Go-to-market strategies that really cut through the noise are increasingly difficult to implement due to an increasing number of moving parts. Today's marketers understand the importance of data & technology and their impact on the success of strategies, however taking full advantage of them in a scalable way is where many fall short.
In this blog we go back to the basics; sure - you've invested, or are planning to invest, in best of breed MarTech, but have you ensured you're positioned to reap the full benefits the tech has to offer?
The current state of MarTech
As more and more tech companies are discovering, there are quite a few elements that all have to come together to create a successful go-to-market strategy. For example, it’s important to ensure that:
• You understand the B2B market and customers
• You’re able to define what a ‘winning strategy’ means for you
• You’ve got stories to tell – and engaging ways to tell them
• You’re identifying and participating in the right channels
• You’re empowering your sales and marketing teams to perform optimally
• You’re drumming up interest, building demand, and generating B2B leads
There’s a lot to it. So it’s not surprising that an increasing number of tech firms are choosing MarTech.
MarTech – or marketing technology – is software that’s designed to make building a strong go-to-market strategy easier for tech companies. And more and more organisations are diving in. In fact, the global market is worth around $345 billion, and it’s estimated that the average company allocates 26% of their marketing budget to tech. In our blog on verticalisation drivers, we found that two-thirds of B2B businesses are using at least one form of marketing technology today.
MarTech has a great deal of potential. It can be used to:
- Collect customer data
- Build buyer personas
- Communicate more effectively with decision-makers
- Distribute content across relevant channels
- Identify new opportunities and nurture leads
- Monitor feedback and identify optimisation opportunities
- Track overall campaign success
The potential of MarTech is clear. But there’s a problem. Research shows that the majority of marketers rate their MarTech initiatives as being just ‘somewhat successful’. And 82% don’t think they’re using their technology in a way that drives best results.
When it comes to MarTech, there are two critical elements that need to be considered.
1. MarTech Identification.
Firstly, businesses must ensure they’re choosing a system that works for them. There are many different types of marketing technology available today. A good MarTech solution should encompass all the features and functions your business needs. It should be simple and intuitive to use. It should help you to manage your go-to-market strategy through a single interface and ensure all your vital marketing and customer data is kept in one accessible place.
2. MarTech utilisation.
Secondly, businesses must ensure that they’re in a position to utilise their MarTech solutions in a way that works for them; in a way that drives results. This is an activity that is distinct from MarTech identification. Businesses could select the most perfect technology on the planet. But unless they’re using it in the right way, and squeezing the most value out of it, it’s ultimately pointless. MarTech outcomes are only as good as the marketers using the system.
At OneGTM, what we see happening regularly is that businesses are putting a lot of effort into assessing, selecting, and implementing MarTech, and expecting the solution to automatically generate the desired outcomes. It doesn’t quite work like that. Organisations have also got to ensure they’re using their systems in the right way; a way that helps them edge closer towards their goals.
Best practices for using B2B MarTech
MarTech can be powerful. But it needs to be used in a way that ensures your business is really squeezing the most value out of the software. Utilising robust MarTech best practices can help.
Here are 5 MarTech best practices that can help you maximise the value of your technology:
1. Make use of your data
Best practices ensure you can leverage the power of data, while adhering to industry standards.
Data is a tricky area when it comes to MarTech, especially following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). MarTech solutions are able to collect and store more insights into buyer behaviours and preferences than ever before. It’s data that’s hugely valuable for making good decisions. Yet businesses are naturally wary of utilising this data for fear of risking non-compliance. However, if you’re not using your data, you’re not getting the most value out of your technology.
Use your data. But use it in a way that gives your B2B customers confidence that their information is in good hands. GDPR isn’t about not using data; it’s about being clear in how you’re using it, and using it in responsible ways. Tech companies should look to strip data back to the basics, focusing only on the most useful and relevant insights they need to optimise their go-to-market strategy. And it’s important to be upfront and transparent about how data is collected, and for what purpose.
2. Define your KPIs
Best practices ensure you’re directing your efforts into the most valuable features and functionalities.
When working with a comprehensive solution that can handle every aspect of developing a go-to-market strategy, it’s natural to want to make use of it all. But is that really the best approach? There’s one major mistake that many tech companies are making. They’re trying to spread their efforts across every available function, regardless of whether that function is really doing anything to drive results. To get the most from MarTech, stay focused on the original purpose – on why you chose the software.
To do this, businesses will need to have a good understanding of what they want to achieve. And this can be done by defining key performance indicators or objectives. Perhaps you want to reduce cost per lead. Or drive more traffic to your website. Maybe you want to increase revenue. Or enhance your sales team’s close rate. Whatever your aim, understanding what you want from your software is key. This will ensure you’re using your technology in a way that helps you achieve those specific goals.
3. Align KPIs with campaign planning
Best practices ensure you’re connecting the dots between MarTech efforts and business outcomes.
Once a business understands its most valuable KPIs, aligning these metrics with campaign planning is essential for generating the highest return on investment from your solution. It means that you’re not just planning a campaign that helps you achieve your direct marketing goals. You’re planning a campaign that’s able to have a wider impact on your bottom line. A strong go-to-market campaign could help you become more innovative, solve complex problems faster, and grow your organisation.
One of the best ways to align KPIs with campaign planning is to focus on the buyer experience. Ask yourself this: “How can we connect this metric with this campaign in a way that puts the buyer first?”
When putting the buyer at the heart of the strategy, it becomes easier to find common ground with stakeholders across the entire business, rather than within the marketing department alone. This is how you’ll succeed in finding that often elusive midpoint between marketing and business results.
4. Make use of automation
Best practices ensure you’re making full use of one of MarTech’s most renowned features.
“Marketing teams are leaving MarTech’s potential untapped, imperilling both their credibility and impact. But the answer isn’t necessarily more technology. Translating marketing technology into business effectiveness is correlated with MarTech utilisation”, says Gartner VP Analyst Benjamin Bloom. And he’s correct. The research indicates that today’s marketers are only squeezing 58% of the value from their MarTech solutions. 42% of potential is waiting to be unleashed. So unleash it.
One of the most under-utilised features of MarTech is automation. There are lots of marketing activities that can be automated:
- Content generation
- Email delivery
- Mobile marketing
- Account-based marketing
- Lead generation and nurture
- Lead profile integration
- Predictive analysis
Making use of automation doesn’t just eradicate human bias or error. It frees your marketing team up to focus on building – and maintaining – valuable person-to-person relationships with buyers.
5. Utilise personalisation
Best practices ensure you’re giving your B2B buyers the experience they expect from tech partners.
Marketing can be described in many different ways. But at the end of the day, what it all boils down to is understanding what psychological factors spark decision making. This is how a business can build a campaign that triggers the emotions, the characteristics, and the rationalities that help buyers make these decisions. But these emotions, characteristics, and rationalities differ from buyer to buyer. There’s no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to a go-to-market strategy. Each interaction needs to be unique.
That’s where personalisation comes in. Personalisation has long been a primary function within most MarTech solutions. However, businesses are often slow to embrace it because of the privacy concerns of data utilisation. But as Seth Godin says, “Personalised and personal are different things”. Perhaps the term ‘personalisation’ is wrong in this privacy-centred landscape. Maybe ‘intuitive marketing’ is a better fit; using MarTech to instinctively preempt buyer needs, and take action to meet them.
Using MarTech intelligently
Every business that wants to market themselves, their products, or their services should be using MarTech. But it’s important to remember that marketing technology is not a magic solution. It needs to be used intelligently and purposefully to ensure it attracts, engages, and converts the right people, at the right time.
At OneGTM, we’re here to support our tech clients as they squeeze the most value out of their tools – to develop and launch robust go-to-market strategies that drive impressive results. Get in touch to find out more about how we can support you in getting the best out of your MarTech.
- Statista, 2022. Marketing Technology - statistics & facts.
- Pearse, Justin; 2022. Winning hearts and minds: increasing martech adoption in a post-Covid world. New Digital Age.
- Gartner, 2020. Gartner reveals only 18% of brands have mastered their extensive Martech stack. Press Release.
- Gartner, 2019. Gartner says marketers utilize only 58% of their Martech stack's potential. Press Release.