How to get the most from your marketing technology for Digital Transformation

Marketing technology is obviously a great enabler for digital transformation. But often when we do marketing automation audits for clients we find they are only getting 20% of the value for the software that they should.

There are two main reasons for this:

  1. Lack of technical know-how

Tools like marketing automation platforms are actually really complicated pieces of software and often no one in the marketing department has the ability to set it up and use it effectively. Therefore marketing has to ask the IT department to implement and run it for them. The problem here is that the person or people in IT responsible for the platform report to the IT Director and not the Marketing Director. So their KPI’s aren’t how many leads the system produces or how much revenue it drives. In fact their KPI is probably how little time they can spend on it so they can work on other projects important to the IT Director. It is very difficult to continually improve their use of the system if they have to “raise a ticket” with IT for every little modification.

  1. No real understanding of the Inbound lead generation process

Often no one within the marketing team has a really good understanding of how the technology has to interact to create an engine that churns out leads. A marketing automation platform is one big part, but that has to integrate into the website and the CRM system. If your marketing automation platform (Eloqua, Marketo, Pardot etc) isn’t configured exactly the same as your CRM (Salesforce etc) then leads can’t be passed from one to the other.

A technology ecosystem

Marketing automation, CRM and your website are the big three tools you need to market digitally. But there are a number of other tools you will need to complete the inbound process like Google Analytics, Hootsuite, GaggleAmp, Tweetdeck, Demandbase, Magic Robot… the list is endless. have put out a new Marketing Technology Landscape for the last 5 years, and every year it doubles in size. So how does any marketing team know what tools to get and how they will integrate? We advise our clients to think in terms of a technology ecosystem that can adapt, grow and integrate as new technologies emerge.

Big data

One of our most senior consultants, Roy Lee, describes data as the fuel that powers your marketing engine and if it is poor quality your engine won’t run properly. So cleansing your data and setting up processes to maintain it are key to success. Improved data quality will increase response rates and allow for better attribution and interaction. If you have a lot of customers you may need to set up a data warehouse just for marketing.

This will enable you to gather insights from the data like “what are your customer’s biggest challenges”. From this you can build propensity models and do white space analysis on a vast scale. This information can drive not only your marketing strategy, but your company’s product development strategy.

How long will it take to implement the technology?

Another big challenge is how long it takes to implement the technology. Paul Stevenson of O2 Business said they were told it would take eight weeks to set up their marketing automation platform when in reality it took eight months. Martrain advises clients to create a long-term roadmap but also to set short term goals to make sure things are progressing and affecting KPI’s.

Also you have to bear in mind that some of these projects will have no completion date because of the speed of development in digital technology and changing customer behaviour. Therefore, there does not necessarily need to be a ‘big reveal’. Thom Groot, digital director at The AA says: “There is a common misconception that you [do] a big project, deliver it [and say] ‘great, we are now transformed’, and it’s done. It’s never done. The long-term view should change, and should change often, because customer behaviour changes often.”

In our eBook The 5 Biggest Challenges for the Digital Transformation of Tech Sector Marketing we will go through each challenge in detail, explaining why they are so troublesome, and giving you tips on how you can overcome them. We can’t make Digital Transformation simple for you, but we can make it achievable.