By now you have probably come across this graphic of the Marketing Technology Landscape, put together year after year by Scott Brinker to emphasize the insane growth of marketing technologies.
Brinker says, “I estimate the de-duped count of logos is closer to 3,500 — approximately 87% growth over last year. That’s really amazing when you consider how large the landscape was last year already,” (there were about 2000 logos on last year’s version).Cloud Elements’ CEO Mark Geene called this ‘The Rise of the App’ in his article on Wired, 2015: The Year of the Cooperative App. “The rise of the app has meant a shift away from large and complex applications that typically were bundled into a platform or suite (think ERP) to a world of small, consumable, and easy to use apps with specialized functionality… The rise of the app has allowed line of business executives to purchase apps that fit their needs, solve their problems.”
Putting this in context of marketing apps, Brinker says, “This has empowered marketers to select “best of breeds” solutions and avoid vendor lock-in with a single marketing technology provider — and, indeed, many are now successfully embracing that more open and heterogeneous approach.”
According to a Tealium and Econsultancy report, 51 percent of organizations are now using 21 or more digital marketing technologies. And when you look at Scott Brinker’s graphic, that starts to make sense as marketers choose one or two tools from each category. The struggle this causes for marketers is how to govern theses apps and the data they provide. All of these disparate apps have the potential to create islands of siloed data that can cause tons of wasted time for a marketing team.
Marketers & APIs
As an API Integration Platform, we know that this technology growth means a need for connectivity and integration to avoid data silos.
One theme of this year’s “Digital Summit” conference seemed to be digital marketing data and analytics. Barrett Coakley, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Telerik, focused his presentation, “5 Must-Have, Integrated Tactics for Every Marketing Strategy” on how to integrate marketing systems for better closed-loop reporting. He urged the audience of marketers to build a “strategy that addresses omni-channel, integration, and customer optimization.” So if this is what digital marketers are being told, you can bet that they will be demanding that the marketing tools they use offer integrations and compatibility with the other tools they rely on.
Knowing that marketers now expect the potential 21 marketing technologies they use to share data for more comprehensive analytics, Brinker included a section dedicated to API integration tools (including Cloud Elements) in this year’s Marketing Technology Landscape.
Marketers not only know to tell their developers that they need these tools, but they are becoming savvy enough to implement and run these tools themselves. Marketers have to become API-knowledgeable in order to enable workflows and automation, along with gather the analytics they need for in-depth campaign reporting.
Even as marketers become more integration-savvy, the “Rise of the app” requires app providers to step up to the plate as well. Brinker adds, “Almost every vendor in the space has invested engineering resources in making it easy (or at least easier) to integrate with the rest of the marketing technology ecosystem."
Cloud Elements customer, Influitive, offers the leading advocate marketing app and realizes the backend experience of their platform needs to be user-friendly and easy for marketers to implement. Vikram Rangnekar, Product Leader at Influitive, is a great example of a technology leader who has deep empathy for the marketers who are constantly challenged to design their own marketing integrations ecosystem. Rangnekar’s mission to lift the marketers’ burden of perpetually trying to “make it work” off of their shoulders, and to deliver seamless integrations that they can consistently rely on, perfectly aligns with the growing marketing technology landscape.
The Marketing Technology Landscape slide makes it clear just how difficult it is for Product Managers and CTOs to plan their integration roadmap. What tools are your customers using? Which integrations are they demanding now and what will they demand in six months? This is where app developers have to make tough decisions about how much engineering resources and budget to dedicate to building integrations and which integrations to build that will increase their app’s value to customers.
Cloud Elements aims to simplify this exponential growth of apps through our API Hub approach. The Cloud Elements Marketing Hub is the first singular API to integrate marketing automation across the industry’s leading cloud services: Act-On, Eloqua, HubSpot, MailChimp, Mailjet, Marketo, Pardot, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Allbound, SharpSpring, Autopilot and Infusionsoft. With our “one-to-many” approach, developers write to one API to integrate all of the leading cloud marketing automation services for a fraction of the time and cost.
Companies such as Influitive, BrightTalk, ReadyTalk and Allbound are using the Marketing Hub to offer more marketing automation integrations to their customers in a faster time-to-market than custom development. Many of our customers have experienced the pain of building one-off integrations and come to us looking for a better and faster solution.
Read how advocate marketing platform Influitive, improved their integration experience using Cloud Elements API Hubs.