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    How to build a marketing tech stack that scales your business

    Companies need a robust marketing tech stack to thrive in today’s competitive business landscape. A well-planned martech stack helps teams work smarter, get data-driven insights and streamline operations to save time and effort that can go into meaningful work. It allows you to improve campaigns, yield a higher return on investment (ROI) and manage business complexity as you grow.

    If you’re thinking of refining your current marketing tech stack or setting up a new one, this guide’s insightful tips will help you create a competitive, growth-oriented one.

    What is a marketing tech stack?

    A marketing tech stack or martech stack, is a set of software tools and platforms that help streamline and improve a company’s marketing operations. It includes software to manage campaigns—like influencer marketing tools, automating tasks, email marketing, reporting and even your CRM. It also enhances team communication and collaboration.

    Here’s what a typical marketing technology stack looks like.

    Martech tools must integrate with a company’s existing infrastructure for smooth operations—only then can you optimize time and resources.

    For example, the Typeform workflow below shows how a compatible martech stack streamlines processes—where teams integrate form entries with their CRM, customer care and project management tools in just a few clicks.

     

    How to build a marketing tech stack that scales your business

     

    This seamless integration is crucial, especially in customer support, where prompt social media response time is vital as you scale. This is, however, challenging in an increasingly digital world. A 2023 Q3 Sprout Social Pulse survey revealed the biggest challenges 48% of 336 customer care professionals in the US faced were a high volume of requests (63%) and time-consuming manual tasks (48%). This was leading to high employee turnover (33%).

    A reliable martech stack helps overcome this problem by connecting the dots between marketing and customer service—improving the customer experience to nurture both customer and employee satisfaction.

    Why your brand needs a marketing tech stack

    Your business has several advantages with a thoughtfully assembled marketing tech stack. These three main reasons help you stay competitive and achieve sustainable growth.

    Increase your scalability and growth

    A martech stack is critical for automating repetitive tasks. It facilitates smoother workflows and helps improve customer acquisition, satisfaction and retention. Imagine a lead contacts your business or a customer raises an urgent issue. How swiftly your team responds, matters. It also matters if the outreach is personalized and consistent.

    With a well-built marketing tech stack, you can automate processes to ensure low wait times. Teams also benefit from AI-enabled features, such as Sprout’s Enhance by AI assist, for quick, customized responses that enable you to choose the right tone when you engage with messages on social media. For example, an agent or a member of your social team can use AI-generated options to lengthen or shorten their response to a direct message or adjust the tone to make it sound friendlier or more professional. This efficiency is valuable as your team grows along with your business.

    Sprout’s Enhance by AI assist capability helps you create quick, customized responses and choose the right tone when you engage with messages on social media.

    Consolidate data for more comprehensive insights

    A centralized marketing tech stack gives you wider, more comprehensive insights by combining data from disparate sources into a single source of intelligence. You can combine brand experience insights from your social listening data with your CRM data to get a 360-degree view of your customers and their preferences to refine your sales and marketing strategy.

    With Sprout’s Salesforce Integration, you can also personalize audience segments and customer journeys based on your social insights to tie your social presence to actual business results.

    With Sprout’s Salesforce Integration, you can personalize audience segments and customer journeys based on social insights to tie your social presence to actual business results.

    Get a competitive advantage

    Competitor analysis tools are an essential part of a robust marketing tech stack. They help you measure your brand sentiment and social presence for competitor benchmarking. The right tools in your tech stack let you use insights from social listening and sentiment analysis across networks to better understand customer experience, common customer grievances and preferences vs. your competitors.

    With Sprout’s competitor analysis features, you also get a side-by-side competitor comparison of key performance metrics across social, including share of voice, engagement, sentiment and impressions.

    Your martech stack must fit your business needs because what works for a startup may not work for an enterprise and vice versa. Read on to find out how to create a software combination that makes sense for your business.

    What should a strong martech stack include?

    An optimized martech stack must have tools to collect and analyze data from various sources so you can make informed decisions. It should help improve marketing campaigns, streamline workflows and personalize customer service.

    Here’s a look at the fundamental tools you need for success.

    Listicle highlighting the types of tools a marketing tech stack much have. The top three are attraction and acquisition tools, social media management tools and customer care tools.

    Attraction and acquisition tools

    Attraction and acquisition tools help you engage your target audience, drive quality traffic to relevant channels and convert them into customers. Tools for search engine optimization (SEO) and content marketing help you reach and resonate with the right people. Use them to optimize campaigns and continually assess and improve acquisition efforts to stay competitive.

    These tools include:

    • Advertising platforms (Google, Facebook ads)
    • SEO (Ahrefs, SEMrush)
    • Email marketing and landing page tools (ActiveCampaign, Klaviyo, Mailmunch)

    Social media management tools

    Social media drives broad business impact. And social media management tools enable a brand to deepen customer connections and conduct market research faster and more efficiently. You can automate tasks like content planning and scheduling, and get powerful brand and customer care insights to build customer trust and loyalty—all from a unified platform.

    Influencer marketing tools are an integral part of social marketing management, too. Case in point: More than 80% of marketers agree that influencers are essential to their overall social media strategy, per the Q3 2023 Sprout Pulse Survey.

    Ace influencer marketing strategies with tools like Sprout’s influencer marketing platform. Choose from thousands of vetted creators, manage contract negotiations, review and approve content, and track campaigns in real-time through one integrated system.

    Schedule a Demo Today

    Customer service tools

    The Sprout Social IndexTM found that in 2024, marketing and customer service teams will often share the responsibility of social customer care—putting cross-platform care tools on the radar for marketing leaders.

    Data visualization from the 2023 Sprout Social Index breaking down which teams will own the social customer care function in 2024.

    Customer service tools that streamline customer service workflows and have AI-driven personalized assistance are essential to prioritize and resolve issues fast. For example, Social Customer Care by Sprout Social helps teams deliver faster, personalized service with AI automation to ramp up customer care quickly. Agents get real-time alerts to answer high-priority messages and can prioritize tasks with the Case Management solution.

    They can also improve responses with additional context from integrations like Salesforce Service Cloud. According to The 2023 State of Social Media report, 88% of business leaders agree social media data and insights are critical to delivering exceptional customer care. Integrating your social tools, CRM and care tools connects your data for a holistic view of customer interactions to help you deliver seamless communication and consistent customer experiences across all touchpoints.

    Marketing analytics tools

    Marketing analytics and reporting tools like Google Analytics or Sprout’s Tableau BI Connector help you assess your marketing performance. They highlight your top-performing content, campaigns and messaging so you have data-backed insights to improve and pivot your marketing plans as needed.

    Merge your social data with key data streams with Sprout’s Tableau BI Connector in an omnichannel view and get comprehensive metrics and performance analytics for key business channels.

    Sprout's Tableau BI Connector integration gives you an omnichannel view of your for key business channels including comprehensive metrics and performance analytics.

    Marketing optimization tools

    Continuous improvement is the key to success, which is why monitoring metrics and performance consistently is important for fine-tuning your strategy to stay ahead of the competition. Optimization tools such as Unbounce and Optimizely make it a cinch to test campaigns and messaging. Add these tools to your martech stack to achieve a higher rate of successful campaigns.

    Unbounce's optimization tool helps you monitor metrics and performance for fine-tuning your marketing strategy.

     

    Team communication tools

    Last but not least, you need team communication tools to help communicate campaigns, strategy and the day-to-day happenings of your business. Internal tools like Slack and Zoom are great examples of such software, having become workplace staples, especially with the increase in remote teams.

    Teamwork app are crucial in a martech stack to help organize daily tasks such as researching, copy writing, editing ad designing.

    6 tips and considerations for building your marketing tech stack

    There are six essential factors to consider when building your martech stack to enhance productivity, communication, knowledge sharing and customer satisfaction. Here is a breakdown.

    1. Collaborate with other teams on your martech stack proposal

    It’s important to involve other revenue leaders from sales, service and success teams as you flesh out your marketing tech stack proposal. Use templates to assess tools and share analysis reports, like this scorecard template, to make comparison easier and ensure everyone’s on the same page. It’s also important to build a compelling case for social media technology so decision-makers see the value in your proposal.

    This cross-organizational collaboration ensures alignment between marketing efforts and revenue goals and also gives you insights into common goals. As a result, you create a cohesive martech stack that supports the entire customer lifecycle—from lead generation to after-sales—maximizing efficiency and driving revenue growth.

    2. Budget for free, freemium and paid tools alike

    You can build a surprisingly powerful tech stack combining free or freemium and paid tools. For example, free email designing software like Sendinblue can be a great addition to your marketing tech stack that includes a freemium version of an SEO tool like Semrush.

    When choosing a paid tool, ideally invest in one that scales alongside your business to avoid switching costs and integration challenges in the future. Implementing a new tool can lead to temporary operational disruptions and decreased productivity because of employee learning curves. A scalable tool ensures you don’t face these disruptions as your team grows. And the best tools have onboarding processes to prevent long implementations that slow you down.

    3. Consider all-in-one platforms

    All-in-one platforms in your marketing tech stack simplify operations by consolidating multiple tools into a single interface to reduce the complexity of software management. These tools also often have native integrations to ensure smooth communication and data flow between different modules. They enhance team productivity by enabling seamless navigation between different functionalities without switching between multiple platforms.

    With Sprout’s centralized social media management capability, manage all your social and online platforms including review sites and influencer campaigns, and streamline customer service.

    4. Look for integrations with existing tools

    Most SaaS solutions have native or third-party integrations to encourage connectivity to reduce bottlenecks. They also ensure your team isn’t drowning in notifications. For example, Slack integrates with tools like Asana and Google Drive to streamline collaboration and keep teammates in the loop without them having to leave the platform. Marketing teams can also easily connect with business intelligence and CRM tools to get business-critical insights and understand customer journeys and campaign performance.

    Double-check the integrations available before investing in any software to ensure all tools in your martech stack are compatible. See all Sprout integrations.

     

    Integrations are crucial for a successful marketing tech stack as seen by the Apollo app that integrates with most office tools.

    5. Assess “wants” versus “needs” when it comes to martech

    It’s important to distinguish between “wants” and “needs” when planning your marketing tech stack to allocate the right resources and align with business objectives. While it may be tempting to pursue flashy features, prioritize what’s essential to address core business needs and achieve strategic goals.

    Assess your teams’ requirements, pain points and desired outcomes when choosing software tools. This will help you focus on addressing genuine needs rather than wants, resulting in a martech stack that drives tangible results and efficiency in the long run.

    6. Consider the cost of onboarding and customer service

    Onboarding your team to an entirely new system can be time-consuming and daunting. Plus, frequent switching between apps disrupts your workflows and team performance.

    To overcome this challenge, opt for a software service provider that prioritizes customer success managers (CSMs) and offers 24/7 service, rather than merely a vendor, when building your marketing tech stack. By investing in a partner with dedicated CSMs and round-the-clock support, you get ongoing assistance tailored to your unique needs and smoother tool implementation and adoption.

    Reliable support also minimizes downtime and ensures prompt issue resolutions, which optimizes the value of your martech stack investment.

    What does your marketing tech stack look like?

    From increasing scalability to standing out versus competitors, your marketing tech stack makes all the difference. While there are numerous tools to choose from, once you find the right combination, you can amp up your marketing performance in no time.

    Need help choosing between apps? We’ve got you covered. Check out our list of the best digital marketing tools to help you grow.

    The post How to build a marketing tech stack that scales your business appeared first on Sprout Social.

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