The Importance of Marketing Technology in 2021 — and How to Ensure Your Stack Is Up to the Challenge [Guide]
Just 12 months ago, no one expected that they would have to completely reevaluate their go-to-market strategies and redefine their processes for connecting and engaging with prospects. Regardless, this is what ended up being the case.
In a world that canceled tradeshows and conferences, nearly all marketing programs went fully digital. As the customer experience was thrown into the spotlight more than ever before, B2B companies had to come up with other ways to generate leads and discover new sources for driving demand.
Not only did these organizations scramble to adjust to the quickly-evolving market, they faced entirely new challenges in the way they promote and sell their products and services. They had to rethink their ability to remove friction from the buying process while also looking for new ways to delight (and maintain) their existing customers.
Ultimately, 2020 was the year that a lot of companies finally tackled digital transformation and prioritized initiatives aimed at adopting new technology to replace and automate many of their previously manual processes.
3 Reasons Technology is More Important than Ever
Regardless of the forces that drove these changes, the fact is that . As we transition into a year that appears to be picking up where the last one left off, it’s essential that marketers have the right technology and marketing infrastructure in place in order to continue supporting and growing their organizations.
Here are three reasons you might consider building a more robust stack this year:
- Maximize your marketing spend
Many marketing teams saw widespread budget cuts as well as a lot of downsizing last year. It’s now more important than ever to be able to cut costs and maximize marketing spend. While investing in new technology may seem like a step in the opposite direction, the right tech can greatly enable us to market more effectively while lowering costs.
Modern marketing teams have access to thousands of tools and platforms, all created with the goal of making marketing outreach more efficient and effective, and all leveraging the vast amounts of marketing data available through a myriad of digital sources.
While a marketing automation platform is table stakes for most marketing teams, it serves as a perfect example of how technology can be used to automate time-consuming processes while allowing for more personalized and targeted marketing efforts. Combined with other specialized tools, marketers have the ability to craft some great digital experiences across various channels.
- Adapt more quickly to changing trends
Top-performing marketing teams are the ones that are most agile. Teams that excel at quickly adapting to new trends and experimenting with new technologies are the ones that have stayed ahead of the curve to begin with.
It’s no surprise that these were the types of teams that were able to respond most quickly to the changes caused by a global crisis. Marketing teams with the right technologies in place were able to quickly adjust their strategies and adapt.
In a recent podcast interview on DemandGen Radio, Meagen Eisenberg, CMO of TripActions, shared in detail how her team has been forced to pivot during the pandemic. Like most B2B companies, TripActions had to cancel their primary lead generation channel due to the ban of in-person events. However, as Eisenberg explained, the company has been able to maintain growth due to a willingness to explore new channels and ability to come up with creative ways to build pipeline.
- Demonstrate marketing’s contribution to revenue
While it has been a long time coming, marketing as a function is finally starting to gain full recognition as a major contributor to revenue. After last year, you might even say that marketing has surpassed sales as the primary driver of revenue.
Regardless, marketing plays a very important role in driving new business and attracting new customers. Sales and marketing alignment has increased dramatically within many organizations as sales teams have relied more and more on marketing to create programs that attract more leads with stronger propensities to buy.
Behind these programs are the right toolsets that not only enable the increase in marketing-attributed revenue, but also provide the reporting and analytics to prove it.
Now is the time to evaluate your stack
If 2020 has taught us anything as marketers, it’s the importance of technology. The companies that were able to adapt most quickly to the surprises that 2020 threw at them were those that were already very mature in the digital sense. Teams with the right infrastructure in place had an advantage when it came to making the necessary pivots.
It has always been a good idea to periodically
Need to evaluate your MarTech stack but not sure where to begin? We’ve put together a detailed guide to walk you through everything you need to know, from assessing your existing tech stack and discovering new opportunities to working with vendors and maximizing ROI from your technology investments.
As Digital Marketing Specialist, Justin Chormicle supports many of the marketing channels and demand generation strategies that DemandGen leverages. He is passionate about enabling fellow marketers with the support and knowledge they need to get started on their digital marketing journey.