11 Ways to Get More out of Pardot Tags

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Pardot Tags are an underrated feature, from what I’ve witnessed. Using Tags properly presents a nifty way to stick a label on to any record or asset in Pardot, for quick segmentation, organisation and identification. In comparison to other features in Pardot, Tags offer more flexibility than creating custom fields or battling with folders.

The reality is that Tags are often created in a ‘Quick & Dirty’ way to serve a one time purpose – a use, abuse and abandon scenario. With a considered strategy to use Tags, it doesn’t have to be this way. Quickly you will see how Tags can step in to aid you – here are 11 ways to get the most out of Pardot Tags.

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Where Can Tags be Used?

Before we go into the imaginative uses for Pardot Tags, it’s a good idea to set the scene.

  • Tag Prospects
  • Tag assets (forms, emails, landing pages, custom redirects/marketing links, Lists, Files)
  • Filter folders
  • Filter tables of Prospects or assets
  • In B2B Marketing Analytics (as filters)

Maybe the cogs in your mind are whirring?

1. Engagement Studio Checkpoints

Your Engagement Studio programs may have important milestones contained within them, but get lost among a complex tangle of actions, triggers and rules, on multiple paths. Using Tags can help you identify these checkpoints and summarise how Prospects are progressing, without involving lists (let’s be honest, we can all do with fewer lists). Better yet, use these tags as the basis for spin-off engagement programs!

Just an an ‘Apply Tag’ action to your Engagement Studio program:

2. Use Account, Opportunity and Custom Object Fields in Engagement Studio

If you take a look at the rule options in Automation Rules, vs. ‘Rule’ steps in Engagement Studio (luckily there’s a comparison list in this post), you will see there are some that are available in Automation Rules, but not Engagement Studio. In short, in Automation Rules, you can use criteria from Prospect and any of their related objects (accounts, opportunities, custom objects), whereas in Engagement Studio, you can only call upon Prospect fields.

Use an Automation Rule to Tag accounts/opportunity/custom object criteria, to then use in Engagement Studio programs.

3. Combining Complex Segmentation

There may be multiple criteria that you want to roll-up into one compact label. I used to use Tags in favour of creating tons of dynamic lists, you can combine your multi-criteria segmentation into a single tag and apply this sub-set of Prospects to various campaigns, at lightning speed.

Above: I’ve applied a single tag using a Segmentation Rule.

This was once a cool hack for tidying up Engagement Studio program, where you had multiple branches to narrow down prospects, one criteria at a time. A Tag was one rule step that eliminated that. Although Engagement Studio Complex Rule Logic has helped tackle this pain point, some non-technical users that do not know how to dig into an Engagement Studio will still prefer labels. Likewise, if you have users dipping in and out of Pardot, it will help communicate what the campaign is doing.

4. Add Pause Steps in Engagement Studio

When using Pardot Engagement Studio, it’s a common requirement to ‘pause’ Prospects at a certain stage of your automated flow. You may want to hold Prospect at one particular step, without pausing the whole programme, which would result in halting every other prospect’s progress through the program.

By simply creating an ‘Apply Tags’ action step in Engagement Studio, and setting a long ‘wait’ time, Prospects will be held there until the pause time passes, or you remove the step from the program.

Read the full tutorial: “How to Add Pause Steps in Pardot Engagement Studio

5. Prioritise Engagement Programs

Like any new relationship, you don’t want to scare a prospect off by sending too many messages within a short space of time.

The Pardot Admin’s challenge comes when managing multiple Engagement Studio programs. As you may know, Engagement Programs run independently from one another. How can you control which communications prospects are receiving across many programs running at once?

The first thing you’ll realise is that you can’t set up a rule based on: <Prospect is in Program X>. What you can do, however, is have an <Add tag: ‘in program x’> action as the first step in any Engagement Studio program – this marks that they are currently in that program. Remember that you will need to <Remove tag: ‘in program x’> on any end step where Prospects are leaving the program.

Read the full tutorial: “How to add Control to Multiple Engagement Studio Programs – and Prioritise them like a Pro

6. Replicate Campaigns Fast

Want to relaunch that campaign you ran this time last year? Can’t remember which form, list, or files that you used?

Fear not – you can locate them by filtering by Tags. Pardot Tags can be used for Marketing assets, that is Pardot Emails, Landing Pages, Forms, Custom Redirects, Files etc. to keep everything bound together. It’s a bit like a folder, but less restrictive!

Here’s the form list page, where you can add tags to single out forms grouped with the same Tag:

Campaign setup will be a breeze!

7. Filtering Multi-lingual Assets

While there are countless ways you could tag your Pardot assets, one categorisation that I have found more beneficial above all else, is tagging by language.

Filter your French Landing pages from your Finnish, and your Portugese emails from your Polish. A must for multi-lingual marketing teams using Pardot.

8. ‘Red Alert’ Tag

‘Red Alert’ can be a useful Tag in a number of cases:

  • Where the Prospect has been excessively emailed and you want clear visibility into any recency & frequency lists you have running.
  • Flag a Prospect’s behaviour, eg. if you lose a customer to a competitor.
  • Their email address is invalid because it hasn’t passed verification.

9. Values from External Systems

Tags are an alternative to creating custom fields. Tags can be useful during system migrations, where you want to retain the legacy field values, without creating custom Prospect fields to hold that information. As well, if you want to bring over a Prospect’s status instead of starting over, you can use Tags such as ‘inactive’, ‘Highly engaged’ – these may save you with some incompatible systems that won’t allow you to export all of your Engagement data.

10. Grading Criteria Matches

Grading relies on Automation Rules to adjust a Prospect’s grade up or down, depending on their field data. What I began to do some time ago, is add an Apply Tag action as well as the required ‘Change Profile Criteria’ action. This means I can identify which criteria the Prospect is missing in order to reach an accurately calculated grade, vs. a grade that tells a partial story.

11. Tags in B2B Marketing Analytics

Tags can become lifelines when taking the step up into B2B Marketing Analytics (B2BMA). Using Tags to filter assets or Prospects will help you navigate through your datasets in an alien interface with different terminology.

Summary

Pardot Tags are an underrated feature, but using them properly presents a nifty way to stick a label on to any record or asset in Pardot, for quick segmentation, organisation and identification. In comparison to other features in Pardot, Tags offer more flexibility than creating custom fields or battling with folders.

This post has shown you 9 ways I have picked up over the years to get the most out of Pardot Tags. Do you have any more to add?