The Good, The Bad & The Ugly: Martech Edition
The topic of martech consolidation is hot right now, and we know because we’re doing it. It’s no longer about “we’ll stitch this point solution together with that point solution”, customers are done cobbling solutions together. What the people now want is something that synergistically combines these individual pieces and delivers one single, integrated platform.
Our Chief Commercial Officer, Srihari Kumar, sat down with Nick Ezzo, VP of Demand Gen at Sage Intacct, last week for an interactive webinar on this very topic – The Coming Wave of Martech Consolidation. With 17+ years in marketing – and prior to that, 10 years in IT – what better person to chat with about marketing technology than Nick Ezzo? Nick has seen the best (and worst) of both worlds, having been in the game long enough to have developed his own philosophy and methods for evaluating technology vendors. Needless to say, he knew what he was talking about.
Among the many words of wisdom he shared throughout the webinar, he shared his top seven tips to tech purchases:
- Always go SaaS. Limit your exposure.
- Understand the time commitment involved with new tech.
- Ownership: What happens when a team member leaves?
- Ensure your partner is with you for the long haul.
- Look for mutual wins. How can I help you reach your goals?
- Maximize the value, or cut it.
- Don’t waste your time with proof of concepts (POCs) unless you have a ton of extra time on your hands.
We would love to go into each and every one of these, but Nick does a better job of it with his personal accounts for each tip — Listen to the webinar recording here.
In his presentation, Nick mentioned the cost of bringing on one single vendor. Multiply that by how many tools you have in your stack, and you’re hit with a reality check. Not only is there hidden financial cost, but also added complexity, time, effort and resources that are compromised each time a new technology is evaluated (see below). Much of what Nick talks about all ties back to doing your due diligence with research beforehand and approaching the relationships as a two-way street – making sure your partner is with you for the long haul.
…And the Ugly
Nick delves into an unfortunate experience with ‘one of his favorite technologies becoming the bane of his existence’ as he mentions his history with Infer. It’s this very experience that brought him to exploring 6sense’s offering during his martech consolidation journey. While an experience like this is nothing short of disheartening, it is the very point that Nick stresses throughout the webinar –
“Be careful about the vendors you work with. Although you love them today, they might be a different company tomorrow. Cover your bases.”
With 6sense, for example, Nick talks about how he approached the beginning stages of the relationship. He mentioned what brought him to the decision of replacing the individual point solutions in his marketing tech stack with 6sense (more specifically, Terminus for display ads and Infer for scoring and routing). By now, he’s created a process to evaluate vendors that only comes with years of experience as well as trial & error. Nick’s secret sauce is checking references that the vendor both has and hasn’t provided. With this approach, he is able to obtain a more realistic perspective of the technology and unbiased use cases from a range of customers. Layered on top of this insight is his own research, calculations, background knowledge and – another tip – asking the hard questions in the product demos. He suggests getting all the nitty gritty details upfront before committing to signing on the dotted line, because you don’t want to be met with any surprises.
We highly recommend taking the time out to listen to Nick and Srihari’s webinar. Not only is there a great amount of value in each of these tips that Nick shares, but he also had an accompanying story for each one. These stories painted a clear picture for the audience to recognize the pain points of stitching several point solutions together — something they are probably experiencing a version of themselves – and why the move to a consolidated platform is more than just a trending topic, it’s a necessity.
With several point solutions comes several hurdles: juggling contracts, multiple points of contact, pricing structures, technologies that don’t seamlessly integrate with one another… just to name a few. There’s not enough time in the world to evaluate each and every point solution to see if it fits in your martech stack, and there’s not enough people on the team to support each and every tool. As the marketplace of vendors is starting to become more and more overwhelming, the next logical step is consolidation. One platform, end-to-end, to tackle all of your ABM efforts. Eliminate the noise, minimize the complexity, and clean up your technology stack.
If you’re starting to explore consolidating your marketing tech stack or you have no idea how to start, look no further! Get in touch with a 6sensor today.