February 13, 2013, Posted by Byron Bardy
Whether you are the Chief Marketing Officer of a small, local business or a Global 2000 brand, the number of marketing tools your team is asking you to purchase today is likely overwhelming. While rapid innovation of digital marketing technologies is helping to transform Marketing “into the new Finance” with their ability to measure and track ROI, the plethora of solutions also presents a conundrum for CMOs trying to allocate scarce resources in a time of increasingly constrained budgets. Here’s but a small sampling of the marketing “tools” CMOs are being asked to evaluate today:
Clearly, this alphabet soup is enough to give any CMO a migraine!
In addition to the challenge of deciding which of these shiny new technologies to buy, CMOs need buy-in from the CIO, the gatekeepers for IT deployments. In fact, it is this relationship between the CMO and the CIO that can determine the fate of marketing strategies and initiatives for many companies, large and small. Even for SMB companies with no IT department, the effort required to manage tens of disparate cloud-based solutions is becoming increasingly more taxing.
According to IBM’s 2011 study of over 1,700 CMOs across the globe, four of the ten largest obstacles to adopting new technology are related to Marketing’s relationship with the IT function. “It’s easy to see the potential of many new tools, but it’s rarely simple to integrate them with the organization’s existing systems,” a food, beverage and tobacco CMO in the United Kingdom warned. “The complexity of integrating a new system with other systems too often destroys the ROI of the new system,” she added.
Between the growing number of discrete solutions and the evolution of the relationship between Marketing and IT, we believe that the Marketing technology landscape will continue to consolidate in 2013. Oracle’s recently announced deal to acquire Eloqua just five months after its IPO is a prime example of the consolidation trend that will continue to gain momentum.
CMOs will increasingly look to decrease the number of vendors they depend on and will gravitate toward Marketing technology providers that can offer them the broadest variety of the above solutions under a single customer experience platform. On the vendor side, Adobe’s latest ad campaign touting their Marketing Cloud as a “complete set of integrated solutions” is a recognition of this trend. In short, the proverbial “one throat-to-choke” rule will become more and more prevalent in the MarketTech industry as it matures from early adopters to mainstream.
Byron Bardy is a Partner at Catapult Advisors, an investment bank providing M&A and capital raising advice to leading software and internet companies. https://www.catapultadvisors.com