Use Cases: The first step in choosing your marketing technology tools

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There are literally thousands of companies providing some flavor of marketing technology in dozens of categories such as software to help manage email marketing, social media, advertising, conversion optimization A/B testing, predictive analytics and on and on. I’ve written reports on martech vendors for The Real Story Group.

One of the surprises of a survey they did of companies choosing a digital asset management (DAM) system is that most companies have a very informal, shoot from the hip vendor selection process. Less than half answered Yes when asked if they conducted vendor demos, talked to other customers, or even issued an RFI or RFP.

If these had been smaller companies I wouldn’t have been surprised, but these were mid-market and enterprise companies.

The first step in choosing your martech tools is developing use cases for how you actually plan to use them. Some of these tools have very broad and deep capabilities, but are they worth paying extra for if you won’t be using them?

In the process of creating use cases you’ll likely also need to work out competing priorities among different members of your buying team. The typical buying team includes several people including the CFO, line of business manager(s), an IT representative, end users, and others. Many companies give the end users the least voice in the selection, but will the tool be successful if they find it difficult to use?

Adopting martech can greatly improve your marketing results, but only if it’s thoughtfully selected and then actually used.