The Case for Lightning: Pardot Edition

If you’re a Salesforce admin, you’ve probably been feeling the pressure to make the transition from Salesforce Classic to Salesforce Lightning since we rolled it out in Winter ’16. But if you’re a Pardot admin or user, you might have happily created an email filter to block out all the Lightning noise and continued on with your day to day marketing activities in the Pardot platform.

But with Pardot’s Winter ’19 release, we invited Pardot users to re-join the Lightning conversation through the unveiling of the new Pardot Lightning App. As a member of Pardot’s customer success group, I’ve had conversations with customers about the Pardot Lightning App almost every day since the release.

Pardot admins who are still using the Salesforce Classic interface often want to save the Pardot Lightning conversation for another day; none of the core functionality is different, so why make the transition now? While I think the Pardot Lightning App alone is a great reason to make the transition, I like to answer this question by pointing out several other Lightning features that can make Pardot admins’ lives easier, and can drive sales and marketing alignment while we’re at it!

So Pardot users, consider this your official invite to join the Lightning conversation, and check out some of my favorite Lightning features that Pardot admins love.

Easy Sales Enablement

Do you ever have a great idea for a lead nurturing program but need sales users to update a new field to make it happen? Or what about the marketing ROI reporting you want to take advantage of but can’t make it happen without Contact Roles being populated on Opportunities?

For these types of process changes, sometimes updating internal process documentation isn’t enough to get the job done. Lightning makes it easy to put process changes front and center with path and guidance for success. Path lets you put process-related fields, like stage or status, front-and-center, making it easier for sales users to find and update fields that might drive automation in Pardot. Guidance for success lets you leave customized messages for your sales users, giving them tips and reminders through each step in the path. Say hello to your new best friend!

The Lightning Report Builder

One of my favorite things to talk to Pardot customers about is ROI reporting. Many marketers I work with, even the marketing automation gurus, are hesitant to jump into Salesforce and build reports there versus in Pardot. And I’ll be honest — when I first started working in Salesforce, report building scared me! The Classic report builder seemed a bit intimidating and I found myself poring over documentation to understand how to use it.

So I was over the moon when I saw the Lightning Report Builder in action for the first time last year! It really lowers the barrier to entry for learning to report in Salesforce. Navigating between fields and filters is clearer, and you don’t have to discern between report types just to group data.

If you’re hesitant to try building a report in Salesforce, I promise the Lightning Report Builder will help you through it.

Customize & Personalize

When you switch to Lightning, your ability to customize the way information in Salesforce is displayed grows exponentially. This means your ability to direct your sales users’ focus grows exponentially, too. I’m talking about way more than just bumping a field up to the top of a page layout or rearranging some lists.

When you open up a record, like a Lead for example, in Salesforce Lightning, the page is comprised of Lightning components. You have standard components that let you display items you had access to in Classic like fields, related lists, and an activity timeline. You can also have custom components that can be built by a Salesforce admin or downloaded from the AppExchange.

The Lightning App Builder is the key to designing page layouts to your exact specifications for each object. Do you care most about the activities that sales reps are logging on Leads? Make the activity timeline the first thing you see. Is there one related list on Opportunities that everyone seems to forget about (hint, hint: Contact Roles)? No problem, put a single related list at the top of your page layout. The possibilities are really endless!

Individual Salesforce users can also customize the tabs they see across each page so that they only see the items they care about most. Tabs can be added for objects and for specific items they’ve favorited in Salesforce, like reports or dashboards.

More Access to Marketing Asset Data

Have you ever wanted to build customized email performance reports? Maybe you’ve wanted to see all the Pardot assets related to a Salesforce campaign. With Pardot’s Winter ’19 release, Lightning also became your ticket to viewing and reporting on this type of marketing asset data in Salesforce. Engagement History is a new feature available to customers who are using Connected Campaigns and the Pardot Lightning App.

Engagement History allows you to access list email, forms, landing page, and custom redirect data from campaign records in Salesforce, and you can create custom reports to summarize and share what you’ve built in Pardot. Even if you’re not quite ready to flip the switch on Connected Campaigns, making the transition to Lightning will put you one step closer to using Engagement History.

Ready, Set, Lightning!

Lightning is the way of the future, not only for Salesforce but now for Pardot as well. Though most of the functionality in the Pardot Lightning App exists in Pardot Classic today, our product team is going to continue to invest in Pardot Lightning with every new release. Two of our most exciting new features that came with the Winter ’19, Engagement History and Multiple Business Units, are only available in the Pardot Lightning App. Consider switching to Lightning part of your Pardot release readiness preparation so that you can hit the ground running with our latest features.

If you already have Lightning enabled in your Salesforce org, I encourage you to go test out the above features for yourself. But if you’re not a Salesforce admin or you’re still using Salesforce Classic, now is the perfect time to have a conversation with your Salesforce admin about making the switch. Connecting some of your favorite features from above with some of your specific business use cases can be a great way to break the ice. It’s time for marketing to join the Lightning conversation.