How to Build a Martech Stack
How to Build a Martech Stack
As a marketer, a portion of your job involves creativity. The remaining hours, it often seems, require you to wrangle the technology that makes such creativity viable.
Depending on your outlook, the fact that there are an estimated 5000-8000 marketing tools available could mean smiles or tears. Sure, modern tech streamlines many daily tasks, making busywork a non-issue. On the other hand, wading through that stockpile of software can feel overwhelming…on a good day.
But don’t worry, you don’t have to use all (or even most) types to propel your business forward. However, having a general idea about what’s out there will help you decide which ones will best serve your purposes.
But first, let’s take a step back.
What’s a martech stack?
Whether you know this term or not, you already use martech, or marketing technology. It’s the umbrella term for all the tools and software you rely on to plan, publish, budget, and whatever else it takes to spread the word of your company’s awesomeness.
A well-working martech stack performs as a unit—collaborating to prevent needless gaps, redundancies, or confusion. But above all, it should uniquely fit the needs and goals of your company.
Sounds great. How do we build one?
Like any business objective, finding the right technological fit means you must ask a few key questions first:
- What marketing activities does the team perform most (planning, budgeting, publishing, analysis, content management, product information management)?
- What tools/programs do we currently use for these tasks and are they user-friendly, meeting our needs, and working in sync with our other tools?
Once you’ve answered these, you’re a step closer to identifying areas of your workflow that could use a little love.
The next step, then, is research.
The most time-consuming part of this process, research is crucial to martech magic. You’ll want to look at trends before vetting specific candidates, and consider asking these questions before making a commitment:
- Will this tech complement what we already have?
- Does it work with our budget?
- How closely does the tool align with the company’s needs?
At this point, your Google coma has started to ease, and your mental faculties are returning. But you might need a recap of what you’ve learned.
So, we’ve compiled a handy list of the most general needs today’s brands are handing over to technology.
The most popular tech tools
Remember, the best tech simplifies essential, everyday tasks:
- Content Marketing: Concise, authentic content is always on trend. Look for programs that document processes and workflows, create content calendars, measure and optimize content, aid in promotion and distribution, and onboard new team members.
- Customer Interaction: Currently (and the foreseeable future), chatbots are all the rage. Use them for customer support, product/service education, and everything in between.
- Prospecting and Engagement: When reaching out to your network, email and direct mail still do the trick. But in today, it’s all about automation. Find top-notch software that makes personalized, consistent, trigger-based messaging fast and easy.
- Data Analysis: You can’t flex and innovate without it. Or know your customers. You’ll undoubtedly need tools that provide information about customer behavior/preferences and help you measure marketing efforts.
- Social Media Marketing: Any technology that helps you enhance your business’ social media presence should be top priority.
- Internal Communications: There’s no shortage of platforms that facilitate collaborating and communicating across teams. When Sales wants to fuss at Marketing, make sure they have the tech to make it happen.
We hope you find your martech project a rewarding and only slightly-dizzying experience. At the end of the day, these tools should make work more efficient, and ultimately, more fun.
Need more help understanding how technology, especially marketing automation, can help grow your business? We can help. Reach out to one of our experts or request a demo today.