Can you name the industry that's grown by nearly 470% in just eight years?
Technology? Too broad...try again.
SaaS? Now, we're getting somewhere.
Martech? Spot on!
Is it really any surprise?
We're in the information age, which makes it possible to develop highly-targeted campaigns. But gathering and properly using data to connect with consumers is a recurring issue. With marketing technology, businesses and marketers can develop strategies that cater to their audience and nearly guarantee positive results.
The Martech boom has streamlined the industry in more ways than one. It's making marketers more efficient and able to scale marketing efforts seamlessly. This is what spawned the astronomical growth of the industry.
Some are even suggesting that we've hit the ceiling for Martech growth. Let's take a closer look.
The Future of Marketing Technology
Back in 2011, there were only 150 marketing technology companies. As of 2019, there are roughly 7,040 Martech firms. That says a lot about the marketing industry and its strong desire to streamline processes.
But as of 2019, the rate of growth for martech has slowed to 3 percent. For the first time, growth is outpaced by churn, which sits at nearly 5 percent.
That may sound horrible, but when you dive into what's really happening, you'll see the industry is only improving. For example, from 2018 to 2019, the amount of money CMOs allocated for marketing technology increased to 29 percent. This is the year after many speculated the downfall of martech (when it reduced from 27 percent to 22 percent).
Then to further prove this point, 34 percent of CMOs state marketing technology acquisition and use as vital marketing capabilities supporting the delivery of marketing strategies over the next year and a half.
If anything, the dip in growth we're seeing has less to do with a stagnant market and more to do with the industry becoming deeper and more complex.
Enter the Rise of Martech Stack
Martech stack was inevitable. Marketers have numerous apps and software to manage on a day-to-day basis. So it was only a matter of time before someone innovated martech to manage martech.
Hence the fastest growing trend we see today, SaaS platforms integrating with any and all relevant apps.
It's all about creating a streamlined workflow that boosts speed and efficiency. So much so that it's bringing forth yet another trend, one that's possibly linked to the slowed growth of martech startups.
Last year, we witnessed several martech companies being acquired by other SaaS and software businesses. For example:
- Salesforce acquired CloudCraze (after acquiring Demandware for $2.8B in 2016)
- SAP acquired CallidusCloud for $2.4 billion
- Adobe acquired Magento for $1.68 billion
- Salesforce Acquired Datorama for $800 million
- Adobe acquired Marketo for $4.75 billion
Clearly, the big name companies see the martech trend and aren't shying away from acquiring as many SaaS firms as they can.
As we slowly leave the "golden age" of martech, we're entering into a stage of judgment. Over the next 18 months, we're going to see some martech companies churn, some fizzle out, some get acquired, or some undergo a digital transformation. Once the dust settles, those that survive the transition will witness the emergence of the second "golden age."
So what's fueling all of the madness in martech? Let's review what and how marketers are using martech to achieve their goals.
Martech Technologies Marketers Are Using
Now that you have an idea of what's happening in martech, it's time to take a look at the leading tools in the industry and how marketers are using them.
To date, the marketing technology landscape looks something like this:
- Advertising and promotion
- Content and experience
- Social and relationships
- Commerce and sales
- Data Management
Let's take a look at some of the most popular martech marketers are using.
Automating Marketing Initiatives
As a marketer, you're always looking for ways to automate mundane tasks. This frees up your time to worry about bigger things, like analytics and making improvements to campaigns. There are various marketing automation tools out there that assist with tasks like email marketing, lead generation, and social media marketing.
As you'd imagine, tons of marketers jumped aboard the train, and it seems it's only growing more steam. One popular platform is Marketo. This tool qualifies as a martech stack. It enables you to automate your emails, mobile marketing, digital ads, and social media using other platforms you've incorporated into your strategy.
Roughly 91 percent of its most successful users say marketing automation is essential to the overall success of their campaigns. No wonder Adobe decided to acquire the company.
With marketing automation, you can build solid, long-lasting relationships with your audience. Marketers achieve this by analyzing their data and segmenting their campaigns for email, blog posting, social media, and paid ads.
Another popular automation tool is BuzzSumo.
Optimizing Project Management and Workflow
One of the killjoys of being a marketer is managing a team, especially if they're remote. This can slow down processes and interrupt a healthy workflow. As the team manager, you need to have the systems in place to make it easier to assign, monitor, and communicate with your team. Martech successfully addresses these issues with several tools.
Popular project management tools allow you to assign tasks, manage deadlines, automate approvals, and access real-time insights about your team.
Plus, you can forgo the use of emails, instant messages, and meetings, which are proven to hamper productivity. Marketers use these tools to keep their projects in order and promote accountability, so team members follow through.
Managing Customer Relationships
The customer's journey doesn't end when they make a purchase. If you're not nurturing them after the sale, then your retention rates will suffer. With customer relationship management (CRM) tools, marketers can capture your interactions with each customer, whether it's online, via the phone, or in person.
You can use a CRM to manage all of your customer data, such as their name, contact details, behaviors, and demographics. All of this will give you insight into your marketing automation efforts.
For example, you can use the data in your CRM to personalize your email campaign. Let's say your CRM records common questions customers ask your customer service reps.
Your marketing team can use this to create a segmented series of emails answering these questions.
Growing Relationships with Social Media
Needless to say, it's one of the most impressive venues marketers can use to reach their target audiences in an authentic way. But you already know this. In fact, you likely have one or more social media pages set up for your brand. However, managing all of those posts, comments, and engagement can be tough when you have other campaigns to manage.
This is where martech comes in. These platforms allow you to connect all of your social media profiles into one, pre-schedule posts, monitor brand mentions (social listening), and so on.
Driving Traffic with Paid Advertising
Content is great, but sometimes it takes a slight boost to get traffic to see it. With paid ads, also known as pay-per-click (PPC) ads, you can do this.
Creating successful campaigns relies on you knowing your audience and regularly split-testing your campaigns. This is a lot easier when you have the tools in place to manage it all. There are several tools on the market that allow you to conduct keyword research, build ads, run split tests, and provide useful analytics.
Today, marketers are using a mix of PPC, social media, and blogging to capture leads. Tools like Google Adwords make this possible.
Improving Organic Reach
Although social media continues to rise, Google still reigns supreme. As of 2019, the search engine accounts for more than 75 percent of all global desktop traffic. We also find that the majority of Google searches are carried out on mobile devices (in the US, Japan, and another 8 countries).
It's clear to see why SEO is still a part of most marketers' strategies. But figuring out how to make it to the first page of Google (and stay there) is another story. This led to the rise of martech tools designed for SEO ranking. These tools help you to find longtail keywords, analyze your website optimization, and track the progress of your web pages.
Marketers use it to build lists of keywords for each of their campaigns and then track them. It's critical to have this a part of your martech stack whether you're running PPC ads, blogging, or creating web content.
Collecting Meaningful Data
In the information age, it's all about collecting and analyzing data in a way that'll convert prospects into customers. If your data fails to perform, then you'll find yourself in a marketing rut. This is a common scenario for marketers who don't have the proper martech stack to achieve their goals.
When it comes to data management, you can't rely on just any tools. You need a platform that'll both collect and clean your data so that it's accurate. Without accuracy, you risk running blind campaigns that end up performing poorly.
Marketers that add tools like this to their system find it easier to segment campaigns and improve ROI. One such tool is the SmartSuite tool offered by ReachForce. With this, you can ensure the data you collect from your Smart Forms are accurate, including a lead's name, address, email, and other vital details. Not only does it do this initially, but it continues to sanitize your database to ensure you're working with the correct information.
Why is this critical? Because every marketing strategy relies heavily on accurate data -- social media, paid ads, email marketing, SEO, and content marketing.
Building a Powerful Martech Stack for Your Marketing
Have several ideas for building your own martech stack? With the martech we've mentioned, you should.
What's great about martech is that there are many tools on the market to try. This gives you the room to test out different options to see what's right for you. But if you need a nudge in the right direction, then click here to learn how to build a coherent tech stack for your business!