Navigating the current marketing technology (martech) landscape can be overwhelming and difficult. Sifting through all of the different vendors and capabilities available could leave your organization thinking it’s time for a technology upgrade. New technology and implementations are often expensive and take valuable time and resources, so before making the decision to upgrade, it is important to evaluate your organization’s current martech stack to ensure the most effective and financially wise investments are made. The following steps can be used to get a better understanding of where your organization is and if you are ready for an upgrade:
1. Assess your current martech stack to identify missing capabilities
Perform a true, unbiased assessment of your organization’s current martech stack to get a good understanding of what technologies are being utilized and if there are any capabilities offered within the current stack that are not being leveraged. Talk with users from across the organization – understand what’s working well and most importantly what’s not working well. Identify key areas that are holding back the organization either from a capability or a process perspective.
2. Design use cases that fill in the gaps of missing capabilities
Formalize your vision of how you would use the capabilities that are missing from your technology stack. Identify workflows needed for these missing capabilities, understand if they are available but not currently utilized within your stack (even if that means being limited due to people or processes). Detail the ideal outcomes of these use cases to prove that the investment required for these capabilities to be enabled.
3. Evaluate current vendors and partnerships that can be expanded to accommodate missing capabilities
New technology licenses and implementations can be costly both financially and to the efficiency of the business. Evaluate how much you can move the needle of your capabilities with upgrades of existing technology to avoid new technology implementations and the training time required.
It can be tempting to invest in the newest technology or technology from the biggest brands, but the most important consideration when maintaining your martech stack is identifying the needs of your organization and determining if those needs are being fulfilled. If the needs of your organization are not being met, then all avenues for enhancing your tech stack need to be identified by considering if the limitation is due to lack of resources, lack of efficient processes, lack of technology capabilities, or a combination. Understanding what’s truly limiting your organization will help determine the best path forward for your organization in terms of making the right investment.
If these steps do not provide a clear path forward for your organization on how to improve your organization’s martech stack, try rationalizing the missing capabilities with your existing resources and budgets to determine what can make the largest impact in your current situation. Begin to layout a roadmap consisting of short and long term implementations to plan for these future capabilities. The most important step in enabling your marketing technology ecosystem is planning.
Want to learn more? Our technology strategy is a group of experts that can help you make sense of the complex martech industry of vendors. Contact us here to schedule time with the team.