Make Your B2B Marketing More Effective with Pardot | YouDigital Insights
Pardot: increased efficiency through marketing automation
Speed counts and, according to a Harvard Business Review study, a lead is 60 times more likely to be converted if followed up within one hour compared to waiting for 24 hours to respond. And this is where Pardot’s B2B marketing automation shows its worth. Pardot customers are seeing an average increase of 34% in sales revenue and 37% improvement in marketing effectiveness.
These are not figures to be taken lightly. As Sales Trainer, Patricia Fripp identifies, ”You don’t close a sale, you open a relationship.” Automation allows businesses to reach clients more frequently, more personally, and with greater relevance. Once that happens, the numbers follow.
But what is marketing automation?
In a nutshell, it is the process of utilizing software to automate repetitive tasks within the marketing function. This, therefore, frees up time for the marketing team to focus on other areas such as business and strategic development – the irreplaceable human side to marketing. Until AI achieves even more remarkable advancements. In addition, it helps to create more personalized relationships with future and current clients and provides an all-around improved customer experience.
Salesforce reports that 67% of marketing leaders use marketing automation as standard practice with most respondents agreeing that their main strategic goal is to increase lead generation. According to a survey by Social Media Today, 75% of marketers use some form of automation as an integral part of their marketing strategy and Forrester has predicted that by 2023, the automation tools sector will hit the $25 billion mark as these technologies grow at a 14% compounded annual growth rate.
Those not already on the automation bandwagon may soon have to hop on. And the word is out there. A study by CRO experts, Invespcro revealed that 63% of marketing departments are planning on increasing their budgets specifically to increase their use of automation. Why? Because it can help with inbound and outbound marketing through:
- Easy email marketing
- In-depth prospect tracking
- Powerful lead nurturing
- Prospect grading and scoring
- Sales and marketing collaboration
- ROI and pipeline reporting
- Nurturing leads
- Personalizing email campaigns (customer journey)
- Establishing workflows
- Analytics reporting
Benefits of marketing automation
Marketing automation can provide benefits in multiple departments. It can foster sales and marketing alignment, improve customer retention, drive higher conversion rates and increase ROI by creating meaningful connections, and generate more pipelines. When it comes to business benefits, marketing automation can also reduce staff costs and maximize the effectiveness of staff members' time while increasing revenue.
With a refined process in place, marketing automation is also more effective. This allows for greater clarity and accountability in the marketing process. It also allows companies to assess the lifetime value of customers and can help to extend it.
What is Pardot?
Pardot (meaning ‘to market’ in Latvian) was founded in 2007 and to use their own words: “is a marketing automation solution that helps companies create meaningful connections, generate more pipeline, and empower sales to close more deals.”
Pardot is a software as a service product (SaaS) and while it was initially aimed at small and medium-sized businesses, it is now being employed by much larger enterprises. Since Salesforce acquired Pardot in 2013 to boost its marketing services products, Pardot has grown exponentially, at one time becoming the world’s fastest-growing automation system available on the SaaS market.
Pardot: an overview
Pardot’s four key solutions on offer are:
- Marketing Automation
- B2B Marketing Analytics
- Salesforce Engage
- Account-based Marketing.
Lead management and generation is Pardot’s forte particularly in creating a seamless transition between sales and marketing departments. The Pardot system breaks down each lead, identifying those most likely to convert for sales reps to prioritize before the competition steps in.
But it also allows for streamlined email campaigns, uses AI to boost marketing and sales strategies, helps align the sales and marketing functions in any business, and creates insightful reports on ROI and performance.
In short, Pardot can help automate:
- Lead generation
- Creating digital marketing campaigns
- Landing page marketing
- Website tracking
- Tracking customer behavior
- Webform management
- Search engine optimization
- Reporting on performance
B2B Marketing Analytics
Included within the Pardot plan is a swathe of features to help marketers understand their data and create better insights into performance through marketing analytics. This includes customizing dashboards, connecting third-party data, and unlocking intelligent insights through its AI capabilities.
Judging the success of a marketing campaign can be seen instantly on customizable dashboards allowing marketers to easily and clearly share insights with sales and marketing teams and thereby highlight successes and weaknesses in their strategy.
The name is a giveaway and no surprise that the Salesforce mother ship has created a simple and straightforward way to integrate sales and marketing functions using Pardot. The premise is that it allows sales reps to dip into the marketing function to find useful information on marketing assets. The prospect filtering function allows access to additional information to help secure a conversion - for example, a client’s email interactions and web-behavior.
Within the software are campaigns, alerts, and reports and it also can link directly into email accounts in Gmail and Outlook. Merging Salesforce data with Pardot fields can speed up launching a campaign thus increasing efficiency and productivity.
According to the Information Technology Marketing Services Association, “84% of marketers are seeing higher ROI with ABM than other marketing programs”.
Using Einstein AI technology, marketers can let machine learning do the hard work in trawling through accounts to predict who are their best customers. It can also target specified accounts with personalized ads and track campaign performance among a host of functions and options, all designed to improve customer engagement and enhance business relationships.
Why use Pardot?
The short answer is lead generation - the holy grail of all marketing departments. It is a system that empowers B2B sales and marketing teams through easy email marketing, in-depth prospect tracking, lead nurturing, scoring and grading, improved collaboration between sales and marketing, and reporting on ROI.
One other key attribute is that Pardot is completely Salesforce native. With Salesforce being the world’s number one CRM system, it makes sense to integrate a marketing automation system that speaks fluently with Salesforce.
Financial investment in such software is wasted if adoption is not fully embraced. But while many companies find such technology intimidating, most are in agreement that such investment is vital to continued growth. Studies show a 451% increase in qualified leads when using marketing automation for lead nurturing. Can marketers afford not to sit up and take note?
Pardot software is used by over 60,000 companies worldwide and was included in G2’s Top Ten list of marketing automation systems. The business case for using Pardot is undeniable.
Who uses Pardot?
Pardot’s success stories show some impressive figures which is why it is trusted by some of the world’s biggest companies including Amazon and Stanley Black & Decker.
Deloitte, a leader in Professional Services reports a 400% increase in active users using the Pardot solution compared to their legacy platform and their focus has moved from quantity to quality leads.
Ticketmaster’s VP of B2B marketing has stated that Pardot “has become the backbone of everything we do” and that thanks to its implementation, the business is now beating the industry standard Click Through Rate.
Utility company Engie Cofely reached 30,000 customers and new prospects in just 15 digital marketing campaigns and can now better equip sales teams with qualified leads.
Industry sectors that use Pardot include:
- Computer hardware
- Computer software
- Education Management
- Financial services
- Hospital and healthcare
- Information technology and services
- Management consulting
- Marketing and advertising
- Real estate
- Staffing and recruiting
Data compiled by research and buyer insight group, Apps Run The World, provide stats on Pardot customers based on industries, revenue, country, and the number of employees.
How Pardot works: key features
Lead scoring and grading
One way in which Pardot helps streamline the sales and marketing functions of a business is by its system of scoring and grading prospects, and from there, the likelihood of converting them. Scoring involves the activity levels of these prospects and is based on, for example, the number of website visits and email exchanges. Prospects are also graded according to the likelihood of them buying a product or a service. This gives sales reps deep customer insight and enables them to focus on the most qualified leads and which are most likely to convert.
Once a lead has been identified, increasing engagement in an accurate and relevant way is crucial to building up the relationship with new prospects. Lead nurturing is fully customizable with Pardot and allows teams to deliver the right message at the right time. Prospects don’t want to be forgotten! Triggers can be implemented based on parameters set and emails sent automatically, thus removing the pain points of manual implementation and time.
* If you want to know more about how to implement a lead nurturing strategy, read our Ultimate Guide on Lead Nurturing Strategy
Ensuring the right prospect receives the right message can be easily tailored through segmenting using lists, rules, tags, and profiles. Segmenting lists are defined through selected criteria such as job titles and interest shown in certain products, for example. If, however, static lists are required based upon a one-time segmentation process, the rules option allows users to pull a non-continuous list. Tags are a simple way to differentiate between objects such as prospects and campaigns and are also useful in reporting. Profiles are particularly relevant when identifying how qualified prospects are to the product or services being offered. Important factors might be company location and size or which industry sector they are in. This can then be linked to the Pardot grading process. Accurate targeting using a system on autopilot is a far more efficient and effective way for marketing departments to operate and releases time to complete repetitive tasks.
Dynamic content based on the behavior, preferences, and interests of users personalizes the customer journey. Putting a personal spin on marketing assets such as emails, landing pages and forms has shown to improve conversion rates. According to Pardot themselves, personalization can increase sales by 19% and email opens by 29%.
This feature helps marketers track visitors’ behavior on their company website and understand what pattern the visit took. For example, which pages they visited, how long they stayed on each page, and what they clicked while they were browsing.
Real-time sales alerts
To ensure that sales reps have the most up-to-date information on their hottest leads, Pardot allows them to set a host of parameters including timing when to follow up on the most promising leads.
* If you are interested in learning more about Pardot features, jump to our article Getting your head around Pardot B2B Marketing Automation
Easy to use interface
Practicality and functionality are all part of the forethought for the end-user which has gone into the design of the Pardot interface. Navigation, UI, and workflows increase user speed and efficiency.
Included in all Pardot plans are features that enhance social posts including a nifty option that renders images correctly and gives users the option to track their post.
Paid Ads Management
With its seamless integration with Salesforce, Pardot users can use the CRM’s ad management capabilities with ease through its Advertising Studio platform within the Marketing Cloud option. It also integrates directly with Google Adwords.
As a huge plus for users on the go, the Pardot app, which is free and immediately available to subscribers to Pardot plans, allows users to access all the information they need on a mobile phone or tablet. This app connects with relevant email platforms and can even keep users up to date with prospect activity by criteria-based notifications.
Marketers want to understand how their efforts have worked - often in granular detail. Pardot’s reporting capacity provides in-depth and insightful reports by tracking campaign successes and failures. Reporting on customer lifecycles can give a full picture of how the marketing process is positively or negatively advancing through the sales funnel. With email being one of the most effective ways of reaching prospects, marketers want to know whether their message is being opened and actioned. And if not, why not? Advanced Email Reporting shows them who clicked where and how effective engagement is along the customer journey. Cross-channel reporting gives an overview of all touchpoints within the pipeline.
With Pardot, we can ensure that no messages are falling through the cracks of B2B sales.
Pardot’s B2B marketing automation has proved itself to be an invaluable tool. But it may seem intimidating to those with little knowledge or expertise. Having a unified platform value proposition whereby employees from the marketing and sales departments not only have access to the same client information but also the capability to share new information is greatly simplified with marketing automation.
A survey undertaken by Liana Technologies discovered that over 50% of companies who are as yet to jump on board are hesitant to use marketing automation simply because they don’t know how to. And of that same number, a healthy proportion does not have the human resources to allocate to implementing and adopting the technology. To that end, Pardot has a vast network and community of partners who provide expert consulting and implementation services.