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Pardot vs Marketing Cloud

Two marketing automation platforms compared

Pardot and Marketing Cloud are both two marketing automation platforms, nevertheless, they are distinctive as well. The main difference is that Pardot is business-to-business focused, while Salesforce Marketing Cloud is generally more business-to-consumer oriented.

What is Pardot?

Pardot, which is likewise called “Salesforce Marketing Cloud Account Engagement”, is a marketing automation tool which is usually used for B2B. It is integrated into Salesforce and is accessible to many organizations. It allows marketers to identify leads since it facilitates the right communication at the proper moment. Due to this marketing automation tool, each customer can be treated personally and the marketing strategies and campaigns can be customized. This platform improves the establishment of connections between companies and its customers, the creation of pipelines and the process of closing deals for the sales team. This is done by the fact that Pardot can track and measure the effectiveness of communications, obtain understanding into consumer behavior, and personalize campaigns based on any specific criteria.

Pardot’s features

Pardot can be divided into five areas:

  • Lead management: Lead management involves scoring and grading, which is lead qualification, lead development with emails and journeys, segmentation, and finally, the use of the dynamic content.
  • Lead generation: In this step the lead’s email adreses play a crucial role. With Pardot marketers can assemble the user’s email adreses with, for instance, search and social postings, and landing pages and drag and drop forms.
  • Email marketing: With Pardot marketers can create email lists and pre-designed templates. Thus, standardized, and at the same time, customized emails can be sent to a large audience.
  • Align with development: Marketers can track consumer behavior. Besides, they can receive real-time alerts about their activities. This does likewise support the personalization of campaigns.
  • Reporting: Pardot provides several reporting tools thus, the communications can be measured and e.g. campaign reports will be created. Hence, continuos improvement is possible due to the measurement and evaluation of its performance. 

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Salesforce Marketing Cloud

Salesforce Marketing Cloud is a Customer Data Platform (CDP) particularly for marketers. It is focused on a business-to-consumer audience. The advantages this Salesforce CDP brings with it are, having the data across departments within the whole organization, Marketing Cloud segmentation, data activation from everywhere, quick analysis and adaptation. 

With Salesforce Marketing Cloud it becomes conceivable to connect data from different sources and devices in one platform. Therefore, one unified perception of the customer is built. Marketers can likewise capture primary data and their collected data can also be linked with Einstein AI. This permits a tailored experience for the customer. The customer can be maintained throughout their whole journey.

The tools of Salesforce Marketing Cloud

  • Journey Builder: With the Journey Builder marketers can create customized journeys which involve several channels. 
  • Email Studio: Email Studio allows to create customized email campaigns.
  • Mobile Studio: This tool offers the possibility to create tailored marketing activities via SMS, group messaging and push notifications.
  • Audience Studio: This tool makes it possible to collect data from multiple distinct sources to Salesforce Marketing Cloud. Audience Studio makes it available to create content which is more attractive and fitting to the audience, based on contact data captured by the Contact Builder.
  • Advertising Studio: Advertising Studio is responsible for digital advertising.
  • Dataroma: This is a central point where all data can be attained through a dashboard.
  • Interaction Studio: With Interaction Studio marketers can visualize customers’ experience in real time and relate to the customers at any time of the journey. Interaction Studio is called Marketing Cloud Personalization now.
  • Data Studio: With this tool is feasible to get to know the audience, capture data and to control it.
  • Google Analytics 360: This allows marketers to use all insights from Google which are related to their customers. Hence, the understanding and the more personalized targeting gets improved. 
  • Pardot: Pardot is the marketing tool for B2B in order to close more deals and build more powerful connections.

Cross channel communications

Although, Pardot and Marketing Cloud are directed to different audiences and business purposes, it can be handy and helpful to use both platforms. This is particularly the case if the organization is using Sales Cloud as their chosen Customer Relationship Management, is engaged on social media, and runs digital advertising campaigns. Besides, a certain budget is necessary to invest in not only Salesforce Marketing Cloud and Pardot, but also in, Salesforce Sales Cloud. 

Generally, when using both marketing platforms, it forms a proper, dynamic link between marketing and sales. Pardot is responsible for collecting the necessary data and Marketing Cloud does activate the consumers based on the collected data of Pardot. This data is stored on Sales Cloud. Consequently, marketing planning and strategy can essentially be enhanced by the use of both platforms. 

B2B vs B2C

B2B is business-to-business marketing, which involves companies that sell services and products to other businesses. On the other hand, B2C means business-to-consumer. Thus, businesses offer their products and services directly to the end-consumer. 

The different marketing practices

It is convenient to have separate platforms for B2B and B2C marketing as both marketing practices differ due to different audiences. Nevertheless, it is likewise possible to use one platform for both marketing forms. 

B2C has a large audience to reach, however, B2B has a smaller target audience since it particularly targets the key decision-makers at an organization. Due to a smaller target audience the understanding of their demands is even more important. Furthermore, in business-to-consumer marketing operations tend to be entertaining, whereas, B2B marketing practices need to be informational in order to educate other businesses about their product/service. Likewise, return on investment is more relevant in B2B than in B2C. Data plays a more relevant role in B2B than in B2C since it is more important to meet the customer’s needs in business-to-business. The buying cycle differs in both marketing forms as well. In B2C consumer commitment can develop quickly, one interaction can be enough for customers to convert. However, in B2B the consumers require more time in order to make a decision and to commit. Thus, more interactions could be necessary. Due to these reasons, separate platforms for these different marketing forms can be useful since a customer journey can be completely different. Hence, different practices, different orders and different repetitions of the practices could be required. 

The key differences

As mentioned before, Pardot is the most handy to use if businesses target businesses. On the other hand, Marketing Cloud is especially relevant for consumer targeting. Furthermore, Pardot is particularly useful for smaller databases with higher values, whereas, Marketing Cloud is convenient for larger databases with smaller values. Additionally, these two platforms distinct in the functionality. Pardot is specifically appropriate for email marketing. In contrast, Marketing Cloud does also offer other studios like Advertising Studio and Mobile Studio, which provide other services as well. 

Pardot vs Marketing Cloud Pricing

Pardot’s pricing starts from $1,250 per month with up to 10,000 contacts. Marketing Cloud is available from $400 per month onwards without a maximum of contacts. Consequently, Salesforce Marketing Cloud is the cheaper option, although, it has more functionalities than Pardot due to offering several studios like Advertising Studio, Mobile Studio and Interaction Studio. 

Which tool is right for you?

Principally, whether you use Salesforce Marketing Cloud or Pardot depends on your objectives. If you want to communicate with your consumers across multiple devices and platforms, Marketing Cloud can be recommended. If you focus more on lead management and lead generation, Pardot could be the right tool for you. 

Nevertheless, with Activation Studio the functionalities of Pardot, like lead management and lead generation, becomes available for Marketing Cloud as well. With Activation Studio Segmentation in Salesforce is usable on Salesforce Marketing Cloud due to the Segment Designer.  This tool facilitates creating segments for non-technical marketers. SQL knowledge is not required as it makes use of a drag-and-drop system. Salesforce lead management is also attainable on Marketing Cloud thanks to the Score Designer of Activation Studio. Leads’ activities can be scored based on self-made scoring rules in order to manage those leads. The Interaction Designer gathers customer data by tracking specific activities, which then can be scored with the Score Designer. Activation Studio unifies all data by the Marketing Cloud data model.

Discover the possibilities of Activation Studio

Do you want functionalities like lead management and capturing first-party data for Salesforce Marketing Cloud? Then, try our interactive demo or book a demo!

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