uCalendar Use Case, Part I: Creating Custom Sugar Modules
A marketing department can experience growing pains as more people join the team: the amount of content will increase and so will the number of platforms used to create it. Keeping track of all past and present marketing content and getting everyone aligned can prove difficult, especially when using multiple platforms, such as marketing automation tool, a social media scheduler, a content management system (CMS) and customer relationship management (CRM).
To overcome this challenge and increase visibility on our marketing content across all channels, we decided to create a Marketing Events calendar that would contain all of our past, present, and upcoming content. However, since we did not want to force our employees to sign up for an online calendar service, we took advantage of Sugar’s customization capabilities and uCalendar, our calendar solution that displays records from any standard or custom module.
This blog post will walk you through the process of creating a custom Sugar module and configuring uCalendar to display records as events. The first part details how to create a custom Sugar module, while part II goes over how to import records to Sugar and configuring uCalendar.
Note: you will need to have an administrator account in Sugar, or ask your admin for assistance. We strongly recommend creating custom modules in a sandbox environment before moving them to production.
Creating a Custom Sugar Module
To start storing events in Sugar, we first needed to create a module where one record contained information on one piece of content (e.g., one blog post = one record in Sugar).
To add a new module in Sugar, you’ll need to log into your CRM instance, go to Administration → Developer Tools → Module Builder.
You will either need to create a new package or add the new module to an already existing package. In this case, we’ll create the Marketing Events module in a new package.
In the next screen, fill in the required fields, then click Save. You are now able to create modules in your new Sugar package. We don’t need too many fields for our Marketing Events module, so we will just use the Basic template for modules.
You are now able to customize your newly created module with fields. Since we want to be able to view the records of this module in uCalendar, we added two date type fields that we’ll use as Start/End dates for our marketing content. We also created a new dropdown that will be used to categorize our marketing content by type:
- Blog post
- Case Study
- Live Event
- White Paper
After adding all of our required fields, we now have three options for deploying this Sugar package:
- Deploy - installs the package in the current Sugar instance.
- Publish - creates a .zip file that is an installable version of the package. Loading this file in Module Loader will install its contents in Sugar.
- Export - creates a .zip file containing all customizations made to the package. Loading this file in Module Loader will add this its contents to the Module Builder.
This concludes our walkthrough of creating custom Sugar modules. In Part II, we will import records in the Marketing Events module and configure uCalendar for it. If you would like to customize your Sugar instance for your business, don’t hesitate to contact us.