Marketing · Marketing cloud · Pardot · Salesforce

Pardot: Jogging your memory on the basics.

Pardot is Salesforce’s B2B marketing automation solution. Pardot can automate marketing activities and help the marketing department to hand over nurtured or hot prospects to the Sales department so that they can follow up with them and eventually close their deals. Hence helping the Sales and marketing team to align their goals and work better together.

A marketer is likely to be working on a multiple campaigns or projects. Pardot is a SAAS where once can create and manage these projects and report on their success. Pardot also helps to track prospects as they interact with the marketing assets across all your marketing channels.

Pardot is your Salesforce Campaigns on steroids. It will help move the visitors and prospects through the sales funnel. This funnel Starts with the marketing assets to generate interest in your products and ends when qualified prospects are assigned to a sales rep.

Let us understand what the funnel stages are along with few other marketing automation terminologies.

Marketing Funnel
The Marketing Funnel

Lead Generation: This is where the interests of potential or existing customers are inculcated in your products or services through marketing efforts.

Visitor: An anonymous person who visits your website and is tracked in Pardot.

Conversion: Once a visitor provides their contact information by submitting a landing page or form in Pardot, they are converted to a prospect.

Prospect: An anonymous visitor that has converted and is now identified. In Salesforce’s Sales Cloud or other CRM software, these are also known as leads.

Lead nurturing: Sending targeted messages at specific intervals based on a prospect’s actions and whether or not they’ve met a certain qualifying criterion. Below image shows an engagement studio which can be used for lead nurturing.

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Lead qualification: You probably have hundreds of people interacting with your organization. It is difficult for the sales teams to contact each one of them, so the marketer’s job is to help send them the best of the best prospects. This process of finding a diamond in a coal mine of prospects is called lead qualification. The marketer decides the threshold for when a prospect is ready to be assigned to a sales rep for them to follow up.

Pardot uses two metrics for lead qualification i.e. score and grade.

Prospect score: A prospect’s score is a numerical value indicating how interested a prospect is in the marketed product or service, based on specific actions the prospect takes. As the prospect interacts with your Pardot connected Marketing assets his or her score can be increases as per desired activities or decreased on an something that can be considered as a less preferred activity.

Prospect grade: A prospect’s grade is represented by an alphabet (A, B, C, D, E, F) indicating how well a prospect fits the profile of the perfect prospect.

Once your prospects are qualified, you can apply your threshold criteria to your prospects to assign them to your sales team.

Pardot Prospect Activities
Prospect Activities being tracked, and Score assigned based on these activities

MQL: Also known as a Marketing Qualified Lead.  A MQL is a prospect who has been typically nurtured within Pardot and has consequently been assigned to someone in sales. If your Pardot instance is connected to a Salesforce CRM, this is the stage when you pass your Pardot data to the CRM by assigning the Pardot Prospects to the CRM Sale Users.

Pardot campaigns: This is the first marketing-related contact the prospect has made with your company. It is similar to campaigns in Sales Cloud, however it is different from how campaigns work there. For now assume that Pardot campaigns are touch points for a visitor or a prospect to any of the marketing assets build in Pardot so as to help segregate the Prospect’s in the tool. In Pardot one prospect can be associated to only one campaign.

Lead Management: Lead management involves identifying, tracking, and managing sales leads from the point of lead generation to conversion.

Visitor to Lead to Opportunity: A visitor is an anonymous individual who comes to your site. Once they convert and provide contact information, they become a lead. A lead becomes an opportunity once contact is made and there is a chance you will close the deal.

Pardot or Marketing Cloud?

Pardot is specifically focused on helping B2B companies automate their marketing efforts. If you’re just beginning to explore the marketing automation industry, and the different marketing automation tools, it might be difficult for you to evaluate between these tools. Salesforce has other tools for marketers, so let’s look at whether you would benefit from Pardot or from Marketing Cloud. While some companies do use both Pardot and Marketing Cloud solutions, they are typically used by different teams who have different goals.

To make it easier to understand, we’ve broken down Pardot and Marketing Cloud into easy to understand comparison table. Use this to match up your company or team goals and decide which tool is right for you.

Use Pardot if: Use Marketing Cloud if:
You sell primarily to other businesses. You sell primarily to individual consumers.
You use, or plan to use, Sales Cloud or another CRM. You send emails that require details from a transaction. For example, a shipping confirmation would include the tracking number.
You need to send emails to prospects on behalf of sales reps. You have very complex data or use cases.
You need to qualify leads to pass to sales team. Your company or group generates revenue through a large volume of one-on-one interactions with your customers.

If you want to further analyze which tool meets your business requirement, go through this blog on Salesforce Marketing Cloud vs Pardot.

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