Thanks to a need for a more integrated system of marketing technologies, the strictly separate roles of Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Technology Officer are a thing of the past. In 2016, expect the line between the two positions to blur, as marketing and technology continue to merge with the use of marketing stacks. Marketing stacks are combinations of all of the platforms and software used to conduct daily marketing tasks. Viewed as the next big thing for streamlining everything from CRMs to content management systems, marketing stacks aren’t just a single platform—these stacks are a set of tools used to analyze a company’s “big data.” The tools then analyze the data to develop an automated marketing program that best suits the company. In our comprehensive guide to upcoming trends for this year, “2016 Digital Marketing Trends: Your Guide to Be Badass,” Sparxoo explores this shift toward a macro-view of marketing tasks versus a micro-view:
“There are never-ending possibilities of technologies to choose from—making today’s marketing landscape both data-rich and very complex. By efficiently integrating inbound marketing, outbound marketing, marketing automation, customer management, and analytics, your marketing stack becomes a set of tools that enables you to manage the big data of your business and gain an even more connected view of your consumers. Think of a marketing stack as the platform that directs and connects messages between the various channels and stages of your marketing.”
Extensive planning and a true understanding of your business’s marketing needs is the key to creating a marketing stack that works for you. Take a look at your current marketing processes, and the software and platforms used to carry out marketing tasks. Make a note of the most frequently used technologies that are essential for your business. Here are some suggestions to consider when planning your marketing stack:
Go Back to the Basics and Outline Your Business Goals
It’s important to know what you’re aiming for one to three years down the road, whether it’s customer service satisfaction, maximizing profits or exponential client growth. Marketing stacks are only effective if you know what direction your company is going in, and what long-term goals you want to reach. Once you’ve established long-term goals for your business, you can develop SMART objectives—smart, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely milestones to make these goals digestible and attainable. These are the tasks that you’ll work on in much shorter timeframes, assign to specific teams and adjust as needed to meet your goals.
Understand Marketing’s Role in Meeting These Goals
All marketing goals should align with the company’s overall business goals. Marketing, especially in the digital realm, isn’t just about building brand awareness or growing your audiences on social media. Marketing is about knowing what information your target audience is looking for, and crafting your message in a way that drives this demographic back to your business. Who’s your target audience and how are you reaching them? What is your unique selling point and how is it conveyed? Pinpoint how much revenue you need to generate from inbound and outbound marketing, and create a SMART objective that looks something as follows:
Sample objective: Generate two customers from email marketing using current contact lists, and from acquiring new contacts from the website signup form, in 90 days.
The point is to make it an actionable task that sets you on the path to help your business reach long-term goals.
Connect Technologies to Goals
Think about what a day in the office is like for the marketing team. What platforms are used daily to help carry out tasks? Which tools—Salesforce, Pardot, Marketo, Google Analytics, etc.—are the best for maintaining customer satisfaction, simplifying tasks and offering the most insight into analytics and performance? Use these insights to build marketing stacks that can manage the “big data” of your business. The tools within your marketing stack will use this data to create automated, personalized marketing programs to help you meet your marketing goals.
The right marketing stack will help you automate routine tasks and give your customers exactly what they want when they need it. See what else Sparxoo has to say about this hot trend in “2016 Digital Marketing Trends: Your Guide to Be Badass.”