Deciding which marketing automation tool to implement into your business can be a daunting and difficult task, especially when there is such a wide variety of software out there.
HubSpot and Pardot are two of the most widely used marketing automation tools worldwide. Both of them are filled with a variety of features that can be personalised to suit any company and its goals, challenges and interests.
We’ve compared the key features of these two marketing automation giants, from how well they perform automation to how easy they are to use, to help you make a well informed decision about which software is the right fit for your business.
For a marketing automation system, it is absolutely essential that automation is done effectively and efficiently. In many ways, marketing automation and CRM go hand in hand, so it is important that these systems (if they are different) are able to integrate successfully in order to improve your business.
Pardot excels at automation, with its custom automation campaign tool that allows users access to endless options, actions and reactions being one of the stand-out features of the software. On top of this, Pardot has a rule/trigger/action sequence that gives users more instruction than its competitors for what can be a complex process, making automation easier than ever.
The software can be a good fit for midsize companies and will integrate especially well with Salesforce. However, it doesn’t encompass both a CRM and a marketing automation system which, if you want a system where everything is in one easily accessible place, could be a reason to look elsewhere.
HubSpot’s automation extends beyond marketing and into sales, with its own built-in CRM system. The ease of this means that both the marketing and sales teams are able to work together on one system, which can be great for productivity.
The software not only allows marketers to build external workflows that are able to nurture leads, it allows for the creation of internal workflows too. These will send automated messages to sales team members that will alert them whenever a lead moves further along in their buyer’s journey, prompting them to take action. This not only enables clear communication between sales and marketing departments, it increases the chance of gaining high quality leads and turning these into customers.
Successful marketing relies on insight gained from data, which makes a good reporting tool an essential for any marketing automation software.
Pardot possesses a useful ability to report across different stages of the pipeline, including being able to check return on investment, customer cycles and overall campaign performance that can allow you to put your focus where it matters at each stage of your campaign.
However, Pardot’s reports can be difficult to understand, meaning that more time and resources could be spent in order to use them, which is counter-productive.
With HubSpot’s reporting tool, you can view all of the standard reports in your account, as well as any custom reports that you create. HubSpot also enables you to send reports directly to your team’s inboxes and create up to 200 dashboards, which allows everyone in your company to focus in on specific metrics that matter to them. All of these features enable you to directly see the impact that marketing practices are having on how sales are closing deals.
On top of this, you don’t have to be a technology expert to use the reports tool. HubSpot purposely makes itself accessible, as well as easy to understand - something that other software options tend to be lacking.
Aligning information across sales and marketing
A good feature of Pardot is that more customisation can be done, meaning it can fit easily into any business. When it comes to finding the right customers, it gives you objective grading to simplify prioritising of sales outreach, which can make closing leads a lot easier.
However, it has some issues when it comes to its optimising the software for your business. Pardot doesn’t necessarily account for all business sizes and if you are a small company, you could find difficulty in implementing it successfully across both departments.
Hubspot has free CRM built into it that automates the tasks for your salespeople through tracking and nurturing leads. Once installed, the CRM will run in the background of all the tools you have already, and you will be able to use it whenever you need. While it doesn’t have the benefit of being directly linked with Salesforce like Pardot is, this is not an issue - HubSpot’s built in CRM is a lot more user friendly than Salesforce, making it an easier software to get to grips with.
Basically, HubSpot is applicable in any software ecosystem, and works alongside all processes and operations instead of asking you to modify any other systems you have to its model - which is what programmes such as Pardot don’t do. HubSpot also offer over 200 plug-ins, which gives your company even more helpful aids to improve sales and marketing efforts. Therefore, if you want an easy, versatile piece of software that can not only work with your current system, but elevate it, HubSpot is the clear choice.
Pardot is fairly simple to grasp in terms of its automation tools and if you are struggling, they have a great customer service team. However, their reporting tools can be a little difficult to use and understand, which delays getting to grips with the whole software. This could cause implementation issues if some of your employees are less confident with technology than others.
HubSpot is designed with user friendliness in mind and it focuses a lot of effort on ensuring you have a great experience with the software. HubSpot’s tools provide step-by-step instructions, which means that anyone can use them - not just an IT expert.
HubSpot also has its very own Academy, which teaches you how to use the software through helpful videos and interactive tasks, and these can be referred to any time. It has an abundance of helpful tutorials, blogs and many other tools that you can use to build your knowledge, and become a master with the software in no time.
The reality is that both of these tools are great choices and each one has its place in digital marketing. No tool guarantees complete success and their ability to help your business depends mostly on the people that use them and how effectively they use them to their advantage. It is this that you need to address, to figure out which software is the best for you.
That being said, HubSpot is the best all-rounder compared to Pardot, ranking high in each of the categories.
With HubSpot’s free CRM and its marketing, sales, and service software, you can connect sales and marketing by creating a central point of truth across both departments, enabling them to work together harmoniously. Not only this, HubSpot is much easier to use than rival systems, making it the perfect fit for your business. Take a look at all of the features and packages that you can use to help your business grow!
As a HubSpot Diamond Partner with years of industry experience working with some of the leading companies within the industrial, tech and professional services sectors, we can help you choose the right HubSpot package for your business.
We can teach you exactly how best to use and optimise the software for your business through a training programme directly tailored to your needs. For more information on how we can help you optimise your business with HubSpot, request a free demo with us today.