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The August 2019 update of Dynamics 365 for Marketing is ready and rolling out starting now! We’re also releasing early access features, which you can choose to enable together with the August 2019 update. This will let you try out a few of the upcoming features we have scheduled for final release with the 2019 release wave 2, which is planned for October 2019.
We’ll be rolling out the production update and early access features on a region-by-region basis, and we expect them to be available to all regions by early August 2019.
For more information about recently released and planned new features, please see the Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Release Plan.
The procedure for getting the August 2019 update depends on whether you want to include the early access features or just the production-ready August 2019 update.
You can opt-in for early access on any instance, but we recommend that you only do so on trial, test, or sandbox instances, which will give you a chance to learn the new functionality before it shows up on your production instances later this year. When you opt-in for early access on an instance, you must then also update that instance to the August 2019 version and will therefore receive the latest generally available features, improvements, and bug fixes together with the early access features.
For instructions on how to opt-in and enable early access, see Enable the 2019 release wave 2 updates for Dynamics 365 for Marketing.
For more information about the 2019 release wave 2 release schedule, and answers to frequently asked questions about the early access program, see Dynamics 365 release schedule and early access.
We encourage all customers to provide feedback related to early access features on the Dynamics 365 for Marketing forum and/or through Microsoft Support.
You can apply the August 2019 production update to any type of instance without enabling early access. This will provide all of the latest bug fixes and performance improvements, but won’t significantly impact user experience. We recommend updating all Marketing instances, including production instances, as soon as you can. To do so, you must apply it to each of your Dynamics 365 for Marketing instances manually. As soon as the update is available in your region, you’ll be able to see and apply it as described in Keep Marketing up to date.
This section provides an overview of the new early access features that will become available in August 2019.
The new Customer Insights app for Dynamics 365 applies artificial intelligence to analyze rich pools of customer data collected from across other apps like Dynamics 365 for Sales, Service, and Marketing. Its standard functionality generates powerful analytical displays for each contact, which makes the information easy to understand and use. In this release, the integrated solution can:
To take advantage of this integration, you must first set up a trial or production instance of Customer Insights.
More information: Use segments from Dynamics 365 Customer Insights with Dynamics 365 for Marketing
Use email A/B testing to test two slightly different email designs on a small part of a target segment to find out which design is more successful, and then automatically send the winning design to the rest of the segment. You start by creating an initial design (the “A” version), and then use that as the basis to create a “B” version of the design in which you have modified a small part of it (such as the subject). Finally, choose your conditions for success (such as most opened or most clicked) and run the test as part of a customer journey.
In the early access version of this feature, you’ll be able to A/B test the message subject or sender name. In the final release, we expect also to enable testing on email content.
More information: Design and run A/B test on your email designs
Previously, the only way to set up a multi-column email message was to start with one of the out-of-box templates, or by entering HTML code directly. Now we provide a new set of layout design elements, each of which creates a different column layout, such as one, two, or three columns with various width ratios. Just drag one of these elements onto your design and the start filling each column with content. You can even create multiple rows of columns, each with a different number and ratio of columns, as required.
More information: Design multi-column layouts for email messages
We have created a much improved experience for establishing your target segments. The new interface is much more graphical and intuitive compared to the previous version. Use it to create powerful and detailed logic for identifying the precise selection of contacts that you want to target, based on demographic and firmographic details, interaction records, and more. It even lets you work across related entities to establish wide-ranging selection criteria.
More information: Create segments with the new segmentation designer
Subscription lists in Dynamics 365 for Marketing are based on the static marketing lists normally used for the in-app marketing feature of Dynamics 365 for Sales. Previously, you needed to take care when setting up a subscription list to ensure that you set it up correctly to make it usable with the Marketing app. But now, we’ve added a new Subscription list entry to the main navigator of the Marketing app, and from here you can get started with a correctly configured subscription list with just one click. Now you’ll have many fewer distractions on your way to creating fully functional subscription lists.
As part of the new easy subscription list feature, you can also now see which lists any of your contacts is subscribing to. To see a contact’s subscriptions, open their contact record, go to the Details tab and check the Subscription lists section.
More information: Easy subscription lists
Marketing forms must be designed to submit values for all mandatory fields and fields used in contact matching, lead matching, and duplicate detection. For option set fields, forms must also provide valid index values that map correctly to available values in the database.
Every now and then, errors in form design or changes to system settings can cause form submissions to fail some or all of the time. Previously, failed submission were usually lost, but now the system will store what it can of erroneous submissions so you can examine them later and possibly recover key information from them. This information can also help you learn how to correct your form designs and/or system settings to prevent failed submissions in the future.
More information: View and recover from failed form submissions
As part of the platform update that you’ll receive when opting in for early access, you’ll notice a cleaner and more compact header design for all forms. We think you’ll like this new design, but please note that it will slightly impact the way you make settings for Marketing entities that previously allowed you to edit values directly in header. With the new design, you can still edit these values, but you must use the drop-down menu at the side of the header to access the settings.
We have now extended the architecture of Dynamics 365 for Marketing to make it easier for developers to build on its functionality, and one of the first capabilities we have in mind for this new extendibility is the ability to create an approvals feature based on Microsoft Flow. We’ve also extended a few standard entities to make them ready for approvals.
The approval workflow functions by replacing the Go live button on relevant entities with a Send for approval button, which, rather than going live right away, instead triggers an email sent to a preselected approver who must approve the record before it can go live. Core approval scenarios include:
To support developers interested in creating an approval feature, we are providing developer documentation that explains how create the feature and customize it to meet the needs of a wide variety of organizations. Because each organization probably has its own business process and hierarchy, Microsoft Flow provides the flexibility required for easy customization by business users, makers, or partners.
More information: Build an approvals feature
The August 2019 release, both with and without the early access features, fixes the following bugs on all instances:
The post Dynamics 365 for Marketing August update and early access are rolling out now appeared first on Dynamics 365 Blog.
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