Marketers bullish about their companies’ martech investment: study

However, most agree they are yet to get full value from their martech investments

More than two-third marketers expect their companies’ marketing technology (martech) budget to increase in 2017. Seven out of ten marketers think their companies invest the right amount in martech, according to a new study, State of Marketing Technology 2017, conducted by global PR firm, Walker Sands Communications and

Based on a poll of more than 300 marketing professionals, the study revealed that marketers still go for best of breed technology solutions.

Close to half (48%) of the professionals polled for this year’s study called their companies either innovators or early adopters of martech. This is twice the percentage of marketers who felt so in last year’s study.

While 70% of the marketers polled saw their martech budget increasing in 2017, only 2% see it going down. The percentage of marketers who feel their companies’ current marketing technology helps them better do their jobs increased from 58% in last year’s survey to 69% this year, the survey finds.  

Like most new investments, martech too is marred by challenges, such as budget (50%) and internal resistance to change (25%). However, a significant percentage of marketers (24%) identified integration/difficulty in implementation being a major challenge.

Best-of-breed rules

Close to half (48%) use best-of-breed martech solutions while only 21% use single vendor end-to-end suite. While 27% marketers have integrated their best of breed point solutions, 42% admit that their technology is fragmented or ‘piecemeal’. The survey polled only the marketing professionals. It would be interesting to get the perspective of CIOs on this specific aspect. Increasingly, CIOs are being seen as chief ‘integration’ officers.

The report, based on the survey, states quite unequivocally that integrated best-of-breed marketers get the most value from their technology stacks, with 83% rating their companies’ ability to leverage the full power of their tools as “excellent” or “good.” Almost three-fourth (74%) respondents said they use between 2-5 tools regularly.

In what could be a kind of anti-thesis, the survey found that only 3% of marketers agreed to having realized the full value of their martech investments.

In terms of specific tools, a third of marketers (32%) plan to purchase a social media marketing tool in 2017, the most popular pick, followed by ad tech (28%), email marketing (27%) and analytics (24%).

In what could be a significant finding for corporate IT, only 13% of respondents (all marketing professionals) said IT managers manage their martech. Marketing (41%) and marketing operations (12%) are the other significant owners of martech within different enterprises, as identified by the respondents in the survey.

The survey finds that increasing marketing department is attracting a tech savvy crowd. More than half of marketers (55%) call themselves innovators or early adopters when it comes to personal tech adoption, compared to 43% a year ago.

Most marketers (39%) feel that key to fully leveraging marketing stack is a better strategy. That may not be a surprising finding. But just marginally less (36%) of respondents feel better analytics is key to better leveraging marketing stack. This indicates that the data-driven marketing is now a mainstream idea.

Interestingly, Gartner reaffirmed recently that marketers will spend more than business technology than CIOs. Gartner had shocked everyone when it had first predicted that way back in 2012. 

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