When Marketers Don't Take Full Advantage Of Martech

Gartner’s 2022 MarTech Survey revealed that marketers only use 42% of the capabilities in their martech stack overall. That was down from 58% in 2020.

The researcher claims that complex martech solutions plus insufficient talent are making it hard for marketers to prove ROI.

We explored those findings in depth with Gartner analyst Ben Bloom. Below is an excerpt of the conversation, edited for clarity and length.

Marketing Daily:Why are marketers using just 42% of their capabilities in the marketing stack? And why is that down from 58% in 2020?

Ben Bloom: What we're seeing is just persistent challenges marketing and CX teams have with technology they think is going to drive tremendous business results. At the same time, there's been real underinvestment in the training and kind of skill development that actually underpins being able to use that technology.

Marketing Daily: Is that unusual? I mean, when companies get new technologies, isn’t there usually a gap between acquiring and actually using those tools?



Bloom: I think the problem isn't that it's unusual, but it’s getting worse. Suppose you were a CMO sitting in your CFO’s office, and the CFO is saying it’s a time of economic uncertainty and then asks, “Is marketing using everything that we've allocated to them? According to our CMO spend survey, 25% of their expense budget goes to technology.”  

And so if you’re a CMO going back to ask for more resources and not using them efficiently, that's going to create a major risk for your credibility.

Marketing Daily: What skills are particularly lacking right now?

Bloom: We certainly see challenges around data and integration, where there's a real need to understand whether data is accurate, as well as understanding where it needs to go. Marketers have generally not devoted sufficient time privacy and customer data ethics. So there's sort of a governance function.

It's also that the skills that are typical for understanding the nuances of getting content into the right channel at scale, along with the data and really understanding the capabilities of all these complex tool sets, are going to vary from vendor to vendor.

But most of the time, teams just aren't allocating enough time in the day for their team members to actually learn these critical skills. That could mean setting up an A B or multivariate test of new creative.

And so you get these great ideas in the strategy phase, but you don't get enough of the testing and iteration that will actually prove whether those strategies can work. And that's pretty common across a variety of different channels and technologies.

Marketing Daily: You cite several growth areas, like the metaverse, and NFTs. Of the six or seven that you cite, which do you think has the most growth potential in the next year or so?

Bloom: Well, I think the environment that we have for content consumption is really shifting from legacy broadcast channels to streaming audio and video. I think it was really interesting to see how salient the technology behind that is to the respondents to our survey.

That's where we're going to see the most growth, because it plays right into something that is not just an experiment, but really kind of meat and potatoes. Consumers are going to continue to consume video content increasingly over these connected devices and in streaming environments.

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