Use Marketo LPs as PDF templates with PDFmyURL

A Community question from Marketo user RT about generating personalized PDF certificates (for Continuing Education classes and such) sent me back to some old bookmarks to see which service would be quickest to integrate with Marketo LPs.

The idea here is to use LPs as your PDF templates. LPs are inherently personalizable via tokens and segmentations, so they're a great base for generating per-lead PDFs. (Your designer will be using HTML and CSS, so the output may not be as awesome as what you'd get from InDesign, but it'll work great for most scenarios provided you have a skilled designer.)

Note *RT'*s original question pertained to emails, but given the highly limited nature of HTML and CSS in emails themselves, I don't think this is the right choice. Instead, send someone a link to "Click here to download your printable certificate."

Generating PDFs from LP URLs was absurdly easy to do with PDFmyURL, who offer a professional-quality PDF generator that I don't hesitate to recommend. (I have no relationship with them at all, but I know a well-thought-out, mature service when I see it.)

Sign up for PDFmyURL and register your LP domain with them. Then simply include this JS snippet in the <HEAD> of the LPs you want to be PDF-able (you could include it on your templates if you want, or just on individual LPs):

if ( document.location.hash == '#pdf' ) {
  document.location.href = '//';

Then, anytime you access an LP with #pdf added to the URL, a PDF will be dynamically generated and downloaded. (You could remove the need for the hash, but then it would be impossible to preview the LP as its native HTML, which your designer won't like!)

In a Marketo email, just send a link like this:

<a href="">Download your certificate!</a>

The link, like all tracked Marketo links are by default, will automatically be mkt_tok-enized, so the final content for your PDF can include lead tokens, program/folder tokens, and segments, just as in the browser.

As you will see, PDFmyURL offers a wide array of customization options (watermarking, page size, header/footer, PDF-level permission settings) so you can really go to town. But even without tweaking any settings, you can start dynamically generating PDFs. Enjoy!