Pardot Migration: Migrate Like A Boss

Eyeing a Pardot migration? Leverage these concepts

Written by BeHai Ligas

January 3, 2019

So, you’ve made the leap. You purchased Pardot and you’re excited to start enabling it in your company. The question is, how? How do you migrate from your old platform to the new?

We’ve got a few suggestions.

Start with a plan

Start with a plan. You need to think about this thoroughly before you take any action. Think about which emails you plan to migrate. While you’re at it, think about email and landing page templates, forms, programs, and campaigns. Just because something exists in your current platform doesn’t mean it should move to your new platform.

Don’t forget to consider all the platforms you are migrating to Pardot. Are there also forms from other sources and/or from other CRMs that need to be migrated as well?

You cannot just copy and paste everything from one platform to another – especially if you have hundreds of landing pages and emails. You need to map out what you want to move over and how you are going to move it over to the new platform.

Here is a plan we suggest you follow when you are preparing to migrate from your old platform to Pardot.

Related: Read about getting started in Pardot with best practices


Focus on your data first by developing or modifying a standardized data dictionary. This dictionary should include fields that need to be moved into the new system. It should also include fields that will be excluded so you may reference them for other purposes in the future. It’s a nice check to see which fields you’re missing and what needs to be added.

You want to have fields from your marketing automation and your CRM. In addition, any other sources of data should be included in this data dictionary that are relevant to marketing and sales. You want to include field name, length, type, purpose, and any other relevant data that you feel is important.

Our getting started with Pardot course is perfect for any beginner Pardot user!


Next, look at your creative assets. Create a matrix (in Excel) so that you can track what the assets are and where they’re located. In this matrix, include a column to Migrate/Don’t Migrate. We suggest looking for the following assets:

  • Emails – In your matrix, list the name of the emails you want to migrate, their location in the previous system, whether it is part of a program/campaign and if it is a marketing or operational email.
  • Landing pages – Again, in your matrix, you’ll want to list the name of the page, its location in the previous system, whether there is a form associated with it and any other relevant details associated with your landing pages including the URL.
    Also, consider whether your landing pages and emails are responsively built. If they’re not, why bring them over?
  • Templates (Email/Landing Page Templates) – Consider whether your old templates need to be migrated over to the new system or will you be creating all new templates in the new platform. Migrating from one system to another often causes problems with coding, so you want to use templates to build emails, not custom HTML every time, because you want to repurpose and scale. You want to do things that are repeatable and scalable. Don’t confine yourself because you want to do things a certain way. And if you haven’t done so already, make sure you build responsive templates to accommodate for the ever-rising mobile-driven audience.
  • Dynamic Content – This is content that changes depending on who the customer is. For example, anyone who has industry=retail is going to see a different email banner than people who have industry=marketing. You’ll want to include your dynamic content in your creative asset matrix. Include the content, content type and how you’ve segmented this.
  • Campaigns/Programs – In bringing these over, think about the goals your campaigns are meant to achieve. Are there nurtures you want to reproduce and replicate? Do you have program templates for events, webinars or newsletters? These are all the marketing efforts that would leverage the marketing automation tool. Get the general purpose and document the flow of steps so you can match it as closely as possible in the new tool. Are any of these associated with campaigns in your CRM and do they need to migrate together? Is it a highly personalized program using dynamic content? Or is it a static program using the same content for everyone?
  • Workflows – Workflows are a little tricky because they are typically unique to their instance. It is important to document them for migration. Consider what you are trying to achieve with the workflow processes. It’s not about the individual steps; it’s about the end result. More than likely, you are not going to get a carbon copy of your old workflow on the new platform.

Finishing Thoughts

One of the most important things to manage during a major transition is change. You’re making a major move from one platform to another. You need to make sure your people are on board with the move and are ready to adopt and use the new platform.

You’ll need to provide your people with training in the new platform so that they will feel confident completing their day to day tasks (such as our Pardot basics class). If you carefully and thoughtfully plan your transition, moving from your old system to Pardot will be a success!

And don’t forget about lead management: how you handle lead processing and the handoff process to sales. Every platform tackles this topic in its own way and Pardot is no different. Strategize and document what you currently have in place so that migrating this process is smoother!

If you’re ready to nail this migration, our expert Pardot consulting can help, as well!

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