Home Media SCU Leavey Blog MarTech and The Future of Marketing

MarTech and The Future of Marketing

20 Dec
Digital Marketer working remotely at home.

One of the more frustrating things about marketing is that it can be hard to define success, especially for those who don't work closely within it. Because marketing appears in many different forms, you can't always link sales or conversions directly to your efforts. But with the creation and adoption of several new marketing technologies, it's easier to create, manage, and report on marketing efforts to redefine their role in a company.

Here, we'll explain the basics of marketing technology, its prospects for the future, and how it can fit into your role today.

What Is MarTech?

Marketing technology, or MarTech, refers to the software, applications, and tools that help streamline marketing processes and improve the efficiency and efficacy of marketing initiatives. The collection of marketing technology tools that companies use is often called the 'marketing stack' or the 'MarTech stack.'

Some examples of MarTech are:

  • Content management systems (CMS): WordPress, Square Space, BrightSpot
  • Email marketing: Mail Chimp, HubSpot, Marketo
  • Customer relationship management: Salesforce, monday, Oracle

These programs help manage the sending, receiving, and reporting of marketing communications. Within these categories, there are smaller digital assets that marketers use to convey their messages and reach their marketing goals: emails, texts, blog posts, app reminders, and more. Marketing technologies also go hand-in-hand (and are sometimes used interchangeably) with digital marketing strategies, such as search engine optimization and other SEO tools, digital advertising, social media marketing, and social media management tools.

The main purpose of MarTech is to strengthen relationships between companies and their target audiences, which can include prospects and current or past customers. This is accomplished by creating multiple touch points between a brand and its desired recipients. Through various communications, both parties learn more about each other and come closer to reaching their respective goals; for a company, that could be a sale, an application, a vote, or any other desired response. For the target audience, that could be a solution to a problem, a physical product, or adopting the marketer's service.

The Move Toward Personalization and Experience

As marketing and advertising move further away from traditional methods (printed brochures, billboards, direct mail, etc.), MarTech solutions have evolved to meet the needs of modern marketing teams and their prospects. Now, marketing technology tools support lead generation, and help marketers nurture leads, by enabling them to send people specific messages, through specific channels, at the specific time that's best for them to receive them.

For example, if someone owns an old iPhone and is eligible for an upgrade, you can send them a personalized text before the holidays to let them know that there will be a sale on the latest iPhone model, and that their upgrade will pay for a portion of it, as well. The link you include in the text can lead them to a customized landing page that instructs users on how to upgrade their phone. You can specify the time of day to send the text, the recipient's name, and even provide the location of their nearest Apple store, to help ensure that your customer has a better experience.

However, the medium and the message are no longer enough. According to Matthew Sweezey, principal of marketing insights at Salesforce, “Experiences, not messages, are the future of marketing.”1 Virtual and augmented reality are changing the ways in which we interact with brands, and consumers expect a higher level of attention and detail than they have before. Events, giveaways, influencers, games, and revitalized storefronts are all intertwined with marketing technology and its path to the future.

What About Advertising?

First, it's important to state that marketing and advertising are not the same thing. Although they are deeply connected, advertising's sole purpose is to sell, while marketing has a variety of bigger picture goals: building brand awareness, recruiting or retaining customers, providing extra information, etc. Advertisers and marketers work in many of the same media, but advertising has a narrower focus (promotion) than marketing does (product, place, price, promotion, and people).

Because of their overlap, MarTech has a large influence on the ways in which we advertise. For example, if a new marketing technology can help ensure that every advertisement adheres to Facebook's best practices and legal requirements, then it will be easier to create more frequent and effective social media marketing campaigns. It also helps to maintain consistency across various ads to make sure that your brand is represented as you want it to be, every time.

The Impact and Influence of MarTech

Not every company has a marketing department, but every company does marketing to some extent. Telling others about your brand, sharing blog posts from your website, or inviting people to company events are all forms of marketing. So, whether you're closely connected to marketing or not, there are many ways that MarTech will benefit your position.

If you work in marketing, MarTech:

  • Offers various and unique ways to reach your audience
  • Aggregates work for review and reporting
  • Standardizes templates, process, and cadence
  • Reduces time and money spent on marketing efforts
  • Encourages new ways to reach prospects and customers

If you don’t work in marketing, MarTech:

  • Enhances whatever marketing efforts your company has in place
  • Funnels more qualified and interested leads
  • Simplifies and streamlines projects for those who aren’t familiar with marketing
  • Can operate without excessive oversight or expenses

Don’t Forget the Basics

While marketing technology has a lot of benefits, don't forget the core principles that shape your strategy. The five Ps mentioned above (product, place, price, promotion, and people) are a great place to start, but it's also beneficial to revisit the psychology and fundamentals of human behavior. People don't like being sold to, so successful marketing strategy involves a clear purpose, consistent messaging, and a smooth user experience, among other considerations.

No matter where you are in your career, continuing your marketing education is crucial for success. Whether you attend industry events, watch webinars, read books, or earn an online graduate degree, mastering the fundamentals and learning the latest technologies will keep you competitive for years to come.

MarTech for Marketing Leaders

Whether through marketing automation, a content management system, project management tools, or other facets of the marketing technology stack, everyone from the marketing department intern to the CMO will interact with marketing technology in one way or another. But if you want to leverage these tools specifically in a leadership role, you should take the time to explore your options fully, identify your pain points, and assess how MarTech tools will work within your marketing team and current projects. While it might be easy to choose the most popular or least expensive option, doing so will end up creating more work for you in the long run.

To choose right marketing technology for your needs, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Who is my audience?
  2. What and where are my business gaps?
  3. Will this marketing technology help close my business gaps?
  4. Do I have the resources to sustain this technology for the long run?2

From here, you can narrow down a few tools, then vet them with other members of your team to determine what's right for your business goals, your needs, and your budget.

An excellent place to learn this process is in the SCU Online Master’s in Marketing class MarTech Integrations and Challenges. This course explores the impact of digital modernization, cyber malice and data privacy mandates on the modern marketer. You’ll look closely at the numerous ways that MarTech helps businesses thrive, while navigating complex data regulations, security requirements for cloud-based marketing tools, and evolving ethical lines.

Know What’s Next in Marketing

Earning your Online Master’s in Marketing degree is one of the most straightforward, surefire ways to acquire the expertise in MarTech and marketing management that you need to succeed. Not only will you learn various marketing technologies and how to use them, but you'll also become an expert in the essential principles, objectives, channels, and consumer psychology patterns that have built some of the world's biggest brands.

Surrounded by global marketing powerhouses, Santa Clara University is the ideal university to help you achieve your goals. Set up some time to talk with an Admissions Advisor, and we’ll take care of the rest.