Pardot Knowledge Base

Custom Objects Overview

Last Updated: Apr 20, 2017 | Print this Article

Custom Objects allow Pardot to run automation around any custom or default objects in your CRM that are not default objects to Pardot. All custom objects must be tied to a prospect record in Pardot in some way through a prospect id. You can make a custom object from anything that is linked to a contact, lead, or account in your CRM.

You can not force default objects in Pardot to become custom objects. In order to sync custom objects from Salesforce, the Salesforce connector user must have administrative rights.

Note: Custom Object Integration is available as an add-on at Pro edition and is included in Ultimate Edition. Custom Object Integration includes unlimited custom objects but objects are provisioned based on a client's needs.

Before integrating with a new custom object with more than 100,000 records, please contact your Implementation Coordinator or your Account Executive.

Create Custom Objects in Salesforce

Custom Objects must first exist in Salesforce in order to be created and synced in Pardot. To create a new custom object in Salesforce:

  1. Navigate to Setup > Create > Objects. This will take you to the Custom Objects page.
  2. Click New Custom Object to launch the Custom Object Editor.
  3. Enter your Custom Object information.
  4. When finished, click Save.

Create Custom Objects in Pardot

To create Custom Objects in Pardot:
  1. Navigate to Admin > Custom Objects.
  2. Click + Add Custom Object.
  3. Select the target CRM Object from the dropdown.
  4. Edit Display Name, Plural Display Name, and Display Field if necessary.
  5. When finished, click Create custom object.
Note: Display Field is is the field Pardot will use to indicate the identity of the Salesforce record.

Manage Custom Objects

To edit existing custom objects in Pardot:
  1. Navigate to Admin > Custom Objects.
  2. Click the gear icon next to your custom object and choose Edit.
  3. When finished editing, click Save custom object.
To edit existing field names on your custom objects in Pardot:
  1. Navigate to Admin > Custom Objects.
  2. Hover over the field name in the table and click the pencil icon.
  3. When finished editing, click the check button to save your changes.
To configure which custom object fields display in the Related Objects tab of prospect records:
  1. Navigate to Admin > Custom Objects.
  2. Hover over the gear icon () then click Configure Fields.
  3. In the Display in Tables column, toggle on any fields you want displayed on prospect records.

Automating Around Custom Objects

Custom objects can also be used in automation rules, similar to other objects in Pardot. Since automations only match prospects, custom object automation rules are designed to match prospects related to a custom object.

To create an automation rule around an existing custom object:

  1. Navigate to Marketing > Automation Rules > +Create New Automation Rule.
  2. Select Prospect custom object from the Match Type dropdown.
  3. Define the criteria for the relation from the prospects to be matched to the custom object, and choose any properties of the related custom object, if applicable.
  4. The first dropdown field after "Match Prospects" allows you to select how you want to match prospects related to the custom object you select.
    • Related matches any prospects that are related to any instances of the selected custom object via the selected relation field.
    • Not related matches any prospects that aren’t related to any instances of the selected custom object via the selected relation field.
    • Related with properties matches any prospect related to instances of the custom object which have the properties defined in the sub-rules below.
  5. The second dropdown field after Match Prospects allows you to select the custom object you want to operate on. Note that only custom objects that have a direct relation to prospects (contact, lead, or account in Salesforce) will be available to select. The object you select will also determine which relation fields are available for you to select from. Any relation field which relates to or from the selected custom object will be available in the third dropdown.
For example, you have a custom object “Car” that has relation fields “Driver” and “Owner” that targets Prospect, and your lead, contact, or account object in Salesforce has a “Daily Driver” field that targets “Car,” which is translated into Pardot as a custom object field Prospect. You could use the following rule to match all prospects that have any kind of Car as their Daily Driver:
Custom Object Auto Rule Car Daily Driver

There is also an automation rule type "Prospect account custom object" that works almost the same as above. This type of rule is defined to target a Pardot "Prospect Account" ("Account" in SFDC), and the rule will match all the prospects in that Prospect Account (or group of accounts). Please see the Automation Rules article for more information about how to build automation rules.

Custom Objects and User Role Abilities

If your account has Custom User Roles enabled, for new custom objects, the default for any Custom User Role is “no access”. You must grant access to these items at the Custom User Role level. Custom Object abilities will be located under the Admin tab within custom user role.


  • Custom objects are read-only in Pardot.
  • Variable tags are not available for custom objects.
  • Syncing between objects in the CRM (both default and custom objects) and their corresponding custom objects in Pardot will follow the same syncing pattern as any other synced element in Pardot — they will sync in the background every 10 minutes.
  • New custom object records will sync automatically after the custom object is created and mapped in Pardot. Updates to custom object records will also sync automatically. However, custom objects that were created in Salesforce before the Pardot connector was set up may need to be manually synced — full DB sync will accomplish this.

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