In prospect audits, you may periodically notice entries with Type = Visitor Association Change, followed by a link with the name of another prospect. Usually you will see specific types of data missing from the prospect's record.
A visitor association change happens when one prospect's cookie and activities become associated with a different prospect. A common cause of this is cookied prospect A passing along a tracked link to prospect B, often through a forwarded email. When prospect B clicks the link, the cookie and subsequent prospect information is passed to prospect B, changing the association.
What is affected?
A visitor association change will affect prospects by:
- All of prospect A's visitor activities will be associated with prospect B's record (with the exception of emails; once an email is sent to one address, it will always have been sent to that address).
- Any scores associated with activities will be subtracted from prospect A's score, while prospect B will accumulate any score points from prospect A's activities.
- Prospect A's personal data will remain intact, while prospect B will have a new identity
- Prospect A will show as never being active
Unfortunately, once a visitor association change has occurred, prospect A will not be able to reacquire their lost data. However, you can remove the association to stop prospect A from being tracked as the wrong person going forward.
To prevent this from happening, try the following tips:
- Use the AddThis functionality for emails. This feature allows the "referrer" to share a link with a friend via email. Then, this friend would click on the link in the email and submit a form for him/herself, which would then correctly create a new prospect record.
- Enable Kiosk/Data Entry Mode to collect form data without applying a prospect cookie to the browser.
- Enable the “Not you?” link to allow visitors to refresh a form that’s been forwarded to them from another prospect. This you can enable this option when editing or creating your form — it's available on the Advanced tab of the Look and Feel step of the Form Wizard.