
  • Also the data views amongst the business units will not be shared. That means if you send an email via bu2, the tracking data will not aggregate in parent level BU1. You would need to query the data views in each Bus separately.
    – Chandan
    Commented Feb 24, 2022 at 21:13

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .