Marketing is rapidly becoming one of the most technology-dependent functions in the business. With more than 5000 marketing technologies and tools on the market today, many providing overlapping functionality, CMOs are continually challenged to align marketing technology with business goals as well as evaluating and choosing the tools their organization needs to execute and optimize their marketing programs. This infographic was developed by Scott Brinker at Chiefmartec.com. As you can see, Martech today is very overwhelming.
What is a marketing technology stack?
The marketing technology stack is a visual framework of tools and technologies that marketers use to execute and improve their marketing activities. It helps CMOs track the tools they are using and identify gaps. Marketing stacks are typically organized by product category such as analytics, by marketing function such as lead management, by the buyer’s journey, or in a web/circuit design that shows the relationships between the tools.
Last year, Chiefmartec.com held an awards competition called The Stackies where marketers were invited to share a one slide diagram of their stacks. The winners split the award money and it was directed to the charities of their choice. All of the entrant’s stacks were shared here and because the marketing technology stack is relatively new, this “content” was a great way to share knowledge and learn from one another.
This infographic was developed by Scott Brinker at Chiefmartec.com. As you can see, Martech today is very overwhelming.
Why do you need to identify your marketing technology stack?
The marketing technology landscape is continuously changing, tools are being enhanced as well as integrated into other tools. We at Red Javelin believe that there will be a consolidation in the martech market over the next few years, you can read more about our predictions in this blog post titled Is the Martech Bubble About to Burst? Yes and No. Here are the benefits of documenting your marketing stack.
Reduce tool sprawl and spend – Because of the sheer number of tools available, many of which begin as free tools, it is easy keep adding tools and quietly upgrade to the “pro version.” At some point, it is likely to have tools with overlapping functionality, slowly increasing unnecessary tool spend.
Identify gaps – A visual depiction of your tool set makes it easy to see where you may have gaps.
Internal communication – Having a visual stack helps you communicate within the organization why you need specific tools as well as garner ongoing support for these tools. It is likely that IT will get involved at some point and IT uses the “stack” framework for technology planning.
Annual tools review – I would actually recommend a cursory quarterly review of the marketing toolset with a more in-depth evaluation on an annual basis. The technology is moving so rapidly that it is likely some tools will become outdate rapidly with new tools with more functionality becoming available. The quarterly review will help you spot quick changes in the market so you can pivot quickly while the annual review will help you look at your marketing stack from a fresh perspective.
Some organizations are beginning to hire marketing technologists that are responsible for the identification of new tools, the implementation, and day-to-day management of the marketing stack. They ensure that the marketing team has the right tools and training to be effective. This person is likely to sit in the marketing organization or just as likely in the IT organization.
Marketing technology is still new and in the early stages. The market is fragmented creating a perfect storm for consolidation. This creates and opportunity for new and disruptive technologies as well as large companies flush with cash to move into leadership postions.
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