As I wrote in a recent article on Martech Advisor, this is an exciting time to be discussing marketing automation. According to the recent Gartner CMO Spend Survey 2018-19, nearly one-third of CMO budgets is now allocated to marketing technology, making martech the single largest area of investment when it comes to marketing resources and programs. But, for most marketing professionals, managing a vendor selection process is not in their immediate comfort zone. They need help.
As you may have noticed, I am collaborating regularly with a business partner, Research in Action GmbH, to field user-surveys about the marketing software vendors they are working with.
Research-in-Action website visitors see a matrix graphic as well as the scores for vendors across the various categories. Our clients (survey panel members, user- and vendor-clients) also get the vendor scorecards for the leading ten vendors in the matrix. A vendor scorecard is a one-page commentary by me on the vendor – duly fact-checked of course.
As an industry analyst with 17 years of experience, I know that the approach we use here, mixing user ratings with the analyst POV, is quite unique. One marketing professional got the point immediately and wrote this blog about it. I am quite amazed and gratified at the response from users and vendors alike.
For your information, I am now listing my research plan for the next months, so that you can plan accordingly.
VSM Project Field Survey Briefings Publish Brand Content Management done done December 2018 Digital Asset Management November 2018 December 2018 February 2019 Sales Engagement Management November 2018 January 2019 March 2019 Web Content Management December 2018 February 2019 April 2019 Account Based Marketing March 2019 April 2019 June 2019 Partner Engagement Management April 2019 May 2019 July 2019
This list is based on requests from clients. While ABM could end up just profiling data vendors (though I will try to avoid that), I also plan to do something in the second half of 2019 around how marketers use data to steer their programs, content presentation, and even performance management reports. I am still working on a concept there. If you have any other suggestions, please let me know.
Always keeping you informed! Peter
I’m almost there with my next Vendor Selection Matrix. I’ve been researching the top twenty vendors named by business users who have automated their Brand Content Management process.
This is an important marketing process which matures from 1) a basic desire to manage all digital branded assets in a central repository to ensure consistency; through 2) actively leveraging content into marketing programs and channels; to 3) the management of all brand messaging across the company, from corporate brand to the individual messaging statements around products. Companies working in a more distributed (sometimes called local) marketing environment deploy Brand Content Management systems to manage content across all their internal organizations, subsidiaries, and/or all business partners.
We had presented the users with a list of 36 possible vendors. I have now collated the respondents’ scoring and user feedback on the twenty vendors named the most, spoken with many of the vendors and written profiles for each of the top ten vendors in the matrix. The last phase is that of fact-checking – giving the vendors one last chance to review my commentary and correct me if necessary.
The top ten list is really interesting. Just as the VSM for Marketing Lead Management mixed up marketing automation vendors with business process automation tools, users have named several software vendors (three with “Brand” in their name) but also the software tools provided by a couple of marketing agencies. There are several European vendors highly listed in this global survey.
The twenty vendors reviewed in the matrix are as follows: Adobe, Ansira, BrandMaker, BrandMuscle, BrandSystems, Bynder, Capital ID, Celum, Censhare, Code Worldwide, Episerver, IBM, MarcomCentral, Northplains, OpenText, Pica9, SAS Institute, Vya, Wedia, plus open source solutions. I plan to publish in December.
Always keeping you informed! Peter