The Marketing Tech Stack for 2022
Marketing technology, or Martech, is a broad term that describes software that marketers use to organize and optimize processes, collaborate, attract and retain customers, execute marketing projects, and analyze the results. A well-organized marketing stack dramatically improves a marketer’s overall performance, so it’s essential to choose one that best fits your workflow.
According to ChiefMartec, in 2020, the number of operational Martech solutions reached 8,000, but we’ll just mention a few examples in three categories: organization, execution, and analysis.
Various management tools help structure the day-to-day work of marketing teams, manage resources, and track goals and deadlines. It’s a broad category that includes full-featured solutions like Basecamp or Asana and services that cover specific areas such as task management, time tracking, knowledge management, and so on. This category may also include communication tools (Slack or Twist), cloud storage (Google Drive or Dropbox), video conferencing (Zoom or Meet), and many other solutions for everyday needs. All such tools provide the basis for team collaboration and marketing campaigns.
There are plenty of tools that help marketers manage specific channels: email (Mailchimp), social media (Hootsuite), organic search, search ads (Google Ads), content production (Adobe Creative Suite for multimedia and Grammarly for writing), publishing (a whole variety of CMSs), and many more. These tools are the core of a good marketing stack. Just like organization tools, this category includes point solutions and all-in-one software that aim to cover all the needs of a marketing team.
Marketing analytics tools are essential for assessing the performance of marketing activities and making decisions based on data. They help determine where customers come from and how they interact with products. Some tools are channel-specific (such as email marketing analysis in Mailchimp), while others aggregate data from multiple sources and visualize it (InsightArc for CJMs and PowerBI for dashboards).
The perfect marketing stack
Does not exists.
Every marketing team has its own specific requirements and creates a stack that meets them. Some choose the most feature-rich products, while others value a convenient UX and a quick learning curve over more complex solutions. The latter is probably the most crucial when it comes to creating a sustainable marketing stack.
Franken-stack vs. Jack-of-all-trades
For a growing team, building an effective marketing stack often means a tough choice between a combination of familiar best-of-breed tools and all-in-one suites. Each option has its pros and cons and, depending on the situation, can be the ideal choice, a bottleneck, or overkill.
All for one. A marketing stack consisting of single-purpose tools is a reliable choice early on. It also reduces overall maintenance costs, as marketers are able to choose the tools that cover their needs perfectly, and only pay for the resources they need. Such flexibility entails two more benefits. First, the learning curve for each separate piece of software is steep, while the use of familiar tools requires little or no additional training. Second, the whole stack can be easily upgraded when needed by switching to a different plan or vendor. Yet such an approach, sometimes jokingly called Franken-stack, has significant shortcomings that cannot be ruled out. Point solutions that serve a single purpose well don’t usually fit together perfectly. Yes, some of them have native integrations, and other ones connect through IFTTT or Automate.io, but such automation comes with limitations. An eclectic tech stack underperforms as the tasks become more complex and require more coordination. What’s even worse, it makes it borderline impossible to organize and effectively analyze data from different data sources, leading to false assumptions about efficiency and preventing marketers from receiving valuable insights.
And one for all. To effectively overcome such challenges, marketers need a solution that keeps all their tools under one roof. Such a suite should provide various resources such as ad management, SEO tools, content creation and publishing, email marketing, lead tracking, and analytics (and much more). Everything should also be integrated, ensuring smooth workflow and practical cooperation between marketing team members. However, all-in-one solutions have their drawbacks. They are often jacks of all trades, covering many processes but still with feature gaps and not excelling at any specific function. Suites may scale well as a marketing team grows, but that scalability can come at the risk of being locked into software provided by a single vendor. Finally, the price tag for a suite is usually high, whether or not the marketers use the whole set of tools.
The middle line. It’s tough to make a choice between using a plethora of different tools and an all-in-one solution. To make a wise decision, think strategically and consider what features will improve the performance of your marketing business in the future. For instance, there won’t be any major changes related to content management and search ads. However, process mining and customer analysis tools will evolve, become more advanced, and have a great impact on tailoring products and services to users’ needs. In other words, tools that facilitate orchestrating numerous marketing channels are an excellent basis for a marketing tech stack, leaving room for enhancement by sophisticated tools where necessary.
What about InsightArc?
InsightArc is an advanced marketing intelligence tool that empowers marketers to understand real customer journeys and act based on data, not assumptions. It aggregates user events from data sources like web analytics and visualizes how customers interact with digital products, allowing marketers to identify and fix points of conversion loss and operational leaks.
This new approach helps digital marketers automate repetitive manual tasks like reviewing user session recordings or analyzing web analytics heatmaps. Everybody knows how important and insightful data from Google Analytics or Hotjar is, but nobody wants to spend dozens of hours on review sessions identifying buyers’ behavior patterns. Moreover, to discover user experience issues, marketers have to analyze technical data (events and logs), a job that is not part of the skill set of 90% of marketers.
InsightArc automates all those jobs for every digital product challenge: eCommerce conversion rates, SaaS retention research, and even UX research for digital marketing agencies.
InsightArc is a rare example of a standalone solution for automated customer mapping and discovery of buyer issues. It isn’t limited to a single channel and can be used with any stack. For an in-house marketer, it’s a must-have tool to get relevant insights and plan future improvements. Also, an agency can use it to understand their client's business better and offer solutions based on actual data, not assumptions.
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