5 Things To Consider When Creating Campaign Members from Pardot

The concept of Campaign Membership within Salesforce is central to a lot of functionality within Pardot, but it’s often misunderstood or misapplied. Here are some considerations to keep in mind when creating or updating Campaign Members from Pardot: 

1. Completion Actions (such as ‘Add to CRM Campaign’) only fire on cookied Prospects

This is most relevant for Custom Redirects and Files hosted in Pardot. If an anonymous (non-cookied) visitor clicks on a Custom Redirect (such as a social media post) that has a Completion Action of ‘Add to Campaign X’ and then fills out a form, the resulting Prospect will not be added to Campaign X, since they weren’t a Prospect at the time of clicking the Custom Redirect. 

One alternative is to create a Pardot Automation Rule for each Custom Redirect. Automation Rules look at retroactive activity (ie. did the Prospect ever click on a Custom Redirect, even if the activity occurred before they were a known Prospect), whereas Completion Actions do not (ie. if the visitor wasn’t a Prospect when the Completion Action fired, nothing happens). 

If it’s not feasible to create a large number of Pardot Automation Rules, it’s possible to use Pardot Engagement Studio to accomplish much of the same functionality. 


2. A Prospect must be assigned in order to have a Campaign Member created in Salesforce

Since Campaign Members are junctions between Campaigns and Leads/Contacts, it makes sense that without a Lead/Contact, you can’t have a Campaign Member. But this is sometimes overlooked when creating automation within Pardot. 

For example, if you have a Completion Action on a form of ‘Add to CRM Campaign X’ but the Prospect is not yet assigned (and therefore not synced to Salesforce), the Campaign Member can’t be created since no Lead/Contact exists. Once the Prospect is assigned, Pardot will remember the request that was made via the Completion Action and will create the Campaign Member at that time. 


3. Campaign Member Created Dates are based on Lead creation date, not request date

To continue the point made above, once the Campaign Member is created, the Creation Date on the Campaign Member record is the date of Lead creation, not the date that the request was made. This may have an impact on First Touch Attribution. If a Prospect was “added” to multiple campaigns before they were MQL, upon assignment all of the Campaign Members will have the same Created Date. This is one of the reasons why you may want to consider syncing Prospects to Salesforce early in the process. 


4. Each Lead or Contact can only have one Campaign Member

While Campaign Membership has some essential benefits, it has one significant limitation in that a Lead/Contact can only have one Campaign Member in each Salesforce Campaign. Therefore, it’s difficult to gauge the number of times a person has interacted with the content within the same campaign. For example, perhaps someone downloaded the same whitepaper three times throughout the sales process over the course of 12 months. They would only have a single Campaign Member to show for it, even though it was three separate touches. 


5. Campaign Membership can have more than one function

Not every Campaign Member needs to feed into the campaign attribution models. Sometimes it’s just helpful for SDRs or BDRs to see who has submitted a specific form (without needing access to view the data in Pardot). Something like a Contact Us form shouldn’t necessarily feed into campaign attribution, so you may want to consider filtering those out in the Auto-Association settings. 

Also, when it comes to campaign attribution, you may want to consider the driver, not the content itself. Demo Request Forms are great (and it’s a good idea to add Leads or Contacts to a Demo Request campaign when they submit a form), but it doesn’t tell you which marketing tactics are working to drive people to the form. If you have multiple drivers (Google Ads, social posts, etc) that are all pointing to the same form, consider using UTM parameters on your links in order to track the origin of the traffic. 


Campaign Members are crucial pieces to the puzzle to gauge ROI, interest, and attribution, but care needs to be taken when creating or updating them from Pardot. If done incorrectly, you could only be deriving a portion of the possible value that this tool provides. For more Pardot tips or help in setting up Pardot, contact your Pardot consultants at Invado Solutions.

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