Don’t let the marketing technology landscape cloud your key objectives
The rapid growth of the marketing technology industry – as displayed in 2015’s edition of the Marketing Technology Landscape Supergraphic – is astounding. Nearly 2,000 vendors are now operating worldwide across 43 categories, almost double the numbers in last year’s chart. This is clearly reflective of the increasing interest of tech companies in the possibilities that the marketing industry offers, and is a promising outlook for the future.
As the digital marketing industry comes of age, with so much choice across so many categories it could be easy to feel overwhelmed by the multitude of available tools. Marketers may feel compelled to tick off every category in this graphic, and spend their time (and budget) on increasingly specialised tools.
However, this trend runs the risk of losing focus on what should be most important: their customers’ experience of their brand.
Having technology and expertise in all 43 of these categories would, realistically, be prohibitively expensive and time-consuming. A marketer’s remit is ultimately to drive their brand’s value and improve customer experiences, using technology as an aid rather than a hindrance – after all, who has the time to evaluate and integrate all these tools?
Using digital marketing tools like Adobe’s Marketing Cloud, is a central, valuable part of what marketers do – they allow us to test, to take risks and to learn. As marketers become increasingly tech-savvy, with ever-growing toolkits, what we must bear in mind is that it’s really all about how this technology is applied.
To be successful, marketers must rise above the minutiae of point problems which are easily solved by yet another new utensil, as this can only lead to more time spent integrating and evaluating technology, and less time deciphering the real issues customers face. What marketers need is one platform that operates across many categories, and generalist skills to encourage strategic thinking.
As the trend for more and more specialisation increases, we must take a step back and realise that what is truly essential is the ability to utilise core marketing principles in the digital age. The future is in core skills and blended, integrated technology.
This graphic is a useful tool, but we must avoid focusing solely on the easy problems. The challenge is always strategic, and the ultimate aim must always be to give our customers a great experience, that is cohesive across all platforms.