Streamline Salesforce Activity Logging via BCC Email to Salesforce

OUTLINE

  • The Logic and Workflow Overview
  • Setting Up “Email to Salesforce” in Salesforce
  • Setting Up the Salesforce Contact in Outlook
  • Executing the Workflow

LOGIC

Are you needing to constantly log Salesforce activities? Are you tired of Outlook plugins breaking or not being allowed by your IT department? There could be a better way; if this works for you then awesome.

This workflow allows you to initiate ANY activity as an email but does not limit your ability to change the activity later nor does it limit your ability to use any other workflow. However, the account/opportunity attachment logic in this workflow is still manual. This is because Salesforce’s logic for attaching activities to the proper account or opportunity is imperfect at best. While all of your emails will land in Salesforce as an email activity, you can always go back and change specific tasks to other activity types later.

This method works well if you need to log activities frequently but only need to change a handful to a different activity type. If you are needing to log calls as a “call” activity then this flow might not be the best for you. If your leadership is only interested in the fact that you logged an activity and care less about the type, this might be great for you.

SETTING UP SALESFORCE

  • Login to Salesforce.
  • Go to your Email to Salesforce Settings.
  • Find the Email to Salesforce settings on the left side of the screen and select it to dive into those settings. We are going to change some things.
  • We are now on the Email to Salesforce Settings page! Here you want to 1. Add your Source Email address to the Acceptable Email Addresses field. Because only you should be sending things to your Unresolved Items. 2. Click the Radio Button under Email Associations to “ALWAYS SEND TO MY UNRESOLVED ITEMS.” 3. Make sure to check the box that says ALWAYS SAVE EMAIL ATTACHMENTS. This is so your fancy PPTX and screenshot files get saved on the activity (though some organizations do not save files automatically, even if you enable this.) 4. Copy YOUR EMAIL TO SALESFORCE ADDRESS. You will need this for the next step.
  • Bookmark or save the “MY UNRESOLVED ITEMS” URL linked on this page. Launch it in a new tab; you need this page to tag your activities later.
  • Now that you have your Email to Salesforce email address. Head over to your email client. Create a new Contact in your email client and save your “EMAIL TO SALESFORCE” email address (which is a really long and odd looking string of text) as a name that is easy to type in the BCC field. I call mine “Notes” because it is easy to type and it autocompletes quickly.
  • Give it a test! In your email client, compose a new message and BCC your Salesforce Notes contact. Wait 30 seconds or so and then head to My Unresolved Items —> https://equinix.lightning.force.com/6AC?src=7
    Do you see your email? You are ready to execute the workflow.

EXECUTING THE WORKFLOW

If you haven’t setup the flow yet, skip this section and come back when you’re ready to try the workflow.

  1. Compose an email message related to an activity. This could originate as notes from a meeting you had or an email you are sending to a key contact or peer. Point is you need to compose a meaningful email of some sort.
  2. Put your unique Salesforce email address in the BCC field (or TO field if you are only sending notes to Salesforce.) DO NOT EXPOSE YOUR SALESFORCE EMAIL TO OUTSIDE AUDIENCES. When in doubt, use BCC always.
  3. If you are sending only notes to Salesforce, change your Subject line to something meaningful so you and others can clearly see what the notes are related to. Example: CALL NOTES – Zoom Meeting – CUSTOMER NAME – THE TOPIC OF THE MEETING
  4. Repeat your activity logging for about a week or so…don’t worry we are going to collect activities through the week until you are ready to assign them to accounts/opportunities.
  5. When you are ready to assign your tasks to specific accounts/opportunities, go here: My Unresolved Items (bookmark this page; you will visit this page frequently.)
  6. In the Unresolved Items page, you should see all the emails you sent to Salesforce. Awesome! Now you can go through this page and assign them to the account or opportunity to which they should be assigned.
    Type in the name of the opportunity or account and click the “Magnifying Glass” icon to the right of the text field. This will look for your account or opportunity name via a pop-up window. Your input should result in something meaningful; click the opp or account that should be attached. This manual step takes a moment to do but in general will save you time by batch processing it here on the Unresolved Items page.
    (Why is this a manual step? Because Salesforce is not always smart enough to assign them automatically. We collect our activities into this bucket so you can assign them all in one place. This takes a bit of time but it is easier than trying to hunt down your activities when they are in the wrong place.)
  7. Hit the Save Button. When you do this it will apply your selections to the activities and the activities will magically disappear and be assigned. Should there be an issue, Salesforce will let you know you need to pick the appropriate account.
    A pro-tip if you know the exact account name, copy and paste it into every activity related to that account; when you click SAVE, Salesforce will ask you to confirm your input by making an educated guess and offer you a drop-down of options.
  8. Go back and manually edit the handful of activities you want to change to another activity type. Maybe your leaders want to see “Strategy Briefing” as the activity type but don’t care that everything else is an “Email” activity even if it was really a phone call or in-person meeting.
    If your leadership is asking you to explicitly mark the exact activity type, consider asking your leaders how much time they want you doing Salesforce hygiene. Seems like a waste of time to me. Quantity is better than type in this example.

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