Not getting value out from your marketing technology? Try switching it off and see if you notice a difference.

That’s the advice from Jason Burby, Chief Customer Success Officer at Domo.

“Unplug it. What does it change? If it changes nothing then leave it unplugged and stop buying it. If it impacts your business and how you are making decisions, figure out how to get value out of it,” Burby told Which-50 during a recent visit to Sydney.

Having been sold the vision of digital marketing delivering measurable, personalised messages to customers, marketers have invested in technology tools and are now under pressure to demonstrate ROI from their technology spend.

Speaking on a panel at an event hosted by Optimizely last week, former ADMA CEO Jodie Sangster summed up the issue:

“We’ve invested heavily in the technology, we had a vision for what we wanted that technology to do but now that it’s embedded into the organisation, the organisation either isn’t structured in the right way or doesn’t have the right skillset internally to make that technology really drive the business.”

Jason Burby, Chief Customer Success Officer at Domo
Jason Burby, Chief Customer Success Officer at Domo

“The majority of organisations have their technology stack in place and now we have moved to the situation where we need to step back and really retrain our teams, restructure our teams and make sure they have the skillset to drive that technology properly,” Sangster said.

That pressure is being passed along to marketing technology vendors, which are actively investigating changes to the way they charge for their software.

But we wouldn’t be focusing on price if the ROI was clearer, Burby argues.

“To me the reason there is a focus on cost and expense is in many cases companies are using too many technologies and not using them enough,” Burby said, who joined Domo from WPP’s digital agency, Possible, in July last year.

“They are spending all this money across 10 or 100 different solutions and they are not getting value out of it. Now if it was able to really help them understand their advertising and marketing and improve it, then people wouldn’t be arguing about the expense of it.”

Burby argues the problem has been caused by the siloed nature of technology implementations, where each team from media buying to campaign management buys a software product to solve its own problem.

Organisation structures and a piecemeal approach to technology investments means the number of solutions used in an organisation quickly adds up, and so do the subscription costs.

“In many cases you aren’t going to get enough out of it because it is siloed and spread out.”

Burby argues marketers must take a holistic view of their technology stack which works together to deliver a business outcome.

“If you have different pockets of technologies and tool sets and different pockets of responsibility within an organisation, you are set up to have those misses,” Burby said.

Both users and vendors have an obligation to improve the current situation, Burby argues.

From the vendor side, the technology needs to be easy to use with ongoing support on offer.

“If we have customers only using a fraction of the tool or platform we are not going to be successful as a company,” he said.

And for users it comes back to understanding their business goals.

“Organisational structure is key but it has to tie to what the goals are. What are the business goals, what are we trying to accomplish, how do we get everyone aligned on those? Out of that can come org structure, tools, and daily, weekly or monthly dialogue of the business.”

“It’s not about more data, it’s not about 100 other solutions, it’s getting it together and getting it working to solve a problem.”

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