Every year, ChiefMartec publishes a chart of the marketing technology landscape, dotted with the vast library of industry players. In 2012, around 350 martech logos filled the poster. By 2016, that number had jumped to over 3,800, broken down into six main categories and 49 subdivisions.
With nearly 4,000 options available, how many martech solutions does a brand use? Conductor, a web presence management and search engine optimization company, polled 387 marketing executives to find the answer.
The results, collected from a November 2016 survey, show that most companies work with an abundance of tools. Sixty-nine percent of respondents use at least six solutions, and 31 percent rely on more than 10. Then there’s the 2 percent of marketing executives who don’t even know the size of their marketing stack, which is its own separate headache.
These supersized marketing stacks underscore the need for brands to consolidate and integrate their operations wherever possible, for the sake of budgeting and efficiency. Contently falls into one of the larger groups, as our marketing stack hovers around 20 separate solutions. In October, we even broke down each tool’s function with some Drake-themed role playing.
While the rapid martech expansion can intimidate everyone who works in the space, brands willing to get creative with their approach can reap the benefits. Most of these companies publish boilerplate content marketing to sell their software, but audiences need a differentiator in such a crowded field. Companies that offer original advice and robust resources will have a big advantage when establishing a voice and standing out from the competition. With 3,800 tools and counting, audiences have no reason to settle for a good enough solution when great is out there.
At some point, that number will (probably) plateau, and with it marketing stacks may grow more stable. But for now, the proliferation of choice leaves marketers with tough decisions, as they figure out what tech to adopt and what’s worth leaving in the cluttered flock.