MarTech for Small Businesses, Startups and SME’s – 5 Tips for 2018

By Convertr - November 23, 2017

With over 5000 MarTech companies now listed on the infamous MarTech 5000, buying an online marketing tools as a small business has become even more confusing. In fact, a WARC study worryingly revealed that 50% of marketers don’t have the tools they need to reach their marketing goals. To help, Convertr has come up with 5 tips for buying technology in 2018:

Unlike large enterprises (who can afford to build a vast tech stack without ever fully utilising it), SME’s need to master MarTech more than other businesses. Especially since, for SME, Scaleup and Startup marketing, making a technology mistake could cost more than just wasted budget.

1. Use MarTech That Is Made for Marketers

“If a product needs a developer or I.T. professional to use it, then it isn’t fit for purpose”

It may sound obvious, but marketing technology should be serving the marketing team’s core objectives rather than fixing problems across the rest of the business. The modern marketer needs to be tech savvy, but if a product is unusable by the marketing team because it needs a developer or I.T. professional to use it, then it isn’t fit for purpose.

Before investing in any form of marketing software for small business, marketers should write up their biggest challenges ahead and look at technologies that solve them, whether it’s measuring ROI from marketing or simply reducing time wasted on manual processes.

2. Bigger isn’t Always Better

“Your ‘holy grail’ is more likely to be a specialised tool than part of a large-scale ‘marketing nirvana’ promised by a MarTech behemoth”

In a recent article John Becker, CMO of Investors Business Daily commented that bigger isn’t always better when it comes to buying MarTech. Whilst larger companies such as IBM, Marketo, Salesforce and co. might have the bigger advertising budgets, their large-scale products and services might not be right for an small businesses.

It’s easy to be tempted by the ‘marketing nirvana’ promised to you by a MarTech behemoth; but remember that, at this level, you’ll achieve greater efficiency though using a specialised tool.

Above all, SME’s will benefit more from tackling niche problems effectively instead of a one-size fits all approach.

3. Integration Issues

The most common mistake with buying MarTech is not ensuring that the new technology integrates with the existing stack and internal processes. Some of the frustrations include adding another platform to log into, reporting metrics that don’t align and data formatting issues.

When you start shopping for new technology, bear in mind what you have already committed to using and ask vendors about who they integrate with and how.

4. GDPR Compliance

It has been called the Y2K of 2018, but whether you are ready for it or not, GDPR is coming. It’s important that all current and future vendors have been assessed for GDPR, as part of your internal audit and that you understand how data flows between your data processors and owners.

That said, a number of vendors are claiming to be GDPR compliant and have certification when no such thing exists. Instead look for vendors who support your compliance strategies and remove risks from your business.

5. Remember the Customer

“consider how any changes will affect customers”

A recent new client asked us how integrating Convertr into their MarTech stack would impact their current customer journey, and on reflection, it is a question that is all too often missed. When looking at solutions that solve marketing challenges it is essential to consider how any changes will affect your customers – especially their purchase journey and communications.

Sandra McDill is CMO Convertr, a MarTech 5000 company, and writes from her own experience as both an agency marketer, a long-term tech geek and senior marketer within an SME.

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