Deep Dive: Conga HTML Email – Part 2

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Welcome to the second and final installment of our deep dive on Conga HTML Email Templates.  I covered three useful features for HTML Email templates in last week’s post, and today I’ll be taking you through three more.  My goal is to leave you with some ideas about how to improve email-based communication processes in Salesforce by getting the most out of this particular Conga Composer template format.  Let’s get started!

4) Merging Images

One of the biggest benefits of HTML Email templates is the ability to include rich content.  Whether it’s a stay-in-touch newsletter or a showcase of apartment listings right in your inbox, images are almost always a key component of richly-formatted HTML emails.

There are two ways to merge images into HTML Email templates with Conga Composer:

Rich Text Field Method

If you insert an image into a Salesforce rich text field, you can reference it in an HTML Email template by using theHTML: prefix before your merge field name.  For example, I’ve stored an image in a rich text field called ‘RTF Description’.

Here’s my template:

RTF-Image-Template

And here’s what it looks like after merging with Composer:

RTF-Image-Output

 

Important: One crucial thing to keep in mind when merging images from rich text fields (RTFs) is that they’re not compatible with Salesforce Reports.  If your RTF isn’t a field on your master object (the object where your Conga Composer button exists), you’ll need to use a Conga Query to merge it.

The Conga Query Manager is included in the latest release of Conga Composer, so thus provides a great opportunity to get a very basic introduction to SOQL.

Image URL Method

You can also merge an image into a Conga HTML Email template by storing its URL in a text field.  The image must be publicly available, so that means any hosted image that can be accessed online without a login.  For example, you can store an image file in Salesforce Documents, ensure that it’s publicly available (fig. 1), and then copy the image URL and paste it into a text field (fig. 2).

 Figure 1:

 

Document-Image

 

Figure 2:

 

Document-Image-Pasted

Once you’ve stored a valid image URL in a text field, you can reference that field in your HTML Email template with the IMAGE: prefix like so:

 

Text-Image-Template

After merging, my email looks like this:

Text-Image-Output

One additional benefit of merging images this way is that Composer gives you the ability to automatically resize them at the template level.  This is done by adding a suffix to the merge field name for either the height or width of the image.  Only one of these options (height or width) can be specified at a time so that the image maintains its original proportions.

To modify the height of an image, add :H=value to the end of your merge field where value is your desired height in pixels.

To modify the width of an image, add :W=value to the end of your merge field where value is your desired width in pixels.

For example, here’s a template that includes three image merge fields for a user signature.  The second and third merge fields have resizing settings applied:

Resize-Template

And here’s the merged output:

Resize-Output

5) Dynamic Subjects

Conga HTML Email templates support merge fields in the subject of an email, making it very easy to include dynamic values and further personalize your communications.  Nothing fancy here – just good, old-fashioned dynamic subjects.

Here’s a sample HTML Email template:

 

Subject-Template

And here’s the result when I run my Composer solution from an Opportunity:

 

Subject-Output

6) ADJUSTing Date Fields

The ADJUST feature for creating dynamic dates in Word templates is also available in Conga HTML Email templates.  The feature itself is pretty straightforward – it allows you to automatically adjust the value of a date or date/time field any number of years, months, days, hours, minutes or seconds into the past or future.  Let’s take a look at the syntax for ADJUST fields:

ADJUST-Syntax

Each color-coded value represents an increment by which the date can be adjusted.  If a positive number is used, it pushes the date forwards.  If a negative number is used, it pushes it backwards.  For example, here’s an HTML Email template where two merge fields are pushing the Opportunity Close Date 30 days into the future and past, respectively:

ADJUST-Template

And here’s the resulting output:

 

ADJUST-Output

The main benefit of the ADJUST feature is that it avoids the need for custom date formulas in Salesforce.  I’ve found the ADJUST feature especially useful for creating dynamic due dates, like an invoice payment deadline.  It’s also great for referencing today’s date to create a value that’s a certain number of months or days in the past.

For example, let’s say I regularly send activity reports to my customers, but I have a few Conga Composer solutions in place to send reports of either the last 1, 3, or 6 months of activity.  Instead of creating formula fields to calculate the exact date that was 1, 3 or 6 months prior to today, I can use an ADJUST field in each of the relevant Conga HTML Email templates to do this automatically.

That wraps up this deep dive on Conga HTML Email templates.  I hope the descriptions of these features give you some food for thought in terms of leveraging the power of Conga HTML Email for your next project, or even adding some dynamic HTML Email capabilities to an existing Conga Composer solution.

Are you using HTML Email Templates for a particularly cool use case?  We’d love to hear about it in the comments.  Until next time!

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