Today our focus is on MarTech – the blending of Marketing and Technology to deliver on digital marketing objectives.
The MarTech scene is booming. There are more than 3,500 players that deliver tools for Data & Sales Management, Content Marketing, Promotions and Social channels.
And to help us explore these tools, we asked our pool of professionals:
What marketing application has had the biggest impact in your organization?
Their responses show a wide range of marketing technology used in various verticals. Here’s what the pros had to say.
Engaging with your Market
My employer, Kuali, is pushing the envelope with simple but powerful higher-ed software. In order to keep up with Kualis growth, I’ve had to onboard several new MarTech solutions in the last year: new web hosts, webinar/conferencing platforms, CMS plugins, CRM integrations, sales enablement tools, etc. By far my most valuable new solution is Marketo’s marketing automation suite. One of our most effective ways of finding new prospective customers and turning our current customers into advocates is through webinars. Marketo allows for program cloning and tokenized content, I’ve been able to cut this webinar launch time down to two hours, whereas before it would take me anywhere from four to six hours.
While this is just one small example, I’ve found a half a dozen or so other tasks that have been equally simplified through using Marketo. Needless to say, I would credit Marketo as the one marketing application that has the biggest impact in my organization.
Bridging the Gap
Finding the right mix between sales and marketing has been the driving force for Mia Farber, Director of Marketing at CitiXsys for iVend Retail. She’s taken the initiative to find the balance in a productive and successful way.
The integration of Pardot and Salesforce has had the biggest impact, as it helps us to bridge the gap between sales and marketing. Marketers are constantly up against finance teams questioning the value of marketing. You have to be able to justify your budget to achieve your own marketing goals and support your organization in the ways you believe are important. To demonstrate how our marketing spend contributes to the financial well-being of the company, I use Closed-Loop ROI Reporting in Pardot and Salesforce, so I can tie closed sales back to the campaigns that created them.
Becoming More Efficient
It’s not specifically built for marketing, but without a doubt, I cannot imagine life without Zapier right now. We’ve been able to automate just about every redundant task on our marketing and growth teams. Our efficiency has gone through the roof, and it’s allowed us to combine data from multiple sources to see a full picture of what’s going on. We’ve basically built our own in-house version of Segment.
Quick, Easy and Manageable
The mantra that works for most busy marketers is to get the job done in the fastest way possible. Sarah Kirk-Douglas, Director of Marketing at SecureKey Technologies, uses MarTech to help her utilize her time effectively.
Hootsuite is my go-to daily marketing tool. We have a variety of social media platforms, and being able to cohesively manage them all through one tool makes it quick and easy to update our busy social media channels on the fly. Hootsuite also gives me the ability to pre-schedule posts and search for relevant articles, should I be on the look-out for fresh and industry relevant content to share with our followers. It has a great dashboard and reporting feature that we use on a daily basis to gauge how our posts are performing, which helps to guide our ongoing content strategy.
Building on Dialogues
Getting to know your customers and prospects has been the guiding light for Roger Beharry Lall, Market Strategist at Adlib Software. He’s all for the philosophy ‘the customer is always right’ and to prove it, he successfully uses tools to understand the market.
The marketing application that’s been most impactful to me is not some cutting edge predictive behavior tool or fancy SEO optimizer. Those are great, but I’m old school. I prefer direct and frequent engagement with customers and prospects. That means listening to concerns, learning about trends, and sharing ideas for new solutions. You have to go further than eavesdropping on social media and interpreting opinions. I’m one for having a direct conversation and gathering insights. So two technologies that impact my day-to-day would have to be Webinars – I happen to use Webex currently – and SurveyMonkey. I know they’re not new or fancy – quite the opposite, they’re simple, old and inexpensive. However, these tools let me quickly gather input and feedback from live customers, engage in one-on-one dialogues, and share trends and best practices with small groups. It’s those types of engagements I simply couldn’t live without as a modern – but well-seasoned – marketer.
Improve Marketing Efforts
While our business develops software technology, our primary mission is to partner with corporations to launch innovative startups.
I have a number of tools that have radically improved my marketing efforts, and the two that stand out for me are Swydo and Ninja Outreach.
Swydo is a reporting system that allows you to pull in data from Google Analytics, Google AdWords, and social media. It was so helpful to pull my metrics into a single, good looking, digestible PDF for clients.
Next is Ninja Outreach. I tried using BuzzSumo to identify influencers in my industry, however, most of my results lacked email addresses. Ninja Outreach returned real contact information for influencers more often. It made outreach much easier for content sharing purposes.
The marketing tool that we use and has had a positive impact is LiveChat. It’s the most suitable tool for engaging prospects on your website, converting them to customers and satisfying them through pre and post sale chats. Generally, LiveChat tools are considered sales tools but now in the digitally growing business world, live chat tools are essential in marketing activities.
One of the features that help in marketing is the interactiveness. It humanizes the customer’s online experience. It is a great tool to gather data that is needed in running marketing activities such as customer preferences, their needs, issues and problems faced etc. The data gathered through LiveChat is first hand and useful to retain existing customers as well as acquire new ones.
Getting the Best Use
Hubspot CRM and Marketing platform for bridging our marketing team to our sales team, through data and a shared enthusiasm for revenue growth. Basic data capture tools such as Hunter, AutoPilot and LinkedIn Sales Navigator for giving us the digital insights we need for successful B2B digital campaigns.
Reduce Manual Work
As the organization grows and more companies are tapping into the global market, the need for automating processes is on the rise. Kristian Jønsson, Growth Marketer at Sleeknote, uses tools to address this need in an efficient and productive manner.
In 2017, we’ve changed strategy from outbound sales to inbound sales. This means that we’ve scaled our marketing department drastically to generate more relevant leads. As the Sleeknote team gets bigger and bigger with employees from all around the world, automated processes become important for our organization. This means automation tools are the most useful, and for that we use Zapier.
One of the great motivators for a team is being informed and understanding data. Kate Jones, Business Intelligence Specialist at itas Solutions in Wales, UK, makes a great point about using software that gets her team close to the action.
We’ve started to use Power BI for some Cloud-based Analytics recently. The software is great for producing visualizations of data. We now have a live ‘Team Dashboard’ up on the office wall showing things like Number of Cases Closed, Logged, Outstanding & Follow Ups due. This has increased visibility within the team and allowed us to redistribute resources. We’ve also used Power BI to create Marketing Dashboards and Project Gantt charts, keeping everyone up to date and informed.
What to expect of MarTech in 2017
MarTech is on the rise. In 2011, there were around 150 vendors in the space. That number has grown to a whopping +3.5K in 2017. Going forward, expect MarTech growth to continue – particularly in areas of automation, AI and social selling.