Catching Up to Your Marketing Tech’s Capabilities

By Suzanne Martin & Tim Cook

Everywhere you look, it seems like there’s a brand-new marketing technology solution promising out-of-this-world results. The marketing tech landscape has never been bigger, and it’s still growing fast. There are over 5,300 solutions on the market at last count, with more arriving daily. With so many options, it’s easy to think that getting the results you want is a matter of picking the right systems.

It’s easy to think that … but it’s just not true.

If you’ve already invested in marketing technology and are stuck waiting for the magic to happen, it’s possible your tech isn’t the problem. True, tech has its own complications. Building the right technology mix — and seamlessly integrating it — can be tricky. But if you’re trying to apply traditional marketing approaches and tactics to tech systems that automate many of them, you’re bound to run into issues.

Modern marketing technology is all well and good, but to be successful, the rest of your operations need to modernize around the tech. Focusing on the right goals will help bring your operations up to speed with your technology.

1. Modernize your marketing programs

Even if you’ve invested in top-of-the-line tech, your systems are only as effective as the programs they’re powering. Don’t waste today’s tools on yesterday’s marketing! Develop programs that make the most of your tech’s capabilities. Segment your database, build buyer journeys that support the full customer lifecycle, or begin experimenting with account-based marketing.

Whatever you do, now’s the time to do it. According to SiriusDecisions, 67% of the buyer’s journey on average now takes place digitally. With that in mind, using tech to create a better digital user experience should be mandatory.

2. Keep your data clean

You’ve heard it before: Data is the engine driving every aspect of modern marketing. And as personalization and predictive engagement become more popular, your data absolutely must be accurate. Unless you have a reliable data hygiene strategy in place, you’ll be at a disadvantage from day one.

Remember, though, that data hygiene isn’t a set-it-and-forget-it affair. Your database is like your house: If you don’t commit to keeping it clean long-term, the clutter will start to creep back in.

3. Gather (the right) metrics

It makes sense that today’s most successful marketers are strong believers in metrics. After all, how can you improve if you don’t know how you’re performing? You need real-time reporting to identify what’s working well — and where you should change course.

But not all metrics are created equal. Sure, CTRs and open rates are nice, but they don’t tell the whole story. What do you care more about: how many people opened your last email, or how many MQLs you brought in? Make sure your tech lets you measure what really matters, and use those metrics to make strategic improvements.

Aligning your marketing operations with your tech’s capabilities is no easy task. There are other important aspects of marketing that require transformation, including lead management and digital strategy. But if you can get your operations and tech on the same page, you’ll be on your way to modern marketing glory.

To learn even more, check out our recent presentation on why modern B2B marketing needs more than tech. Happy modernizing!

Tim Cook

Tim is the former vice president of client services for The Mx Group. Previously, Tim held senior marketing positions at the global outsourcing firm Convergys, where he served clients at McCann and Resource Marketing. Tim is a graduate of Stonehill College in Easton, Massachusetts. He also completed certificate programs in integrated marketing communications and change management at the Chicago Graduate School of Business.

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