How to Add Pause Steps in Pardot Engagement Studio

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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.

Think about it this way: any wait step in Engagement Studio causes Prospects to wait. By reimagining the ‘wait’ functionality, it’s so simple to implement a ‘pause tag’! If you are using Engagement Studio and want more control over the automation, this is a great hack for you to have up your sleeve!

Why Pause?

The pause is designed to be a temporary step that you plan to remove at some point – perhaps you are waiting for the final few details for the next email, or you want to assess the campaign performance thus far, to make a decision whether you will continue altogether.

Secondly, there’s the importance of keeping prospects in the Engagement Studio flow, preventing them from reaching an ‘End’ step. Once a prospect reaches the ‘End’, they cannot re-enter the program (unless your Engagement Studio is set to repeat, then the prospect would re-enter when they are eligible to do so).

How to Create a Pause Step

As I mentioned, I will be showing you a pause tag. It’s simply an ‘Apply Tags’ action step in the Engagement Flow, that adds a tag ‘pause’ (or whatever you wish). You can create this straight from within Engagement Studio, there’s no need to create beforehand.

Important: under ‘When?’ select ‘wait’, and enter a number of days. I always choose 365 days, as this is the maximum you can input.

This is what it will look like in the program as a whole:

I chose ‘Apply Tags’ because it is the least dramatic action to happen should the pause time expire.

When prospects reach your pause tag, they will sit there in a ‘waiting status’, as shown below:

How to Remove a Pause Step

If you no longer want your pause step, simply pause the whole program for editing, go to the pause tag step, and click the ‘Delete’ button. Upon resuming the Engagement Studio program, Prospects that were waiting will continue to flow through to the next step.

Summary

Pausing Prospects at a certain stage of your automated Engagement Studio flow is a common requirement, especially as other marketing automation tools offer this built-in to their tools.

If you are using Engagement Studio and want more control over the automation, this is a great hack for you to have up your sleeve!

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