By Alex Bozhin
Marketing tech, or MarTech, encompasses a huge number of digital tools that help businesses achieve their marketing goals. It’s also an important sector to watch for growth.
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Even with consolidations and acquisitions, nearly 1 in 5 of the current MarTech solutions is new on the scene. To me, this paints a clear picture of a thriving industry.
As we continue to become a more tech-centric society, the numbers show that MarTech will keep playing a pivotal role. That said, there are some obstacles that need to be addressed. Below, I outline why privacy concerns matter, how sustainable growth can be achieved through social media, why investors are so keen to back MarTech startups, and where I think the industry’s future is headed.
Privacy: The elephant in the room
MarTech is now a $121 billion market, so the challenge of ethical data collection is serious.
Nobody minds when aggregated data makes life easier with personalized user experiences, streamlined workdays or a better bottom line. However, there’s a general feeling of discomfort from the public when they understand that we’re tracking and analyzing personal data.
In response to these unsettled feelings, regulatory bodies are stepping up consumer protections. This is good for security but frustrating for marketers. Remember the EU’s GDPR directive? The entire internet had to race to adapt, costing more than $9 billion.
Statistics show that the demand for data protection has skyrocketed, and brands like Apple are already implementing privacy updates in response. These policies will keep coming, so we need to be proactive.
Let’s change the narrative
Did you know that 67 percent of internet users have no idea what their country’s privacy and data protection rules are? Worse, 79 percent of internet users worldwide feel they have no control over their data. This means it’s our job to educate and empower the public.
So, let’s change the narrative around privacy. For my startup, I decided a proactive approach was best. The sooner that MarTech and AdTech startups can build transparency into their brand strategies, the sooner they’ll be able to move forward and tackle other challenges.
Social media markets are the final frontier
Social media is the final frontier for businesses looking for new avenues of active user growth. Facebook last year expanded 7.3 percent, while Reddit, Twitter, Pinterest and Snapchat added 20 percent.
Consumers want to find your products, interact with your brand and share your content. The trick is knowing how and when to give them what they want. For example, my startup launched in 2020, and thanks to our strong social media presence, we’ve booked 100,000 clients globally. We make sure that our services are visible across all major platforms, and we make engaging our potential client base an integral part of our marketing strategy.
Show me the money
The MarTech sector is flooded with VC money right now. Even in 2020, top projects signed six-figure deals.
Here are a few notable ones:
- Engagio, an account-based engagement platform, was acquired by Demandbase.
- Ceros, a cloud-based design platform, raised $100 million in investment.
- Evergage, a real-time personalization customer data platform, was acquired by Salesforce.1
Where do marketers go from here?
A recent poll shows that 69 percent of marketers believe they’ll be expected to produce better results with fewer resources from now on. Because of this, only brands with budget-friendly, effective solutions will thrive.
Another avenue to pursue is client education. According to research, even skeptics will bring in MarTech if marketers can show them how it improves their marketing strategy.
Finally, interconnectivity is going to be essential to successful digital transformation. If you’re still trying to compartmentalize, you’re going to get left behind.
Let’s wrap it up
Right now, businesses of all stripes are poised to invest in MarTech—marketers just have to prove that it’s worth their time and money. The industry is at 8,000 companies and growing. Build-on acquisitions are gaining popularity, and global reach is becoming a make-or-break part of marketing strategies.
Despite the challenges of handling privacy concerns and seeking new avenues of growth, there’s still so much exciting, unexplored territory to cover in MarTech.
Alex Bozhin, founder and CEO at Postoplan, is a serial entrepreneur with 15 years of marketing experience. In 2020, he founded Postoplan, an AI-powered system for marketing automation in social networks that helps to create, publish and promote content in social media and messengers.
Illustration: Dom Guzman
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