Despite no shortage of options, most marketers are still searching for their martech “Nirvana”. And as they have added more pieces to the marketing stack the technology has actually become a hindrance, according to Acquia CMO Lynne Capozzi.
Capozzi explained the paradox during the company’s APAC user conference in Melbourne last week where she cited Acquia’s own research which found 72 per cent of Australian marketers feel like technology has made it harder, not easier, to offer customers personalised experiences.
However, the same study found marketers are planning to spend their way out of the problem, with most planning to spend even more on technology this year.
“Marketers are spending more on marketing technology but then they are more frustrated because it’s not synching up together. So it’s still siloed,” Capozzi told Which-50.
“I think it’s still clear that there’s still seperate silos, they don’t know how to integrate data together so that’s a frustration.”
Which-50 asked if the struggle was largely down to vendors or the companies using martech. According to Capozzi there’s plenty of blame to go around.
“I think it’s on the vendor side for us,” Capozzi said.
Acquia offers several enterprise level marketing platforms based on the open source software Drupal. A key attraction for its customers, Capozzi says, is the open source model and open APIs allow for better integration including with competing martech vendors. But its a feature and a philosophy not shared by many other vendors, she said.
“For marketers, a more critical evaluation of technology is also needed as well as voicing their demands,” Capozzi said.
“It’s what we hear from our customers: ‘help us Acquia, help us make this connection together. I don’t want to buy 10 new products to do what I want to do, which is maybe two pieces of technology. Can’t you give me something that helps tie it together.’”
CMOs leading change
When marketing leaders get it right they can also lead greater organisational change, Capozzi said. Recent research has suggested CMOs are struggling to — or not getting the chance —to lead digital transformation. Not least of all because of their notoriously short tenure and subsequent focus on short term ROI goals.
But Capozzi contends change leadership is not out of the question for CMOs.
“I think it is realistic for [CMOs] to drive the change. But they can’t do it alone.”
To drive digital change at an organisational level requires collaboration, particularly with IT, according to Capozzi.
“It’s not just a CMO led initiative, it’s really both [marketing and IT] together. Where it works and where it’s ideal is when we see both together.”
Budget allocation suggests that, of the two, marketing may be the ultimate leaders, according to Capozzi, as money was typically being poured more into marketing coffers.
“That tells me a lot about change and driving change. It’s where that budget is.”