Pardot Injects Marketing Automation with Social Media Perks
Lots of news is coming out of this year's Dreamforce conference in San Francisco. Pardot's personal addition, revealed today, gives a social networking boost to the company's already well-developed marketing automation system. 

Pardot has been a provider of cloud marketing automation software for small and medium-sized businesses for some time now. Their aim as of late has been very CRM-oriented, including holistic integration with various platforms. 

Today Pardot's taking a social turn, and the oh-so-timely upgrades are twofold:

Social Media Profiling

Pardot can automatically populate its system with the public social data of a potential customer via his or her e-mail address. Thanks to an integration with Qwerly, this nifty trick pulls from leading social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Details can include a photo, location and short description if the person provides them. 

This collection of social data is displayed in a potential customer's record through Pardot's integration with several big CRM platforms (salesforce.com, SugarCRM, Microsoft Dynamics CRM and NetSuite), and aims to make the lives of sales reps a bit easier. That is, by providing them with profile data before they contact a lead, they can get the insight needed for a more effective conversation. 

Social Media Messaging

With sharing management and conversation facilitation in mind, Pardot has also added social posting features. Users are now able to schedule Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn posts in advance, and these posts can be tracked using the company's existing bit.ly connector, which also provides data like click-through rates.

Beginning in September, Social posting data will be available in Pardot's reporting module, allowing users to pull reports on individual messages and across all campaigns. This will assist marketers in identifying which areas of social media are most effective. 

“There’s no denying that social media is a powerful force in today’s marketing world,” explained Adam Blitzer, co-founder and COO for Pardot. “But until now, marketing automation platforms have lacked the tools that are necessary to truly engage sales prospects in a social media environment. Our new profiling and messaging features solve this problem, and we’re proud to be the first cloud marketing automation vendor to offer what we believe is critical functionality.”