At the recent MarTech East conference in Boston, Bryan Yeager, research director with Gartner, reviewed nine key insights from Gartner’s recent marketing technology survey. Gartner surveyed 504 marketers across the US, Canada and the UK in companies with $500MM+ in annual revenue. Yeager shared the following:
Insight 1: In the U.S., installations of ad tech and advanced capabilities grew by more than 20% points over two years. The biggest adoption was in multi-touch attribution but there was also an increase in personalization, dynamic creative optimization, demand-side platform adoption and native and social ad platform adoption.
Insight 2: Canada and the U.K. trail the U.S. in usage across 34 marketing technology categories including email marketing platforms, content management and digital marketing analytics.
Insight 3: 7 in 10 marketers view their martech stack as effective at meeting their objectives.
Insight 4: Most marketers also have tech responsibilities. Having a dedicated martech leader helps advance marketing maturity. Companies with a dedicated martech leader are focused on customer retention, driving new insights through analytics, active personalization and real-time efforts. Whereas those organization who don’t have a dedicated martech leader are challenged with scalability, have siloed data and usually employ a reactive strategy to marketing. They are also focused on awareness and conversions and a skill, capability gaps usually exist.
Insight 5: Marketing takes the lead across all martech activities, but collaboration with IT is common. The evaluation, selection, purchase, configuration and integration of marketing technology is done in collaboration with IT.
Insight 6: Marketers use five sources on average to inform new martech purchases.
- Existing vendor relationships
- Own prior experiences
- Other decision-makers
- Events and conferences
- Analyst reports
Yeager noted that not enough marketers are using peer communities, proofs-of-concept, free or managed trail periods when doing vendor selection.
Insight 7: Half of marketers prefer a best-of-breed approach to martech selection. Companies with a dedicated martech leader and team prefer the best of breed when selecting marketing technologies while those with no formal leader or team prefer an integrated solution.
Insight 8: More than 40% of marketers emphasize growth as the key performance indicator for martech.
Insight 9: Event-triggered and real-time campaigns rank at the top for emerging technologies that will drive future marketing impact, with AI close behind. Many marketers are deploying tools to enable event-trigger, real-time marketing like lead management platforms. Marketers are currently using AI for predictive analytics, campaign decisions, prescriptive analytics and conversational interfaces like chat and voice.
Yeager also offered the following recommendations based on the study. Exercise caution when investing in advanced solutions and adtech if you don’t have the data foundation or internal resources to fully leverage them. Audit your marketing technology stack to map existing tools and their degree of effectiveness. Appoint a dedicated martech leader to help advance your marketing maturity. And align your martech success metrics with your overarching marketing and business objectives, such as driving growth and profitability.