72% of Marketers Want MarTech Buying to Happen Faster
Martech buying hit a fever pitch this year, we found recently. But 72% of marketers think their organizations aren’t agile enough about adopting new marketing technology, determined new Walker Sands Communications research.
Asked “How agile is your company in its ability to add new solutions to your marketing technology stack?” just 15% of the marketers responding to a survey Walker Sands announced on July 11 answered “very agile.”
In the “State of Marketing Technology 2018: Maximizing the Value of Martech Innovations,” Walker Sands said, “slow and steady has yet to win the race.” So marketers who are out-front in tech stack buying are among the 23% in the study who believe their martech buying is at least keeping pace with advancing marketing technology.
“Marketing organizations can’t keep up with the rate of martech innovation,” reads the Walker Sands research. “Sixty-three percent of marketers feel the martech landscape has evolved rapidly or at light speed in the last year, while only 28% feel the same about their company’s use of martech.”
What MarTech Sellers Can Do
Vendors need to help laggard companies by providing educational resources for them to understand how what they’re buying will help their bottom lines. Plus, vendors need to help marketers maximize the value of what they already have in their tech stacks, writes Walker Sands in its report:
“Faced with quickly growing competition, vendors tend to highlight their solutions’ features and benefits rather than how organizations can best use them alongside their current strategies. Organizations must understand how their teams will absorb solutions before they will feel confident in a purchase.”
The Walker Sands Research Complements Our MarTech Buying Benchmarks
Walker Sands finds only 23% of surveyed marketers think their organizations are at least keeping pace with evolving marketing technology. Chances are, those organizations are among the ones we classified as richer marketers who were buying the bleeding-edge technology, while poorer marketers were mainly bulking up on staple marketing technology for their tech stacks.
Most marketers answering our “2018 Marketing Technology Stack Investment Trends” survey said if they were buying marketing tech, most of them were going to do so within three months of completing the survey. That’s a fast turnaround on pricey products, and it matches the urgency Walker Sands is reporting.
Walker Sands says: “63% of marketers said they feel like the martech landscape has evolved rapidly or at light speed in the last year.”
So it’s surprising, too, that we found the richer marketers, whose companies bring in $5 million or more in revenue each year, are also adding onto that urgent martech buying by budgeting for numerous bleeding-edge technologies, like artificial intelligence.
Overall, we found plans to purchase marketing tech were up by double digits YOY in every channel but social, mobile and email.
Walker Sands finds 2019 will continue this trend: “While marketers have struggled to keep up for the past several years, the report reveals even in the face of adoption challenges, marketers have refused to give up on their martech investments, and continue to build their skill sets as efficiently as possible. In fact, 65% of marketing organizations plan to spend more on martech in the next year.”
Marketing Organization Stagnation Inhibits MarTech Buying
Marketers tell Walker Sands that they have the acumen to skillfully use marketing technology, but their companies aren’t buying the tools fast enough.
“While budget is a dominant factor,” says Walker Sands, “27% of marketers say internal resistance to change prevents their organization from making new investments.”
And this is perhaps why we found most brands were purchasing staple marketing tech to beef up their stacks and keep up with their competitors. While they may believe digital marketing tools are innovative and they’re being bold in their tech allocations, our research shows these tools are now just table stakes.
We found social media marketing tools, the most in-demand software, saw a 1% increase in demand in 2018 — with 68% of marketers wanting to have it buzzing through their tech stacks by year’s end. In a sign that marketers consider mobile and email marketing tools staple tech for their marketing stacks that many CMOs already bought, purchasing is up for mobile by only 8% and down for email by 6%. (The latter is still one of the most popular marketing solutions, though, and is tied for No. 3 with video marketing tech.)
In addition to social, CMOs are allocating expenditures for web analytics/web design/web optimization; email; content marketing; SEM/SEO; video; database marketing/personalization; direct mail; and CRM marketing tech the most.
For Walker Sands respondents naming core martech, email marketing tech was No. 1 at 54%; social media, content marketing and CRM tied for No. 2 at 48%, and analytics tools rated 45%.
What do you think, marketers?
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Related story: 68% of Brands Are Buying Social Media Marketing Tech