PathFactory is an intelligent B2B content experience platform used to create personalized content journeys for your audience. The global content team is primarily responsible for all the of the content within the PathFactory. Campaign managers work with other teams in marketing to organize and curate assets into tracks that are then disseminated for use in Marketo,
about.gitlab.com, and other campaign-related channels.
PathFactory is used primarily for email nurture streams, landing pages, advertising, and virtual event follow-up.
Assets are bundled together (around 5-7) in a "content track" and shared as one link. Instead of sharing multiple links to individual assets, one link provides a curated content experience.
Sharing individual assets. It's meant to encourage a visitor to "binge" the content and self-nurture towards MQL. For sharing individual assets, please direct to the GitLab website.
Creating web pages. Pathfactory is a content library that curates experiences (think of it like Netflix for B2B content). Pathfactory is not a replacement for Marketo.
☝️ PathFactory ≠ Email Nurture. PathFactory is a tool that - instead of driving to a single asset - drives to a related-content experience.
Nurture is a channel to bring an individual to the content. Just like ads, social, website, etc. drive to CTAs, PathFactory link is the CTA - a powerful CTA because it can lead the individual down a "choose your own adventure" path of consumption which we track.
What are the differing goals of PathFactory and Marketo?
Can records be in Marketo nurture and PathFactory nurture at the same time? If not, is 1 prioritized over the other?
Yes, the PathFactory track acts as a supplement to the existing Marketo nurture instead of a replacement. It allows us to provide related content in a seamless way for the end-user (better than simply providing a PDF link and to improve "binging" of content).
PathFactory is not a single source of truth (SSoT) for all GitLab content, but rather content that has been activated in a marketing campaign.
Content Management System (CMS) - A content management system is a software application that can be used to manage the creation and modification of digital content.
Digital Asset Management (DAM) - Digital asset management (DAM) is a system that stores, shares and organizes digital assets in a central location.
PathFactory - Content experience software used to allow buyers to binge-consume content, remove friction, and create more qualified leads, faster.
PathFactory for Sales allows B2B sales teams to deliver and track personalized content to engage buyers and close deals.
The Marketing Operations team is responsible for managing access requests & provisioning the appropriate level of access for each role/function. PathFactory is not provisioned as a baseline entitlement. If you or your team require access, please open a
Single Person Access Request issue and provide business reason why access is needed. For certain permissions or roles, you may be required to go through training before access is provisioned.
There are three levels of access -
Reporter - which are granted based on the persons' role and team function within GitLab. All access levels have the ability to view analtyics within the tool.
Adminaccess is granted to Marketing Operations and at times, other teams such as sales or business operations to manage integrations between systems.
Authoraccess allows user to build, edit and publish content tracks applying existing tags to the assets.
Reporteraccess provides general visibility to content within PathFactory but does not allow end user to create or modify any of the content, tracks or tags. This level of access is granted for the general GitLab team member both within Marketing and elsewhere who have a business need to have access.
Sales Useris anyone who has a valid email domain associated with our PathFactory instance, but who does not have a login. These users are not able to login to PathFactory, but they will be able to share any content tracks that
Adminsselect on the
For more info on the capabilities of each role, see the knowledge base article.
|Team||User Roles||Rules of Engagement|
||Manage, quality assurance, user management, system integrations, training|
||Add content, quality assurance, participate in quarterly content audits|
||Add content, create and edit tracks for use in campaigns, define form strategy for conversion on tracks, participate in quarterly content audits|
||Upload new content, participate in quarterly content audits, collaborate with
||Upload content from virtual workshops, clone existing workshop tracks for use in follow-up emails, view content performance|
||Add content, create and edit content tracks for use in campaigns|
|Customer Reference Programs||
||Upload new case studies and customer content|
||Upload new technical content|
|Sales Development Representative (SDR)||
||PathFactory for Sales (SFDC)|
||Upload new all remote content, create and edit content tracks for use in all-remote campaigns|
||View content library, create and clone content tracks for partners, reporting|
||View content library, create content tracks for customer onboarding where a TAM is not assigned or requested, reporting|
PathFactory has no built-in audit log or trail for changes that are made within the content library (only that it was updated and by whom) or content tracks. It is critically important that everyone with
Author role access to PathFactory follow the instructions and documentation outlined in this handbook. Any changes made to the content library or content tracks can have a negative impact on those content tracks which are tied to campaigns, reporting, and attribution.
For instance, if an asset is deleted from the content library and that asset exists in campaign-related content tracks, the user that visits that asset within that track will be redirected to
about.gitlab.com, which has the following impacts:
The same impacts above can happen if an
Author role makes changes to an existing content track without collaborating with the
Author of that track.
Before making any of these impactful changes, please collaborate with the
Author of a content track before making any changes or asking in
#mktgops before deleting any assets in the content library.
If these changes are made, it is also critically important to input them to the PathFactory changelog so that we can correct them accordingly.
Periodically, significant changes are made or added to PathFactory and processes that affect overall data and reporting. As such we have a changelog. Everyone with
Author access that is making significant changes in PathFactory should add their changes to the changelog with a linked issue and/or relevant PathFactory links.
Scenarios for adding to the changelog:
[LIVE]content track and why
The content library is where all content uploaded to PathFactory is added and tagged for use in content tracks and experiences. An asset must exist in the content library first before it can be utilized in a PathFactory experience.
There are multiple types of PathFactory experiences that you can create under
Explore Pageyou create is built on top of an existing
When adding assets to the content library, please ensure both the public and internal titles match the title of the asset. Do not add any extra prefixes to the asset title (ex:
[BLOG] - Title of blog). Content types are already indicated by the content type field. Remove any extra SEO meta title information such as
|GitLab that is appended to the title once PathFactory pulls in the information about the asset from the URL. Follow the editorial team's guidelines for formatting and case (sentence case).
When creating and editing content tracks, please use the following naming convention to let others know the status of your track. These track names are not shown to the visitor of the track. Name the track so that other
Author roles understand the use of your track. Add start and end dates for your campaign if relevant so it can be archived/deleted at a later date. Add persona in the track title if the track is for a specific persona. Add a GTM motion to the title if the track assets are focused toward a specific GTM motion.
[WIP] - [Campaign Name]- work in progress track; not live
[LIVE] - [Campaign Name]- live track; traffic is flowing to track
[ARCHIVED] - [Campaign Name]- arhived track; not in active use; traffic may or may not be flowing to track
Track labels are used to document the channels that a content track is distributed on. These track labels are arbitrary and do not tie to any functionality within PathFactory. They are simply used to indicate to other
Author roles within PathFactory how you intend to use your content track.
|archived||content track no longer in use and marked for archiving, possibly future deletion|
|content track to be sent from a Marketo email or nurture stream|
|event||content track is shared as part of a corporate event or partner event|
|external||content track is shared externally (ex: third-party website)|
|in-app||content track sent from an in-product message or notification|
|integrated campaign||content track is part of an integrated campaign|
|internal use only||content track is distributed to GitLab team members only|
|landing page||content track is sent to a visitor after filling out a form on a landing page|
|organic social||content track is shared in an organic social media post|
|outreach||content track is sent via Outreach|
|paid search||content track is part of a paid search campaign|
|paid social||content track is part of a paid social campaign|
|SAL inbound||content track is enabled for PathFactory for Sales for SALs to share inbound|
|SAL outbound||content track is enabled for PathFactory for Sales for SALs to share outbound|
|SDR inbound||content track is enabled for PathFactory for Sales for SDRs to share inbound|
|SDR outbound||content track is enabled for PathFactory for Sales for SDRs to share outbound|
|survey/quiz||content track is shared in a survey or quiz|
|web promoter||content track is used in a website promoter within PathFactory|
|website||content track is linked on a web page on
Track folders are set up by team as different teams within marketing use and distribute content tracks for various use cases. This helps to ensure that team members only make change to content tracks within their team folder.
When naming forms, please follow the naming convention:
[WIP] Language - Purpose - Marketo Form ID(example:
[WIP] Korean - Contact Us - 2963)
[LIVE] Language - Purpose - Marketo Form ID(example:
[LIVE] Korean - Contact Us - 2963)
[TEST] Language - Purpose - Marketo Form ID(example:
[TEST] English - PF<>Bizible - 2715)
Before creating a new content track, decide what type of content track (target vs. recommend) you want to create. Use the criteria below to decide the best option:
Campaign Toolsin the top navigation bar and select the content track type you want to create (target or recommend).
Create trackbutton in the top right.
Add contentbutton at the top right. A window will pop up with the content library. Use the sorting options at the top to quickly add content by topic, type, funnel stage, etc. PathFactory content tracks are meant to encourage content binging (visitors reading more than 1 asset to accelerate them in the pipeline by helping them self educate faster in one visit). So as best practice, have more than 1 asset in a track.
custom URL slugfor the content track. Follow the instructions for creating a custom URL slug for an asset.
No Index, No Follow.
Links & Sharingset to default.
External IDset to default.
Cookie Consentbefore providing the approved content track link for live use.
Promoters are the tools that allow visitors to navigate the Content Tracks and encourage them to view additional recommended content. Think of promoters as the guides through a content track; the promoters you use determine how and when content will be presented to visitors. Note the different functionality of each below. Before going live, you can test each promoter to find the one that works best for the goals of your PathFactory experience.
Headerfeature with the
Headeris used to add additional branding to your content track.
Sign Posts, and
Bottom Barcannot be used together. Choose 1 of the 3.
Inactivitypromoters can be used in conjunction with either the
Sign Posts, or
Call-to-action (CTA) buttons encourage further engagement from your visitors within your Content Tracks. CTAs can be added to any Target or Recommend Content Track. These CTA buttons can link to either a form or a URL.
Create a CTA
Watch a demo.
WIPform as your CTA.
Form strategy is used on content tracks to collect data from unknown visitors. This is done by "gating" an asset within a track or by creating a track rule with an engagement threshold (example: spent at least 60 seconds in the track and viewed 2 assets). Not all content tracks will or should have form strategy turned on - it depends on the goal of your campaign. Form strategy should only be used when a track entry point is not from a webform or landing page (i.e. direct link from digital ad or web promoter). The forms used in PathFactory are directly tied to currently existing Marketo forms. Even if you are sending to a known audience, you should consider using form strategy should a visitor forward the experience to an unknown user.
Please Note: PathFactory activity is tied into the MQL scoring model. This means that you do not need to add form strategy to a content track if entry point is from a landing page.
GDPR Considerations: When using time-based form strategy, aim for at least 15-30 seconds in order for the user to have plenty of time to accept the cookie consent pop-up prior to filling out the form.
View Form Strategylocated below the
Content Rules; for form strategy on the entire content track, you'll choose
Form strategy by asset:
Add Rulein the
General Form (2074) LIVEform unless otherwise required according to campaign needs. Do not select a form marked
Display Behavior, click the dropdown and choose the assets where you want the form to show. (Please Note: only assets that you have added to the content track will show in the dropdown. If you want the form to show on an asset that is not in the track, you will need to add it first.)
10 secondsis the default selection.
Show to unknown users. This prevents forms being shown to users who are already known in Marketo. However, if you are using the form on the web or other channels, you'll want to select
Show to unknown usersonly.
Show to Known Visitorsis toggled off.
If submitted, allow form to show againtoggled off.
allow visitors to dismiss the formsif it is not crucial to its use to have them submit their info.
Keep promoters active when form is shownis up to the
Author. For example, if the
Flowpromoter is used on a content track, they will still be able to see the sidebar of avialable content while the form is shown to them. If this option is toggled off, the visitor will not be able to click on any content in the sidebar until they fill out the form.
Form strategy for content tracks:
Add Rulein the
General Form (2074) LIVEform unless otherwise required according to campaign needs.
Display Behavioryou can choose to serve the form based on the number of content assets viewed or the total time spent on the track.
?(there should only be one immediately after the end of the URL).
&when appending UTMs.
When a track is LIVE (in use):
[LIVE] Name of track.
When a track has been archived (no longer in use):
[ARCHIVED] Name of track.
[LIVE]track can disrupt the user experience for the visitor and activate the
#alltrack or fallback URL (
about.gitlab.com) instead of the intended content track. Please ensure that the link to the asset is not being used in any other marketing channels before deleting.
DRI for track creation: Campaign Managers
Segment Campaigns(subject to change if the folders get massive - HB to update as needed)
vcc-) - see more
Start Free SaaS Trial
CI Awareness Practitioner 1, set the end promoter to go to
CI Awareness Practitioner 2to move them to the next stage and continue binging)
The forms used in PathFactory are hardcoded Marketo form script. They are added to PathFactory using the Marketo script, but they should also include the PathFactory capture tags and custom parameters to capture additional information behind the form fill. If a new form is created, the PathFactory capture tag and custom paramters must be hardcoded in the script.
To request a new form to use in PathFactory, the form must first exist in Marketo. If one does not exist, first create an issue in the marketing ops project using the
form_request.md template. Once the Marketo form is completed, then create an issue in the marketing ops project using the
Capture Tag is a snippet of code added to a Marketo form code itself. The
Capture Tag sees the visitor’s email address on submitted form, and sends it to PathFactory. This allows PathFactory to associate the email address of a visitor to their engagement data; the visitor will then be a known visitor rather than anonymous.
We use external forms (added by External URL or Custom HTML generated from Marketo) in PathFactory. The information submitted in the form is sent directly to Marketo. In order for PathFactory to associate the submitted email address with the visitor’s engagement data, you must use a
Capture Tag. This is what allows PathFactory to identify the individual as a known visitor.
#alltrack, which includes all assets uploaded to PathFactory. In a case where the user is not redirected to the
#alltrack, they will be redirected to the
Fallback URLwhich is set to
lb_email=parameter when sharing
about.gitlab.comlinks in Marketo emails. This parameter is used on
learn.gitlab.comlinks to identify anonymous track visitors.
Get Share URLfeature next to the title of the track.
Share linksare to be used in locations such as the website whereas
Email tracking linksare only for use in email. Note: If it’s in email, it’s a known audience so don’t gate any assets in the track. Only use
share linkson the web and those tracks can have gated assets within PathFactory.
?already existing in the PF link. Typically there is one. The only time it won't have a
?is when you set a custom URL.
?, first add an ampersand
&at the end of the PF link, followed by the UTMs.
?, first add a question mark
?at the end of the PF link, followed by the UTMs.
&at the end of the PF link, followed by the UTMs.
?(there should only be one immediately after the end of the URL).
PathFactory links behind a form fill on a landing page
Using a content track with a custom URL
?in a different location than with content tracks that don't have a custom URL.
x=XOIXTl= content track ID)
*Note: for simplicity in tracking, we strongly urge you to use a custom URL slug on all tracks. Video regarding custom URL slugs
PathFactory’s custom query string manager allows you to manage and append query strings when sharing a link to a content track or explore page.
Organization Settingsin the dropdown menu in the top right corner.
Custom Query Stringstab.
Sharebutton or icon.
Note: Do not delete or edit the default query string for Marketo as that query string is an important way to integrate with PathFactory.
Explore pages allow your visitors to quickly view all content assets in a content track. Each explore page you create is built on top of an existing target or recommend content track.
Explore pages can act as replacements for traditional landing pages or simple microsites.
Before you make an explore page ensure that you have already built a content track (target or recommended) that you will use as the base.
Explorefrom the left navigation.
Create Explore Pagebutton.
Create Explore Page. Please follow the hierarchy of folders by dept. from the content tracks.
Appearances. Select your desired appearance from the left navigation in your explore page under
Page Settings, ensure that the
Search Engine Directiveis set to
No Index, No Follow.
Why can’t I change the background color behind my cover image?
The cover background color only shows when the cover image is set to "Fixed Width." Because of this, the color selection square is only available when "Fixed Width" has been selected.
I don’t want this header on my Explore page, how do I get rid of it?
The header is applied to an Explore experience from the base content track you chose for the explore page. If you don’t want the header on your explore page, go to the base content track and turn the header off.
I don’t like the order that my content is arranged on the Explore page; how do I move my content around?
All changes to the content in an explore page has to be done in the base content track that the explore page is built from. This includes the order of your content, so if you want to reorder your content you have to do so in the base content track.
Can I create a custom hero for a header on my page?
Yes! You can add a custom hero image by navigating to
Appearances Configuration and selecting the appearance you would like to modify. Then click on the
Explore tab and select
cover image for Hero layout and upoad your custom image under
Hero Image. Make sure you click
save on both the explore image upload and then again to save the appearance edits you have made (recommended size for a hero image is 1600x500).
Appearances allow you to control the look and feel of your content tracks. By creating different appearance groups you are able to quickly and easily apply different colors, fonts, and logos to content tracks without having to configure them each time you build a new track. Appearance settings allow you to control how your promoters look, select favicons for your tracks, and configure the appearance of your cookie consent messaging.
You are able to change the appearance of the following components of a content track:
Video walkthrough of appearances (Nook login required)
Create a new appearance group
Appearancesfrom the drop-down menu.
Bbutton to bold the text. Click on the
Abuttons to change the text size.
Appearancegroups, you can apply this styling to any of your content tracks. Simply select the appearance group from the drop-down menu under
The Languages feature gives you complete control over the text displayed to visitors on your promoters within content tracks and on website promoters. This feature also allows you to create language groups for languages other than English, and to customize the text that will be displayed for those languages.
There is no native integration between Smartling and PathFactory. To create a new language configuration in PathFactory and submit the default English source text available in PathFactory's language configuration menu, you must create a CSV. You can only include/exclude columns for translation in CSV. See the help center article for more info on formatting CSV files to submit for translation.
Add Languagebutton in the top right or in the left sidebar under the other language configurations.
Webhooks allow PathFactory to automatically connect with a third party system and send data every time someone visits or interacts with a PathFactory experience. There are 3 types of PathFactory webhooks (form capture, visitor session, visitor activity).
We currently use the
Visitor Session Webhook to connect to Marketo. The
Visitor session webhook is triggered off of session data. A
visitor session begins when a visitor arrives on a content track and ends when that visitor has stopped engaging with content for thirty minutes. This webhook is triggered when a visitor session ends. This means that the webhook will trigger and send data to Marketo thirty minutes after the visitor has finished engaging with content. The data sent though this webhook provides an overview of the level of engagement the visitor had with your content track and the content assets inside them during the session.
PathFactory applies a score to a person based on how much time they spent viewing an asset by its content type. The PathFactory score is incorporated into the Behavior score in Marketo.
|Content Type||Content Engagement Score||Engagement Time Threshold (seconds)|
|Technical Blog Post||1||120|
|Thought leadership Blog Post||1||120|
MOps: Form Submit-Bizible: Applies a Bizible touchpoint upon form submit within a PathFactory track
MOps: Bizible-Met Threshold: Applies a Bizible touchpoint when a visitor to a track has met the engagement threshold
There are custom PathFactory fields available in Salesforce and Marketo.
|PathFactory Asset Type||A tag to help categorize types of content (whitepaper, video, eBook, etc)|
|PathFactory Assets Viewed||Cumulative number of assets viewed. This is not associated to time consumed! See Content Count for difference|
|PathFactory Content Count||Cumulative count of assets consumed. Example: if person consumes 2 whitepapers, 1 video and blog post for minimum of 20 seconds each in a single session this field would show 4.|
|PathFactory Content Engagement Threshold||The engagement threshold time setting (in seconds) of the content asset.|
|PathFactory Content Journey||Shows users path through a PathFactory experience (next asset viewed from previous asset based on slug)|
|PathFactory Content Language||The language of the content asset.|
|PathFactory Content List||Cumulative list of each assets content id/slug for each asset consumed.|
|PathFactory Content Slug||The custom slug of the content asset.|
|PathFactory Content Source URL||The URL of the underlying source content of the content asset.|
|PathFactory Content Title||The public title of the content asset.|
|PathFactory Content URL||The current public URL of the asset being rendered in the content track.|
|PathFactory Engagement Score||Each asset in content library can be assigned an engagement score; this score is passed from PF to SFDC and used to determine meaningful engagement with content.|
|PathFactory Engagement Time||Cumulative time a person spends consuming assets in session.|
|PathFactory Experience Name||The PathFactory track name - more details|
|PathFactory External ID||A non-unique ID that can be added to tracks &/or assets, which can be leveraged to organize content and configure it in Marketing Automation Platform (i.e Marketo)|
|PathFactory Funnel State||Each asset is tagged with stage of funnel most applicable to asset - Top of Funnel, Middle of Funnel or Bottom of Funnel|
|PathFactory Query String||Returns any values captured by a query string which you have added to the content experience URL.|
|PathFactory Query String Value||The value of a key in the query string.|
|PathFactory Topic List||Assets are tagged by topic. This is manually set & aligns with the tracking content list.|
|PathFactory Track Custom URL||The custom URL of the content track.|
|PathFactory Track ID||The automatically generated PathFactory ID of the content track.|
There are a variety of analytics and reports available in PathFactory that show the overall effectiveness of content. See more info here.
An iframe, or inline frame, is a tag
<iframe> </iframe> that is used to embed an HTML document inside another HTML document on a website. The iframe HTML element can be used to insert content from another source, such as an advertisement, into a web page.
PathFactory uses iframes to serve content inside content tracks. Some web pages have restrictions that prevent their content from displaying in an iframe.
The Google Chrome Extension for PathFactory lets PathFactory users share content tracks and explore pages via Gmail. This functionality lets you embed content thumbnails and titles when sending emails using Gmail. See FAQ in The Nook.
Insertin the bottom right.
Copy Linknext to the content track or content asset. Close the modal to return to the email, select the text you want to link from, click the
Insert Linkbutton, then paste the copied link.
Admins can enabled content tracks in the organization settings for use in the Chrome extension. Open an issue in the marketing operations project if you would like a specific content track enabled.
The PathFactory Google Chrome Extension will only de-anonymize users who view content sent in emails if the following is true:
Access protection protects content and events so only a select group of people can access it, based on them having a valid email address or email domain based on an allowed list. This allows you to share more confidential information with prospects, customers and employees in a content track or a VEX Event without the worry of someone viewing it who shouldn’t be.
Add Emailto save. You can edit or delete these values at any point.
Note: Anyone who has an email address in the Domains list or the Email Address list will be able to access the content.
Note: These messages willl apply for all users who use access protection in PathFactory. Ensure the messages are generic to apply to all use cases.
Generaltab, configure the styling that will apply when someone is trying to access the content track. The fonts and colors will apply to messages within the windows that appear while trying to gain access to the content track, and the logo configured here is also displayed in the first message someone sees when they try to gain access.
email@example.com) with the link to access the content track.
You can use Drift within your PathFactory tracks to incorporate a "white glove" experience on a high-value campaign. For available Drift playbooks, see the Drift handbook page.
To set up Drift on your PathFactory track:
MOps: Driftexternal code snippet on the
External Codefield within your track settings.
PathFactoryissue label and cc