Would you buy a car that had doors and a steering wheel but no engine? You could motor down hills and coast for a while on flat roads, but come to an uphill stretch and suddenly you’d find you’re at a standstill. Or spend millions on a complex engineering project only to leave out the critical piece?
Regrettably, many CMOs – by their own admission — are poor purchasers of marketing technology. And while enterprise marketing teams can easily find themselves using more than 90 martech tools, many of them have left the engine out of their martech stack.
If you’re thinking this is an article about CRMs, you may be one of those CMOs struggling to get over the next rise. In fact, 91% of companies already have a CRM of some sort.
What about marketing automation, you ask? No. Marketing automation, which generally refers to the process of automating email communications to your database, is the moped of martech – it’s zippy, but against the backdrop of your broader customer experience, has limited relevance.
In fact, the missing piece when it comes to most martech stacks is marketing resource management – MRM.
Not the cumbersome, on-premise, timesheet-focused MRM technologies of yore. MRM solutions today enable marketing teams to plan and create marketing campaigns and build engaging customer experiences across all channels and touch points.
They address the neglected but critical job of planning marketing activity — something that just 1% of all the martech solutions available even attempt to do — leaving most marketing teams struggling to make spreadsheets do things for which they were never designed.
MRM platforms help marketing teams operate efficiently, with visibility, agility and accountability – eliminating the time-wasters and organisational drag that makes the difference between a mediocre marketing department and a high-performing team.
They allow CMOs to track campaign results against their total budget and resource allocation, so marketing leaders can finally know the real return on their marketing investment and optimise their future spend accordingly.
Intelligent MRM goes even further and assesses past results to recommend future marketing playbooks based on your own results over time.
MRM solutions for the new era are often overlooked when marketers are putting the foundational elements of their martech stack in place.
But they are the only all-encompassing, end-to-end marketing solutions that will drive your brand from the planning and briefing stage, through creative development across all channels, to launch, evaluation and into next year’s planned activity.
Most other martech solutions focus on digital-only channels – or even just one or two of these; social or email marketing, for example.
Those technologies have had a lot of airplay in recent years with the rise and rise of digital marketing.
But there are more than 7000 tech solutions out there. And just trying to get them to talk to each other is an ongoing dilemma for most marketing teams.
Today, MRM solutions that capture and streamline marketing workflows can also be used to smooth the onboarding process, mandate the use of other martech solutions at relevant points along the process and capture results – all in one single source of marketing truth.
Why else should you consider an MRM solution? Marketing is becoming more complex as most marketing teams add more channels to market every year. That’s more work, more complex processes, more touch points – and more chances for the customer experience to break down.
The need for MRM is becoming more pressing every day. According to Forrester, “marketing professionals see MRM as a way to address organisational and operational challenges”.
Smooth, automated marketing workflows reduce time wasted on manual administrative tasks, increase visibility that is lost when planning is done in static spreadsheets, reduce penalties due to breaches of agency SLAs or missed media deadlines, and eliminate the risk of compliance breaches.
We’re also at a tipping point in marketing, where brand is coming back… and with it, a much more holistic approach to marketing and the customer experience across all channels.
Research from the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising shows the pendulum has swung too far towards short-term sales activation. The optimal balance between brand-building and activation is 60% of marketing spend on the former and 40% on the latter, which means a resetting of the marketing agenda is looming for many teams.
And most teams are not seeing marketing budgets increase: which means they need to do more with less.
MRM implementations typically boost team performance by 15%, lower agency costs by as much as 50% and reduce production costs by 12%.
In such an environment, doing nothing simply reduces a brand’s overall competitiveness.
Can you afford not to include an MRM platform in your martech stack?
Missing MRM? The answer’s Simple.