While marketing leaders are stepping up their efforts to improve the digital experience of buyers, as well as modernize their marketing organization, marketing technology budgets are on the rise. For many organizations, part of those budgets will be spent on replacing or upgrading technology. A report from Third Door Media looks at which martech marketers have been replaced and the reasons why.
Of the more than 350 marketers surveyed for the report, two-thirds (67%) say they have replaced a marketing technology application in the past year. The types of solutions being replaced vary, with marketing automation (24%), email distribution (23%) and CRM (23%) technologies topping the list. Also included on the list are attribution or business intelligence (19%), analytics and business intelligence (17%), CMS (17%), SEO tools (16%) and virtual events or webinar platforms (16%).
It appears, however, that fewer marketing organizations are ready to replace their customer journey orchestration and analytics (9%), AMB (5%) or identity resolution (4%) technologies.
Reasons for Upgrading or Replacing Martech
Lowering costs is one of the top reasons why marketing organizations have either upgraded their homegrown application or replaced a commercial application. Some 16% share of those who upgraded a homegrown application say they did so because it was too expensive to maintain. And, close to one-quarter (23%) of those who replaced a commercial application did so to reduce expenses.
However, the promise of better features is the leading reason for replacing or upgrading marketing technologies. Some 53% cite better features from SaaS software as the main reason they upgraded a homegrown application, while 51% replaced a commercial application for one with better features.
Earlier research from Ascend2 shows that data centralization is one of the features marketers consider most important when considering martech tools. This more recent survey echoes that finding. About half (51%) of respondents identified data centralization and data capabilities as one of the reasons they replaced a solution. Another two-fifths (42%) also switched to improve customer and digital experiences.
Who Advocated for the Change?
It’s probably no surprise that marketing management were the ones most likely to spur on the upgrade of technologies. About 4 in 10 (39% share of) respondents say this is the group who championed the upgrade, while 3 in 10 identified executive management. Only 12% say that marketing operations initiated the upgrade of martech, however, the report points out that it’s possible that respondents in this role grouped themselves in with marketing management.
When it comes to how long it took to approve the upgrade, the majority say it took up to 6 months, with the largest share (36%) saying it took as little as 2-3 months.
Retraining Existing Staff
Although lack of training or resources is one of the reasons many marketers say they aren’t getting the most of martech like marketing automation, only about 1 in 5 (18%) of respondents say they hired a new team in conjunction with their martech upgrade. Instead, more than half (55%) say they retrained existing staff. Another quarter (24%) say they both retrained existing staff and onboarded new people as well.
The COVID-19 Factor
Finally, while a 2020 survey from Merkle found that martech projects were being accelerated due to the pandemic, results from this more recent survey were split as to whether or not the pandemic factored into decisions to replace marketing technologies. Some 48% say that, yes, the conditions brought on by the pandemic factored into their replacement decision, while 52% say they did not.
The full report can be found here.
About the Data: Results are based on a Q2 survey of 374 marketers, 67% of whom reported having replaced a marketing technology application in the previous year.