The Track process

Use the Track process to update the contact statuses or additionally tracked fields for existing records in contact history. The Track process can update existing contact history records, create new records, or do a combination of both.

The Track process lets you log contact information to the contact history tables, separate from the contact process that generated the list of contacts.

For example, if your mail house does post-processing to remove invalid and duplicate addresses, then you probably would not write your initially-generated list to contact history. Instead, you would wait for the mail house to send you a confirmation list of IDs to which they actually sent offers.

In this case, your input to the Track process will be the final mailing list used by the mail house after they performed post-processing, and your contact history will be more accurate. Later, if some direct mail pieces are returned as undeliverable, you can use the Track process to update the contact status for those contacts as "Undeliverable."

Additionally, there are times when the target list is large, and it is not necessary to load all of this information into contact history. Instead, you can log only those contacts who were actually contacted. Often, you do not know who was or was not contacted until you receive feedback from call centers or mail houses. You can use the Track process so that when feedback is received from different sources you can insert it into the contact history tables.

For details about logging contacts to contact history, see Contact history.

Example 1

You create two separate flowcharts to take advantage of the Track process's delayed writing to contact history.

Create your contact list in Flowchart 1: A Select process selects data and provides input to a Segment process, where the data is segmented by value tier. The segmented data from the Segment process is input to a Mail List process. You configure the Mail List process to output a list of IDs to a file, without logging contact history, because you want the contact list to undergo post-processing by the mail house.

Create Flowchart 2 to handle the contact list that the mail house returns to you, and to write the final list of contacts to contact history. Flowchart 2 consists of a Select process whose input is the list of customers who were actually contacted by the mail house, connected to a Track process which then writes the information to contact history.

Example 2

In a variation of the previous example, the mail house returns a list of IDs that could not be contacted. To obtain the list of contacted IDs, select the original output contact list from Flowchart 1 and use a Merge process to suppress the IDs that could not be contacted. The output from the Merge process is then your list of contacted IDs, and these IDs can be passed to a Track process for writing to contact history.

Note: In both examples, the Treatment code is needed to map the updated data back to the original list.