Just like email marketing, marketing automation isn’t dead, and doesn’t appear to be going anywhere — the market is actually expected to be worth $7.63 Billion by 2025.

With all of the money to be had, the leading platforms are often biting at each other’s ankles, trying to grab as much market share as possible. And, let’s be real; if each platform didn’t have it’s own niche and unique selling point, it wouldn’t be able to exist alongside the competitors.

Considering my notoriety in the Pardot space, my move to become Marketo Expert certified came as a shock to many. After all, most folks do seem to be certified in only one platform; whichever platform they are working in at the moment for their job.

So, why become multi-certified? Here are some great reasons:

  1. Learning more than one platform in-depth helps you think about the current platform you’re using from a different perspective. This enables you to devise more creative ways to optimize your instance.
  2. Protect yourself in an ever-changing market. If your platform suddenly is bought out or goes under, what will keep you competitive? How will you pivot? There is definitely a “one-platform loyalist” culture out there, but I believe that it hurts those in the field and leaves us vulnerable to any negative shifts in the market.
  3. It shows an interest in continual learning and professional growth. If you want to show your boss or a potential new employer that you are a naturally curious and ambitious marketing professional, learning new platforms that you don’t immediately *need* is a great way to do it.
  4. Generally speaking, more certifications = higher compensation. If a company knows that you can help them decide which marketing automation platform to pick or help lead a migration from one platform to the other, they will find your certifications in both platforms very attractive.

So, there you have it — what do you think? Tweet me at @ifeellikemacmac and let me know what you think. In the meantime, if you have decided to take the plunge —

Here are the resources that I used to learn Marketo/prepare for certification:

  • Marketo University: Did you know that Marketo has 68 free training videos that are open to the public? Check them out here.
  • Marketo-Fu: I highly recommend Joe Reitz‘s YouTube channel, which has hours of tips and tricks from Joe himself, a former Marketo consultant and Marketo Champion. Check it out here.
  • Professional experience: When I worked for Pardot Partners, I assisted with marketing automation platform migrations, including from Marketo to Pardot. If you can find an internship or part-time gig, that could be your way of getting a foot in the door!
  • Sixbricks: If you don’t have access to a Marketo instance, Sixbricks has a simulated instance to play in during their free Marketo specialist course. Check it out here.
  • Quizlet study cards: When studying terminology, flashcards can be super helpful! Check out free, public flashcard decks here.

Here are some resources that you can use to learn Pardot/prepare for certification:

  • Pardot’s Training Resources: Unfortunately, a lot of the videos feature #VintagePardot, but they still cover the fundamentals as well. Check them out here.
  • Jenna Molby’s Blog and Pardot Specialist Practice Exam: Jenna is legendary in the marketing operations field, and her experience extends to Pardot as well as Marketo. Check out Jenna’s blog here and her practice exam here.
  • Jason Dominy‘s Tuesday Tips with the Pardot Support Team: To be honest, I miss these. 🙁 They were a fantastic social media marketing campaign and a lot of fun to share. Check them out here.
  • Kelli Meador’s Pardot course: Kelli Meador is an excellent Pardot expert whom I have worked alongside in the past, and the reviews for this course speak to her skills in teaching the platform to others. Check out her course here.
  • Quizlet study cards: When studying terminology, flashcards can be super helpful! Check out free, public flashcard decks here.

P.S. I recommend following Datanyze’s marketing automation market share report (something to keep in mind: some MAPs give out free trials, and this report relies upon website tracking code scraping). It isn’t 100% accurate, but it will give you a general idea of trends in the market.

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Sara McNamara is a Marketing Operations Manager and former top-tier Salesforce Pardot Partner senior consultant. She has a special place in her heart for marketing operations, Kanye West, huskies, and people who don’t call her about something that could have been a text/don’t request a meeting about something that could have been an email. She is honored to be the very first B2B marketing Trailblazer to be recognized and featured by Salesforce Trailhead, as well as featured in the first Trailblazers in B2B Marketing | Powered by Pardot magazine. She is also a Marketo Certified Expert and cosigned by Jill Rowley, the greatest sales professional of all time. 🐐

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