Avoid Losing Subscribers with Pardot’s Engagement Studio

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Pardot’s Engagement Studio is usually associated with nurture campaigns but it’s capable of much more.

Prevent excessive email sends

One of the easiest mistakes to make in Pardot is excessively emailing prospects because of overlapping campaigns. Preventing this becomes even more difficult when there are multiple people executing campaigns within the same marketing automation system.

Creating engagement streams instead of email blasts ensures you don’t increase the likelihood of your prospects unsubscribing. The word “stream” is a misnomer here. Engagement programs can consist of just one step.

Engagement streams vs. email blasts

Timely emails – newsletters, announcements, product launches – tend to go out as email blasts instead of via the Engagement Studio. But is this best practice?

When to send out email blasts

I generally avoid sending out emails as blasts but that’s only possible in the most ideal circumstances.

The only communication I’ll always send out as an email blast in Pardot are operational emails such as maintenance announcements and outage alerts. This is because operational emails – which avoid unsubscribe settings – can only be sent out as email blasts or autoresponder messages.

Getting started

Before you get to work, determine how often your prospects should be emailed. This varies wildly by business and industry so leverage your own data. Retailers can get away with sending several emails per day while that would make a B2B company’s unsubscribe rate skyrocket.

Create a dynamic list

The first thing you need is a segmentation. Go to Marketing > Segmentation and click +Add List to create a dynamic list.

Make sure to check the Dynamic List box and then click Create List.

Creating Pardot Dynamic List

Click + Add a new rule and then select Prospect has been emailed from the dropdown.

After completing all the fields, click Set Rules.

Pardot dynamic list rules

Now you’ll need a master list so follow the steps above again.

For this example, I’m keeping it really simple:

  • Prospect default field is Email and is not empty
  • Prospect list is NOT a member of the dynamic list I just created
  • Make sure Match all is selected (it should be by default)
Dynamic list

After clicking Set Rules, you’ll be ready to start your Engagement Studio program.

Note: This is only an example. You’ll absolutely want to create more specific segmentations.

Starting Engagement Studio program

Once you’re in the Engagement Studio, create a program and select your new master dynamic list from the Recipient List dropdown.

Let’s say you’re sending a newsletter out. You want everyone to get it but you don’t want to bug people who’ve already been emailed a bunch this week.

Using this method puts the prospects in a holding pattern until enough time has passed. Once a prospect hasn’t been emailed for a week, they’ll automatically enter the master dynamic list.

Engagement Studio

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