June 8 2021
Author Tony Di Carlo

Pardot Lead Qualification: Setting-up the lead scoring and lead grading system

Every conversation about Pardot somehow circles back to its robust lead qualification features.

Pardot’s lead qualification helps businesses identify the leads that are ready to buy through its lead scoring and grading system. This way, companies can prioritise required actions, so the lead ends up becoming a customer.

The benefits of qualifying leads with Pardot include saved time for the sales reps, on top of improved collaboration with the marketing department. However, introducing the scoring and grading system in a business can sometimes be tricky, primarily if the marketing and sales are not used to working together.

For this reason, we wanted to provide a simple framework that will support your lead qualification journey.


What are Pardot’s Lead Score and Lead Grade 

The lead score describes the level of interest the customer shows for your product or service. To take an example, scoring the lead will include assigning points to particular website behaviour that signals purchase readiness, along with the engagement level or email open rates.

The lead grade, however, represents the level of interest your business has in the lead. In other words, the lead grade shows if a lead is your target customer. For instance, if a website lead spends most its time browsing the career’s page, chances are – this is not your ideal buyer.


3 Steps to setting-up Pardot’s Lead Scoring and Lead Grading System

Pardot comes with a default lead scoring and grading system that companies can apply to start their scoring and grading process.

However, eventually, we recommend customising it by following our three steps.

  • Get the sales and marketing team talking
    • To optimise the scoring and grading system, we always recommend to first get your sales reps in the same room with the marketing team to share their experience with lead management. This step is vital because what marketing registers as ‘buyers behaviour’ might not reflect the experience that the sales team have when they engage with leads.  Clarifying everybody’s standpoint will help better qualify leads for the overall business benefit.
  • Examine the customer journey
    • Examination of the customer journey is easily done by making an inventory of your marketing collateral and dividing it into the journey stages. Any specific website page, form, email newsletter or downloadable material you have can trigger leads to either interact with you or not. This reaction can uncover some valuable insights and give you an indication of the lead’s interest or purchase power.
  • Optimise Continously
    • Analysing and then optimising your actions is not only the best practice but also – necessary. As your marketing efforts evolve, so will the customer’s behaviour and therefore, new scores should be added to your lead qualification practice. The truth is, every next time you optimise the process, your lead qualification practice will become better. As you collect more data, you will be able to look for patterns and critical indicators you might have missed before.  We recommend our clients to revisit their lead qualification system after a few months, just in case.


Final thoughts

There are many ‘best practices’ of using Pardot; however, every business should find its way of adjusting the platform to fit its needs.  To get the best out of Pardot’s lead scoring and grading system, make sure it reflects your business’ operational model and always follows your customer throughout their journey with your company.

If you need help with tailoring Pardot to fit your marketing endeavours, connect with our team here at Cloud Orca and get a piece of expert’s advice!

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