Tech stacks are still large, but orchestration can make all the difference

Ever see the miniseries From the Earth to the Moon? Great story about the Apollo moon missions. I’m pretty sure it was in one of those episodes that I most remember the impactful difference between “unit tests” and “system tests.” Getting people on the moon required a huge number of different component technologies, many each breakthrough innovations on their own. But success depended on how well the entire system worked. All those components needed to …

Tech stacks are still large, but orchestration can make all the difference Continue Reading »

Orchestrated Tech Stacks

What to expect in martech in 2023 and how to harness it to your advantage

2023 will be a fascinating but challenging year for marketing. Macroeconomic headwinds are colliding with rising customer expectations for better digital experiences. Martech stacks are consolidating under economic pressure. Yet at the same time, major innovations with generative AI, first-party/second-party data, ecosystem strategies, and fragmenting media channels are driving important changes to marketing’s digital capabilities. On December 6 at 11am EST — 5pm CET and 8am PT — Frans Riemersma and I will give the …

What to expect in martech in 2023 and how to harness it to your advantage Continue Reading »

Martech for 2023

Partner Ops: The forgotten ops that’s suddenly thriving in the ecosystem era

tl;dr — The State of Partner Ops and Programs is a “must read” report for martech. A month ago, I wrote about how channel, partner, and ecosystem tech is one of the hottest categories in martech today. As businesses become increasingly interwoven with each other in serving customers in a digital world — where nearly everything can be adjacent to everything else — a whole wave of new opportunities for innovation are opening up. The …

Partner Ops: The forgotten ops that’s suddenly thriving in the ecosystem era Continue Reading »

State of Partner Ops and Programs 2022

When is a martech stack too complex?

At many companies — but not all — their martech stack has become too complex. Aside from the anecdotal evidence that I frequently hear on LinkedIn and Twitter threads, Gartner’s most recent Marketing Technology Survey frames the problem quantitatively: on average, the 324 enterprise marketing technology leaders they surveyed reported that only 42% of their martech capabilities are being used. That’s down from 58% utilization in 2020. You only need two points to draw a …

When is a martech stack too complex? Continue Reading »

Martech Complexity vs. Martech Maturity

Why there are 10,000 martech products that “kinda all do the same thing” (but not really)

One of the perennial criticisms of the martech landscape is that “most of these products all do the same thing.” Send an email. Render a web page. Analyze some data. This criticism has grown louder in proportion to the growth of the landscape. With an increasingly exasperated tone, people ask, for example, “What’s the point of hundreds of CRMs or marketing automation tools? They’re all just storing the same customer fields and mail merging them …

Why there are 10,000 martech products that “kinda all do the same thing” (but not really) Continue Reading »

Martech Differentiation is at the Decision Layer

Channel, partner, and ecosystem tech is one of the hottest categories in martech today

Jay McBain, formerly of Forrester and now with tech analyst firm Canalys, is the world’s leading expert in partner, channel, and ecosystem technology. Where I’ve gone broad with the martech landscape, Jay has gone deep with his own ecosystem tech landscape. He recently released his 2022 Channels Ecosystem Landscape, shown in the image above but discussed in more detail in his accompanying release write-up. I first came across Jay’s work with his 2017 landscape, where …

Channel, partner, and ecosystem tech is one of the hottest categories in martech today Continue Reading »

2022 Channels Ecosystem Landscape

The 2nd Age of Martech has arrived, and it’s all about convergence in ecosystems

In 2019, I hypothesized that we were on the cusp of a Second Golden Age of Martech. The defining characteristic of this new era was a shift from dichotomies to convergences: From suite vs. best-of-breed to integrated platform ecosystems From software vs. services to blended delivery models with both From build vs. buy to customization on top of commercial platforms Instead of being forced to choose between X or Y — which was never fun …

The 2nd Age of Martech has arrived, and it’s all about convergence in ecosystems Continue Reading »

1st to 2nd Ages of Martech

Are we “digital” yet? An algorithmic answer to a philosophical question

“We’re entering a post-digital-transformation era, where companies are no longer planning to become ‘digital.’ They are digital.” I didn’t think that was a particularly controversial statement, which I wrote back in April while working on this year’s martech landscape. It’s hard to inventory all of the ways in which technology is now embedded in marketing and not conclude that we’re past the “we should probably go digital someday” stage of things. But with a study …

Are we “digital” yet? An algorithmic answer to a philosophical question Continue Reading »

Is marketing digitally transformed yet?

Think the martech landscape is big? Here’s the size of the software industry overall

Over the 11 years that I’ve been publishing the martech landscape, as it mushroomed from ~150 solutions to ~10,000, I’ve seen many people react to it as an anomaly. “What is it about marketing that spawns so many software apps? Surely no other profession has to deal with such sprawl!” To which software review site G2 responds in this article, “Hold my beer.” While there are certainly dynamics specific to marketing that feed the frenzy …

Think the martech landscape is big? Here’s the size of the software industry overall Continue Reading »

Martech and Other Software Landscapes

Marketers keep replacing major martech apps, integration #1 factor for replacements

My friends at MarTech.org recently released their latest Martech Replacement Survey 2022, where marketers shared which apps they’ve replaced over the past 18 months, what their primary motivation was in doing so, and what were their most important factors in choosing the replacement solution. Marketing automation (24%), CRM (23%), SEO (23%), email marketing (22%), and work/project management (19%) apps were the most frequently replaced. As I highlighted in blue in the chart above, the #1 …

Marketers keep replacing major martech apps, integration #1 factor for replacements Continue Reading »

Integration is #1 Factor in Replacing Martech Apps