MarTech is Evolving More Rapidly Than Marketers’ Use of It

MarTech is evolving rapidly, trouble is, marketers may not be keeping pace with tech advancements.

Editor’s Note:  Anecdotally, and from the dozens of conversations we’ve had with C-level executives on the topic, the gaps and lags in customer engagement have less to do with the MarTech technology and more to do with organizations’ ability to understand their customers.  Case in point …

MarTech is evolving rapidly, trouble is, marketers may not be keeping pace with tech advancements. According to Walker Sands’ 2018 Marketing Technology report, more than two-thirds of marketers don’t think there’s such a thing as the “perfect stack” for marketing technology, believing instead that it’s always a work in progress. The survey, conducted among 300 marketers in Q1 from companies of various sizes, found that the majority feel that the marketing technology landscape has evolved rapidly (48%) or at light speed (15%) over the past 3 years.

But marketing teams may not be keeping up with the pace of change. Just 28% feel that their company’s use of marketing technology has evolved at that speed over the past 3 years. That’s matched by the 28% of marketers who believe they’ve only evolved “slightly” over that time frame, with a plurality (37%) instead saying their use has grown “steadily.”

About half of respondents assess their marketing technology stack holistically every 6 months or less, including more than a quarter who do at least monthly. Marketers also are adding to their stacks, though not quite as quickly. Roughly half report adding new tools to their company’s marketing technology stack every 6 months (26%) or once a year (27%).

Respondents this year are not quite as confident as they were last year in their marketing technology usage, says the report. Only 16% this year, down from 22% last year, strongly agree that the marketing technology in place at their company is up to date and sufficient for helping them do their job more effectively. Likewise, just 13% strongly agree that their company invests the right amount in marketing technology, down from 24% last year.

While research has suggested that budget availability is the main impediment to acquiring new martech tools, marketers feel reasonably confident in tech skills. 65% of respondents to the Walker Sands survey expect their company’s marketing technology budget and investment to increase either slightly (48%) or greatly (17%) this year as compared to last.

This article originally appeared in MediaPost Research Brief. Photo by Alexandre Debiève on Unsplash.

  1. Completely agree. From what we have seen across many engagements, this usually boils down to an organization not being prepared to leverage the new technology they have invested in. Whether that is a lack of clearly defined use cases, measures of success, decisioning processes or failure to have the right data quality/structure feeding in to the technology, or even a misunderstanding of how to use tools (IE using an A/B testing platform as a CMS).

    MarTech is like anything else….without a good plan on how to use it, success will be elusive.

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