I’ve been working with marketing automation tools for a little over 5-years and have had exposure to several tools, each with unique pros and cons. One question I am most often asked is “what is the difference between Marketing Cloud and Pardot?” I thought I would take some time and write-up one ladies opinion.
I’ll start by saying, depending on who you talk to, some consultants prefer one tool over the other — personally, I don’t. I think that selecting a marketing tool has three factors: your marketing team, your marketing strategy, and then technology. Before you select a technology, make sure you can answer these questions:
- What does the internal marketing team look like? What roles, skills, and experience do they have?
- Are you working with an external marketing team? What roles, skills, and experience do they have?
- What does your marketing strategy include? Email, SMS, Website, Social, Scoring, etc.
- What are you doing today and what do you want to be able to do in the future?
- Do you have a defined process to manage your strategy and how will you measure success?
I thought it would also be helpful to look at each tool in a bit more detail.
Take a Closer Look at Pardot
- Create professional-looking email campaigns fast with 36 customizable, out-of-the-box templates or build your own fully-branded templates (from headers and logos to font size and color) with a simplified WYSIWYG editor.
- Personalize the buyer’s journey and tailor your emails to prospects’ interests with dynamic content.
- Optimize deliverability with custom email authentication, SPAM analysis, email testing, and automated CAN-SPAM compliance.
- Automation reduces human error and takes the manual labor out of lead assignment, segmentation, and lead nurturing.
- Use the Google Analytics Connector to sync visitor and prospect data between Pardot and your CRM.
- Get a high-level view of your sales cycle’s health with Lifecycle Reporting.
- Monitor the performance of your paid search campaigns with Pardot’s paid search reporting.
- Real-time sales alerts make immediate follow-up a cinch.
- Pardot’s blended lead scoring and grading model mean sales reps won’t waste time chasing down dead ends. Follow up with only those meeting your ideal customer profile.
Lead Generation & Management
- Pardot’s intuitive WYSIWYG interface makes designing and launching landing pages and forms a snap. Optimizing your landing page is also a breeze with automated Multivariate Testing.
- Create polished forms with real-time field validation and Progressive Profiling designed to increase conversions by never asking for the same information twice.
- Connect all of your Search Campaigns on one cohesive platform.
- Run more targeted campaigns using Pardot’s easy-to-use segmentation wizard.
- Save time and continually distribute your content with scheduled social postings.
- Provide sales reps additional insight with social profile lookups.
- Let others circulate your content for you by adding social “share” buttons to your email, blog posts, and white papers.
- Post to multiple channels simultaneously, cross-sell your content and track the success of your social efforts — from one all-inclusive platform.
Dive Into Marketing Cloud
- Test multiple variations of content, channel, timing, and frequency.
- Automatically monitor and respond to customers.
- Reach across the customer lifecycle creating Salesforce contacts, leads, cases, and tasks.
- Utilize mobile-optimized email templates.
Predictive Intelligence ($)
- Create predictive profiles for each contact.
- Infer customer preferences.
- Incorporate merchandising or business-centric rules.
- Predict and automate marketing decisions based on customer behavior.
- Engage in two-way mobile communications.
- Track and send mobile messages.
- Track when a custom opens your app.
- Adverse on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
- Manage ads at scale using creative permutations, rules automation, and team collaboration tools.
Social Media Marketing
- Listen and analyze social media conversations.
- Publish and plan social marketing campaigns.
- Monitor your social media presence.
Customer Data Platform
- Bring in data from any source.
- Build a single, 360-degree view of each customer.
- View, analysis, filter, and segment data.
- Track page view, click-through rates, and more with actionable web analytics.
- Create smart content with pre-built and custom layouts.
Integration in the Cloud
The tools do have a slightly different integration with Sales Cloud and Service Cloud. Here’s a bit more information about both:
Marketing Cloud Integration with Sales/Service Cloud
- MC and Salesforce sync on Email Address or IDs as the unique identifier
- MC has full functionality when connecting to one CRM connector at a time but has the ability to connect to multiple SF orgs but functionality is minimized
- Sync standard Salesforce Objects to MC (Leads, Contacts, and Accounts)
- Sync custom Salesforce Objects with MC Data Extension
- Sync MC Activities to Salesforce Custom Object
- MC custom Actions include: Send Email
- Sync is automatic
Pardot Integration with Sales/Service Cloud
- Pardot and Salesforce sync on Email Address as the unique identifier
- Pardot can only have one CRM connector at a time
- Sync standard Salesforce Objects to Pardot (Leads, Contacts, Accounts, and Opps) and custom objects
- Sync Pardot Campaigns to Salesforce Campaigns
- Sync Pardot Activities to Salesforce as Activities
- Sync Pardot Scoring to Salesforce as custom fields on Lead & Contact
- Pardot Visual Force Pages include: Pardot Activities, Pardot List Management, and Pardot Social
- Pardot custom Actions include: Send to Pardot and Send Pardot Email
- Pardot is Salesforce1 friendly
- Sync is automatic and runs every 10 minutes
I want to leave you with a general guideline to compare the two after reviewing each product and taking a dive into integration.
Pardot: B2B Marketing Automation by Salesforce
Marketing Cloud: The digital marketing platform for 1:1 customer journeys across email, mobile, social, advertising, and the web.
- Pardot: Likely a Sales Cloud User
- Marketing Cloud: CRM System not required
- Pardot: B2B marketing automation, lead scoring, lead nurturing
- Marketing Cloud: Journey management, email marketing, mobile marketing, social media marketing, display advertising, and web personalization.
Example Use Cases
- Pardot: Customer Lifecycle Marketing, Landing Pages & Forms, Email Drip Campaigns, Search Campaigns, Prospect Activity Tracking, Auto Lead Assignment, Webinar Promotion
- Marketing Cloud: Promotional Messages, Transactional Messages, Event Marketing, Mobile Messaging, Cross-Channel Journey, Social Listening & Publishing
- Pardot: B2B
- Marketing Cloud: B2C
- Pardot: Sales enablement, Lead Nurturing and Scoring, CRM Automation, Additional connectors, Owner Assignment
- Marketing Cloud: 1:1, Real-Time Journeys, Reporting and Analytics, Integrated Social Insights and Publishing, Integrated Mobile
- Pardot: Email is the unique identifier, Data deduplication may be required, data cleansing may be required
- Marketing Cloud: Greater Configuration Effort, Heavier Customization
- Pardot: Marketo, Hubspot, Eloqua
- Marketing Cloud: Adobe Marketing Cloud, Oracle Marketing Cloud, and IBM Marketing Cloud
I hope this has been a helpful overview. If you have more questions, get in touch! Silverline has a team of Marketing Cloud and Pardot experts, and over a decade of working with Salesforce technologies. We’d love to help you on your journey and find the solution that best fits your need.