A unified data strategy is incredibly important for midsize and large companies, especially those seeking to improve their marketing efficiency, data quality, and customer journey. However, many organizations struggle to properly implement new technology and thus derive optimal value from it.
The ability to use new marketing technology successfully and efficiently depends on the technology itself, of course; but more than that, it depends on the implementation and time spent before going live. Either could negatively influence ROI.
In an effort to provide information and actionable recommendations, GetResponse and Ascend2 recently conducted a survey focused on the state of marketing technology implementation at midsize and large companies. We sought to discover how those organizations implement marketing technology to improve performance, and to give some helpful and actionable advice based on those findings.
Here are the five major takeaways to help you benchmark your own performance, along with actions we recommend you take.
1. Companies are embracing marketing technology to improve data quality
Marketers know that marketing automation can improve efficiency by eliminating time-consuming manual tasks and automating much of the customer journey.
When using automation, improving data quality is vital. Organizations rely on data as a source of customer information, and they base their strategies on the insights gathered from it. The higher quality the data, the more personalized the communications and the more positive the results.
Nearly half (46%) of marketers from midsize and large companies are implementing martech with the goal of improving data quality.
Recommended actions: Embrace data-driven marketing. Organizations with a complete data view of their audience, available in real-time, have a competitive advantage over other companies.
Data should provide you with a picture of your customers that is as complete as possible. Data drives informed business decisions and can make all the difference in your company's bottom line. Any gaps in your data, as well as unstructured or untimely data, could misinform you.
If you want to improve data quality, you must establish a process to keep your data structured and up to date. The process should be based in a platform with tools that continually evolve to keep data quality high.
2. Streamlining complicated processes and increasing marketing efficiency are a priority
Technologies that consolidate multiple tools into a single platform are appealing to marketers: 91% pointed to consolidation as important.
As a marketer, you need a platform that empowers you with solution-based tools that evolve with today's and market.
Recommended actions: “All-in-one” solutions help to improve data quality and provide a complete and robust picture of your customers by consolidating and storing all the data in one place so that it becomes a single source of truth and insights for your whole team. You don't have to integrate multiple systems to have actionable and reliable insights in real time; you can get it all on one platform.
You can also run complex marketing campaigns and act on reliable data from multiple sources. For example, you can retarget page visitors or webinar participants based on information such as level of engagement, interests, and number of purchases.
Doing it all from one platform lets you rely on accurate data to be up-to-date and structured.
3. Determining the right technology and executing strategy is a major challenge
Many companies struggle with determining the right technology to use and then executing a strategy using that technology, the report also found.
One of the reasons for that is that when it's time to level up to a new provider you have to temporarily give up your day-to-day responsibilities (generating demand, launching campaigns, etc.) so you can dedicate your team's efforts to choosing the right provider and learning the new system.
Recommended actions: Embrace a provider with compete tech support from real people. Ask the providers you're reviewing what kind of support they can offer you. For example, ask whether migration assistance is available to take the burden away from your team so you and your team can concentrate on your marketing efforts rather than losing precious time and energy setting up your marketing platform.
With personalized support, you can also count on assistance in executing your strategy from an expert who knows the platform inside-out: someone well-versed in your company and goals—and quick to come up with practical solutions tailored to your business and strategy.
4. Marketers say marketing technology improves their success rate
Most marketers (55%) from midsize and large companies report success gained from implementing marketing automation technology. Organizations enjoy both quantitative and qualitative benefits because automating campaigns allows for additional time to dedicate to higher-value activities.
Recommended actions: Use automation to personalize your messaging and to constantly improve your data through methods such as A/B testing. Automation helps data quality continue to improve by providing your audiences with engaging assets that they interact with, which in turn gives you more data.
You can even see what performs best and how the audience interacts with certain aspects of campaigns and specific messaging; that data better informs your progress and future projects?—all while giving your team more time to be creative and to use their talents more effectively instead of wasting them doing tedious work that can be automated.
5. Implementing new tools with ease and efficiency is essential for 91% of marketers
Without a clear marketing strategy on how to make the most of all the tools and features available to you, the onboarding process can be overwhelming and down time can influence the company's bottom line.
Recommended actions: Imagine logging into your new marketing platform and having a multitude of tools to choose from and no guide to where you should begin. You can alleviate that anxiety and waste of time with an expert by your side who can maximize the new tools at your disposal. Personalized assistance steers you in the right direction from the start—because, to get great results from implementing a complex marketing automation technology, you need a clear strategy.
Your marketing campaigns should be cohesive, and success will largely depend on all the tools working together. Go with a platform that provides you with personalized support from people who know the nuances and intricacies of the system to make all the tools and campaigns work together in synergy.
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Marketing technology will remain the top priority for marketers in 2021 because it delivers business results and because best-in-class campaigns remain a source of great competitive advantage.
Technology helps you gain insights about your audience and empowers you to act on it, tailoring communications to your audience's interests and behaviors. Companies that implement their marketing technology successfully and make the most of multiple solutions available to them will stay ahead of the competition.