Pardot has been recognized as one of the top marketing automation platforms since its inception in 2007. Now that it’s been absorbed by Salesforce, it’s getting a name change. Salesforce announced last month that it is rebranding Pardot to Marketing Cloud Account Engagement.
While "Marketing Cloud" aligns Pardot to Salesforce's larger family of products, the rest of the name feels misrepresentative. Salesforce itself has positioned Pardot as a "B2B marketing automation and lead generation tool," so dubbing it as an "Account Engagement" platform implies more of a sales-led, ABM-supported model, which, in our opinion, is a bit of a stretch.
The consultant community can see the writing on the wall, with one of Pardot's top SMEs calling Salesforce's recent move a career-killer, in an open letter on LinkedIn. Others have expressed concern with Pardot's future and are starting to hitch their wagons to HubSpot.
Either way, large acquisitions, mergers, and rebrands allow customers and consultants a prime opportunity to reflect, research, and even reconsider the tools needed to execute their vision. And this is no different.
Time for a Change?
If you’ve been, or are, a customer of Pardot, you’ve probably considered HubSpot at one time or another. We invite you to take another look at the platform that's been named the #1 Best Product for Marketers in G2 Crowd Best Software Awards two years in a row.
In speaking with many customers and prospects over the years, we've noted a number of reasons that many have made the switch from Pardot to HubSpot (and have never looked back). Here are some of the most common we've come across.
12 Reasons Why Customers Switched to HubSpot
1. Poor Integration between Salesforce and Pardot
You would think that since Pardot is owned by Salesforce, integration would be a snap. Not so. Actually, HubSpot's bidirectional sync integrates far more efficiently. Customers find themselves exporting lists from Salesforce and importing them in HubSpot via CSV every time they want to send an email resulting in wasted time and messy data.
2. Automations Must Be Triggered by a Form
If you want to send a marketing email, retargeted ad, or sales rep notification based on a website page view, lead score, or other customer behavior, the contact must fill out a form first in order to trigger that follow-up. In other words, you can’t nurture leads that don’t fill out forms with Pardot.
3. No Content Marketing Tools
While you can track content such as website pages and forms, you can’t build any of them in Pardot. HubSpot is a content-first platform that easily allows for content creation, optimization, tagging, and reporting all under one umbrella.
4. No Custom Reports
You can only use reports out of the box. So, if your customer is looking for a report on KPIs, you’d better hope that Pardot has one already built.
5. Double User Fees
Since it’s actually not one tool, the user has to pay for licenses in Salesforce and Pardot.
6. Manual Tagging
You have to manually tag every part of a campaign in Pardot to report on it. That means manually tagging every asset to attribute it back to the campaign. And to make it worse, prospects can only be associated with one campaign at a time.
7. Limited Ways to Score Leads
The only way to score leads is by form completions and manual adjustments. If you want more options, you have to add on Einstein Marketing Cloud.
8. Lacking Customer Support
Pardot only offers email support in which customers must submit their case and describe it in detail in order to get a sufficient response. There is no phone or live chat support. In contrast, HubSpot provides in-app live chat with experienced representatives and quick response times. You can also contact HubSpot through email and take advantage of its knowledge base with access to detailed articles and a community of 85,000 members strong.
9. Poor Segmentation
In order to send an email, your contacts must be on a list. So get ready to create a lot of lists and slow down the nurturing process since you have to do that before any automation can happen. Much of this is a result of poor sync with Salesforce. It means you can’t segment with as many demographic or behavior data points. As an added complication, the rendered examples of what your email will look like on mobile are inaccurate many times.
10. No Template Setup Process
If you want to set up a landing page or blog, be ready to spend time doing it. This will increase your time to value, prevent you from creating dynamic content, and slow your rollout of campaigns. HubSpot offers template setup for free.
11. Chatbots Have to Be Built in Salesforce
The marketing data lives in Pardot, not Salesforce. So you have to create the chatbot in Salesforce and then integrate it into Pardot.
12. No Sales Tools
There is a lack of sales tools like sequences and inbox integration. And if you want to integrate your inbox to CRM in Salesforce, you have to pay for it.
What Are the Reviews Saying?
HubSpot and Pardot are two of the top marketing automation tools that are available. There are a number of reviews out there that compare HubSpot to Pardot. In almost all categories, HubSpot comes on top.
In terms of satisfaction, customers preferred HubSpot to Pardot. Customers found HubSpot easier to use, set up, and administer. In addition, they felt HubSpot better met the needs of their business and that ongoing product support was superior.
In terms of integration, HubSpot has a big advantage. With the goal of making sure HubSpot connects with as many apps as possible, its app partner list program numbers in the hundreds. HubSpot is able to integrate with many third-party tools giving marketers many options and making them more functional in their business.
Let MDCo Help You Make the Switch from Pardot to HubSpot
Our team is here to help you confidently migrate onto HubSpot with minimal disruption to your business. We'll help you design a new, better process – one that will scale with you for years to come. Now is the time. Let's get started.