How to Build a World-Class Demand Generation Tech Stack

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Marketing Insights for ProfessionalsThe latest thought leadership for Marketing pros

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

A well-built MarTech stack will ensure your business has a steady stream of leads, encourage growth and help it scale.

Article 4 Minutes
How to Build a World-Class Demand Generation Tech Stack

Businesses rely on demand generation to survive and grow, but creating a steady flow of sales-ready leads isn’t an easy thing to achieve. It requires data and insight into potential clients’ behavior, wants and needs, and most crucially involves harnessing the right tools to deliver results.

Building a world-class demand generation stack will give you the confidence to move your business forward. It should be developed over time and be bespoke to your organization, delivering the leads you need to transform them into loyal customers.

The MarTech landscape

In 2020 there were around 8,000 MarTech solutions, up 13.6% from the previous year. While some of these perform single functions, others can address a number of challenges at once. It’s important to consider your tech purchases in the context of the entire stack and how they’ll integrate into the whole for a smooth-running demand generation operation.

Building a MarTech stack

Step one: Identifying your MarTech needs

At the beginning of your MarTech journey, it’s vital you think about what you want to achieve with the tools you employ. It’s worth understanding what software can help you with and where it fits into the overall picture. The majority of marketing technologies will fit into one of these categories:

  • Content management
  • Customer relationship management (CRM)
  • Search engine marketing and optimization
  • Marketing automation or lead nurturing
  • Advertising platforms
  • Analytics and tracking
  • Data management
  • Social media management
  • Remarketing and retargeting

Don’t make the mistake of signing up to software in each and every one of these categories straight away if you’re not going to need it. Keep them in mind as you build your stack and fill in areas where you have gaps.

Step two: Establish a framework

To ensure any prospects move through your funnel without losing any value, it’s imperative to establish a framework for your stack. This will look different for each organization, but will likely include software from the categories outlined above. Without a framework your funnel could stagnate or you might end up paying twice over for software that carries out the same function.

Step three: Select your tools

For each step in your framework, you then need to select a tool to automate the process and guide users through your funnel. There are many considerations that come into choosing the right software for your stack:

  • Decide on best-in-breed or a single vendor approach - the former offers one tool to carry out a specific function, while the latter groups a number of solutions together
  • Your budget - the cost of licensing and implementation will help to guide your decisions
  • Support and training available - despite MarTech helping marketing tasks to run more efficiently, they need to be overseen by employees and it’s crucial they’re given the skills and support to do this successfully
  • Non-negotiable criteria - ensure any potential MarTech purchase meets your organization’s size, scale and specialist requirements

Step four: Check compatibility

Your entire MarTech stack should work together, otherwise you’ll find certain functions must be carried out manually, which can sometimes result in human error. Check the compatibility of the tools you’ve selected before making any commitments. This is something to continue to monitor as you add more software to your stack. Smooth integration will prevent unnecessary headaches down the line.

Step five: Ensure your choices are scalable

As your business grows, which it inevitably will with such a comprehensive demand generation stack, you need to know that the MarTech you’ve chosen will scale with it. Otherwise, you can end up having to carry out the process of choosing tools again in the future, as the ones you’ve selected no longer suit your needs. Align your software with the company timeline for its goals based on insights you’ve collected.

Step six: Consider a suite of programs to stretch the budget further

Like many elements of business, the more you buy from a single supplier, the better deal you get. This is the case with MarTech and you can sometimes get a good deal on a suite of programs when compared to purchasing them all separately. While you could also potentially save money by sourcing a number of your MarTech solutions from the same vendor, don’t expect a single organization to solve all of your problems, as this is likely to limit your lead generating power.

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