If you look at all the separate individual platforms or SaaS systems companies are investing in, teams are losing about five hours a week just by logging in and going into those separate systems. That’s not including time spent attempting to create insights from an excess of data.
So, companies are spending more on tech – much of which they’re not using – than the people they potentially need. And the people they do have are probably less productive because of all the different tech solutions they’re using, with no clear way to link the different data points.
But there are some simple steps CMOs can take to make sure they break this pattern.
1. Only invest in tech that helps
First, does the tech app or platform actually help you meet your customers’ needs? Do you really know what your customer needs and how to satisfy these needs at a profit? Or — this is something we see a lot of — is it creating more work by requiring an extra team to gather, analyse and act on the data? If it’s the latter, cut it out.
2. Look at the numbers. Do they add up?
Which takes me nicely onto the next question you must ask yourself — are you actually using the data you’re paying for? Do you really need it? If you’re not then why are you paying for it? It’s imperative CMOs have a plan in place for their whole marketing ecosystem, including their martech stack. Once you have that clarity you can easily identify systems you’re not using and reduce the number of data points.
3. Clear the fog
A common issue from companies that are investing in so many different technologies is they’re drowning in data. They’re analysing so much information from such a variety of places that the data doesn’t always show useful real-world customer problems. The CMO’s plan needs to validate their investment and clear the fog. This will ensure only appropriate data is being gathered as it has to relate to the achievement of this committed plan.
4. Will it work with tech you already use?
Something CMOs should think about immediately when talking to any tech provider is whether the tech can be easily integrated into current platforms and help to better execute their marketing plan. If not, why not and are you crystal clear on the reason for purchasing?
Martech solutions are meant to streamline your business processes, helping your staff with menial jobs so they have more time to spend on other areas of business. If the solutions you’re buying don’t work well together then this cannot be achieved. You will just be creating more work for less output.
5. Do your due diligence
Probably the biggest thing CMOs are not doing enough of is their due diligence to ensure the tech has actual proven traction. We all love a good pitch but putting money into a tech company because they had a really good presentation that promised the world isn’t going to cut it with your board when, three months down the line, you can’t justify the spend with any benefits.
A lot of people talk about the future CMO being a techie — whether or not this is true, creativity is absolutely key for the CMO role. However if, as a CMO, you’re not prepared to put the work in to understand the tech that will help streamline your company’s processes and enhance its products or services, then you’re about as useful as a chocolate teapot.
Without the ability to execute tech that could save your company 20 hours per person per week, you’ll find yourself stuck with ineffectual tech and an unproductive workforce. And without an extensive plan that gives the team direction and purpose, CMOs will find it difficult to validate whether their martech investment is helping achieve their goal or mission.
Professional tech experience is not a requirement for a CMO, but it should be a keen interest and a basic understanding of it is essential if you’re to compete and succeed in modern marketing.