Pardot: Export data overview

You have two integration methods to select from when exporting data from ion to your Pardot instance (also known as an "Add Lead" integration): the Post to Web Form (Form Handler) method and the Embedded Form method. Both methods can work seamlessly with your ion creatives. The best method for you will depend on the types of data you plan to collect and whether you intend to gate content within your ion experiences.

Post to Web Form (Form Handler)

A Post to Web Form integration is what it sounds like: data collected in ion is re-posted to a form handler you've published in Pardot. While the customer sees a form you built in ion (and data is saved to your ion console), Pardot's unique form handler option allows you to still use automation rules based on form completion. Benefits of this method include maximum control over the form completion user experience and the flexibility to easily pass all types of data to your Pardot prospect records.

Embedded Form

Your Pardot form code is used to build a reusable widget in the ion platform. Once the widget is built, you can insert any Pardot form using variables in ion's creative studio. This method requires custom scripting or other specialized setup to pass data that isn't collected directly via form fill (things like IP address or the results of an interactive assessment) to hidden fields on your Pardot form, or if you wish to use the embedded form as a gate for interior ion pages. The primary benefit of this method is the ability to leverage progressive profiling built in Pardot. This can also be a good solution for companies with strict data security policies who do not want lead form data stored in ion for any period of time.

Check out the table below for a more detailed comparison of the methods.

  Pardot Post to Web Form Pardot Embedded Form
How does it work?

A form handler is published in Pardot to receive your ion data. Next a field mapping is completed in ion to define which ion fields should be exported and where that data should be submitted in your Pardot form handler. The integration endpoint can be dynamic, allowing you to post to multiple form handlers from the same integration.

When the integration runs, data collected in ion is re-posted to the Pardot form handler.

Your Pardot form code is used to build a reusable widget in the ion platform.

Once the widget is built, you can insert any Pardot form using variables in ion’s creative studio.

Visitors will directly complete and submit Pardot forms embedded in your ion creatives.

What kind of data can be sent to Pardot?

All types of data can be seamlessly passed to a prospect record in Pardot. This includes Basic Lead Data, ion Core Data, data passed on the query string (like tracking parameters), and interaction data (like a calculator input or an assessment result).

Note: Integration services may be limited to certain data types. Check with your Customer Success Manager if you are unsure what you’ve purchased. 

Embedded forms work well when you are primarily concerned about passing data collected via form fill (in the Pardot form itself). Things like ion Core Data and interaction data (e.g. calculator inputs or assessment results) can be passed to Pardot using hidden fields in the Pardot form, but custom scripting in the ion form widget or other specialized setup is required.

Note: Integration services may be limited to certain data types. Check with your Customer Success Manager if you are unsure what you’ve purchased.

What are my options to manage sensitive data? Field-level security controls are available. Data can be encrypted (AES 256-bit encryption) and/or automatically deleted from your ion console. Data collected via the form is stored in Pardot only, according to your instance’s configuration.
How will I build the form my visitors see? Can I change the styling? You will use ion's form building components. This gives you maximum control of the look, feel, and flow of your form experience, and allows you to leverage the branded theme built for you in ion. Forms are built directly in Pardot, and any edits you make (e.g. adding a new field) will be reflected in your ion creative.

Form styling is controlled in Pardot and can be updated by editing the custom CSS on your Pardot form layout template.
Can my forms be pre-populated with known lead data?

Forms can be pre-populated based on ion data or (if a Get Lead integration is setup) based on Pardot + ion data.

Note: Integration services may not include a Get Lead integration. Check with your Customer Success Manager if you are unsure what you’ve purchased.

Pardot's native pre-fill functionality and progressive profiling both work on embedded forms by default.

How often are my leads sent to Pardot? Leads are immediately sent to Pardot each time the integration runs. Most ion users apply their integration to run on the submission of a form in their ion creative. Leads are immediately sent to Pardot upon form submission.
What happens if there is a Pardot service interruption? Visitors will still be able to submit forms and form data will be saved according to your configuration in ion. We’ll retry the post once an hour until successful, up to the maximum number set in your integration. (default: 50 retries) In the event of a Pardot service interruption, visitors will be unable to submit forms and no form data will be collected.