Use Automation Rules in Pardot Lightning App

Learning Objectives

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:

  • Define automation rules.
  • Create an automation rule.

Automation Rules

Automation rules are definitely the heavy lifters in the automation tools toolbox. They’re both powerful and flexible, which makes them a popular choice when automating. They’re also the most comprehensive automation tool offered by Pardot. But as the old saying goes, “When you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” We look at what automation rules do and why you use one, so you can make smart decisions about when to use your “hammer.” 

Automation rules allow you to perform certain marketing and sales actions based on criteria that they specify. Automation rules continuously look for prospects who match the rule criteria. They are retroactive; but any changes after the rule becomes live are not.

A few things to note about automation rules: 

  • Automation rules also begin in the “paused” status. This allows the user to preview matches before resuming the rules for the actions to take place.
  • You can set automation rules to repeat if you select the repeat rule checkbox. This option lets you control how many times the rule can match a prospect.
    Enabling the repeat rule checkbox allows you to match prospects more than once and set a time period to wait before repeating the rule. You can also limit rule matches to a specific number.
    [Alt Text: Enabling the repeat rule checkbox allows you to match prospects more than once and set a time period to wait before repeating the rule. You can also limit rule matches to a specific number.]

  • If you leave repeat rule unchecked and an existing automation rule is updated, the automation rule does not match already matched prospects for the same rule.
  • Deleting an automation rule stops it from running, but the actions it has already applied to prospects is not undone. An automation rule resumes if the rule is ever restored from the recycle bin and restarted.

Putting the Pieces Together: Creating Automation Rules

Automation rules are built from criteria and actions. The criteria is what sorts through your database for you, and then the action is applied to those prospects matching your criteria. 

After you’ve considered your criteria, consider what kind of rule operator to use: either “match any” or “match all.” The differences between match any and match all can be confusing. This video demonstrates some of the key differences and how you can even combine the two for advanced automation actions.

Once you set the rule type to either match any or match all, you jump down a level to consider the operators for your criteria. 

When you use “is” as your operator for evaluating criteria, Pardot needs you to supply an exact match to look for, either by selecting the desired field value from a dropdown menu or by typing in a word or phrase (capitalization matters). 

When you use “contains” as your operator, you can list multiple criteria in one line separated by colons, so there’s more flexibility for a prospect to match a wider range of options. Watch this short video to learn more about the differences between “is” and “contains.” 

Leung wants to create a Salesforce task for the CRM owner to ensure they promptly follow up with Get Cloudy prospects who filled out the Get Cloudy Consulting landing page and are qualified with a grade greater than a B. 

Let’s see how she would do that: 

  1. Click Automations | Automation Rules.
  2. Click +Add automation rule.
  3. Enter the name Assign Task to Sales User.
  4. Select the Automations folder if it is not already selected.
  5. Leave Repeat Rule unchecked.
  6. Select  Match all as the Match Type.
  7. Click +Add new rule.
  8. From the dropdown, select Prospect Score.
  9. From the next dropdown, select is greater than.
  10. Enter a score of 100.
  11. Click +Add new action.
  12. From the dropdown, select Create Salesforce task.
  13. Fill out the Task fields as following:
    1. In Subject enter Consulting Interest Follow Up
    2. Select CRM Owner
    3. Set Priority to High
    4. Set Status to Not Started
    5. Enter Due 3 days from today
    6. Enter Reminder 1 days from today
  14. Review the page.
  15. Select Create automation rules.

Now that you’ve learned about automation rules, let’s move on to the next unit and learn about using segmentation rules to—yep, you guessed it—segment your database for email sends. 


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